„Men have no right to complain that they are naturally feeble and short-lived, or that it is chance and not merit that decides their destiny.... What guides and controls human life is man's soul.... If men pursued good things with the same ardour with which they seek what is unedifying and unprofitable--often, indeed, actually dangerous and pernicious--they would control events instead of being controlled by them, and would rise to such heights of greatness and glory that their mortality would put on immortality.
As man consists of body and soul, all our possessions and pursuits partake of the nature of one or the other. Thus personal beauty and great wealth, bodily strength, and all similar things, soon pass away; the noble achievements of the intellect are immortal like the soul itself. Physical advantages, and the material gifts of fortune, begin and end; all that comes into existence, perishes; all that grows, must one day decay. But the soul, incorruptible and eternal, is the ruler of mankind; it guides and controls everything, subject itself to no control. Wherefore we can but marvel the more at the unnatural conduct of those who abandon themselves to bodily pleasures and pass their time in riotous living and idleness, neglecting their intelligence--the best and noblest element in man's nature--and letting it become dull through lack of effort; and that, too, when the mind is capable of so many different accomplishments that can win the highest distinction.“