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Section 27

27. But of what soul; of that which we envisage as the more divine, by which we are human beings, or that other which springs from the All?

Memory must be admitted in both of these, personal memories and shared memories; and when the two souls are together, the memories also are as one; when they stand apart, assuming that both exist and endure, each soon for gets the other's affairs, retaining for a longer time its own. Thus it is that the Shade of Hercules in the lower regions- this "Shade," as I take it, being the characteristically human part- remembers all the action and experience of the life, since that career was mainly of the hero's personal shaping; the other souls [soulphases] going to constitute the joint-being could, for all their different standing, have nothing to recount but the events of that same life, doings which they knew from the time of their association: perhaps they would add also some moral judgement.

What the Hercules standing outside the Shade spoke of we are not told: what can we think that other, the freed and isolated, soul would recount?

The soul, still a dragged captive, will tell of all the man did and felt; but upon death there will appear, as time passes, memories of the lives lived before, some of the events of the most recent life being dismissed as trivial. As it grows away from the body, it will revive things forgotten in the corporeal state, and if it passes in and out of one body after another, it will tell over the events of the discarded life, it will treat as present that which it has just left, and it will remember much from the former existence. But with lapse of time it will come to forgetfulness of many things that were mere accretion.

Then free and alone at last, what will it have to remember?

The answer to that question depends on our discovering in what faculty of the soul memory resides.

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