GENUI TE

10/2015
 D Vautier

ex utero ante luciferum genui te

Before the morning star I brought you into existence from the womb
Psalm 109


So there are about three ways of looking at souls.

1)  For Christians the answer is that the soul is immortal created at the moment of conception and sticks around forever after that.

2)  Others believe the soul starts our sometime when the body gets conscious then evaporates after death.  I think these would be called materialists or something.

3)  Then you can believe that God created all souls and keeps them around forever.

Psalm 109 suggests the third idea and i kind of like it.  So why would an infinite God have to go to all the trouble of creating souls all the time.  Just do them all at once and be done with it.  Jewish tradition has it that the Guf ha-Briyo or Hall of Souls contains all the raw materials and that a baby gets in-souled sometime from this vast depository.

 

 

 

The Soul Theory

With regard to the soul theory, there are three kinds of teachers in the world:

- The first teacher teaches the existence of an eternal ego-entity that outlasts death: He is the eternalist.

- The second teacher teaches a temporary ego-entity which becomes annihilated at death: He is the materialist.

- The third teacher teaches neither an eternal nor a temporary ego-entity: He is the Buddha.

I was just browsing on Wikipedia when I came across an article on the Guf, or t, the Treasury

[Illustration: Doves suffused in radiance, Die Bucher der Bibel, E.M. Lilien]

Well of Souls, which entered pop consciousness with the 1988 apocalyptic horror film, The Seventh Sign, starring Demi Moore. The entry was very peculiar and had already been flagged as needing some attention, so I took a turn at tweaking it. This is more or less what I wrote:

The word Guf is derived from Hebrew for "body/corpse". The Guf can also be referred to as the Otzer (Hebrew for "treasury"). It is the source of every human soul. In some traditions the Guf is located in the celestial plane of Aravot, other times it is located beneath God's Throne of Glory, which resides "above" Aravot. Though some cite Isa. 57:16 as

 

 

eatheris Virgilian forsan (short for forsitan) is perhaps a good way to deal with past trauma.  The word means “maybe, perhaps, could’a, would’a, should’a, if, who knows, whatever” and it's very context can change the meaning. 

Virgid experiences can be remembered later as not being, well not quite so bad really, so everybody just cheer up because in a few years when we are in a bar drinking somewhere, we will recall these adventures with lighter hearts and have a good laugh about it.

Beginning at line 200 of book 1 of the Aeneid we read:

O socii—neque enim ignari sumus ante malorum—

O passi graviora, dabit deus his quoque finem.Vos et

Scyllaeam rabiem penitusque sonantis

accestis scopulos, vos et Cyclopea saxa

experti:

 

revocate animos, maestumque timorem
mittite:

Listen up. We are certainly not unaware of the bad things that’s happened lately in addition to all the worse things that happened even before that, but I have no doubt that god will put an end to this string of hard luck.  You have stood up to the whirlpool with her noisy currents and dealt with those weird rock formations (Cyclopian is a type of stonework but he actually had to avoid them).

 

So revive your spirits, men, and get rid of these fears

 

Then he presents us with this neat little aside that is a sure cure for PTSD. So short and sweet.  

 

forsan et haec olim meminisse iuvabit

He then continues

Per varios casus, per tot discrimina rerum

tendimus in Latium; sedes ubi fata quietas

ostendunt; illic fas regna resurgere Troiae.

Durate, et vosmet rebus servate secundis.

 

 

After all, maybe these experiences can be remembered later in a happier way.

 

 

Through all these troubles and these dangerous

times,We will get to Rome, where everything’s going to be fine. Troy will rise again, etc, etc, etc.

 

So Virgil comes up with something brilliant by sneaking the Forsam between two rather verbose passages.  Here’s the thought.

 

  1. The usual human can experience some pretty rough times, I certainly did.
  2. How the mind deals with unpleasant things depends on DNA and attitude.
  3. Time and distance softens the impact of bad experience.
  4. We never can totally erase a bad memory but we trivialize it by remembering it cheerfully.