Now come: that thou mayst able be to know That minds and the light souls of all that live Have mortal birth and death, I will go on Verses to build meet for thy rule of life, Sought after long, discovered with sweet toil. But under one name I'd have thee yoke them both; And when, for instance, I shall speak of soul, Teaching the same to be but mortal, think Thereby I'm speaking also of the mind— Since both are one, a substance inter-joined. First, then, since I have taught how soul exists A subtle fabric, of particles minute, Made up from atoms smaller much than those Of water's liquid damp, or fog, or smoke, So in mobility it far excels, More prone to move, though strook by lighter cause Even moved by images of smoke or fog— As where we view, when in our sleeps we're lulled, The altars exhaling steam and smoke aloft— For, beyond doubt, these apparitions come To us from outward. Now, then, since thou seest, Their liquids depart, their waters flow away, When jars are shivered, and since fog and smoke Depart into the winds away, believe The soul no less is shed abroad and dies More quickly far, more quickly is dissolved Back to its primal bodies, when withdrawn From out man's members it has gone away. For, sure, if body (container of the same Like as a jar), when shivered from some cause, And rarefied by loss of blood from veins, Cannot for longer hold the soul, how then Thinkst thou it can be held by any air— A stuff much rarer than our bodies be? Besides we feel that mind to being comes Along with body, with body grows and ages. For just as children totter round about With frames infirm and tender, so there follows A weakling wisdom in their minds; and then, Where years have ripened into robust powers, Counsel is also greater, more increased The power of mind; thereafter, where already The body's shattered by master-powers of eld, And fallen the frame with its enfeebled powers, Thought hobbles, tongue wanders, and the mind gives way; All fails, all's lacking at the selfsame time. Therefore it suits that even the soul's dissolved, Like smoke, into the lofty winds of air; Since we behold the same to being come Along with body and grow, and, as I've taught, Crumble and crack, therewith outworn by eld. Then, too, we see, that, just as body takes Monstrous diseases and the dreadful pain, So mind its bitter cares, the grief, the fear; Wherefore it tallies that the mind no less Partaker is of death; for pain and disease Are both artificers of death,—as well We've learned by the passing of many a man ere now. Nay, too, in diseases of body, often the mind Wanders afield; for 'tis beside itself, And crazed it speaks, or many a time it sinks, With eyelids closing and a drooping nod, In heavy drowse, on to eternal sleep; From whence nor hears it any voices more, Nor able is to know the faces here Of those about him standing with wet cheeks Who vainly call him back to light and life. Wherefore mind too, confess we must, dissolves, Seeing, indeed, contagions of disease Enter into the same. Again, O why, When the strong wine has entered into man, And its diffused fire gone round the veins, Why follows then a heaviness of limbs, A tangle of the legs as round he reels, A stuttering tongue, an intellect besoaked, Eyes all aswim, and hiccups, shouts, and brawls, And whatso else is of that ilk?—Why this?— If not that violent and impetuous wine Is wont to confound the soul within the body? But whatso can confounded be and balked, Gives proof, that if a hardier cause got in, 'Twould hap that it would perish then, bereaved Of any life thereafter. And, moreover, Often will some one in a sudden fit, As if by stroke of lightning, tumble down Before our eyes, and sputter foam, and grunt, Blither, and twist about with sinews taut, Gasp up in starts, and weary out his limbs With tossing round. No marvel, since distract Through frame by violence of disease. Confounds, he foams, as if to vomit soul, As on the salt sea boil the billows round Under the master might of winds. And now A groan's forced out, because his limbs are griped, But, in the main, because the seeds of voice Are driven forth and carried in a mass Outwards by mouth, where they are wont to go, And have a builded highway. He becomes Mere fool, since energy of mind and soul Confounded is, and, as I've shown, to-riven, Asunder thrown, and torn to pieces all By the same venom. But, again, where cause Of that disease has faced about, and back Retreats sharp poison of corrupted frame Into its shadowy lairs, the man at first Arises reeling, and gradually comes back To all his senses and recovers soul. Thus, since within the body itself of man The mind and soul are by such great diseases Shaken, so miserably in labour distraught, Why, then, believe that in the open air, Without a body, they can pass their life, Immortal, battling with the master winds? And, since we mark the mind itself is cured, Like the sick body, and restored can be By medicine, this is forewarning too That mortal lives the mind. For proper it is That whosoe'er begins and undertakes To alter the mind, or meditates to change Any another nature soever, should add New parts, or readjust the order given, Or from the sum remove at least a bit. But what's immortal willeth for itself Its parts be nor increased, nor rearranged, Nor any bit soever flow away: For change of anything from out its bounds Means instant death of that which was before. Ergo, the mind, whether in sickness fallen, Or by the medicine