whether it produces more gold, silver, copper, iron, lead, or clay.
There is more silver than gold, more copper than silver, more iron than copper, more lead than iron, and more clay than lead.
So judge for yourself which are more desirable and valuable, common things or rare things."
I answered, "Lord and master, the common things are cheap; it is the rare things that are valuable."
"All right," he replied, "so draw the logical conclusion: the person who has what is scarce has more reason to be pleased than the person who has what is plentiful.
It's the same with the judgment that I have promised: I will be pleased with the few who will be saved, because they are the ones who now praise and honor me and make my name known.
I will not be sad about the large number of people who will be lost, because even now they last no longer than a vapor; they disappear like fire and smoke; they catch fire, blaze up, and quickly go out."
Then I said to the earth, "Look at what you have done! When you gave birth to the rest of creation you gave birth to reason.
It would have been better if you had never been created. Then we humans would never have had the power of reasoning!
But as it is now, our reason grows up with us and then torments us, because we realize that we are going to die!
Compared to us who must bear this sorrow, the dumb animals must be happy.