5. Two Metaphysical Questions
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CHAPTERI . F I V E Two Metaphysical Questions Text 1. Natura: Individualis, Universalis, et Indifferens Sicut1 dictum est in solutione primae quaestionis (de hac materia ) quod natura prius est naturaliter quam haec natura, et unitas propria-consequens naturam ut natura-est prior naturaliter unitate eius ut haec natura; et sub ista ratione est consideratio metaphysica de natura, et assignatur definitio eius, et sunt propositiones per se primo modo. In eodem igitur quod est unum numero, est aliqua entitas, quam consequitur minor unitas quam sit unitas numeralis, et est realis; et illud cuius est talis unitas, formaliter est "de se unum" unitate numerali. Concedo igitur quod unitas realis non est alicuius exsistentis in duobus individuis, sed in uno.... Ita2 concedo quod quidquid est in hoc lapide, est unum numero ,-vel primo, vel per se, vel denominative: "primo" forte, ut illud per quod unitas talis convenit huic composito; "per se" hie lapis, cuius illud quod est primo unum hac unitate, est per se pars; "denominative" tantum, illud potentiale quod perficitur isto actuali, quod quasi denominative respicit actualitatem eius.... Et3 si quaeras a me quae est ista "entitas individualis" a qua sumitur differentia individualis, estne materia vel forma vel compositum,-respondeo: Omnis entitas quiditativa-sive par-tialis sive totalis-alicuius generis, est de se indifferens "ut entitas quiditativa" ad hanc entitatem et illam, ita quod "ut entitas quiditativa" est naturaliter prior ista entitate ut haec est,-et ut prior est naturaliter, sicut non convenit sibi esse hanc, ita non repugnat sibi ex ratione sua suum oppositum; et 1. Ordinatio II, d. 3, no. 172 (Vat.7, 476). 2. Ordinatio II, d. 3, no. 175 (Vat. 7,477-78). 3. Ordinatio II, d. 3, no. 187-88 (Vat. 7,483-84). I 184 185 I Two Metaphysical Questions IIndividuation, Universals, and Common Nature As was stated in the solution to the first question on this matter" [of individuation], nature is prior naturally to "this nature," and the unity proper-which follows on nature qua nature-is prior naturally to its unity qua this nature. And it is under this prior aspect that there is a metaphysical consideration ofthe nature, and its definition is assigned and propositions are true in the first mode ofper se predication. And therefore in the same thing that is one in number, there is some entity to which is attributed a unity that is less than numerical, and that unity is real; and that to which such a unity pertains is made formally "one de se" by numerical unity. Therefore, I concede that this real unityis not something existing in two individuals but in one.... And so I concede that whatever is in this stone is one numerically -either primarily or per se or derivatively. That [individuat;. ing difference or haecceity] through which such unity pertains to this composite would perhaps be such primarily; this stone would be such per se, [for] that which is primarily one by this unity [or individuating difference] is a per se part of the "this"; that potential [i;e., the stone-nature, in itself less than numerically one] which is perfected by this actual [individuating difference] is only derivatively one numerically with respect to its actuality.... And if you ask me, What is this "individuating entity" from which the individual difference is taken? Is it matter or form or the composite? I give you this answer: Every quidditative entity -be it partial or total-of any sort is of itself indifferent as a quidditative entity to this entity and that, so that as a quidditative entity it is naturally prior to this entity as just this. Now just as, in this natural priority, it does not pertain to it to be this, neither is it repugnant to its essential nature to be other than 186 I C HAP T E R F I V E sicut compositum non includit suam entitatem (qua formaliter est "hoc") in quantum natura, ita nec materia "in quantum natura" includit suam entitatem (qua est "haec materia"), nec forma "in quantum natura" includit suam. Non est igitur "ista entitas" materia vel forma vel compositum , in quantum quodlibet istorum est "natura,"-sed est ultima realitas entis quod est materia vel quod est forma vel quod est compositum; ita quod quodcumque commune, et tamen determinabile, adhuc potest distingui (quantumcumque sit una res) in plures realitates formaliter distinctas, quarum haec formaliter non est ilIa: et haec est formaliter entitas singularitatis, et ilIa est entitas naturae formaliter. Nec possunt istae duae realitates esse res...


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Subject Headings

  • Knowledge, Theory of.
  • Duns Scotus, John, ca. 1266-1308.
  • Metaphysics.
  • God (Christianity) -- History of doctrines -- Middle Ages, 600-1500.
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