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Section 16

16. When each of the entities bound up with the pseudo-substance is taken apart from the rest, the name of Quality is given to that one among them, by which without pointing to essence or quantity or motion we signify the distinctive mark, the type or aspect of a thing- for example, the beauty or ugliness of a body. This beauty- need we say?- is identical in name only with Intellectual Beauty: it follows that the term "Quality" as applied to the Sensible and the Intellectual is necessarily equivocal; even blackness and whiteness are different in the two spheres.

But the beauty in the germ, in the particular Reason-Principle- is this the same as the manifested beauty, or do they coincide only in name? Are we to assign this beauty- and the same question applies to deformity in the soul- to the Intellectual order, or to the Sensible? That beauty is different in the two spheres is by now clear. If it be embraced in Sensible Quality, then virtue must also be classed among the qualities of the lower. But merely some virtues will take rank as Sensible, others as Intellectual qualities.

It may even be doubted whether the arts, as Reason-Principles, can fairly be among Sensible qualities; Reason-Principles, it is true, may reside in Matter, but "matter" for them means Soul. On the other hand, their being found in company with Matter commits them in some degree to the lower sphere. Take the case of lyrical music: it is performed upon strings; melody, which may be termed a part of the art, is sensuous sound- though, perhaps, we should speak here not of parts but of manifestations [Acts]: yet, called manifestations, they are nonetheless sensuous. The beauty inherent in body is similarly bodiless; but we have assigned it to the order of things bound up with body and subordinate to it.

Geometry and arithmetic are, we shall maintain, of a twofold character; in their earthly types they rank with Sensible Quality, but in so far as they are functions of pure Soul, they necessarily belong to that other world in close proximity to the Intellectual. This, too, is in Plato's view the case with music and astronomy.

The arts concerned with material objects and making use of perceptible instruments and sense-perception must be classed with Sensible Quality, even though they are dispositions of the Soul, attendant upon its apostasy.

There is also every reason for consigning to this category the practical virtues whose function is directed to a social end: these do not isolate Soul by inclining it towards the higher; their manifestation makes for beauty in this world, a beauty regarded not as necessary but as desirable.

On this principle, the beauty in the germ, and still more the blackness and whiteness in it, will be included among Sensible Qualities.

Are we, then, to rank the individual soul, as containing these Reason-Principles, with Sensible Substance? But we do not even identify the Principles with body; we merely include them in Sensible Quality on the ground that they are connected with body and are activities of body. The constituents of Sensible Substance have already been specified; we have no intention whatever of adding to them Substance bodiless.

As for Qualities, we hold that they are invariably bodiless, being affections arising within Soul; but, like the Reason-Principles of the individual soul, they are associated with Soul in its apostasy, and are accordingly counted among the things of the lower realm: such affections, torn between two worlds by their objects and their abode, we have assigned to Quality, which is indeed not bodily but manifested in body.

But we refrain from assigning Soul to Sensible Substance, on the ground that we have already referred to Quality [which is Sensible] those affections of Soul which are related to body. On the contrary, Soul, conceived apart from affection and Reason-Principle, we have restored to its origin, leaving in the lower realm no substance which is in any sense Intellectual.

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