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Section 29

29. Suppose, however, that pleasure did not result from the good but there were something preceding pleasure and accounting for it, would not this be a thing to be embraced?

But when we say "to be embraced" we say "pleasure."

But what if accepting its existence, we think of that existence as leaving still the possibility that it were not a thing to be embraced?

This would mean the good being present and the sentient possessor failing, nonetheless, to perceive it.

It would seem possible, however, to perceive and yet be unmoved by the possession; this is quite likely in the case of the wiser and least dependent- and indeed it is so with the First, immune not merely because simplex, but because pleasure by acquisition implies lack.

But all this will become clear on the solution of our remaining difficulties and the rebuttal of the argument brought up against us. This takes the form of the question: "What gain is there in the Good to one who, fully conscious, feels nothing when he hears of these things, whether because he has no grasp of them but takes merely the words or because he holds to false values, perhaps being all in search of sense, finding his good in money or such things?"

The answer is that even in his disregard of the good proposed he is with us in setting a good before him but fails to see how the good we define fits into his own conception. It is impossible to say "Not that" if one is utterly without experience or conception of the "That"; there will generally have been, even, some inkling of the good beyond Intellection. Besides, one attaining or approaching the good, but not recognising it, may assure himself in the light of its contraries; otherwise he will not even hold ignorance an evil though everyone prefers to know and is proud of knowing so that our very sensations seek to ripen into knowledge.

If the knowing principle- and specially primal Intellectual-Principle- is valuable and beautiful, what must be present to those of power to see the Author and Father of Intellect? Anyone thinking slightingly of this principle of Life and Being brings evidence against himself and all his state: of course, distaste for the life that is mingled with death does not touch that Life Authentic.

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