Page:Auerbach-Spinozanovel.djvu/453

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431
SCARS AND PURIFICATION.

"It is not as the Jew that I come to you. He knows you no more. The physician stands before you; his calling is to help all, to advise without question whomsoever it may be. I counsel you, leave your native town; danger menaces you. Your heart is sick as long as you are here. No man can bear to wander among his own people, thrust forth from them like a corpse by those with whom he once lived in fellowship. I know you do not mean to insult those who take your continued stay as an insult. And one thing more. Ephraim Cardoso has joined another party of emigrants for Brazil. Chisdai wished to join them, but they refused him. No one will associate with him, he is avoided like one plague-stricken. No one will forgive him for being your accuser."

"But I forgive him."

"That does not help him, nor does it help you. I am afraid he broods over a dreadful deed, for he seldom leaves home in the daytime, but sneaks out at night. Let me warn you; I do it in kindness to you. Ay, I will recall my words, and say I come to you as a Jew. You have not scoffed at our religion before the Sanhedrim, you have spoken as beseemed a thinker. I myself will have naught to do with thought that is not founded on faith; but a Jew appeals to you; be just to us, as to others. You are more pious than you let yourself appear, than your reason permits you to confess."