divine was supposed toinhere in them. The"images" and
or"groves" mentioned in theBible were of this character.So was the "idol in a grove,"made by Queen Maachah, aswell as the simulacrumswhich, as Herodotus states,the Egyptian women carriedat the festivals.4. Compare
Gospelaccording to Matthew,
XI,12. "From the days of Johnthe Baptist till now, thekingdom of heaven isforced, and they who areviolent seize it."Suppose, then, we say, as certain individuals have affirmed, that thegods are pure mental essences and that the dæmons are psychicbeings participating of mind.
The fact remains, nevertheless, thatthe pure mental essences are not to be charmed or mingled withthings of sense, and that the supplications which are offered areentirely foreign to this purity of mental substance.
But on the otherhand the things that are offered are offered as to sensitive andpsychic natures.Are gods, then, separated from dæmons by the distinction of bodiedand unbodied? If, however, only the gods are incorporeal, howshall the Sun, the Moon, and the visible luminaries in the sky beaccounted as gods?How is it that some of them are givers of good and others bringevil?What is the bond of union that connects the divinities in the skythat have bodies with the gods that are unbodied?The gods that are visible (in the sky) being included in the samecategory with the invisible, what distinguishes the dæmons fromthe visible, and likewise the invisible, gods?
2. The superior races and their manifestations
5. Xenokrates, who was adisciple of Plato, himself taught these doctrines. Heconsidered the heavens asdivine and that the substanceof the divine nature wasmind pure and absolute. Healso described the stars as"visible divinities." Thedæmons were depicted as of a psychic nature,subordinate to that of thegods, and therefore subjectto emotion and perturbationlike human beings, while atthe same time sharing in adegree in the power andintelligence of the gods.6. Greek, the mind or"rational soul," the essenceor principle of intelligencewhich transcends theunderstanding or reasoningfaculty, and is capable of knowing truth intuitivelyand instinctively from being