A division in act by power

All power is power of acting with respect to some X. Since power as such doesn’t involve dependence, either this relation involves a real dependence or it doesn’t. We are most familiar with powers that in fact depend on the X in some way in order to act: perhaps we need the parts that make it up (the way we need bread to make a sandwich), or some instrument (a knife), or the right conditions for working, or it might need the consent of the thing itself (telling someone to make a sandwich for us). But it  To be independent, however, would be to create ex nihilo – where the “nihil” is a negation of the need for the parts, conditions, memories, consent of others, the right working conditions, any instruments, etc. Though we approach this independent power by way of all these negations, it is actually simply the real existence of what power logically is.

In dependent power, we posit not just a power to act but a power to receive – an active and passive potency. These will be correlative aspects and not absolute entities. If the passive potency of the action were made impossible, the active power would also be made impossible. Independent power, however, is not a correlative but presupposes the real non existence. In fact, apart from the creative act, the term of the action is not just non existent but impossible.

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