bullet1 Goodness

The Principles of the Art

B Goodness

Definition: Goodness is that on account of which good does good, and thus it is good to be and evil not to be. And we say this because goodness is the cause or principle on account of which good does good in the same way that heat is the cause on account of which hot things produce heat.

Clarification: This means that good substantial being gives rise to good produced with its own goodness and that of the good things arising from it; thus, a good being that does good finally exists for the good it produces. Hence, substantial beings clearly exist for two purposes, namely to be good and to produce good, all by reason of goodness where goodness is an end that moves good things toward itself. And this shows the full extent and scope of goodness.

Distinctions: clarification shows distinct kinds of goodness because some good beings are greater than others; as one good thing gives rise to another, one goodness gives rise to another proceeding gradually from lesser goodness to greater goodness and from lesser good to greater good all the way to the supreme good, or supreme goodness that is the supreme origin of all other good beings and of their goodness. Supreme good moves all other good beings as the final cause moves the efficient, formal and material causes where the efficient cause, with its goodness, moves the form toward a good end; and form moves matter to the same end which cannot exist apart from goodness. Now this supreme good is the final cause of its own goodness and conversely, for in itself it is so abundantly full of goodness that it needs no other goodness apart from itself. And this shows that goodness is a principle without which no being or entity can arise, since all being is essentially good, which shows that being only means good, and entity only means goodness, even though they are not identical. They belong to different rational orders, although synonymous, they are convertible only in God, not in creatures.

The nature, fullness, or total essential scope of goodness is declined in the following way: the bonifier, bonifiable and bonifying, all intrinsically one essence, followed by the bonified. These terms cover the entire scope of goodness and whatever exists on account of it.

Goodness is a principle of the Art so it can influence the other principles through its own conditions and those it derives from other principles of the Art, to enable the artist to investigate particulars and find means to reach conclusions, since goodness, because of its essential and accidental conditions, always indicates that there is even more goodness. Following its conditions, one good thing denotes another as one likeness shows another, when likenesses are considered and judged.