Chapter 184 The Great Gospel of John, Book 8

The difference between epicures and cynics from a spiritual point of view (20/32)

1. Now Kado said: "Yes, Lord and Master, regarding the words and lessons that You have given us, I have a question that seems very important to me. If it is allowed to bother You with a question I would very gladly like to open my mouth.

2. Look, o good Savior, Lord and Master, according to what You said, You have explained to us extremely clearly how harmful the Epicurism is for the life of the soul, so that we have really taken firm resolution to withhold ourselves from it forever. But besides Epicurus, we still have also another sage of a totally different direction. That is Diogenes from Kyne, who deeply despises the whole world and its temptations, beauties and treasures and even this earthly life.

3. He is the complete opposite of Epicurus, and neither him nor one of his disciples believe in the immortality of the human soul. The feeling of being mortal does not give them any anguish or fear, but they all can hardly wait for the moment that they will be no more. And still they are very honest, good and helpful people, and they keep strictly to the promises that they once made. Their food is so meager and simple as possible. They despise every comfort, every beauty, and live very chaste and modest. Yes, they even honor the gods and acknowledge their goodness, wisdom and might, but they do not thank them for anything and despise most deeply every form of reward they could expect from one or the other deity. Eternal non-existence is their desire. Every manner of existence and life they regard as an unbearable burden and torment.

4. Well now, as far as their actions are concerned, these men are almost completely what a person would be according to Your teaching. What are they actually missing, so that they can become what we have become by Your mercy? And when they die, will their souls continue to live after the death of their body, and then how, happy or unhappy? I have always given these strange people my attention, although I truly could never find myself in their teaching as being authoritative. Lord and Master, give us also an explanation about this, and also about the manner in which they could be converted to Your teaching."

5. I said: "Yes, My now dear friends, it is even more difficult to bring these kind of people on the right way of life than the epicures, because they have no love for life. The epicures have surely a lot of love for life, however this is self-love, and so a material love that brings death. But if they will change it by the right faith - as is now the case with you - in an only true God, in love for Him and for fellowman, then the epicures are undeniably much better of than the cynics who are bored of life.

6. However, if those can be converted to the true faith in the only true God, then by that, also the love for Him and fellowman will come to life, and consequently also for themselves, because God, who is the purest and eternal love, resides, because of the living faith, in the heart of man, and thereby He changes everything in man into love and life.

7. But as said, such people are difficult to convert, on the Earth as well as in the spirit world, because they are lacking the love for life. But once they are converted, then they are true heroes in faith, in love and in actions, for they have this advantage over other people that they possess self-denial, patience and a great measure of humility by which they can control all material love that lives in the flesh, and can progress with determination on the way to the light, which is much more difficult with other people.

8. When cynics die unconverted, their souls still continue to live eternally, despite their desire for non-existence, which of course they find not very pleasant. For the rest, they do not experience any torment or pain, but they live exactly as they have lived on this world. However, in the spirit world they are also often visited by angels and as much as possible enlightened without affecting their free will. But much love, wisdom, effort, patience and persistence is needed for that.

9. Besides, there are only few people of this kind, and therefore they also will difficultly be able to spoil the other people on a large scale as the extremely numerous great and small epicures can do who are everywhere and live their selfish life, and they hardly think about God because of their pursue for a good life and they absolutely do not notice a poor fellowman, except when that person can work for a small salary to the advantage of the epicure.

10. By his example of a luxury life, an epicure spoils many people. The one part, who are wealthy only strive to have also such a good life, and the person who is not wealthy will be filled with envy and vexation, for he cannot live as those who are wealthy. Therefore, an epicure is much worse than a cynic. Now, with this, I have answered your question and someone else can now ask something."

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