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Section 32

32. But the memory of friends, children, wife? Country too, and all that the better sort of man may reasonably remember?

All these, the one [the lower man] retains with emotion, the authentic man passively: for the experience, certainly, was first felt in that lower phase from which, however, the best of such impressions pass over to the graver soul in the degree in which the two are in communication.

The lower soul must be always striving to attain to memory of the activities of the higher: this will be especially so when it is itself of a fine quality, for there will always be some that are better from the beginning and bettered here by the guidance of the higher.

The loftier, on the contrary, must desire to come to a happy forgetfulness of all that has reached it through the lower: for one reason, there is always the possibility that the very excellence of the lower prove detrimental to the higher, tending to keep it down by sheer force of vitality. In any case the more urgent the intention towards the Supreme, the more extensive will be the soul's forgetfulness, unless indeed, when the entire living has, even here, been such that memory has nothing but the noblest to deal with: in this world itself, all is best when human interests have been held aloof; so, therefore, it must be with the memory of them. In this sense we may truly say that the good soul is the forgetful. It flees multiplicity; it seeks to escape the unbounded by drawing all to unity, for only thus is it free from entanglement, light-footed, self-conducted. Thus it is that even in this world the soul which has the desire of the other is putting away, amid its actual life, all that is foreign to that order. It brings there very little of what it has gathered here; as long as it is in the heavenly regions only, it will have more than it can retain.

The Hercules of the heavenly regions would still tell of his feats: but there is the other man to whom all of that is trivial; he has been translated to a holier place; he has won his way to the Intellectual Realm; he is more than Hercules, proven in the combats in which the combatants are the wise.