Καθόλου δὲ ὅπερ ἐν νηῒ μὲν κυβερνήτης, ἐν ἅρματι δὲ ἡνίοχος, ἐν χορῶι δὲ κορυφαῖος, ἐν πόλει δὲ νομοθέτης, ἐν στρατοπέδῳ δὲ ἡγεμών, τοῦτο θεὸς ἐν κόσμῳ, πλὴν καθ’ ὅσον τοῖς μὲν καματηρὸν τὸ ἄρχειν πολυκίνητόν τε καὶ πολυμέριμνον, τῷ δὲ ἄλυπον ἄπονόν τε καὶ πάσης κεχωρισμένον σωματικῆς ἀσθενείας· ἐν ἀκινήτῳ γὰρ ἱδρυμένος πάντα κινεῖ καὶ περιάγει, ὅπου βούλεται καὶ ὅπως, ἐν διαφόροις ἰδέαις τε καὶ φύσεσιν, ὥσπερ ἀμέλει καὶ ὁ τῆς πόλεως νόμος ἀκίνητος ὢν ἐν ταῖς τῶν χρωμένων ψυχαῖς πάντα οἰκονομεῖ τὰ κατὰ τὴν πολιτείαν· ἐφεπόμενοι γὰρ αὐτῷ δηλονότι ἐξίασιν ἄρχοντες μὲν ἐπὶ τὰ ἀρχεῖα, θεσμοθέται δὲ εἰς τὰ οἰκεῖα δικαστήρια, βουλευταὶ δὲ καὶ ἐκκλησιασταὶ εἰς συνέδρια τὰ προσήκοντα, καὶ ὁ μέν τις εἰς τὸ πρυτανεῖον βαδίζει σιτησόμενος, ὁ δὲ πρὸς τοὺς δικαστὰς ἀπολογησόμενος, ὁ δὲ εἰς τὸ δεσμωτήριον ἀποθανούμενος. γίνονται δὲ καὶ δημοθοινίαι νόμιμοι καὶ πανηγύρεις ἐνιαύσιοι θεῶν τε θυσίαι καὶ ἡρώων θεραπεῖαι καὶ χοαὶ κεκμηκότων· ἄλλα δὲ ἄλλως ἐνεργούμενα κατὰ μίαν πρόσταξιν ἢ νόμιμον ἐξουσίαν σώζει τὸ τοῦ ποιήσαντος ὄντως ὅτι
πόλις δ’ ὁμοῦ μὲν θυμιαμάτων γέμει,
ὁμοῦ δὲ παιάνων τε καὶ στεναγμάτων, [Sophocles, Oed. Tyr. 4-5]
οὕτως ὑποληπτέον καὶ ἐπὶ τῆς μείζονος πόλεως, λέγω δὲ τοῦ κόσμου· νόμος γὰρ ἡμῖν ἰσοκλινὴς ὁ θεός, οὐδεμίαν ἐπιδεχόμενος διόρθωσιν ἢ μετάθεσιν, κρείττων δέ, οἶμαι, καὶ βεβαιότερος τῶν ἐν ταῖς κύρβεσιν ἀναγεγραμμένων.
(Pseudo-Aristotle, Peri Kosmou 400b7-31)
To sum up the matter, as is the steersman in the ship, the charioteer in the chariot, the leader in the chorus, law in the city, the general in the army, even so is God in the Universe; save that to them their rule is full of weariness and disturbance and care, while to him it is without toil or labour and free from all bodily weakness. For, enthroned amid the immutable, he moves and revolves all things, where and how he will, in different forms and natures; just as the law of a city, fixed and immutable in the minds of those who are under it, orders all the life of the state. For in obedience to it, it is plain, the magistrates go forth to their duties, the judges to their several courts of justice, the councillors and members of the assembly to their appointed places of meeting, and one man proceeds to his meals in the prytaneum, another to make his defence before the jury, and another to die in prison. So too the customary public feasts and yearly festivals take place, and sacrifices to the gods and worship of heroes and libations in honour of the dead. The various activities of the citizens in obedience to one ordinance or lawful authority are well expressed in the words of the poet,
And all the town is full of incense smoke,
And full of cries for aid and loud laments.
So must we suppose to be the case with that greater city, the universe. For God is to us a law, impartial, admitting not of correction or change, and better, methinks, and surer than those which are engraved upon tablets. (tr. Edward Seymour Forster)