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Plotino - Tratado 49,17 (V, 3, 17) — A alma não pode ter acesso ao Uno

Enéada V, 3, 17

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

Cap 16-17: A condição do Uno e o acesso ao primeiro princípio

  • Cap 16, 1 a cap 17, 14: O Uno é superior ao Intelecto e à vida inteligível, e é por esta razão o Bem para as realidades que vêm após ele; é absolutamente suficiente a ele mesmo enquanto todas as realidades que vêm dele têm necessidade dele
  • Cap 17, 15-38: A alma não pode ter acesso ao Uno ao por meio de sua faculdade discursiva, pois esta não chega a apreender uma realidade simples e una; deve-se portanto a persuadir, como por uma "encantação", a se liberar de tudo o que lhe faz obstáculo, para subir assim até seu princípio

Míguez

17. ¿Qué cosa hay, pues, superior a la vida plenamente sabia, exenta de faltas y de errores, a la Inteligencia que posee todo, y a la vida y a la Inteligencia universales? Si respondiésemos que "el principio que las ha producido", tendríamos que preguntarnos, entonces, cómo las ha producido. Y si no se muestra como un principio superior, nuestro razonamiento no alcanzará nada nuevo y quedará detenido en Inteligencia. Mas, deberemos elevarnos más allá de ella porque, entre otras muchas razones, la propiedad de bastarse sí misma se aplica a la Inteligencia por estar hecha de muchas cosas y mantenerse, a la vez, exterior a ellas. Cada una de estas cosas es claramente deficiente y es por ello por lo que participa en la misma unidad en la que Ella participa, sin ser, no obstante, el Uno en sí. ¿Qué es, por tanto, el Uno en el que ella participa y qué la hace ser, a la vez, que todas las demás cosas? Si produce el ser de todas las cosas y da a la pluralidad de ellas, con su sola presencia, el poder de bastarse a sí misma, es, en efecto, la causa productora de la esencia, de la esencia que se basta a sí misma, sin ser por ello la esencia, puesto que se encuentra más allá de la esencia y de los seres que se bastan a sí mismos.

¿Basta con esto y podemos dar de lado a la cuestión? No, porque mi alma, y ahora más que nunca, siente los dolores del parto. De tal modo que, colmada hasta el máximo de estos dolores, debe ya dar a luz precipitándose hacia el Uno. Y, no obstante, conviene conjurarla, si encontramos todavía algún encanto contra tales dolores. Porque, tal vez, su aquietamiento se origine con nuestros discursos, a condición de repetir con frecuencia sus encantos. Pero, ¿qué nuevo conjuro podríamos encontrar? Porque el alma, que corre en pos de todas las verdades, huye sin embargo de todas aquellas en las que participamos, en cuanto queremos decirlas o pensarlas; ya que conviene que el pensamiento discurso, si realmente quiere expresarse, aprehenda las cosas una as otra, cumpliendo así su camino. Ahora bien; ¿qué contacto podrá seguirse en lo que es absolutamente simple? Basta para ello con un contacto intelectual. Pero, con este contacto, cuando tiene lugar, no se da posibilidad ni tiempo alguno para poder expresar nada, siendo sólo más tarde ando se razona sobre él. Hemos de creer que lo vemos cuando el alma percibe súbitamente su luz; porque la luz proviene de él y es él mismo. Pensemos, pues, que está presente a nosotros cuando nos ilumina, cual si se tratase de otro dios que viene a una morada, obedeciendo a algún llamamiento; es claro que, si no hubiese venido, no nos habría iluminado. De la misma manera, el alma carece de luz ando no lo contempla; en cambio, cuando ha sido iluminada, tiene ya lo que ella buscaba. Tal es el fin verdadero del alma: el contacto con esa luz y la visión que tiene de ella, por medio de otra luz sino, precisamente, por esa misma luz que le da la visión. Porque lo que (el alma) debe contemplar es la luz por la que es iluminada. Y ni el sol es listo por otra luz. Pero, ¿cómo llegar a esto? Suprimid todo lo demás.

