Wednesday, August 18, 2021

Four Attributes

 Most true, indeed, is the statement that there are four attributes which embrace all that exists, namely, being, unity, truth, and goodness, provided that they are taken in the sense that their negations be: nothing, division, falsity, evil. Two others, something (aliquid) and thing (res), have been added to these by the late disciples of Avicenna, who interpolated the philosophy of Averroes in more than one place, wherefore Averroes attacked them vigorously. But, to tell the truth, on this point there is little reason for discord. For they merely divide what is subsumed under 'one' into 'one' and 'something,' a procedure that is not contrary to Plato who, in the Sophist, enumerates unity among the most extensive genera; and that which is contained under 'being' they divide into being and thing. But of this later. To return to our subject, -- these four attributes exist in one way in God, and in another way in beings created by God, since God has them from Himself, other beings from Him.

Pico della Mirandola, On Being and One, chapter 8.