] If there was a God, you say, we would know it; we would
know that it is for that reason that we believe [in] Him, because we feel Him
although we do not see Him. For in His works and in all the movements of
nature we see His virtue present when He sends us thunder, or lightning, or
beautiful weather. And do not find it at all strange, atheists
, if you do not see
God in the manner that you would wish to.
[12L] All is stirred and moved by the winds, and nevertheless you do not see
it [the wind]. Even the sun, which makes all visible, is as if invisible ; its rays
dazzle us, and if we stop to contemplate it, it will make us lose our sight. And
will you be able to sustain the gaze of He who lights the sun and who is the
source of light? What, you want to see God with your eyes of flesh, and you
cannot see only that soul that makes you speak and animates you?
Answer me, atheists: why do you move the limbs of your body with such
ease? You will say that it is because we have within ourselves a principle [12R]
of all these movements: “I want to.” And this is true, in a sense; but if I press you
to make me understand this principle, you will not hesitate to tell me that it is
your will. There you are, then, certain of something that you have never seen
and that has never fallen within your senses ; if you have seen it, tell us what
color it is, and what its form
is. Therefore it is without reason, man of flesh and
Marcus Minucius Felix (d. ca. 250) was an early Christian apologist, author of the
treatise Octavius. https://www.britannica.com/biography/Marcus-Minucius-Felix
The alternate spelling of Minutius seems to have been current in the period our
was writing (as a very quick reference, here’s an English translation from
1703 that spells his name with a T:
Q6AEIVDAP - v=onepage&q&f=false)
The MS has, here and at a few other points in this chapter, hatees where athees is
clearly meant. They would be pronounced exactly the same way, though, and there
are several other instances of this kind of homophonic switching (e.g. ce for se).
This, in addition to the absence of punctuation, suggests to me that this MS (or the
original of which it is a fair copy) was taken down by dictation. Is that something
the Team has thought of / may or may not be relevant?
(Hatées is a real word—perfect passive participle of hâter, “to hasten,”
feminine plural—but it definitely doesn’t fit here contextually.)
Figure again (see note 5).