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Plotino - Tratado 27,29 (IV, 3, 29) — A memória depende da faculdade representativa (2)

Enéada IV, 3, 39

sexta-feira 14 de janeiro de 2022, por Cardoso de Castro

    

Cap 27 a 31, 16: A memória depende da faculdade representativa e pertence como ela à alma   sensitiva

    

Míguez

29. ¿Atribuiremos la memoria a la facultad de sentir y afirmaremos en tal sentido que la memoria y la facultad de sentir son una y la misma cosa? Si la imagen de Hércules  , tal como se decía, es capaz de recordar, tendremos que hablar de dos facultades de sentir y, en todo caso, si la memoria y la sensación   son cosas diferentes, habrá que contar con dos memorias. Si la memoria y la facultad de sentir son una y la misma cosa, dado que hay una memoria de nuestros conocimientos habrá también una sensación de ellos. O convendrá, por el contrario, que sea otra la facultad que se refiera a estas cosas. ¿Consideraremos acaso como algo común la facultad de percibir [1] y le atribuiremos la memoria de los objetos sensibles y de los objetos inteligibles? Algo diríamos, en verdad, si afirmamos que es una y la misma facultad la que percibe las cosas sensibles y las cosas inteligibles; ahora bien, si nos vemos forzados a desdoblarla, otro tanto ocurrirá con la memoria, y si nosotros atribuimos estas dos memorias a cada una de las dos almas, las memorias mismas se convertirán en cuatro.

¿Será necesario, en absoluto  , que recordemos las cosas sensibles con la facultad con la que las sentimos y que, consiguientemente, ambas cosas tengan su origen   en la misma facultad? ¿Y será necesario asimismo que la facultad con la que reflexionamos no sea otra que la que nos recuerda nuestras reflexiones? Convengamos en que los que mejor razonan no son los de mejor memoria. Igualmente, no hay analogía entre las sensaciones y los recuerdos que se tienen de ellas, pues unos disfrutan de sensaciones muy vivas, y otros, en cambio, aun contando con una buena memoria, no disponen de una percepción muy aguda.

Por lo demás, si la memoria debe ser distinta a la facultad de sentir, ya que la memoria versa sobre objetos que anteriormente ha percibido la sensación, convendrá que haya recibido los objetos de los que luego tendrá el recuerdo. Nada impide que, para el recuerdo, exista la sensación de un objeto que es una imagen, ni tampoco que la memoria y su retentiva se atribuyan a la imaginación. Porque no hay duda que la sensación culmina en imaginación, de tal modo que cuando la primera ya no existe, el objeto de la visión se halla presente   en la segunda. Hay, en efecto, recuerdo, siempre que la imagen persista, y por poco duradera que sea, sin que el objeto se halle presente; en este caso, la memoria será corta, pero, si la presencia de la imagen es más duradera, la memoria aumentará también más en gracia a la fuerza de la imaginación. De modo que si la imagen no cambia fácilmente, debemos tener la memorias como indestructible. Digamos, en fin, que la memoria de las cosas sensibles ha de atribuirse a la imaginación.

En cuanto a las diferencias que subsisten entre las memorias debemos atribuirlas a alguna de estas cosas: o bien a las diferencias mismas entre las facultades, o a la índole de su ejercicio, o a las características de los cuerpos en los que ellas se encuentran, que las alteran y las turban en mayor o menor grado. Aunque sobre esto volveremos en otra ocasión.

Bouillet

XXIX. Rapporterons-nous la mémoire à la sensibilité ? Admettrons-nous que c’est la même faculté qui sent et qui se ressouvient ? — Mais, si l’image de l’âme   [eidolon  , l’âme irraisonnable] possède la mémoire, comme nous le disions plus haut [§ 27], il y aura en nous deux principes qui sentiront ; si ce n’est pas la sensibilité qui possède la mémoire, si c’est une autre puissance, il y aura en nous deux principes qui se souviendront ; enfin, si la sensibilité est capable de saisir les notions, elle devra aussi percevoir les conceptions de la raison discursive, ou bien ce sera une autre faculté qui percevra les unes et les autres.

Admettrons-nous donc que la puissance de percevoir (τὸ ἀντιληπτιϰόν) est commune à l’âme raisonnable et à l’âme irraisonnable, et lui accorderons-nous le souvenir des choses sensibles et des choses intelligibles ? — Reconnaître que c’est une seule et même puissance qui perçoit également ces deux espèces de choses, c’est faire faire déjà un pas à la question. Si l’on divise en deux cette puissance, il y aura encore néanmoins deux espèces de mémoire ; enfin, si nous accordons les deux espèces de mémoire à chacune des deux âmes [à l’âme raisonnable et à l’âme irraisonnable], il y aura ainsi quatre espèces de mémoire.

