On Generation and corruption
is'. But if that is their character, it is impossible they should
not be affected by one another: the 'slightly-hot indivisible', e.g.
will inevitably suffer action from one which far exceeds it in heat.
Again, if any 'indivisible' is 'hard', there must also be one which is
'soft': but 'the soft' derives its very name from the fact that it
suffers a certain action-for 'soft' is that which yields to pressure.
II. But further, not only is it paradoxical (i) that no property
except figure should belong to the 'indivisibles': it is also
paradoxical (ii) that, if other properties do belong to them, one only
of these additional properties should attach to each-e.g. that this
'indivisible' should be cold and that 'indivisible' hot. For, on
that supposition, their substance would not even be uniform. And it is
equally impossible (iii) that more than one of these additional
properties should belong to the single 'indivisible'. For, being
indivisible, it will possess these properties in the same point-so
that, if it 'suffers action' by being chilled, it will also, qua
chilled, 'act' or 'suffer action' in some other way. And the same line
of argument applies to all the other properties too: for the
difficulty we have just raised confronts, as a necessary
consequence, all who advocate 'indivisibles' (whether solids or
planes), since their 'indivisibles' cannot become either 'rarer' or
'derser' inasmuch as there is no void in them.
III. It is a further paradox that there should be small
'indivisibles', but not large ones. For it is natural enough, from the
ordinary point of view, that the larger bodies should be more liable
to fracture than the small ones, since they (viz. the large bodies)
are easily broken up because they collide with many other bodies.
But why should indivisibility as such be the property of small, rather
than of large, bodies?
IV. Again, is the substance of all those solids uniform, or do
they fall into sets which differ from one another-as if, e.g. some
of them, in their aggregated bulk, were 'fiery', others earthy'? For