Natureza: Vegetais e Animais

Of the corporeal thus brought into being by Nature the elemental materials of things are its very produce, but how do animal and vegetable forms stand to it? Are we to think of them as containers of Nature present within them? Light goes away and the air contains no trace of it, for light and air remain each itself, never coalescing: is this the relation of Nature to the formed object? It is rather that existing between fire and the object it has warmed: the fire withdrawn, there remains a certain warmth, distinct from that in the fire, a property, so to speak, of the object warmed. For the shape which Nature imparts to what it has moulded must be recognized as a form quite distinct from Nature itself, though it remains a question to be examined whether besides this [specific] form there is also an intermediary, a link connecting it with Nature, the general principle. Enneads: IV IV. 14