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Plotino - Tratado 49,15 (V, 3, 15) — O Uno «dá» o que ele não é

Enéada V, 3, 15

terça-feira 14 de junho de 2022, por Cardoso de Castro

    

Cap 11-15: O Intelecto   conhecente e pensante e o Uno   além do conhecimento e do pensamento

    

Míguez

15. Pero, ¿cómo nos las ha dado? ¿Las poseía o no las poseía? Porque, ¿cómo pudo dárnoslas si no las poseía? Y si realmente las posee, entonces, no es simple. Si, por el contrario, no las posee, ¿cómo ha podido proceder de él una multiplicidad de cosas? Porque tal vez un ser simple pueda ser donación de una sola cosa (aunque haya   motivos para dudar de ello, tratándose de un ser enteramente uno, para el que, sin embargo, puede invocarse la semejanza con el resplandor de la luz); pero, ¿cómo atribuirle una pluralidad? Sin duda, lo que provenga de él no tiene por qué ser idéntico a él, y mucho menos superior a él; porque, ¿qué podría haber superior al Uno y que estuviese más allá de todas las cosas? Ha de ser, por tanto, algo inferior  , esto es, algo verdaderamente deficiente. Pero, ¿cuál es ese ser más deficiente que el Uno? ¿Y qué hay en realidad más deficiente que el Uno? Ciertamente, lo que no es Uno, es decir la multiplicidad, aunque se trate de una multiplicidad que aspira a lo Uno, y que es, por tanto, lo Uno múltiple .Porque lo que no Uno es conservado por el Uno y es lo que es gracias al Uno; ya que si una cosa compuesta de varias no ha logrado hacerse una, no puede decirse siquiera que ella es. Si cada una de las cosas puede decirse lo que es, concédase esto a la unidad y, además, a la identidad. Pero, lo que no tiene multiplicidad en sí mismo  , eso no es uno porque participe en lo Uno, sino porque es lo Uno en sí, que no cabe atribuir a otra cosa, puesto que de él provienen todas las demás cosas, tanto las que permanecen próximas como las alejadas de él. Una de estas cosas permanece idéntica a sí misma y es claro que viene después del Uno porque la multiplicidad de sus partes es también una; por tanto, aunque posea muchas partes, éstas se adscriben a una misma cosa y no puede distinguírselas porque todas ellas constituyen un conjunto  . Cada una de las cosas que provienen de ella es, a su vez, una unidad múltiple, en tanto participe de la vida; pero, sin embargo, no podrá mostrarse como la unidad de todas las cosas. Ella misma es esa unidad porque encierra en sí un gran principio, esto es, un principio que es la unidad real y verdadera. Lo que viene después de este principio, impulsado por el Uno, constituye todas las cosas porque participa del Uno. Y, cuanto se encuentre en él, será a la vez el todo y la unidad. ¿Será, entonces, todas las cosas? Todas las cosas de las que el Uno es principio. Pero, ¿cómo es principio de todas las cosas? ¿Tal vez porque las conserva y hace de cada una de ellas una sola cosa? Porque les proporciona su existencia. ¿Cómo, entonces? Porque ya las poseía con anterioridad. Pero en este caso, según se ha dicho, tendría que ser múltiple. Poseía, verdaderamente, todas esas cosas, sin que ellas mismas pudiesen ser distinguidas, porque, ¿no se las distingue en el segundo principio, por medio de la palabra? Este segundo principio es un acto, mientras que el Uno es la potencia de todas las cosas. Pero, ¿cuál es la significación de la palabra potencia? No se habla aquí de la potencia como cuando se dice que la materia está en potencia porque recibe las formas; ya que la materia sufre y este sufrimiento de la materia es todo lo opuesto a la acción. ¿Cómo, pues, produce el Uno lo que no posee? No produce, desde luego, ni por azar   ni por reflexión, y, sin embargo, produce. Ya se ha dicho que si una cosa proviene Uno, tendrá que ser algo diferente a él; pero al ser otra no es una, porque el Uno es uno. Si, pues, no es una, sino dos, constituye necesariamente una multiplicidad, porque con ella se dan la diferencia, la identidad, la cualidad todo lo demás. Queda demostrado, entonces, que lo que proviene del Uno es algo que no es uno; pero subsiste nuestra incertidumbre respecto a la multiplicidad y, en especial, respecto a la multiplicidad que contemplamos en el ser   que del Uno. De aquí que hayamos de investigar todavía por qué se da necesariamente algo posterior   al Uno.

