XXIX. (88) Again, they say that Jacob and Esau, the former being the ruler, and governor, and master, and Esau being the subject and the slave, had their several estates appointed to them while they were still in the world. For God, the creator of all living things, is thoroughly acquainted with all his works, and before he has completely finished them he comprehends the faculties with which they will hereafter be endowed, and altogether he foreknows all their actions and passions. For when Rebecca, that is the patient soul, proceeds to ask an oracle from God, the answers are, “Two nations are in thy womb, and two people shall come forth from thy bowels, and one people shall be stronger than the other people, and the elder shall save the Younger.”{43}{#ge 25:23.} (89) For that which is wicked and void of reason is, by its own nature, a slave in the eye of God; but that which is good and endowed with reason and better, is looked upon as powerful and free by him. And this is the case not only when each of these two different characters is perfect in the soul, but when there is a doubt on the subject; for, altogether, a slight breeze of virtue shows power and supremacy, and not freedom only, and on the other hand, the existence of even an ordinary degree of vice enslaves the reason, even though not by any means as yet come to maturity.

XXX. (90) Again, why did the same Jacob when Joseph brought him his two sons, the elder being Manasses and the younger Ephraim, change his hands, and put his right hand upon the younger brother Ephraim, and his left hand upon the elder brother Manasses? And when Joseph thought this a grievous thing, and thought that his father had unintentionally made a mistake in the matter of the imposition of hands, Jacob said, “I did not make a mistake, but I knew, my son, I knew that this one should be a father of a nation, and should be exalted; but, nevertheless, his younger brother shall be greater than He.”{44}{#ge 48:1.} (91) What, then, must we say but this? That two natures, both utterly necessary, were created in the soul by God, one memory and the other recollection, of which memory is the best and recollection the worst. For the one has its perceptions fresh and harmonious and clear, so that it never errs through ignorance. But forgetfulness does, in every case, precede recollection, which is but a mutilated and blind thing. (92) And, although recollection is worse, it is nevertheless older than memory, which is better than it, and is also conjoined with and inseparable from it; for when we are first introduced to any art we are unable at once to make ourselves masters of all the speculations which bear upon it. Being, therefore, affected with forgetfulness at first, we subsequently recollect, until from a frequent recurrence of forgetfulness and a frequent recurrence of recollection, memory at last prevails in us in a lasting manner. On which account it is younger than recollection, for it is later in its existence. (93) And Ephraim is a symbolical name, being, to be interpreted, memory. For, being interpreted, it means the fertility of the soul of the man fond of learning, which brings forth its appropriate fruit when it has confirmed its speculations, and preserves them in its memory. But Manasses, being interpreted, means recollection, for he is spoken of as one who has been translated from forgetfulness, and he who escapes from forgetfulness does unquestionably recollect. Most correctly, therefore, does that supplanter of the passions and practiser of virtue, Jacob, give his right hand to that prolific memory, Ephraim, while he places Manasses, or recollection, in the second rank. (94) And, Moses, also, of all those who sacrificed the passover, praised those who sacrificed first most, because they having crossed over from the passions, that is to say, from Egypt, remained by the passage, and did not hasten any more to the passions which they had quitted; and the others he also thinks worthy to be placed in the second rank, for, having turned back, they retraced their steps, and, as if they had forgotten what it became them to do, they again hastened to do the same things; but the former men continued in their course without turning back. Therefore, Manasses, who is born of forgetfulness, resembles those who were the second party to sacrifice the passover; but the fertile Ephraim is like those who had sacrificed previously.