Of wisdom and foolishness

In a matter of religion (that is, of the worship and knowledge of God), they are less to be followed who forbid us to believe, making most ready professions of reason. For no one doubts that all men are either fools or wise. But now I call wise not clever and gifted men but those in whom there is, so much as may be in a man, the knowledge of man himself and of God most surely received, and a life and manners suitable to that knowledge; but all others, whatever be their skill or want of skill, whatever their manner of life, whether to be approved or disapproved, I would account in the number of fools. And, this being so, who of even moderate understanding will not clearly see that it is more useful and more healthful for fools to obey the precepts of the wise than to live by their own judgment? For everything that is done – if it be not rightly done – is a sin, nor can anything be rightly done which proceeds not from right reason.