Est-il absolument nécessaire que nous nous souvenions des sensations par la sensibilité, que ce soit la même puissance qui éprouve la sensation et qui se souvienne de la sensation, que ce soit également la raison discursive qui conçoive et se souvienne des conceptions ? Mais les hommes qui raisonnent le mieux ne sont pas ceux qui se souviennent aussi le mieux, et ceux qui ont des sens également délicats n’ont pas tous pour cela une mémoire aussi bonne les uns que les autres ; au contraire, les uns ont des sens délicats, tandis que les autres ont une bonne mémoire, sans être cependant capables de percevoir également bien. D’un autre côté, si sentir et se rappeler sont choses indépendantes l’une de l’autre, il y aura [outre la sensibilité] une autre puissance qui se rappellera les choses précédemment perçues par la sensation, et cette puissance devra sentir ce qu’elle se rappellera [2].

[Pour résoudre toutes ces difficultés] nous dirons que rien n’empêche d’admettre que l’acte de la sensation (αἴσθημα) produit dans la mémoire une image (φάντασμα), et que l’imagination, qui est différente [de la sensation], possède le pouvoir de conserver et de se rappeler ces images. C’est en effet à l’imagination que vient aboutir la sensation, et, quand la sensation n’est plus, l’imagination en garde la représentation (ὅραμα). Si donc cette puissance conserve l’image de l’objet absent, elle constitue la mémoire ; selon que l’image demeure plus ou moins de temps, la mémoire est ou n’est pas fidèle, nos souvenirs durent ou s’effacent. C’est donc à l’imagination qu’appartient la mémoire des choses sensibles. Si les divers esprits possèdent cette faculté à des degrés inégaux, cette différence tient soit à la diversité des forces, soit à l’exercice [3], soit à l’absence ou à la présence de certaines dispositions du corps qui peuvent avoir ou non de l’influence sur la mémoire ou y porter le trouble [4]. Mais nous reviendrons ailleurs sur cette question.

Guthrie

MEMORY DOES NOT BELONG TO THE FACULTY OF SENSATION.

29. Can memory be referred to sensibility? Is the I faculty that feels also the one that remembers? But if the image of the soul (the irrational soul) possess the memory, as we said above, there would be in us two faculties that will feel. Further, if sensibility be capable of grasping notions, it will also have to perceive the conceptions of discursive reason, or it will be another faculty that will perceive both.

MEMORY DOES NOT BELONG EXCLUSIVELY TO THE POWER OF PERCEPTION.

Is the power of perception common to the reasonable soul and to the irrational soul, and will we grant that it possesses the memory of sense  -objects and of intelligible things? To recognize that it is one and the same power which equally perceives both kinds of things, is already to take one step towards the solution of the problem. But if we divide this power into two, there will nevertheless still be two kinds of memory; further, if we allow two kinds of memory to each of the two souls (the rational and the irrational), there will be four kinds of memory.

MEMORY IS NOT IDENTICAL WITH FEELING OR REASONING.

Are we compelled to remember sensations by sensibility, whether it be the same power which feels sensation, and which remembers sensation, or is it also discursive reason which conceives and remembers conceptions. But the men who reason the best are not those who also remember the best; and those who have equally delicate senses, do not all, on that account, have an equally good memory. On the contrary, some have delicate senses, while others have a good memory, without however being capable of perceiving equally well  . On the other hand, if feeling and remembering be mutually independent, there will be (outside of sensibility) another power which will remember things formerly perceived by sensation, and this power will have to feel what it is to remember.

MEMORY BELONGS TO IMAGINATION.

(To solve all these difficulties) it may be stated that nothing hinders the admission that the actualization of the sensation produces in memory an image, and that the imagination, which differs (from sensation), possesses the power of preserving and recalling these images. It is indeed imagination in which sensation culminates; and when sensation ceases, imagination preserves its representation. If then this power preserve the image of the absent object, it constitutes memory. According as the image remains for a longer or shorter time, memory is or is not faithful; and our memories last, or are effaced. Memory of sense-objects therefore belongs to the imagination. If this faculty of memory be possessed by different persons in unequal degrees, this difference depends either on the difference of forces, or on practice (or exercise), or on the absence or presence of certain bodily dispositions which may or may not influence memory, or disturb it. But elsewhere we shall study the question further.

