A Concise Introduction to the Philosophy of Nicholas of Cusa by Jasper Hopkins

By Jasper Hopkins

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Yet this return is Introduction 39 most complete with regard to that human being who is the perfectio universi. For in Christ the finite and the infinite come together in the same person, so that in this person God and the perfection of the universe are one. As Cassirer notes, this idea has at times "been so little understood that the attempt has been made to sever it from the whole of Cusanus' philosophy, considering it an arbitrary 'theological' appendix rooted in a purely dogmatic interest. But excisions of this sort .

Considered in itself it cannot be greater than it is. Nicholas's argument for this conclusion is bizarre: The universe cannot be greater than it is. This results from a lack. For possibility or matter does not extend beyond itself. For to say that the universe is able always to be actually greater is the same as saying that possible being passes over into actually infinite being. But this latter [occurrence] is impossible. 133 Therefore, with respect to God's infinite power, which isunlimitable, the universe is able to be greater; nevertheless, because the possibility-of-existing or matter, which is not actually extendable unto infinity, opposes, the universe is not able to be greater.

Briintrup, Alfons. Kbnnen und Sein. Der Zusammenhang der Spdtschriften des Nikolaus von Kues. Munich: Pustet, 1973. Bufo, Giuseppe. Nicolas de Cues: ou la metaphysique de la finitude. Paris; Editions Seghers, 1964. Burgevin, Frederick H. New York: Vantage Press, 1969. Caramella, Santino, "Unita ideale e coincidenza reale degli oppositi nel pensiero ni Nicolo da Cusa," NC, pp. 17-28. "U problema di una logica trascendente neH'ultima fase del pensiero di Nicola Cusano," NCMM, pp. 367-73. Cassirer, Ernst.

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