[231a] And I claim that I ought not to be refused what I ask because I am not your lover. For lovers repent of the kindnesses they have done when their passion ceases; but there is no time when non-lovers naturally repent. For they do kindnesses to the best of their ability, not under compulsion, but of their free will, according to their view of their own best interest. And besides, lovers consider the injury they have done to their own concerns on account of their love, and the benefits they have conferred, and they add the trouble they have had, [231b] and so they think they have long ago made sufficient return to the beloved; but non-lovers cannot ever neglect of their own affairs because of their condition, nor can they take account of the pains they have been at in the past, nor lay any blame for quarrels with their relatives; and so, since all these evils are removed, there is nothing left for them but to do eagerly what they think will please the beloved. [231c] And besides, if lovers ought to be highly esteemed because they say they have the greatest love for the objects of their passion, since both by word and deed they are ready to make themselves hated by others to please the beloved, it is easy to see that, if what they say is true, whenever they fall in love afterwards, they will care for the new love more than for the old and will certainly injure the old love, if that pleases the new. And how can one reasonably entrust matters of such importance to one who is afflicted with a disease [231d] such that no one of any experience would even try to cure it? For they themselves confess that they are insane, rather than in their right mind, and that they know they are foolish, but cannot control themselves; and so, how could they, when they have come to their senses, think those acts were good which they determined upon when in such a condition? And if you were to choose the best from among your lovers, your choice would be limited to a few; whereas it would be made from a great number, if you chose the most congenial from non-lovers, [231e] so that you would have a better chance, in choosing among many, of finding the one most worthy of your affection. Now if you are afraid of public opinion, and fear that if people find out your love affair you will be disgraced,
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