Taylor

XXIX. Shall we, therefore, ascribe memory to the sensitive power, and will the sensitive power be the same thing with us as that which remembers ? If, however, the image of the soul remembers, as we have said, the sensitive power will be twofold. And if the sensitive power does not remember, but something else, this something else will have the power of remembering in a twofold respect. Farther still, if the sensitive power is capable of apprehending disciplines, it will also apprehend the objects of the dianoetic power [i.e. the discursive power of reason], or something else will apprehend the objects of each of these. Shall we, therefore, by admitting that the power which apprehends is common, attribute to it the remembrance of both these ? If, however, one and the same thing apprehended sensibles and intelligibles, something to the purpose would perhaps be asserted. But if it is divided in a twofold respect, there will nevertheless be two things. And if we ascribe both to each soul, four things will be produced. In short, what necessity is there that we should remember through the same power by which we perceive, and that both sensible perception and recollection should be effected by the same power, and also that we should remember dianoetic objects through the power by which we energize dianoetically ? For the same persons do not excel in dianoetically energizing and remembering, and those whose sensible perceptions are equally acute, do not remember equally. Some also excel in sensible perception, but others in memory whose sensations are not acute. Again, however, if each is different, it will be requisite that the power also should be different which remembers what sense had before perceived, and it will be necessary to perceive that which it is requisite to remember. Or may we not say that nothing hinders a sensible perception from being a phantasm to him who remembers, and that memory and retention may belong to the power of the phantasy, which is something different from memory. For it is this power in which sense ends; and when sense no longer energizes, the sensible spectacle is present with the phantastic power. If, therefore, the imagination of an absent object is present with this, it will now remember it. And if it remains, indeed, but for a little time, the remembrance will be little; but if for a long time the remembrance will be greater, in consequence of this power being stronger, so that not being easily perverted, it will not be compelled to lose its remembrance. Memory, therefore, belongs to the power of the phantasy, and to remember will consist of things of this kind. We say, however, that souls are differently disposed with respect to memory, either through differently possessing the powers of it, or by frequently or not frequently exercising it; or by corporeal temperaments being or not being inherent, and producing or not producing a change in quality, and causing as it were perturbation. These things, however, must be elsewhere discussed.

MacKenna

29. Are we, then, to refer memory to the perceptive faculty and so make one principle of our nature the seat of both awareness and remembrance?

Now supposing the very Shade, as we were saying in the case of Hercules, has memory, then the perceptive faculty is twofold.

[(And if (on the same supposition) the faculty that remembers is not the faculty that perceives, but some other thing, then the remembering faculty is twofold.]

And further if the perceptive faculty [= the memory] deals with matters learned [as well as with matters of observation and feeling] it will be the faculty for the processes of reason also: but these two orders certainly require two separate faculties.

Must we then suppose a common faculty of apprehension [one covering both sense perceptions and ideas] and assign memory in both orders to this?

The solution might serve if there were one and the same percipient for objects of sense and objects of the Intellectual-Kind; but if these stand in definite duality, then, for all we can say or do, we are left with two separate principles of memory; and, supposing each of the two orders of soul to possess both principles, then we have four.

And, on general grounds, what compelling reason is there that the principle by which we perceive should be the principle by which we remember, that these two acts should be vested in the one faculty? Why must the seat of our intellectual action be also the seat of our remembrance of that action? The most powerful thought does not always go with the readiest memory; people of equal perception are not equally good at remembering; some are especially gifted in perception, others, never swift to grasp, are strong to retain.

But, once more, admitting two distinct principles, something quite separate remembering what sense-perception has first known - still this something must have felt what it is required to remember?

No; we may well conceive that where there is to be memory of a sense-perception, this perception becomes a mere presentment, and that to this image-grasping power, a distinct thing, belongs the memory, the retention of the object: for in this imaging faculty the perception culminates; the impression passes away but the vision remains present to the imagination.

By the fact of harbouring the presentment of an object that has disappeared, the imagination is, at once, a seat of memory: where the persistence of the image is brief, the memory is poor; people of powerful memory are those in whom the image-holding power is firmer, not easily allowing the record to be jostled out of its grip.

Remembrance, thus, is vested in the imaging faculty; and memory deals with images. Its differing quality or degree from man to man, we would explain by difference or similarity in the strength of the individual powers, by conduct like or unlike, by bodily conditions present or absent, producing change and disorder or not - a point this, however, which need not detain us here.


Ver online : ENÉADAS III-IV (Gredos)


[1En el texto griego τὸ ἀντιληχτικόν, que puede considerarse, en el mejor sentido, como la facultad de aprehender o de percibir.

[2« La mémoire ne se confond ni avec la sensation ni avec la conception intellectuelle ; mais elle est ou la possession ou la modification de l’une des deux, avec la condition d’un temps écoulé. » (Aristote, De la Mémoire, 1 ; tr. fr., p. 113.)

[3« Du reste, l’exercice et l’étude conservent la mémoire en la forçant de se ressouvenir; et cet exercice n’est pas autre chose que de considérer fréquemment la représentation de l’esprit, en tant qu’elle est une copie, et non pas en elle-même. » (Aristote, ibid., 1; tr. fr., p. 120.)

[4« Ceux qui sont trop jeunes et ceux qui sont trop vieux sont sans mémoire, à cause du mouvement dont ils sont agités ; ils sont tout absorbés les uns par le développement qui se fait en eux, les autres par le dépérissement qui les emporte, etc. » (Aristote, ibid., 2, tr. fr. p. 136.)