Ars Brevis

bullet1 8. Mixing Principles and Rules

Part 8

The Mixture of Principles and Rules

In this part, as the intellect mixes the principles with each other, it combines each defined principle with all the other principles in turn, and with all the species of the rules. In this discourse, the intellect learns more and more about each principle, and diversifies its knowledge of each principle each time it mixes it in a different way. Who can tell how many media the intellect can discover for concluding its arguments by evacuating this mixture, as it earlier evacuated camera BC?

This mixture is the very hub of this Art where many propositions, questions, media, conditions, solutions and objections are discovered. But we leave this to be worked out by the diligent intellect for the sake of brevity and also because a clear example of the method of mixture is provided in Ars Magna.

Moreover, as this mixture is the basic subject matter of this Art, it is a reliable resource where the artist can freely find whatever he wants. When looking for anything related to goodness, he can combine the entire sequence of principles and rules with goodness and find out all he wants to know about it. And what we said about goodness also applies to the other principles. This mixture respects the conditions and order inherent in the natural distinctions between things. When divine goodness is combined with the principles and rules, loftier definitions and species of rules are required in a discourse on divine goodness than in a discourse on the goodness of angels, and discourse on the goodness of angels requires loftier ones than discourse on the goodness of man, and discourse on the goodness of man needs loftier ones than discourse on the goodness of lions. And so with the other subjects, each in its own way.