restored, gives signs, As I have taught, of its mortality. So surely will a fact of truth make head 'Gainst errors' theories all, and so shut off All refuge from the adversary, and rout Error by two-edged confutation. And since the mind is of a man one part, Which in one fixed place remains, like ears, And eyes, and every sense which pilots life; And just as hand, or eye, or nose, apart, Severed from us, can neither feel nor be, But in the least of time is left to rot, Thus mind alone can never be, without The body and the man himself, which seems, As 'twere the vessel of the same—or aught Whate'er thou'lt feign as yet more closely joined: Since body cleaves to mind by surest bonds. Again, the body's and the mind's live powers Only in union prosper and enjoy; For neither can nature of mind, alone of self Sans body, give the vital motions forth; Nor, then, can body, wanting soul, endure And use the senses. Verily, as the eye, Alone, up-rended from its roots, apart From all the body, can peer about at naught, So soul and mind it seems are nothing able, When by themselves. No marvel, because, commixed Through veins and inwards, and through bones and thews, Their elements primordial are confined By all the body, and own no power free To bound around through interspaces big, Thus, shut within these confines, they take on Motions of sense, which, after death, thrown out Beyond the body to the winds of air, Take on they cannot—and on this account, Because no more in such a way confined. For air will be a body, be alive, If in that air the soul can keep itself, And in that air enclose those motions all Which in the thews and in the body itself A while ago 'twas making. So for this, Again, again, I say confess we must, That, when the body's wrappings are unwound, And when the vital breath is forced without, The soul, the senses of the mind dissolve,— Since for the twain the cause and ground of life Is in the fact of their conjoined estate. Once more, since body's unable to sustain Division from the soul, without decay And obscene stench, how canst thou doubt but that The soul, uprisen from the body's deeps, Has filtered away, wide-drifted like a smoke, Or that the changed body crumbling fell With ruin so entire, because, indeed, Its deep foundations have been moved from place, The soul out-filtering even through the frame, And through the body's every winding way And orifice? And so by many means Thou'rt free to learn that nature of the soul Hath passed in fragments out along the frame, And that 'twas shivered in the very body Ere ever it slipped abroad and swam away Into the winds of air. For never a man Dying appears to feel the soul go forth As one sure whole from all his body at once, Nor first come up the throat and into mouth; But feels it failing in a certain spot, Even as he knows the senses too dissolve Each in its own location in the frame. But were this mind of ours immortal mind, Dying 'twould scarce bewail a dissolution, But rather the going, the leaving of its coat, Like to a snake. Wherefore, when once the body Hath passed away, admit we must that soul, Shivered in all that body, perished too. Nay, even when moving in the bounds of life, Often the soul, now tottering from some cause, Craves to go out, and from the frame entire Loosened to be; the countenance becomes Flaccid, as if the supreme hour were there; And flabbily collapse the members all Against the bloodless trunk—the kind of case We see when we remark in common phrase, "That man's quite gone," or "fainted dead away"; And where there's now a bustle of alarm, And all are eager to get some hold upon The man's last link of life. For then the mind And all the power of soul are shook so sore, And these so totter along with all the frame, That any cause a little stronger might Dissolve them altogether.—Why, then, doubt That soul, when once without the body thrust, There in the open, an enfeebled thing, Its wrappings stripped away, cannot endure Not only through no everlasting age, But even, indeed, through not the least of time? Then, too, why never is the intellect, The counselling mind, begotten in the head, The feet, the hands, instead of cleaving still To one sole seat, to one fixed haunt, the breast, If not that fixed places be assigned For each thing's birth, where each, when 'tis create, Is able to endure, and that our frames Have such complex adjustments that no shift In order of our members may appear? To that degree effect succeeds to cause, Nor is the flame once wont to be create In flowing streams, nor cold begot in fire. Besides, if nature of soul immortal be, And able to feel, when from our frame disjoined, The same, I fancy, must be thought to be Endowed with senses five,—nor is there way But this whereby to image to ourselves How under-souls may roam in Acheron. Thus painters and the elder race of bards Have pictured souls with senses so endowed. But neither eyes, nor nose, nor hand, alone Apart from body can exist for soul, Nor tongue nor ears apart. And hence indeed Alone by self they can nor feel nor be. And since we mark the vital sense to be In the whole body, all one living thing, If of a sudden a force with rapid stroke Should slice it down the middle and cleave in twain, Beyond a doubt likewise the soul itself, Divided, dissevered, asunder will be flung Along with body. But what severed is And into sundry parts divides, indeed Admits it owns no everlasting nature. We hear how chariots of war, areek With hurly