Bouillet

XVII. Qu’y a-t-il donc de meilleur que cette Vie souverainement sage, exempte de faute et d’erreur? Qu’y a-t-il de meilleur que l’Intelligence qui embrasse tout? Qu’y a-t-il de meilleur en un mot que la Vie universelle et que l’Intelligence universelle ? Si nous répondons que ce qui est meilleur que ces choses est le principe qui lésa engendrées, si nous nous contentons d’expliquer comment il les a engendrées et de montrer qu’on ne peut découvrir rien de meilleur, au lieu d’avancer dans cette discussion, nous pesterons toujours au même point. Cependant, nous avons besoin de nous élever plus haut. Nous y sommes obligés surtout par cette considération que le principe que nous cherchons doit être conçu comme l’Absolu dans une souveraine indépendance de toutes choses (τὸ αὔταρκες ἐκ πάντων ἔξω (23) : car, les choses sont incapables de se suffire chacune à elle-même; ensuite, toutes ont participé de l’Un, et, puisqu’elles ont toutes participé de l’Un, nulle d’elles n’est l’Un. Quel est donc ce principe dont toutes choses participent, qui fait que l’Intelligence existe et est toutes choses ? Puisqu’il fait que l’Intelligence existe et est toutes choses, qu’il rend le multiple qui est en elle absolu par la présence de l’unité, qu’il est ainsi ^principe créateur de l’essence et de l’existence absolue (αὐταρκείας), il doit, au lieu d’être l’essence, être supérieur à l’essence même aussi bien qu’à l’existence absolue.

En avons-nous assez dit, et pouvons-nous nous arrêter ici? Ou bien notre âme sent-elle encore davantage les douleurs de l’enfantement? Qu’elle enfante donc, en s élançant vers l’Un, pleine des douleurs qui la tourmentent. Non, tâchons plutôt de la calmer par quelque charme magique, s’il en est d’efficace contre de pareilles douleurs. Mais, pour charmer l’âme, il suffit peut-être de répéter ce que nous avons déjà dit. A quel autre enchantement pourrions-nous encore recourir ? S’élevant au-dessus de toutes les vérités dont nous participons, cet enchantement nous échappe dès que nous voulons parler ou même penser. Car, pour exprimer quelque chose, la raison discursive est obligée d’aller d’une partie à l’autre, de parcourir successivement les différents éléments de l’objet; or, qu’y a-t-il à parcourir successivement dans ce qui est absolument simple ? Il suffit de l’atteindre par une sorte de contact intellectuel (νοερῶς ἐφάψασθαι). Or, au moment où l’on touche l’Un, on ne doit ni pouvoir en rien dire, ni avoir le loisir d’en parler; ce n’est que plus tard qu’il est possible d’en raisonner. On doit croire qu’on l’a vu quand une lumière soudaine a éclairé l’âme : car cette lumière vient de Lui, est Lui-même (24).

Il faut croire qu’il est présent, lorsque, comme un autre dieu, il illumine la maison de celui qui l’appelle (25) : car elle est obscure s’il ne vient l’illuminer. L’âme est donc sans lumière quand elle est privée de la présence de ce Dieu ; illuminée par lui, elle a ce qu’elle cherchait. Le vrai but de rame, c’est d’être en contact avec cette lumière, de voir celte lumière àla clarté de cette lumière même, sans le secours d’une lumière étrangère, c’est de voir ce principe à l’aide duquel elle voit. En effet, c’est le principe par lequel elle est illuminée qu’elle doit contempler, comme on ne contemple lç soleil que par sa propre lumière. Mais comment y arriver? Retranche toutes choses (26).

Guthrie

THE SUPREME AS SUPERESSENTIAL AND SUPEREXISTENT.

