The Six Aspects of Reality

"The Real is one."

"The Real": It is the Absolute, and It is the Infinite. Absoluity excludes all contingency; Infinitude excludes all limitation. The Absolute is discerned by our spirit as transcendent Object; the Infinite is realized in our heart as immanent Subject. Transcendence has an aspect of immanence since the Truth is inscribed in the very substance of our spirit; and immanence has an aspect of transcendence since the Self transcends the I.


"The Real is": It is purely, and It is totally. The first aspect is Vacuity, which excludes all manifestation; the second is Totality, which excludes all privation.


"The Real is one": It is unique, and It is simple. The first aspect is One-and-onliness,, which excludes all repetition; the second is Simplicity, which excludes all division.


Absoluity, Vacuity and One-and-onliness are exclusive; Infinitude, Totality and Simplicity are inclusive.


It is in virtue of Absoluity, of Vacuity and of One-and-onliness that the Real alone is; and it is in virtue of Infinitude, of Totality and of Simplicity that the world exists, and that it is not other than the Real.


Absoluity gives rise, by compensation in a certain way with regard to nothingness and thus by inversion--although in illusory mode since the Absolute is the Real--to Relativity.


Likewise: Infinitude gives rise, by compensation and inversion, to Limitation.

Likewise again: Vacuity gives rise to its contrary, Manifestation; Totality gives rise to Privation; One-and-onliness gives rise to Plurality; and Simplicity, to Diversity.

That is to say that the Real:

relativizes itself, but without nullifying Absoluity;

limits itself, but without nullifying Infinitude;

manifests itself, but without nullifying Vacuity;

deprives or diminishes itself, but without nullifying Totality;

repeats or reproduces itself, but without invalidating One-and-onliness;

divides itself, but without invalidating Simplicity;


and this more and more in the direction of a nothingness never attained and never capable of being so.


The Real thus produces the world, degree by degree, beginning with the divine Degree, if one may say so; namely the creative Principle, with Its Qualities and its treasury of Archetypes.


Frithjof Schuon

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