VII. (17) Seeing therefore that Joseph has wholly entered into the hollow valleys of the body and of the outward senses, he invites him to come forth out of his holes, and to bring forward the free air of perseverance, going as a pupil to those who were formerly practisers of it themselves, and who are now become teachers of it; but he who appears to himself to have made progress in this, is found to be in error; “For a man,” says the holy scripture, “found him wandering in the Plain,”{10}{#ge 37:15.} showing that it is not labour by itself, intrinsically considered, but labour with skill, that is good. (18) For as it is of no use to study music in an unmusical manner, nor grammar without any attention to its true principles, nor, in short, any art whatever in a manner either devoid of art or proceeding on false rules of art, but each art must be cultivated on a strict obedience to its rules; so also it is of no avail to apply one’s self to the study of wisdom in a crafty spirit, or to the study of temperance in a nigardly and illiberal frame of mind, nor to courage rashly, nor to piety superstitiously, nor, in fact, to any other science which is in accordance with virtue in an unscientific manner. For all these steps are confessedly erroneous. In reference to which, a law has been delivered to us “to pursue what is just in a just Manner,”{11}{#de 16:20.} that we may cultivate justice and every other virtue by those works which are akin to it, and not by those which are contrary to it. (19) If, therefore, you see any one desiring meat or drink at an unseasonable time, or repudiating baths or ointments at the proper season, or neglecting the proper clothing for his body, or lying on the ground and sleeping in the open air, and by such conduct as this, pretending to a character for temperance and self-denial, you, pitying his self-deception, should show him the true path of temperance, for all the practices in which he has been indulging are useless and profitless labours, oppressing both his soul and body with hunger and all sorts of other hardships. (20) Nor if anyone, using washings and purifications soils his mind, but makes his bodily appearance brilliant; nor if again out of his abundant wealth he builds a temple with brilliant artments of all kinds, at a vast expense; nor if he offers up catombs and never ceases sacrificing oxen; nor if he adorns temples with costly offerings, bringing timber in abundance, and skilful ornaments, more valuable than nay of gold or silver, (21) still let him not be classed among pious men, for he also has wandered out of the way to piety, looking upon ceremonious worship as equivalent to sanctity, and giving gifts to the incorruptible being who will never receive such offerings, and flattering him who can never listen to flattery, who loves genuine worship (and genuine worship is that of the soul which offers the only sacrifice, plain truth), and rejects all spurious ministrations, and those are spurious which are only displays of external riches and extravagance.