17. What better thing is there then than this supremely wise Life, exempt from all fault or error? What is there better than the Intelligence that embraces everything? In one word, what is there better than universal Life and universal Intelligence? If we answer that what is better than these things is the Principle that begat them, if we content ourselves with explaining how it begat them, and to show that one cannot discover anything better, we shall, instead of progressing in this discussion, ever remain at the same point. Nevertheless, we need to rise higher. We are particularly obliged to do this, when we consider that the principle that we seek must be considered as the "Self-sufficient supremely independent of all things;" for no entity is able to be self-sufficient, and all have participated in the One; and since they have done so, none of them can be the One. Which then is this principle in which all participate, which makes Intelligence exist, and is all things? Since it makes Intelligence exist, and since it is all things, since it makes its contained manifoldness self-sufficient by the presence of unity, and since it is thus the creative principle of "being" and self-sufficiency, it must, instead of being "being," be super-"being" and super-existence.

ECSTASY IS INTELLECTUAL CONTACT WITH SUDDEN LIGHT.

Have we said enough, and can we stop here? Or does our soul still feel the pains of parturition? Let her, therefore, produce (activity), rushing towards the One, driven by the pains that agitate her. No, let us rather seek to calm her by some magic charm, if any remedy therefor exist. But to charm the soul, it may perhaps be sufficient to repeat what we have already said. To what other charm, indeed, would it suffice to have recourse? Rising above all the truths in which we participate, this enchantment evanesces the moment we speak, or even think. For, in order to express something, discursive reason is obliged to go from one thing to another, and successively to run through every element of its object. Now what can be successively scrutinized in that which is absolutely simple? It is, therefore, sufficient to reach Him by a sort of intellectual contact. Now at the moment of touching the One, we should neither be able to say anything about Him, nor have the leisure to speak of Him; only later is it possible to argue about Him. We should believe that we have seen Him when a sudden light has enlightened the soul; for this light comes from Him, and is Himself. We should believe that He is present when, as another (lower) divinity, He illumines the house of him who calls on this divinity, for it remains obscure without the illumination of the divinity. The soul, therefore, is without light when she is deprived of the presence of this divinity, when illumined by this divinity, she has what she sought. The true purpose of the soul is to be in contact with this light, to see this light in the radiance of this light itself, without the assistance of any foreign light, to see this principle by the help of which she sees. Indeed, it is the principle by which she is enlightened that she must contemplate as one gazes at the sun only through its own light. But how shall we succeed in this? By cutting off everything else.

Taylor

XVII. What then is better than a most wise, irreprehensible, and unerring life ? What more excellent than an intellect possessing all things ? Or than all life, and every intellect ? If, therefore, we should say that the maker of these is more excellent, and should relate how he made them, and show that nothing better than him can present itself to our view, our reasoning will not proceed to any thing else, but will stop there. It is necessary, however, to ascend, both on account of many other considerations, and because self-sufficiency to this intellect is the result of all the things of which [1] it consists. But each of these is evidently indigent, because each participates of the same one, and participates of one in consequence of not being the one itself. What then is that of which this intellect participates, and which causes it to exist, and to be all things at once ? If, however, it causes it to be every thing, and the multitude of it is sufficient to itself through the presence of the one, and if also it is evidently effective of essence and self-sufficiency, it will not be essence, but beyond this, and beyond self-sufficiency. Is what we have said therefore sufficient, or is the soul yet parturient with something else, and in a still greater degree ? Perhaps, therefore, it is requisite that the soul should now become impelled towards the one, being filled with parturient conceptions, about it. Again, however, let us try if we cannot find a certain charm for this parturiency. Perhaps, indeed, he will accomplish this, who frequently enchants himself from what has now been said. What other new enchantment, therefore, as it were, is there ? For the charm which runs above all realities, and above the truths which we participate, immediately flies away from him who wishes to speak of and energize discursively about the one; since it is necessary that the dianoetic power, in order that it may speak of any thing, should assume another and another thing. For thus there will be a discursive energy. In that, however, which is perfectly simple, there is nothing1 discursive ; but it is sufficient to come into contact with it intellectually. That, however, which comes into contact with it, when it is in contact, is neither able to say any thing, nor has leisure to speak; but afterwards [when it falls off from this contact] reasons about it. Then also it is requisite to believe that we have seen it, when the soul receives a sudden light. For this light is from him, and is him. And then it is proper to think that he is present, when like another God entering into the house of someone who invokes him, he fills it with splendour. [2] For unless he entered, he would not illuminate it. And thus the soul would be without light, and without the possession of this God. But when illuminated, it has that which it sought for. This likewise is the true end to the soul, to come into contact with his light, and to behold him through it; not by the light of another thing; but to perceive that very thing itself through which it sees. For that through which it is illuminated, is the very thing which it is necessary to behold. For neither do we see the sun through any other than the solar light. How, therefore, can this be accomplished ? By an ablation of all things.