Bouillet

XV. Comment les donne-t-il ? Est-ce parce qu’il les possède ou parce qu’il ne les possède pas ? Si c’est parce qu’il ne les possède pas, comment donne-t-il ce qu’il n’a pas? Si c’est parce qu’il les possède, il n’est plus simple. S’il donne ce qu’il n’a pas, comment de lui naît le multiple ? Il semble qu’une seule chose puisse procéder de lui, l’un ; encore se demandera-t-on comment de ce qui est absolument un peut naître quelque chose. — C’est, répondrons-nous, de la même manière que d’une lumière rayonne une sphère lumineuse (περίλαμψις)(20). Mais comment de l’Un naît le multiple ? C’est que la chose qui procède de lui ne doit pas lui être égale, ni à plus forte   raison supérieure : car qu’y a-t-il de supérieur à l’un, de meilleur que lui ? Elle doit donc lui être inférieure, être par conséquent moins parfaite. Or, elle ne peut être moins parfaite qu’à condition d’être moins une, d’être multiple. Mais elle doit aspirer à l’Un ; elle sera donc l’un-multiple (ἓν πολλά). C’est par l’Un que ce qui n’est pas un est conservé, est ce qu’il est : car ce qui n’est pas un, quoique composé, ne peut recevoir le nom d’être. S’il est possible de dire ce qu’est chaque chose, c’est seulement parce qu’elle est une et identique. Ce qui n’est pas multiple n’eσt pas un par participation, est l’Un absolu; il ne tient pas son unité d’un autre principe ; il est au contraire le principe auquel les autres choses doivent d’être plus ou moins unes selon qu’elles en sont plus ou moins rapprochées. Puisque ce qui est le plus près de l’Un a pour caractère l’identité et lui est postérieur, évidemment le multiple qui s’y trouve doit être la totalité des choses qui sont unes. Car, puisque le multiple y est uni à l’identité, il n’y a pas en lui de parties séparées les unes des autres, toutes subsistent ensemble. Les choses qui en procèdent sont chacune unité-multiple (ἓν πολλά  ), parce qu’elles ne peuvent être unité-totalité (ἓν παντά). Être unité-totalité ne convient qu’à leur principe [l’Être intelligible], parce qu’il procède lui-même d’un grand principe qui est essentiellement et véritablement un. Ce que l’Un engendre par sa fécondité exubérante est tout ; d’un autre côté, comme ce tout participe à l’Un, il est un; il est par conséquent unité-totalité.

Quelles sont toutes ces choses qu’est l’Être? — Toutes celles dont l’Un est le principe. — Mais comment l’Un est-il le principe de toutes choses? — C’est qu’il leur conserve l’existence en faisant que chacune d’elles soit une .— Est-ce aussi parce qu’il leur donne l’existence? Et alors, est-ce en les possédant? — Dans ce cas, il serait multiple. Non, c’est en les renfermant sans qu’aucune distinction se soit encore opérée entre elles. Dans le second principe, au contraire, elles sont distinguées par la raison (elles sont logiquement distinctes, διεκέκριτο τῷ λόγῳ), parce que ce second principe est un acte (ἐνέργεια), tandis que le Premier est la puissance de toutes choses (δύναμις πάντων), non dans le sens où l’on dit que la mati  ère est en puissance pour indiquer qu’elle reçoit, qu’elle pâtit, mais dans le sens opposé pour dire que l’Un produit (τῷ ποιεῖν  ). Comment l’Un produit-il ce qu’il ne possède pas, puisque ce n’est ni par hasard, ni par réflexion qu’il produit? Nous avons dit que ce qui procède de l’Un doit en différer, par conséquent n’être pas absolument un, être dualité, par suite multitude, puisqu’il renfermera identité et différence, qualité, etc. (21). Nous avons démontré que ce qui est né de l’Un n’est pas absolument un. Il nous reste à voir s’il est le multiple, tel qu’on le contemple dans ce qui procède de l’Un. Nous avons à considérer aussi pourquoi il en procède nécessairement.

Guthrie

RADIATION   OF MULTIPLE UNITY.

