Philo, Every Good Man Is Free

LCL 363: 10-11

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[445] 1 I. Ὁ μὲν πρότερος λόγος ἦν ἡμῖν, ὦ Θεόδοτε, περὶ τοῦ δοῦλον εἶναι πάντα φαῦλον, ὡς καὶ διὰ πολλῶν καὶ εἰκότων καὶ ἀληθῶν ἐπιστωσάμεθα· οὑτοσὶ δ᾿ ἐκείνου συγγενής, ὁμοπάτριος καὶ ὁμομήτριος ἀδελφὸς καὶ τρόπον τινὰ δίδυμος, καθ᾿ ὃν 2ἐπιδείξομεν, ὅτι πᾶς ὁ ἀστεῖος ἐλεύθερος. τὸν μὲν οὖν τῶν Πυθαγορείων ἱερώτατον θίασον λόγος ἔχει μετὰ πολλῶν καὶ ἄλλων καλῶν καὶ τοῦτ᾿ ἀναδιδάσκειν, “ταῖς λεωφόροις μὴ βαδίζειν ὁδοῖς,” οὐχ ἵνα κρημνοβατῶμεν—οὐ γὰρ ποσὶ κάματον παρήγγελλεν—, ἀλλ᾿ αἰνιττόμενος διὰ συμβόλου τὸ μήτε λόγοις μήτ᾿ ἔργοις δημώδεσι καὶ πεπατημένοις 3χρῆσθαι. ὅσοι δὲ φιλοσοφίαν γνησίως ἠσπάσαντο, καταπειθεῖς γενόμενοι τῷ προστάγματι νόμον αὐτὸ μᾶλλον δὲ θεσμὸν ἰσούμενον χρησμῷ ὑπετόπησαν, δόξας δ᾿ ἀγελαίους ὑπερκύψαντες ἀτραπὸν ἄλλην ἐκαινοτόμησαν ἄβατον1 ἰδιώταις λόγων


Every Good Man is Free

Every Good Man is Free

I. Our former treatise, Theodotus, had for its theme1 “every bad man is a slave” and established it by many reasonable and indisputable arguments.a The present treatise is closely akin to that, its full brother, indeed, we may say its twin, and in it we shall show that every man of worth is free.b Now we are told2 that the saintly company of the Pythagoreans teaches among other excellent doctrines this also, “walk not on the highways.”c This does not mean that we should climb steep hills—the school was not prescribing foot-weariness—but it indicates by this figure that in our words and deeds we should not follow popular and beaten tracks. All genuine votaries of3 philosophy have obeyed the injunction, divining in it a law, or rather super-law,d equivalent to an oracle. Rising above the opinions of the common herd they have opened up a new pathway, in which the outside world can never tread, for studying and discerning

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.philo_judaeus-every_good_man_is_free.1941