slaughter, lop with flashing scythes The limbs away so suddenly that there, Fallen from the trunk, they quiver on the earth, The while the mind and powers of the man Can feel no pain, for swiftness of his hurt, And sheer abandon in the zest of battle: With the remainder of his frame he seeks Anew the battle and the slaughter, nor marks How the swift wheels and scythes of ravin have dragged Off with the horses his left arm and shield; Nor other how his right has dropped away, Mounting again and on. A third attempts With leg dismembered to arise and stand, Whilst, on the ground hard by, the dying foot Twitches its spreading toes. And even the head, When from the warm and living trunk lopped off, Keeps on the ground the vital countenance And open eyes, until 't has rendered up All remnants of the soul. Nay, once again: If, when a serpent's darting forth its tongue, And lashing its tail, thou gettest chance to hew With axe its length of trunk to many parts, Thou'lt see each severed fragment writhing round With its fresh wound, and spattering up the sod, And there the fore-part seeking with the jaws After the hinder, with bite to stop the pain. So shall we say that these be souls entire In all those fractions?—but from that 'twould follow One creature'd have in body many souls. Therefore, the soul, which was indeed but one, Has been divided with the body too: Each is but mortal, since alike is each Hewn into many parts. Again, how often We view our fellow going by degrees, And losing limb by limb the vital sense; First nails and fingers of the feet turn blue, Next die the feet and legs, then o'er the rest Slow crawl the certain footsteps of cold death. And since this nature of the soul is torn, Nor mounts away, as at one time, entire, We needs must hold it mortal. But perchance If thou supposest that the soul itself Can inward draw along the frame, and bring Its parts together to one place, and so From all the members draw the sense away, Why, then, that place in which such stock of soul Collected is, should greater seem in sense. But since such place is nowhere, for a fact, As said before, 'tis rent and scattered forth, And so goes under. Or again, if now I please to grant the false, and say that soul Can thus be lumped within the frames of those Who leave the sunshine, dying bit by bit, Still must the soul as mortal be confessed; Nor aught it matters whether to wrack it go, Dispersed in the winds, or, gathered in a mass From all its parts, sink down to brutish death, Since more and more in every region sense Fails the whole man, and less and less of life In every region lingers. And besides, If soul immortal is, and winds its way Into the body at the birth of man, Why can we not remember something, then, Of life-time spent before? why keep we not Some footprints of the things we did of, old? But if so changed hath been the power of mind, That every recollection of things done Is fallen away, at no o'erlong remove Is that, I trow, from what we mean by death. Wherefore 'tis sure that what hath been before Hath died, and what now is is now create. Moreover, if after the body hath been built Our mind's live powers are wont to be put in, Just at the moment that we come to birth, And cross the sills of life, 'twould scarcely fit For them to live as if they seemed to grow Along with limbs and frame, even in the blood, But rather as in a cavern all alone. (Yet all the body duly throngs with sense.) But public fact declares against all this: For soul is so entwined through the veins, The flesh, the thews, the bones, that even the teeth Share in sensation, as proven by dull ache, By twinge from icy water, or grating crunch Upon a stone that got in mouth with bread. Wherefore, again, again, souls must be thought Nor void of birth, nor free from law of death; Nor, if, from outward, in they wound their way, Could they be thought as able so to cleave To these our frames, nor, since so interwove, Appears it that they're able to go forth Unhurt and whole and loose themselves unscathed From all the thews, articulations, bones. But, if perchance thou thinkest that the soul, From outward winding in its way, is wont To seep and soak along these members ours, Then all the more 'twill perish, being thus With body fused—for what will seep and soak Will be dissolved and will therefore die. For just as food, dispersed through all the pores Of body, and passed through limbs and all the frame, Perishes, supplying from itself the stuff For other nature, thus the soul and mind, Though whole and new into a body going, Are yet, by seeping in, dissolved away, Whilst, as through pores, to all the frame there pass Those particles from which created is This nature of mind, now ruler of our body, Born from that soul which perished, when divided Along the frame. Wherefore it seems that soul Hath both a natal and funeral hour. Besides are seeds of soul there left behind In the breathless body, or not? If there they are, It cannot justly be immortal deemed, Since, shorn of some parts lost, 'thas gone away: But if, borne off with members uncorrupt, 'Thas fled so absolutely all away It leaves not one remainder of itself Behind in body, whence do cadavers, then, From out their putrid flesh exhale the worms, And whence does such a mass of living things, Boneless and bloodless, o'er the bloated frame Bubble and swarm? But if perchance thou thinkest That souls from outward into worms can wind, And each into a separate body come, And reckonest