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[621c] And it will save us1 if we believe it, and we shall safely cross the River of Lethe, and keep our soul unspotted from the world.2 But if we are guided by me we shall believe that the soul is immortal and capable of enduring all extremes of good and evil, and so we shall hold ever to the upward way and pursue righteousness with wisdom always and ever, that we may be dear to ourselves3 and to the gods both during our sojourn here and when we receive our reward,

1 Phaedo 58 Bἔσωσε τε καὶ αὐτὸς ἐσώθη. σώζειν is here used in its higher sense, approaching the idea of salvation, not as in Gorg. 511 C f., 512 D-E, Laws 707 D, where Plato uses it contemptuously in the tone of “whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it.”

2 Cf. James i. 27, Phaedo 81 B, 2Peter iii. 14, and the Emperor Julian's last speech “animum . . . immaculatum conservavi.” Cf. Marius the Epicurean, pp. 15-16: “A white bird, she told him once, looking at him gravely, a bird which he must carry in his bosom across a crowded public place his own soul was like that.”

3 Cf. Laws 693 Bἑαυτῇ φίλην, Rep. 589 B, Horace, Epist. i. 3. 29 “si nobis vivere cari.” Jowett's “dear to one another” misses the point. Cf. my review of Lemercier, Les Pensées de Marc-Aurèle, in Class. Phil. vii. p. 115: “In iii. 4, in fine, the words οἵγε οὐδὲ αὐτοὶ ἑαυτοῖς ἀρέσκονται are omitted because ‘le gens que méprise Marc-Aurèle sont loin de mépriser eux-mêmes.’ That is to forget that Seneca's ‘omnis stultitia fastidio laborat sui’ is good Stoic doctrine, and that the idea that only the wise and good man can be dear to himself is found in the last sentence of Plato's Republic.” Cf. also Soph. OC 309 τίς γὰρ ἐσθλὸς οὐχ αὑτῷ φίλος;.

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