12. Questions about the Hundred Forms
Questions about the hundred forms can be made in as many ways as each form is different in each of the nine subjects. For instance, entity, etc. which is one form in God, another in angels, another in heaven etc. For instance, let us ask:
134. Is God's entity the prime origin of all entities? The answer is yes, because his goodness is the prime origin of all instances of goodness, his greatness of all instances of greatness and his eternity of all instances of duration. But this cannot be said about the entity of angels, heaven etc. And so each form, as it differs from the others, can be discussed with its principles and rules.
135. Question: do essence and being convert? We reply that they convert in God, for in God, there is nothing superior or inferior. But they do not convert in an angel or in heaven, because their being exists by reason of essence and not vice versa. In such cases, the essence is above and being is below.
Questions can be made in one way about God's unity, in another way about an angel's unity, and in another way about the unity of heaven etc. For instance, let us ask:
136. Does God's unity function by uniting infinity? The answer is yes. Now without an infinite uniting act, unity could not be infinite because its power would be finite and bound, and idle in eternity; and it would be the same with God's goodness and greatness etc. which is impossible.
137. Now if we inquire about the goodness of an angel and ask: does an angel function by uniting? We reply according to the conditions of its unity, whereby one angel unites morally and objectively with another in one act of loving, one act of understanding, one act of bonifying. I do not mean that one angel unites another angel, because it cannot do this, as we already said. Nor can one heaven unite another heaven. But the unity of heaven effectively causes unities below. But this does not apply to the unity of man, because one man can unite another man by generating one. And likewise with other such things, each in its own way.
138. Question: is there plurality in God? And the answer is yes, with regard to his correlatives signified by the second species of rule C. Without them He cannot have his innate, infinite and eternal operation as He bonifies, magnifies, eternalizes etc. And so his reasons would be confined to idleness, which is impossible. But this does not apply to the plurality of an angel. Now an angel is composed of active and passive parts, as compared to divine simplicity. And likewise, heaven is more compounded than an angel, and man more than heaven.
139. Question: is there nature in God? And the answer is yes, so that God can have natural acts of remembering, understanding and loving as well as natural goodness, greatness etc. And so that these reasons be naturally his own, whereby He produces infinite and eternal good as becomes his act of naturizing. But this is not the case with angelic nature, as it is finite and new. Nonetheless, it functions by naturizing, because it has innate natural species with which it objectifies things objectively and naturally. And the nature of heaven can be dealt with likewise in its own way, by applying its specific natural principles and rules, with which it naturally acts in its specific way. And the nature of the other subjects can be dealt with likewise, each in its own way.
The things said above enable the artist to make questions about the hundred forms and solve them, following the different ways of dealing with different questions and combining them with the nine subjects where they differ from one another while each form keeps its own definition, as given above. And here the intellect recognizes its method for rising to a highly general level, by making many questions and solving them by the methods shown in the evacuation of the third figure and the multiplication of the fourth figure. Who indeed can count all the questions and solutions that can be made? And this is enough regarding questions about the hundred forms, for the sake of brevity.