not why many thousand souls Collect where only one has gone away, Here is a point, in sooth, that seems to need Inquiry and a putting to the test: Whether the souls go on a hunt for seeds Of worms wherewith to build their dwelling places, Or enter bodies ready-made, as 'twere. But why themselves they thus should do and toil 'Tis hard to say, since, being free of body, They flit around, harassed by no disease, Nor cold nor famine; for the body labours By more of kinship to these flaws of life, And mind by contact with that body suffers So many ills. But grant it be for them However useful to construct a body To which to enter in, 'tis plain they can't. Then, souls for self no frames nor bodies make, Nor is there how they once might enter in To bodies ready-made—for they cannot Be nicely interwoven with the same, And there'll be formed no interplay of sense Common to each. Again, why is't there goes Impetuous rage with lion's breed morose, And cunning with foxes, and to deer why given The ancestral fear and tendency to flee, And why in short do all the rest of traits Engender from the very start of life In the members and mentality, if not Because one certain power of mind that came From its own seed and breed waxes the same Along with all the body? But were mind Immortal, were it wont to change its bodies, How topsy-turvy would earth's creatures act! The Hyrcan hound would flee the onset oft Of antlered stag, the scurrying hawk would quake Along the winds of air at the coming dove, And men would dote, and savage beasts be wise; For false the reasoning of those that say Immortal mind is changed by change of body— For what is changed dissolves, and therefore dies. For parts are re-disposed and leave their order; Wherefore they must be also capable Of dissolution through the frame at last, That they along with body perish all. But should some say that always souls of men Go into human bodies, I will ask: How can a wise become a dullard soul? And why is never a child's a prudent soul? And the mare's filly why not trained so well As sturdy strength of steed? We may be sure They'll take their refuge in the thought that mind Becomes a weakling in a weakling frame. Yet be this so, 'tis needful to confess The soul but mortal, since, so altered now Throughout the frame, it loses the life and sense It had before. Or how can mind wax strong Coequally with body and attain The craved flower of life, unless it be The body's colleague in its origins? Or what's the purport of its going forth From aged limbs?—fears it, perhaps, to stay, Pent in a crumbled body? Or lest its house, Outworn by venerable length of days, May topple down upon it? But indeed For an immortal perils are there none. Again, at parturitions of the wild And at the rites of Love, that souls should stand Ready hard by seems ludicrous enough— Immortals waiting for their mortal limbs In numbers innumerable, contending madly Which shall be first and chief to enter in!— Unless perchance among the souls there be Such treaties stablished that the first to come Flying along, shall enter in the first, And that they make no rivalries of strength! Again, in ether can't exist a tree, Nor clouds in ocean deeps, nor in the fields Can fishes live, nor blood in timber be, Nor sap in boulders: fixed and arranged Where everything may grow and have its place. Thus nature of mind cannot arise alone Without the body, nor exist afar From thews and blood. But if 'twere possible, Much rather might this very power of mind Be in the head, the shoulders or the heels, And, born in any part soever, yet In the same man, in the same vessel abide. But since within this body even of ours Stands fixed and appears arranged sure Where soul and mind can each exist and grow, Deny we must the more that they can have Duration and birth, wholly outside the frame. For, verily, the mortal to conjoin With the eternal, and to feign they feel Together, and can function each with each, Is but to dote: for what can be conceived Of more unlike, discrepant, ill-assorted, Than something mortal in a union joined With an immortal and a secular To bear the outrageous tempests? Then, again, Whatever abides eternal must indeed Either repel all strokes, because 'tis made Of solid body, and permit no entrance Of aught with power to sunder from within The parts compact—as are those seeds of stuff Whose nature we've exhibited before; Or else be able to endure through time For this: because they are from blows exempt, As is the void, the which abides untouched, Unsmit by any stroke; or else because There is no room around, whereto things can, As 'twere, depart in dissolution all,— Even as the sum of sums eternal is, Without or place beyond whereto things may Asunder fly, or bodies which can smite, And thus dissolve them by the blows of might. But if perchance the soul's to be adjudged Immortal, mainly on ground 'tis kept secure In vital forces—either because there come Never at all things hostile to its weal, Or else because what come somehow retire, Repelled or ere we feel the harm they work, For, lo, besides that, when the frame's diseased, Soul sickens too, there cometh, many a time, That which torments it with the things to be, Keeps it in dread, and wearies it with cares; And even when evil acts are of the past, Still gnaw the old transgressions bitterly. Add, too, that frenzy, peculiar to the mind, And that oblivion of the things that were; Add its submergence in the murky waves Of drowse and torpor.