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Chapter XLIV.—Ordinate and Inordinate.

Then the old man:  “I should like to hear from you why those useless things are made by the will of that supreme mind?”  “If,” said he, “it is fully manifest to you that there is in them the work of mind and reason, then you will not hesitate to say also why they were made, and to declare that they have been rightly made.”  To this the old man answered:  “I am not able, my son, to say that those things which seem formed by art are made by mind, by reason of other things which we see to be done unjustly and disorderly in the world.”  “If,” says Aquila, “those things which are done disorderly do not allow you say that they are done by the providence of God, why do not those things which are done orderly compel you to say that they are done by God, and that irrational nature cannot produce a rational work?  For it is certain, nor do we at all deny, that in this world some things are done orderly, and some disorderly.  Those things, therefore, that are done rationally, believe that they are done by providence; but those that are done irrationally and inordinately, that they befall naturally, and happen accidentally.  But I wonder that men do not perceive, that where there is sense things may be done ordinately and inordinately, but where there is no sense neither the one nor the other can be done; for reason makes order, and the course of order necessarily produces something inordinate, if anything contrary happen to disturb order.”  Then the old man:  “This very thing I wish you to show me.”

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