15. How does He give them? Is it because He possesses them, or because He does not possess them? If it be because He does not possess them, how does He give what He does not possess? If it be because He does possess them, He is no longer simple. If He give what He does not possess, how is multiplicity born of Him? It would seem as if only one single thing could proceed from Him, unity; and even so one might wonder how anything whatever could be born of that which is absolutely one. We answer, in the same way as from a light radiates a luminous sphere (or, figuration). But how can the manifold be born from the One? Because the thing that proceeds from Him must not be equal to Him, and so much the less, superior; for what is superior to unity, or better than Him? It must, therefore, be inferior to Him, and, consequently, be less perfect. Now it cannot be less perfect, except on condition of being less unitary, that is, more manifold. But as it must aspire to unity, it will be the «manifold one.» It is by that which is single that that which is not single is preserved, and is what it is; for that which is not one, though composite, cannot receive the name of existence. If it be possible to say what each thing is, it is only because it is one and identical. What is not manifold is not one by participation, but is absolute unity; it does not derive its unity from any other principle; on the contrary it is the principle to which other things owe that they are more or less single, according as they are more or less close to it. Since the characteristic of that which is nearest to unity is identity, and is posterior to unity, evidently the manifoldness contained therein, must be the totality of things that are single. For since manifoldness is therein united with manifoldness, it does not contain parts separated from each other, and all subsist together. Each of the things, that proceed therefrom, are manifold unity, because they cannot be universal   unity. Universal unity is characteristic only of their principle (the intelligible Being), because itself proceeds from a great Principle which is one, essentially, and genuinely. That which, by its exuberant fruitfulness, begets, is all; on the other hand, as this totality participates in unity, it is single; and, consequently, it is single totality (universal unity).

THE SUPREME PRODUCES MANIFOLDNESS BECAUSE OF ITS CATEGORIES.

We have seen that existence is «all these things;» now, what are they? All those of which the One is the principle. But how can the One be the principle of all things? Because the One preserves their existence while effecting the individuality of each of them. Is it also because He gives them existence? And if so, does He do so by possessing them? In this case, the One would be manifold. No, it is by containing them without any distinction yet having arisen among them. On the contrary, in the second principle they are distinguished by reason; that is, they are logically distinguished, because this second principle is an actualization, while the first Principle is the power-potentiality of all things; not in the sense   in which we say that matter is potential in that it receives, or suffers, but in the opposite sense that the One produces. How then can the One produce what it does not possess, since unity produces that neither by chance nor by reflection? We have already said that what proceeds from unity must differ from it; and, consequently, cannot be absolutely one; that it must be duality, and, consequently, multitude, since it will contain (the categories, such as) identity, and difference, quality, and so forth. We have demonstrated that that which is born of the One is not absolutely one. It now remains for us to inquire whether it will be manifold, such as it is seen to be in what proceeds from the One. We shall also have to consider why it necessarily proceeds from the One.

Taylor

XV. But how does it impart them ? Shall we say by possessing, or by not possessing them? If, however, it indeed possesses them, it is not simple. But if it does not possess them, how does multitude proceed from it? For perhaps some one may admit that one simple thing may proceed from it, though even in this case it may be inquired how any thing can proceed from that which is entirely one. At the same time, however, it may be said, that one simple thing may flow from it, in the same manner as a surrounding splendour from light. But how do many things proceed from it ? May we not say, that what proceeds from is not the same with it ? If, therefore, it is not the same with, it is not better than it. [For what is better, or in short, more excellent than the one ? It is therefore inferior to it. But this is more indigent.] For what is in a greater degree indigent than the one, except that which is not one ? This, therefore, that is more indigent is many. At the same time, however, it aspires after the one. Hence it is one many. For the one saves every thing which is not one; and every thing is what it is through the one. For unless it becomes one, though it should consist of many things, it cannot yet be denominated being. And though it may be possible to say what each thing is, yet this is only in consequence of each thing being one, and participating of sameness. That, however, which has not multitude in itself, is not one by the participation of one, but is the one itself, not from another, but because it is this; from which other things also derive their subsistence, some indeed, proximately, but others remotely. But since that which is next to the one is characterized by sameness, and is posterior to the one, it is evident that the multitude of it is every where one. For being multitude at the same time it subsists in sameness, and without separation, because all things in it exist collectively at once [in impartible union]. Each also of the natures which proceed from it, as long as it participates of life, is one many. For it cannot exhibit itself to the view as one all. That, however, from which this originates is one all, because it is a great principle. For the principle is in reality and truly one. But that which is next to the principle, being thus after a manner [exuberantly full of] and heavy with the one, becomes all things through its participation of the one; and whatever it contains is again all and one. What therefore is this all ? Is it not those things of which the one is the principle ? But how is the one the principle of all things ? Is it not because it is the saviour of them, causing each of them to be one ? Or is it also because it gave subsistence to them ? After what manner therefore ? Is it not because it antecedently contained them? We have however before observed, that thus it will be multitude. They are contained in it, therefore, in such a way as to subsist without distinction and separation. [1] But the things contained in the second principle [after the one] are separated by reason: for they are now in energy. The one, however, is the power of all things. But what is the mode of this power ? For it is not said to be in power or capacity in the same manner as matter, because it receives: for matter suffers [in consequence of being passive]; and thus the power of matter has an arrangement opposite to that of efficiency. How, therefore, does it produce the things which it has not? For it does not produce them casually; nor having considered what it is to do, does it then produce them. It has been said, therefore, by us, that if any thing proceeds from the one, it is different from it; but being different, it is not one. For this is what the one was. If, however, that which proceeds from the one is not one, it is now necessary that it should be two things, and should be multitude. For it is now same and different, quality, and other things. That the offspring of the one, therefore, is not one [alone] has been now demonstrated. But that it is multitude, and a multitude of such a kind as that which is surveyed in what is posterior to it, is deservedly a subject of doubt. And the necessity of the subsistence of that which is posterior to it, still remains to be investigated.

