Fragments that Remain of the Lost Writings of Proclus, by Thomas Taylor, , at sacred-texts.com
If there are two wills in the Demiurgus, one indeed will be this, that what is moved in a confused and disorderly manner should not exist, as Plato says [in the Timæus]; for being willing [says he] that there should be nothing evil, he brought that which was confused from the inordinate into order. And if the Demiurgus has likewise another will, viz. that the universe should be bound, (for, speaking to the junior Gods, he says, "You shall never be dissolved, in consequence of obtaining my will, which is a greater bond than any of those bonds by which you were
connected at the commencement of your generation;")—and if these wills are the very being of the things which partake of them, one of them willing that the inordinate should not exist, but the other, that what is orderly should be preserved;—if this be the case, it is necessary either that these wills should always exist in the Demiurgus, or each of them sometimes, or one of them always, but the other at a certain time. It is false, however, that either of these wills should exist only at a certain time. For it is evident, that to be willing at one time, and at another not, can by no means accord with the nature of an eternal being, though he should at first not have been willing, but afterwards should be willing; or, on the contrary, should at first have been willing, but afterwards unwilling. For there will be in this willingness and unwillingness the prior and posterior, and the was, and the will be. But these, Plato says, are the species of time. Time, however, is not in the Demiurgus, but proceeds from, and is posterior to him. Hence he was always willing that the confused and disorderly should not exist, and that what has an orderly arrangement should exist. His will, therefore, essentially producing that which he wished, and both the inordinate and the orderly having a perpetual subsistence, he always produces then by
his very being. * If, however, he always produces that which he wishes to produce, he will certainly, through one of these wills, always abolish the inordinate, but will preserve, through the other, that which is reduced into order. For thus he will effect, through both, that which it is proper for him to effect; destroying that which he does not wish to exist, and preserving and defending that which he wishes to exist. Each of these wills, therefore, of the Demiurgus, effecting that which it is its province to effect, it is necessary that what is produced by each should be perpetual. For the maker and the thing made exist simultaneously with each other, as Plato says in the Philebus: for there he asserts, "that the thing which is becoming to be beautiful, and the artificer and maker of it, subsist together, and that the one is not without the other." † That which is disorderly, therefore, is always abolished,
through the eternal will of the Demiurgus that it should not exist, and that which is orderly is preserved, on account of his will that it should always exist; each of these wills being eternal. But if both the inordinate and the orderly are perpetually generated, the inordinate will not be prior to the orderly, nor the orderly to the inordinate. If, however, the inordinate is not prior to the orderly, that which is orderly will not have a beginning posterior to the inordinate; and if the orderly is not prior to the inordinate, it will not have an end prior to the inordinate. * But if it neither began posterior to, nor will end prior to, the inordinate, order is without a beginning and without an end, and is both unbegotten and incorruptible. Moreover, the world is nothing else than order, and that which is arranged. The world, therefore, is un-begotten and incorruptible. For it is absurd to say, since there are two wills in divinity, either that one of these should be always effective, but the other not always; or that one of these should produce by its very being, but the other not; since both possess the same essence, and have through the same cause an eternal subsistence. † For one
of these, in consequence of being good, as Plato says, was willing that the disorderly should not exist; but the other, in consequence of not being evil, was willing that the orderly should exist. By how much, therefore, to be essentially good, is more adapted to divinity than not to be evil, by so much more divine is the will that what is inordinate should not exist, than the will which ordains that what is orderly should exist. For to be good is more adapted to divinity than not to be evil. Hence, it is perfectly absurd to make the will which is more adapted to him, not to be more eternal and efficacious, if it be lawful so to speak, since it is more divine. So that if it is consequent to these wills that the world should be unbegotten through one of them, but incorruptible through the other, it will be in a greater degree unbegotten than incorruptible; since it possesses the former through the more principal and more divine will of the Demiurgus, but the latter through a subordinate will. Moreover, one of these, viz. the incorruptibility of the world, is manifest to all; and consequently the other will be much more manifest than this, viz. that the world is unbegotten. If, therefore, the two are one, the universe will be similarly unbegotten and incorruptible. But if they are two, but that which exists in consequence of being good is more powerful than that which
exists in consequence of not being evil, the universe is in a greater degree unbegotten than incorruptible. It would, however, seem, that there is rather one will in the Demiurgus than two wills: for it is the province of the same will to reject the inordinate, whether it be prior or posterior to order, and to produce, without any temporal beginning, that which is orderly, and preserve it in arrangement without end. For there is not any thing which is more adapted to every artificer than order. Every artificer, therefore, wishes to give a proper arrangement to the work which he produces; so that order, so far as he is an artificer, is to him the object of desire. But if there is one object of desire, the appetition also is one, being the appetition of order. If, however, there is one appetition and will, which are directed to the object of the will, there will certainly be one will always producing prior to time that which is arranged, and connecting a thing of this kind for ever. But being one, it is absurd, or rather impossible, to distribute it into parts, and to attribute one part of it to divinity, and this the more imperfect part, but not to attribute to him another part, and this of a more perfect nature. For that which is more perfect pertains to divinity, since it has a greater power than that which is more imperfect.
74:* This sentence in the original is, τησ ουν βουλησεως αυτῳ τῳ ειναι ποιουσης ο βουλεται, ἢ αει τῳ ειναι ποιησει. But for ἢ αιε, κ.τ.λ. it is necessary to read και αει, κ.τ.λ. conformably to the above translation, and also to the version of Mahotius, which is, "cum igitur voluntas ipso esse, quod vult efficiat, et semper sit utraque, semper ipso esse efficiet."
74:† Hence, as the world subsists in becoming to be, and the artificer of it is an eternally energising being, and the one cannot exist without the other, the world must necessarily be perpetually rising into existence.
75:* This follows from what is above demonstrated, viz. that both the inordinate and the orderly are perpetually generated.
75:† For το ευλογον here, in the original, I read το κιωνιον.