Beleza e Uno

VI. 7. 33
(Armstrong Selection and Translation)

[The pursuit of beauty leads the soul eventually beyond form, shape, and proportion to the Formless Source of form, the One or Good.]

The Primary, the First, is without form; beauty There is the nature of good in Noûs. The experience of lovers is evidence of this; as long as the lover is on the level of the impression made on his senses, he is not yet in love. It is only when he produces from this, by his own inward action, an impression which is not on his senses but in his undivided soul, that love is born. Then he seeks to look at the loved object in order to freshen that impression in his soul when it begins to fade. But if he understood that he must go on to that which has less form, it is that which he would desire. His first experience was love of a great light from a dim gleam of it. For shape is a trace of Something without shape, which produces shape, not shape It. It produces shape when matter comes to It. Matter is necessarily farthest away from It, since it has no shape derived from itself, not even of the lowest kind. So then, if it is not matter that is lovable, but the being which is informed by form, and the form in matter comes from soul, and soul is more form and more lovable, and Noûs is more form than soul and more lovable still, we must assume that the Primary Nature of beauty is without form.