XXXIV. (156) Moreover, should we while draining draughts stored up by the contrivance of men through distrust, seek a refuge and place of escape where the Saviour of the universe has opened to us his heavenly treasury for our use and enjoyment? For Moses, the hierophant, prays that “the Lord may open to us his good treasure, his heavenly one, to give us his rain,”42 and the prayers of the man who loves God are sure to obtain a hearing. (157) And what does he say who neither thinks the heaven, or the rain, or a cistern, or in fact anything whatever in all creation sufficient to nourish him, but who goes beyond all these things, and relating what he has suffered, says, “The God who has nourished me from my youth up.”43 Does not this man appear to you not to think all the collections of water under the earth put together worthy even of looking at? (158) Nor therefore would he drink out of a cistern to whom God gives draughts of unmixed wine; at one time, by the ministrations of some angel whom he has thought worthy to act as cupbearer, and at another time by his own means, placing no one between the giver and the receiver. (159) Let us then, without any delay, attempt to proceed by the royal road, since we think fit to pass by all earthly things; and the royal road is that of which there is not private individual in the world who is master, but he alone who is also the only true king. (160) And this is, as I said a little while ago, wisdom, by which alone suppliant souls can find a way of escaping to the uncreate God; for it is natural that one who goes without any hindrance along the royal road, will never feel weariness before he meets with the king. (161) But, then, those who have come near to him recognise his blessedness and their own deficiency; for Abraham, when he had placed himself very near to God, immediately perceived that he was but dust and ashes.44 (162) And let them turn away out of the royal road, neither to the right hand nor to the left, but let them advance along the middle of it; for any deviation in either direction is blameable, as that on the one side has a tendency to excess and that on the other side to deficiency; for the right hand is, in this instance, no less blameable than the left hand. (163) In the case of those who live according to impulse, the right hand is temerity and the left hand cowardice. As regards those who are illiberal in the management of money, on the right hand stands stinginess, and on the left hand extravagant prodigality; and those men, who are very subtle in calculating, judge craftiness to be desirable and simplicity to be a thing to be shunned. Again, some persons incline towards superstition as being placed on the right hand, and flee from impiety as a thing to be avoided on the left.