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Plotino - Tratado 28,15 (IV, 4, 15) — A questão da temporalidade: as almas não estão no tempo

Enéada IV, 4, 15

quinta-feira 5 de maio de 2022, por Cardoso de Castro

Cap 15 a 17: Dificuldades relativas à alma e à temporalidade

  • Cap 15: A questão da temporalidade: as almas não estão no tempo
  • Cap 16: A questão da sucessão: ela existe nos produtos da alma, mas não nela
  • Cap 17: A questão da sucessão das razões na alma: mais a alma é submetida a um princípio único, melhor ela é

Míguez

15. Mas he aquí una dificultad contra lo que ahora decimos: si la eternidad se da en la inteligencia y el tiempo en el alma — pues afirmamos que el tiempo sólo tiene existencia en relación con la actividad del alma y que, además, salió de ella — , ¿cómo la actividad del alma no se divide con el tiempo y, al volver sobre el pasado, no engendra a la vez la memoria en el alma del universo? Porque claro está que situamos la identidad en lo eterno y la diversidad en el tiempo; de otro modo, la eternidad y el tiempo, serian la misma cosa, si no atribuyésemos a las almas ningún cambio en sus actos. ¿Acaso se dará por bueno que nuestras almas admiten el cambio y cualquier otra falta que nosotros situamos en el tiempo, en tanto el alma del universo, que engendra el tiempo, queda colocada fuera de él? Pues bien; sea esto así. Pero, ¿cómo es que engendra el tiempo y no en cambio la eternidad? Lo que ella engendra, tendremos que contestar, no es realmente eterno, sino que está comprendido en el tiempo. Y las almas no se dan por entero en el tiempo, sino tan sólo sus afecciones y sus acciones. Todas las almas son eternas y el tiempo es algo posterior a ellas. Mas, lo que está en el tiempo es inferior al tiempo mismo, porque el tiempo debe abarcar necesariamente lo que se encuentra en él, como cuando se habla de lo que está en el lugar y en el número.

Bouillet

XV. Nous avons encore à résoudre une question relative à ce que nous venons de discuter. Si l’éternité se rapporte à l’Intelligence et le temps à l’Âme (car nous disons que l’existence du temps est liée à l’action de l’Âme et qu’il en dépend (37)), comment le temps peut-il être divisé, avoir un passé, sans que l’action de l’Âme soit elle-même divisée, sans que son retour sur le passé constitue en elle la mémoire? En effet, l’éternité implique identité, et le temps, diversité : autrement, si nous supposons qu’il n’y ait pas changement dans les actes de l’Âme, le temps n’aura rien qui le distingue de l’éternité. Dirons-nous que nos âmes, étant sujettes au changement et à l’imperfection, sont dans le temps, tandis que l’Âme universelle engendre le temps sans y être elle-même ?

Admettons que l’Âme universelle ne soit pas dans le temps: pourquoi engendre-t-elle le temps plutôt que l’éternité? C’est que les choses qu’elle engendre sont comprises dans le temps au lieu d’être éternelles. Les autres âmes ne sont pas non plus dans le temps : il n’y a d’elles dans le temps que leurs passions et leurs actions. En effet, les âmes elles-mêmes sont éternelles ; le temps leur est donc postérieur. D’un autre côté, ce qui est dans le temps est moindre que le temps, puisque celui-ci doit embrasser tout ce qui est dans le temps, comme Platon   dit qu’il embrasse ce qui est dans le nombre et dans le lieu (38).

Guthrie

HOW CAN TIME BE DIVIDED WITHOUT IMPLYING DIVISION OF THE SOUL’S ACTION?

15. We still have to solve one question bearing on the above discussion. If eternity relate to Intelligence, and time to the Soul — for we have stated that the existence of time is related to the actualization of the Soul, and depends therefrom — how can time be divided, and have a past, without the Soul’s action itself being divided, without her reflection on the past constituting memory in her? Indeed, eternity implies identity, and time implies diversity; otherwise, if we suppose there is no change in the actualizations of the Soul, time will have nothing to distinguish it from eternity. Shall we say that our souls, being subject to change and imperfection, are in time, while the universal Soul begets time without herself being in it ?

IN TIME ARE ACTIONS AND REACTIONS OF THE SOUL; BUT NOT THE SOUL HERSELF.

Let us admit that the universal Soul is not in time; why should she beget time rather than eternity? Because the things she begets are comprised within time, instead of being eternal. Neither are the other souls within time; nothing of them, except their "actions and reactions" (Stoic terms). Indeed, the souls themselves are eternal; and therefore time is subsequent to them. On the other hand, what is in time is less than time, since time must embrace all that is within it, as Plato   says, that time embraces all that is in number and place.

MacKenna

15. But there is a difficulty affecting this entire settlement: Eternity is characteristic of the Intellectual-Principle, time of the soul - for we hold that time has its substantial being in the activity of the soul, and springs from soul - and, since time is a thing of division and comports a past, it would seem that the activity producing it must also be a thing of division, and that its attention to that past must imply that even the All-Soul has memory? We repeat, identity belongs to the eternal, time must be the medium of diversity; otherwise there is nothing to distinguish them, especially since we deny that the activities of the soul can themselves experience change.

Can we escape by the theory that, while human souls - receptive of change, even to the change of imperfection and lack - are in time, yet the Soul of the All, as the author of time, is itself timeless? But if it is not in time, what causes it to engender time rather than eternity?

The answer must be that the realm it engenders is not that of eternal things but a realm of things enveloped in time: it is just as the souls [under, or included in, the All-Soul] are not in time, but some of their experiences and productions are. For a soul is eternal, and is before time; and what is in time is of a lower order than time itself: time is folded around what is in time exactly as - we read - it is folded about what is in place and in number.