Though selfishness hath defiled the whole man, yet sensual pleasure is the chief part of its interest, and therefore by the senses it commonly works, and these are the doors and the windows by which iniquity entereth into the soul.
Sordid and infamous sensuality, the most dreadful evil that issued from the box of Pandora, corrupts every heart, and eradicates every virtue. Fly! wherefore dost thou linger? Fly, cast not one look behind thee; nor let even thy thought return to the accursed evil for a moment.
Those wretches who never have experienced the sweets of wisdom and virtue, but spend all their time in revels and debauches, sink downward day after day, and make their whole life one continued series of errors.
I have read of a glass kept in an idol temple in Smyrna that would make beautiful things appear deformed, and deformed things appear beautiful; carnal sense is such a glass to wicked men, it makes heavenly things which are beautiful to appear deformed, and earthly things which are deformed to appear beautiful.
For, in the language of Heraclitus, the virtuous soul is pure and unmixed light, springing from the body as a flash of lightning darts from the cloud. But the soul that is carnal and immersed in sense, like a heavy and dank vapor, can with difficulty be kindled, and caused to raise its eyes heavenward.
If any sensual weakness arise, we are to yield all our sound forces to the overthrowing of so unnatural a rebellion; wherein how can we want courage, since we are to deal against so feeble an adversary, that in itself is nothing but weakness? Nay, we are to resolve that if reason direct it, we must do it, and if we must do it, we will do it; for to say I cannot is childish, and I will not is womanish.