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[5] Wherefore, if you are accustomed to marvel at my wisdom—and would that it were worthy of your estimate and of my cognomen1 —I am wise because I follow Nature as the best of guides and obey her as a god; and since she has fitly planned the other acts of life's drama, it is not likely that she has [p. 15] neglected the final act as if she were a careless playwright. And yet there had to be something final, and—as in the case of orchard fruits and crops of grain in the process of ripening which comes with time—something shrivelled, as it were, and prone to fall. But this state the wise man should endure with resignation. For what is warring against the gods, as the giants did, other than fighting against Nature?

1 Cato was called sapiens, Cic. Lael. 2. 6.

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