23. That which soul must quest, that which sheds its light upon Intellectual-Principle, leaving its mark wherever it falls, surely we need not wonder that it be of power to draw to itself, calling back from every wandering to rest before it. From it came all, and so there is nothing mightier; all is feeble before it. Of all things the best, must it not be The Good? If by The Good we mean the principle most wholly self-sufficing, utterly without need of any other, what can it be but this? Before all the rest, it was what it was, when evil had yet no place in things.
If evil is a Later, there found where there is no trace of This- among the very ultimates, so that on the downward side evil has no beyond- then to This evil stands full contrary with no linking intermediate: This therefore is The Good: either good there is none, or if there must be, This and no other is it.
And to deny the good would be to deny evil also; there can then be no difference in objects coming up for choice: but that is untenable.
To This looks all else that passes for good; This, to nothing.
What then does it effect out of its greatness?
It has produced Intellectual-Principle, it has produced Life, the souls which Intellectual-Principle sends forth and everything else that partakes of Reason, of Intellectual-Principle or of Life. Source and spring of so much, how describe its goodness and greatness?
But what does it effect now?
Even now it is preserver of what it produced; by it the Intellectual Beings have their Intellection and the living their life; it breathes Intellect in breathes Life in and, where life is impossible, existence.