9. But how can we conceive a thing having existence without having magnitude?
We have only to think of things whose identity does not depend on their quantity- for certainly magnitude can be distinguished from existence as can many other forms and attributes.
In a word, every unembodied Kind must be classed as without quantity, and Matter is unembodied.
Besides quantitativeness itself [the Absolute-Principle] does not possess quantity, which belongs only to things participating in it, a consideration which shows that Quantitativeness is an Idea-Principle. A white object becomes white by the presence of whiteness; what makes an organism white or of any other variety of colour is not itself a specific colour but, so to speak, a specific Reason-Principle: in the same way what gives an organism a certain bulk is not itself a thing of magnitude but is Magnitude itself, the abstract Absolute, or the Reason-Principle.
This Magnitude-Absolute, then, enters and beats the Matter out into Magnitude?
Not at all: the Matter was not previously shrunken small: there was no littleness or bigness: the Idea gives Magnitude exactly as it gives every quality not previously present.