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Date: c. 501 B.C.

"A dry gleam of light is the wisest and best soul."

— Heraklitus (fl. 504-1 BCE)

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Date: 360 B.C.

"For it does not admit of exposition like other branches of knowledge; but after much converse about the matter itself and a life lived together, suddenly a light, as it were, is kindled in one soul by a flame that leaps to it from another, and thereafter sustains itself."

— Plato (427 BC - 347 BC)

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Date: c. 43 AD

"Those things that men's untutored hearts revere, sunk in the bondage of their bodies--jewels, gold, silver, and polished tables, huge and round--all these are earthly dross, for which the untainted spirit, conscious of its own nature, can have no love, since it is itself light and uncumbered, wa...

— Seneca, Lucius Annaeus (c. 4 B.C. - A.D. 65)

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Date: 413-427

"And this grand and wonderful instinct belongs to men alone of all animals; for, though some of them have keener eyesight than ourselves for this world's light, they cannot attain to that spiritual light with which our mind is somehow irradiated, so that we can form right judgments of all things."

— St. Augustine (354-430)

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Date: 1273

"Therefore it seems to be united to the body by means of an incorruptible body, and such would be some heavenly light, which would harmonize the elements, and unite them together."

— St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)

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Date: 1273

"Others said it is united to the body by means of light, which, they say, is a body and of the nature of the fifth essence; so that the vegetative soul would be united to the body by means of the light of the sidereal heaven; the sensible soul, by means of the light of the crystal heaven; and the...

— St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)

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Date: 1273

"And according to this the active intellect is required for understanding, in like manner and for the same reason as light is required for seeing."

— St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)

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Date: 1273

"Wherefore the human soul derives its intellectual light from Him, according to Ps. 4:7, 'The light of Thy countenance, O Lord, is signed upon us.'"

— St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)

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Date: 1273

"On the contrary, The Philosopher says (De Anima iii, 5) that the active intellect is as a light."

— St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)

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Date: w. c. 1425-1440

"Then wolle the chambir of my thought trewly / Of plesaunce take a light in eche parté / Such ioy wolle him aray so fresshe and hy / That waken must myn heuy hert slepé / Out of his fowle and sluggissh slogardé."

— Charles [d'Orléans], duke of Orléans (1394-1465)

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The Mind is a Metaphor is authored by Brad Pasanek, Assistant Professor of English, University of Virginia.