XIII. On which account Moses says moreover, “He led him forth out of doors and said to him, look up to heaven, and count the Stars,”{23}{#ge 15:5.} which we should be glad indeed to see thoroughly and to comprehend; since we are insatiable in our love for notice, but nevertheless we are unable to measure the riches of God. (40) Nevertheless thanks be to that magnificent and bounteous God because he says that he has implanted in the soul seeds as brilliant, as visible at a distance, and as eternally new as the stars in heaven. And it is not a superfluous addition when after having said “he led him forth,” he subjoins “out of doors,” for who is ever led forth in doors? But perhaps what he says here has some such meaning as this; he led him forth into the outermost place, not into some place or other out of doors, which might be surrounded by other places.

For as in dwelling houses the man’s character is outside the woman’s chamber, and the inner chamber is within, and the vestibule is outside of the hall but within the doorway, so also in the case of the soul that which is within one thing may be outside of some other thing. (41) This then is the sense in which we must understand this passage; he led the mind forth into the outermost place, for what was the use of his leaving the body and fleeing to the outward senses; and what would have been the use of his discarding the outward senses, and subjecting that which exists to the voice? For it is fitting that the mind which is about to be led forth, and to be dismissed in freedom should be emancipated from all corporeal necessities, from all the organs of the outward senses, from all sophistical ratiocinations, and plausible persuasions, and last of all from itself.