are eternal principles, yet he has himself taught us that the same does not hold good of their particular embodiments. And it is a mere quibble to say that this case is an exception, because the idea in ques tion is the idea of life; for, ex Kypothesi, an idea
is distinguished from particular existences, just the fact that it is eternal, while they are ever changing, ever becoming and passing away.
ISfow, there is a way of repelling the objection to the ontological argument for the being of God; though only, it must be confessed, by inverting it, or challenging the presuppositions on which it was originally based. That argument, as it is usually stated, starts with the assumption of an essential division between thought and being in general, and then seeks for some special means of transcending that division in the case of the idea of God* But, instead of assuming such a dualism to begin with, we may ask on what grounds it can be asserted In other words, we may ask on what grounds existence is separated from thought, and thought from existence. When we look at the question in this way, as I tried to show in dealing with the Idea of Good, it becomes clear that the distinction of thought and reality is not an absolute ona It corresponds, indeed, to a real difference, but that difference presupposes an identity which is beyond it. There is an ultimate unity between thought
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