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[176b] and to escape is to become like God, so far as this is possible; and to become like God is to become righteous and holy and wise. But, indeed, my good friend, it is not at all easy to persuade people that the reason generally advanced for the pursuit of virtue and the avoidance of vice—namely, in order that a man may not seem bad and may seem good—is not the reason why the one should be practiced and the other not; that, I think, is merely old wives' chatter, as the saying is.

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