'Earthly love is not for the material form but for the beauty manifested upon it...The soul taking that outflow from the Divine is stirred; filled with a holy ecstasy, stung by desire, it becomes Love. Before that, even Divine Mind with all Its Loveliness did not stir the soul; for until it takes the light of the Good the soul lies supine before It, cold, unquickened. But when there enters into it a glow from the Divine, the soul gathers strength, spreads true wings, and however distracted by its nearer environing, speeds its buoyant way to something greater to its memory; so long as there exists anything loftier than the near, its very true nature bears it upwards, lifted by the giver of that love. Beyond Divine mind passes, but beyond Good it cannot, for nothing stands above That.'
'The Heart of Plotinus: The Essential Enneads'
By Aldis Uzdavinys (Editor), Jay Bregman (Foreword)
Drawing parallels with other traditions, Uždavinys emphasizes that Plotinus’ philosophy was not a purely mental or rational exercise, but a complete way of life incorporating the spiritual virtues. Plotinus is widely regarded as the founder of the school of Neo-Platonism and this book provides an introduction to his teachings and an informative commentary on the Enneads. Also included is a commentary by Plotinus’ leading disciple, Porphyry (c. 233-305 A.D.), on an enigmatic passage from Homer’s epic, the Odyssey.