Page:Auerbach-Spinozanovel.djvu/451

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
429
SCARS AND PURIFICATION.

virtues and the causes thereof as thoroughly as possible, and to fill his mind with the joy which only springs from true knowledge. Whoever observes this diligently—for it is not difficult—and then practises it, will best regulate his actions according to the law of reason."

Thus the friends raised and animated each other in their penetration of the nature of intellect and investigation of its laws of action, and Spinoza had in his own life proof sufficient of the theory, which he maintained with irrefutable reasoning, that the passions alone disturb the universal well-being and the internal harmony of the individual; but reason reconciles them.

This pleasant, lively intercourse was interrupted by Oldenburg's departure for England. Spinoza, Meyer and de Vries accompanied him to Schreyerstoren (the weeping gate), which takes its name from the tears of the deserted for the departure of their friends. With a heavy heart Spinoza tore himself from his friend's arms, and watched him sadly as the waves bore him away. Meyer and de Vries yet remained to him; but the one was too young to be wholly his friend, their age and experience were too unequal; the other was married. A hundred relations and circumstances make it impossible for a husband and father to devote himself to a friend with the same undivided attention. In Oldenburg he had lost his most faithful friend.