MacKenna

15. Conferring - but how? As itself possessing them or not? How can it convey what it does not possess, and yet if it does possess how is it simplex  ? And if, again, it does not, how is it the source of the manifold?

A single, unmanifold emanation we may very well   allow - how even that can come from a pure unity may be a problem, but we may always explain it on the analogy of the irradiation from a luminary - but a multitudinous production raises question.

The explanation is that what comes from the Supreme cannot be identical with it and assuredly cannot be better than it - what could be better than The One or the utterly transcendent? The emanation, then, must be less good, that is to say, less self-sufficing: now what must that be which is less self-sufficing than The One? Obviously the Not-One, that is to say, multiplicity, but a multiplicity striving towards unity; that is to say, a One-that-is-many.

All that is not One is conserved by virtue of the One, and from the One derives its characteristic nature: if it had not attained such unity as is consistent with being made up of multiplicity we could not affirm its existence: if we are able to affirm the nature of single things, this is in virtue of the unity, the identity even, which each of them possesses. But the all-transcendent, utterly void of multiplicity, has no mere unity of participation but is unity’s self, independent of all else, as being that from which, by whatever means, all the rest take their degree of unity in their standing, near or far, towards it.

In virtue of the unity manifested in its variety it exhibits, side by side, both an all-embracing identity and the existence of the secondary: all the variety lies in the midst of a sameness, and identity cannot be separated from diversity since all stands as one; each item in that content, by the fact of participating in life, is a One-many: for the item could not make itself manifest as a One-and-all.

Only the Transcendent can be that; it is the great beginning, and the beginning must be a really existent One, wholly and truly One, while its sequent, poured down in some way from the One, is all, a total which has participation in unity and whose every member is similarly all and one.

What then is the All?

The total of which the Transcendent is the Source.

But in what way is it that source? In the sense, perhaps, of sustaining things as bestower of the unity of each single item?

That too; but also as having established them in being.

But how? As having, perhaps, contained them previously?

We have indicated that, thus, the First would be a manifold.

May we think, perhaps, that the First contained the universe as an indistinct total whose items are elaborated to distinct existence within the Second by the Reason-Principle there? That Second is certainly an Activity; the Transcendent would contain only the potentiality of the universe to come.

But the nature of this contained potentiality would have to be explained: it cannot be that of Matter, a receptivity, for thus the Source becomes passive - the very negation of production.

How then does it produce what it does not contain? Certainly not at haphazard and certainly not by selection. How then?

We have observed that anything that may spring from the One must be different from it. Differing, it is not One, since then it would be the Source. If unity has given place to duality, from that moment there is multiplicity; for here is variety side by side with identity, and this imports quality and all the rest.

We may take it as proved that the emanation of the Transcendent must be a Not-One something other than pure unity, but that it is a multiplicity, and especially that it is such a multiplicity as is exhibited in the sequent universe, this is a statement worthy of deliberation: some further enquiry must be made, also, as to the necessity of any sequel to the First.


[1As all things proceed from the one, hence the one is all things prior to all.