MacKenna

17. But what can it be which is loftier than that existence - a life compact of wisdom, untouched by struggle and error, or than this Intellect which holds the Universe with all there is of life and intellect?

If we answer "The Making Principle," there comes the question, "making by what virtue?" and unless we can indicate something higher there than in the made, our reasoning has made no advance: we rest where we were.

We must go higher - if it were only for the reason that the maker of all must have a self-sufficing existence outside of all things - since all the rest is patently indigent - and that everything has participated in The One and, as drawing on unity, is itself not unity.

What then is this in which each particular entity participates, the author of being to the universe and to each item of the total?

Since it is the author of all that exists, and since the multiplicity in each thing is converted into a self-sufficing existence by this presence of The One, so that even the particular itself becomes self-sufficing, then clearly this principle, author at once of Being and of self-sufficingness, is not itself a Being but is above Being and above even self-sufficing.

May we stop, content, with that? No: the Soul is yet, and even more, in pain. Is she ripe, perhaps, to bring forth, now that in her pangs she has come so close to what she seeks? No: we must call upon yet another spell if anywhere the assuagement is to be found. Perhaps in what has already been uttered, there lies the charm if only we tell it over often? No: we need a new, a further, incantation. All our effort may well skim over every truth and through all the verities in which we have part, and yet the reality escape us when we hope to affirm, to understand: for the understanding, in order to its affirmation must possess itself of item after item; only so does it traverse all the field: but how can there be any such peregrination of that in which there is no variety?

All the need is met by a contact purely intellective. At the moment of touch there is no power whatever to make any affirmation; there is no leisure; reasoning upon the vision is for afterwards. We may know we have had the vision when the Soul has suddenly taken light. This light is from the Supreme and is the Supreme; we may believe in the Presence when, like that other God on the call of a certain man, He comes bringing light: the light is the proof of the advent. Thus, the Soul unlit remains without that vision; lit, it possesses what it sought. And this is the true end set before the Soul, to take that light, to see the Supreme by the Supreme and not by the light of any other principle - to see the Supreme which is also the means to the vision; for that which illumines the Soul is that which it is to see just as it is by the sun’s own light that we see the sun.

But how is this to be accomplished?

Cut away everything.


[1It is necessary here to supply or.

[2Plotinus, in what he here says, doubtless alludes to the following lines in the 19th book of the " Odyssey," when Ulysses and Telemachus remove the weapons out of the armory : "Minerva preceded them, having a golden lamp, with which she produced a very beautiful light; on perceiving which, Telemachus thus immediately addressed his father: O father, this is certainly a most admirable thing which presents itself to my eyes. For the walls of the house, the beautiful spaces between the rafters, the fir beams, and the columns, appear to me to rise in radiance, as if on fire. Certainly some one of the Gods is present who inhabit the extended heaven. But the wise Ulysses thus answered him : Be silent, repress your intellect, and do not speak. For this is the custom of the Gods who dwell in Olympus." Homer, therefore, indicates by this, that to the reception of divine illumination, silence, and a cessation of all mental energy, are requisite.