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Full text of "Political Science Of The State"

THE STATE'S RELATIONS TO RELIGION.          471
so called, who are to have converse with them for their ad-
monition and their soul's safety. (908 £.-909 A. Comp.
xii., 968 A.) At the end of this five years' imprisonment,
if they should be found again to fall into the same insanity,
they are to suffer death. Of the worse portion of those who
deny a providence, and of those still more depraved persons
who think that the gods can be induced by offerings or purga-
tions to pass by their sins, he omits to speak. But there are
some, he says, belonging to the latter class, who practise
magic arts, evoke the dead, get an influence by their arts
over the living, and for money undertake to destroy private
persons, whole houses, and states ; these are to be put into
the dreariest of the prisons for life, and when they die to be
cast unburied beyond the borders. (909 C.)
The tenth book of the laws closes with a prohibition of
private sacred rites and sacred shrines, founded on the con-
f>sideration that they are the result of vows made in danger or
illness, or are intended to appease the anger of the gods
against crimes. A penalty for having such sacra privata is
to be inflicted until compliance with the law is effected.
Plato wished to have all proper instruction given to the
young, but never reached the conception of a church or the
stated public inculcation of morals and religion. His motives
in his religious laws were not merely drawn from the benefit
of the state, as if the protection of the gods could be secured
by prayers and festivals, but from the improvement of the
character of the community. He believed that faith in
superior beings who abhorred wrong was necessary not only
for the state's welfare but for the individual's perfection ; and
that religion was more than a support of morals—it was to
be supported for its own sake. No one could be good with-
out it. As for the rest, his plan of correcting unbelievers by
admonition and imprisonment is a pagan inquisition, only
somewhat milder than that of the Dominicans.
Cicero in the second of his books de legibus (§§ 6-27), treats'
Cicero's.       of laws  concerning  religion  after the manner
of Plato, first in a short proem showing the importance to