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Section 18

18. There remains still something to be said on the question whether the soul uses deliberate reason before its descent and again when it has left the body.

Reasoning is for this sphere; it is the act of the soul fallen into perplexity, distracted with cares, diminished in strength: the need of deliberation goes with the less self-sufficing intelligence; craftsmen faced by a difficulty stop to consider; where there is no problem their art works on by its own forthright power.

But if souls in the Supreme operate without reasoning, how can they be called reasoning souls?

One answer might be that they have the power of deliberating to happy issue, should occasion arise: but all is met by repudiating the particular kind of reasoning intended [the earthly and discursive type]; we may represent to ourselves a reasoning that flows uninterruptedly from the Intellectual-Principle in them, an inherent state, an enduring activity, an assertion that is real; in this way they would be users of reason even when in that overworld. We certainly cannot think of them, it seems to me, as employing words when, though they may occupy bodies in the heavenly region, they are essentially in the Intellectual: and very surely the deliberation of doubt and difficulty which they practise here must be unknown to them There; all their act must fall into place by sheer force of their nature; there can be no question of commanding or of taking counsel; they will know, each, what is to be communicated from another, by present consciousness. Even in our own case here, eyes often know what is not spoken; and There all is pure, every being is, as it were, an eye, nothing is concealed or sophisticated, there is no need of speech, everything is seen and known. As for the Celestials [the Daimones] and souls in the air, they may well use speech; for all such are simply Animate [= Beings].

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