XXXIII. (152) What is the advantage then of passing over all the mortal advantages of mortal man, and passing them by too, not in accordance with right reason, but as some do through their hesitation, or sluggishness, or inexperience; for everything is not honoured everywhere, but different things are esteemed by different persons. (153) On this account, Moses wishing to teach further, that they had become by correctness of reason inclined to despise what was said, adds to the words, “I will pass by,” the further description, “through your land.” For this is exceedingly necessary, that when surrounded by an abundance of those things which are usually accounted advantages, we should avoid being taken prisoners by any of the toils which are spread by each separate pleasure; and that like fire, we should be able at one onset to break through their attacks which are so continually armed against us. (154) The Israelites say then that they will pass by this way, but that they will not pass any longer through the fields and vineyards; for it would be doting simplicity to pass by all the plants in the soul worthy of cultivation and producing eatable fruit, that is to say virtuous discourses and praiseworthy actions. For it would be proper rather to remain, and to gather the fruit, and to feed on it to satiety. For nothing is more beautiful than an insatiable cheerfulness and amid perfect virtues, of which cheerfulness, the aforesaid vineyards are the symbol. (155) But we, on whom God pours and showers his fountains of good things from above, we drank from that cistern, and we were seeking scanty moisture beneath the earth, while the heaven was raining upon us, from above without ceasing, the more excellent food of nectar and ambrosia, far better than that celebrated in the fables of the poets.