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On The Heavens   

many in number the various places are.


We must show not only that the heaven is one, but also that more

than one heaven is and, further, that, as exempt from decay and

generation, the heaven is eternal. We may begin by raising a

difficulty. From one point of view it might seem impossible that the

heaven should be one and unique, since in all formations and

products whether of nature or of art we can distinguish the shape in

itself and the shape in combination with matter. For instance the form

of the sphere is one thing and the gold or bronze sphere another;

the shape of the circle again is one thing, the bronze or wooden

circle another. For when we state the essential nature of the sphere

or circle we do not include in the formula gold or bronze, because

they do not belong to the essence, but if we are speaking of the

copper or gold sphere we do include them. We still make the

distinction even if we cannot conceive or apprehend any other

example beside the particular thing. This may, of course, sometimes be

the case: it might be, for instance, that only one circle could be

found; yet none the less the difference will remain between the

being of circle and of this particular circle, the one being form, the

other form in matter, i.e. a particular thing. Now since the

universe is perceptible it must be regarded as a particular; for

everything that is perceptible subsists, as we know, in matter. But if

it is a particular, there will be a distinction between the being of

'this universe' and of 'universe' unqualified. There is a

difference, then, between 'this universe' and simple 'universe'; the

second is form and shape, the first form in combination with matter;

and any shape or form has, or may have, more than one particular


On the supposition of Forms such as some assert, this must be the

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