labor on the earth and to have need of those clouds. But before sin God had made the green of the field and food, and we said that this expression signified the invisible creature. God watered it by an interior spring, speaking to its intellect, so that it did not receive words from the outside, as rain from the aforementioned clouds. Rather it was satisfied from its own spring, that is, by the truth flowing from its interior.
The Spring Watering the Earth Taken Allegorically, and
What Pride Is
6. "For a spring came up," it says, "from the earth and watered the whole face of the earth." 22. [It came up] from that earth, of which Scripture said, "You are my hope, my portion in the land of the living." 23. When the soul was being watered by such a spring, it had not yet thrust forth its inmost parts through pride. For "the beginning of man's pride is to turn away from God." 24. And as it swelled out into external things through pride, the soul ceased to be watered by the inner spring. Hence, it is rightly mocked by the words of the prophet and told, "Why is earth and ashes proud? Because in its life it has thrust forth its inmost parts." 25. For what is it to be proud but to have abandoned the secret place of con‐____________________
In R 1.10.3 Augustine says, "Also I seem to have incorrectly called those words prophetic which read, 'Why is earth and ashes proud?' (Sir 10.9), since they are not found in the book of an author whom we are certain should be called a prophet." Though Sirach is not in the strict sense called a prophet, the whole Old Testament is referred to as the Law and the prophets and was, moreover, regarded as prefiguring the New Testament.