Any man will rightly be valued but slightly If he is feared on account of his irrational words; A speaker utters his speech sensibly If his speaking tongue desires to join with it The power of reason, and his mind avoids lies; If he refuses to live together in concord with his fellows, One among many, and behaves himself senselessly, His life in commons will become odious to his fellows. Humble manners normally cement close ties; Marginal behavior sunders social bonds. But if you have proofs, you should adduce them At your pleasure to serve as apt support For the statements you made earlier with a serious face, So you suitably support your assertions.
[1.] It seems to me, Brother, I replied, that your contradictory statements have made you far more brazenly superfluous than usual. Lacking the purity of logic or truth, you are no less tardily circumspect when you do not blush to deny the immortality of man’s soul, unique among animals, even though you grant that the prerogative of rationality is granted to man alone among the animals. Nor can I imagine that you would dare to deny it, were it not that you absurdly affect delirious or insane notions; instead, reason alone, a precious thing without price, causes man to become like, or in some measure equal, the highest spirits or angels.
[2.] Brother, in order that I might, to the best of my ability, attend to your words and intent, graciously and without any fear of abhorrent squabbling, I will try to put forward at least some of the arguments which I have learned for the immortality of the human soul. If you are willing, we will begin by adducing a trivial and meretriciously commonplace example of the durability of man’s soul, even an apparent proof of its immortality. In fact, the matter has long been known to men through a frequent and familiar experience. To speak of a true commonplace, when anyone who has