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Section 17

17. We may be told that neither Act nor Motion requires a genus for itself, but that both revert to Relation, Act belonging to the potentially active, Motion to the potentially motive. Our reply is that Relation produces relatives as such, and not the mere reference to an external standard; given the existence of a thing, whether attributive or relative, it holds its essential character prior to any relationship: so then must Act and Motion, and even such an attribute as habit; they are not prevented from being prior to any relationship they may occupy, or from being conceivable in themselves. Otherwise, everything will be relative; for anything you think of- even Soul- bears some relationship to something else.

But, to return to activity proper and the action, is there any reason why these should be referred to Relation? They must in every instance be either Motion or Act.

If however activity is referred to Relation and the action made a distinct genus, why is not Motion referred to Relation and the movement made a distinct genus? Why not bisect the unity, Motion, and so make Action and Passion two species of the one thing, ceasing to consider Action and Passion as two genera?

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