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Section 2

2. To this our first answer is that to place certain things under one identical class- by admitting an identical range of operation- is to make them of one common species, and puts an end to all mention of part; the reasonable conclusion would be, on the contrary, that there is one identical soul, every separate manifestation being that soul complete.

Our opponents after first admitting the unity go on to make our soul dependent on something else, something in which we have no longer the soul of this or that, even of the universe, but a soul of nowhere, a soul belonging neither to the kosmos, nor to anything else, and yet vested with all the function inherent to the kosmic soul and to that of every ensouled thing.

The soul considered as an entirety cannot be a soul of any one given thing- since it is an Essence [a divine Real-Being]- or, at least, there must be a soul which is not exclusively the soul of any particular thing, and those attached to particulars must so belong merely in some mode of accident.

In such questions as this it is important to clarify the significance of "part."

Part, as understood of body- uniform or varied- need not detain us; it is enough to indicate that, when part is mentioned in respect of things whose members are alike, it refers to mass and not to ideal-form [specific idea]: take for example, whiteness: the whiteness in a portion of milk is not a part of the whiteness of milk in general: we have the whiteness of a portion not a portion of whiteness; for whiteness is utterly without magnitude; has nothing whatever to do with quantity.

That is all we need say with regard to part in material things; but part in the unembodied may be taken in various ways. We may think of it in the sense familiar in numbers, "two" a part of the standard "ten"- in abstract numbers of course- or as we think of a segment of a circle, or line [abstractly considered], or, again, of a section or branch of knowledge.

In the case of the units of reckoning and of geometrical figure, exactly as in that of corporeal masses, partition must diminish the total; the part must be less than the whole; for these are things of quantity, and have their being as things of quantity; and- since they are not the ideal-form Quantity- they are subject to increase and decrease.

Now in such a sense as this, part cannot be affirmed of the soul.

The soul is not a thing of quantity; we are not to conceive of the All-Soul as some standard ten with particular souls as its constituent units.

Such a conception would entail many absurdities:

The Ten could not be [essentially] a unity [the Soul would be an aggregation, not a self-standing Real-Being] and, further- unless every one of the single constituents were itself an All-Soul- the All-Soul would be formed of non-souls.

Again, it is admitted that the particular soul- this "part of the All-Soul- is of one ideal-form with it, but this does not entail the relation of part to whole, since in objects formed of continuous parts there is nothing inevitably making any portion uniform with the total: take, for example, the parts of a circle or square; we may divide it in different ways so as to get our part; a triangle need not be divided into triangles; all sorts of different figures are possible: yet an absolute uniformity is admitted to reign throughout soul.

In a line, no doubt, the part is inevitably a line; but even here there is a necessary difference in size; and if, in the case of the soul we similarly called upon magnitude as the distinction between constituents and collective soul, then soul, thus classed by magnitude becomes quantitative, and is simply body.

But it is admitted that all souls are alike and are entireties; clearly, soul is not subject to part in the sense in which magnitudes are: our opponents themselves would not consent to the notion of the All-Soul being whittled down into fragments, yet this is what they would be doing, annulling the All-Soul- if any collective soul existed at all- making it a mere piece of terminology, thinking of it like wine separated into many portions, each portion, in its jar, being described as a portion of the total thing, wine.

Next there is the conception of the individual soul as a part in the sense in which we speak of some single proposition as a part of the science entire.

The theorem is separate, but the science stands as one undivided thing, the expression and summed efficiency [energy] of each constituent notion: this is partition without severance; each item potentially includes the whole science, which itself remains an unbroken total.

Is this the appropriate parallel?

No; in such a relationship the All-Soul, of which the particular souls are to be a part, would not be the soul of any definite thing, but an entity standing aloof; that means that it would not even be the soul of the Kosmos; it would, in fact, be, itself, one of those partial souls; thus all alike would be partial and of one nature; and, at that, there would be no reason for making any such distinction.

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