In one of his letters to his brother Quintus, Marcus Tullius Cicero makes the following observation:
The more virtuous a man is, the less he considers others to be evil. [Letters to Quintus I.4.12]
The idea is the same as that expressed in an old Korean proverb, which I remember from my residence in that country many years ago: “In the eyes of a Buddha, everything is Buddha-like; but to a pig’s eyes, everything appears piggish.” The proverb sounds much more beautiful, of course, in the original Korean; but the point remains valid. A great spirit—a soul imbued with a certain nobility—finds it difficult to comprehend, or accept, venality and baseness displayed by others. Such a man can be trained to recognize and avoid these things, but they will always retain an air of incomprehensibility to him, as if they were fundamentally anathema to his soul. Why is this?