The Perfect Sermon, or

The Asclepius


1. That, then, from which the whole Cosmos is formed, consisteth of Four Elements—Fire, Water, Earth, and Air; Cosmos [itself is] one, [its] Soul [is] one, and God is one.

Now lend to me the whole of thee,—all that thou can’st in mind, all that thou skill’st in penetration.

For that the Reason of Divinity may not be known except by an intention of the senses like to it.

’Tis likest to the torrent’s flood, down-dashing headlong from above with all-devouring tide; so that it comes about, that by the swiftness of its speed it is too quick for our attention, not only for the hearers, but also for the very teachers.

2. [II. M.] Heaven, then, God Sensible, is the director of all bodies; bodies’ increasings and decreasings are ruled by Sun and Moon.

But He who is the Ruler of the Heaven, and of its Soul as well, and of all things within the Cosmos,—He is God, who is the Maker of all things.

For from all those that have been said above, o’er which the same God rules, there floweth forth a flood of all things streaming through the Cosmos and the Soul, of every class and kind, throughout the Nature of [all] things.

The Cosmos hath, moreover, been prepared by God as the receptacle of forms of every kind.

Forth-thinking Nature by these kinds of things, He hath extended Cosmos unto Heaven by means of the Four Elements,—all to give pleasure to the eye of God.

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