XXVII. (148) We must also inquire what the meaning of the expression, “He went with Lot,”{75}{#ge 12:4.} is. Now, the name Lot, being interpreted, means “declination;” and the mind declines or inclines, at one time rejecting what is good, and at another time what is evil. And both these declinations are often seen in one and the same thing. For there are some hesitating and wavering people who incline to both sides in turn, like a ship which is tossed about by different winds, or like the different sides of a scale, being unable to rest firmly on one thing; people whom one cannot praise even when they turn to the better side, for they are influenced by impulse, and not by deliberate meaning. (149) Now, of these men Lot is a spectator, who Moses here says went with the lover of wisdom. But it was very well that when he began to accompany him he should unlearn ignorance, and should never again return to it. But still he goes with him, not in the hope of deriving improvement from an imitation of a better man, but with a view of persecuting him also with a counter attraction and allurements in an opposite direction, and of leading him where there was a chance of his falling. (150) And a proof of this is, that the one, having fallen back again into his ancient disease, departs, having been taken prisoner by those enemies who are in the soul; but the other, having guarded against all his designs, concealed in ambuscade, took every imaginable care to live at a distance from him. But the separate habitation he will arrange hereafter, but not yet. For at present, his speculations, as would be likely to be the case with a man who has but lately begun to apply himself to divine contemplation, have a want of solidity and steadiness in them. But when they have become more compact, and are established on a firmer footing, then he will be able to separate from himself the alluring and flattering disposition as an irreconcileable enemy, and one difficult to subdue: (151) for this is that disposition which attaches itself to the soul in such a manner as to be difficult to shake off, hindering it from proceeding swiftly on its progress towards virtue. This, too, when we leave Egypt, that is to say, the whole of the district connected with the body, being anxious to unlearn our subjection to the passions, in accordance with the language and precepts of the prophet Moses, follows us close, checking and impeding our zeal in the departure, and out of envy causing delay to the rapidity of setting forth; (152) for it is said, “And a great mixed multitude went up with them, and sheep, and oxen, and very much Cattle.”{76}{#ex 12:38.} But this mixed multitude, if one is to speak the plain truth, are the cattle-like and irrational doctrines of the soul.