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Section 4

4. We have to enquire into the existence of the Numbers in the Intellectual. Are they Ideas added to the other Ideas? Or are they no more than necessary concomitants to the Ideas?

In the latter case, Being, as the first [in the Intellectual] would give us the conception of the Monad; then since Being produces motion and rest, Three exists; and so on for all the other members of the realm of Being. Or perhaps there is one monad for each member, or a monad for the first, with a dyad for its next, since there exists a series, and a corresponding number for every successive total, decad for ten, and so on.

If, on the contrary, Number is a direct production of the Intellectual-Principle [an Idea in itself], there is the question whether it preceded or followed the other Ideas.

Plato, where he says that men arrived at the conception of Number by way of the changes of day and night- thus making the concept depend upon variation among things- seems to hold that the things numerable precede and by their differences produce number: Number then would consist in a process within the human mind passing onwards from thing to thing; it results by the fact that the mind takes count, that is when the mind traverses things and reports their differences; observing pure identity unbroken by difference, it says One. But there is the passage where he tells us that the veritable Number has Being, is a Being; this is the opposed view that Number is no product of the reckoning mind but a reality in itself, the concept of which is reawakened in the mind by changes in things of sense.

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