Their goodness then, is something distinct from, and added to, their proper essences or being.
What, in Plato's mind, is the nature of this participation we need not explain further than that he makes it consist in this, that the thing is a copy or imitation of the idea.
Now in all these locutions the word conveys directly or indirectly the idea of desirability.
The merely useful is desired for the end towards which it is employed; the end is desired on its own account.
Whether Plato held that other ideas exist in God as in their proper dwelling-place is not quite clear.
Aristotle so interpreted Plato ; and it is very likely that Aristotle was better qualified to understand Plato's meaning than were subsequent philosophers who have disputed his interpretation.
Our concepts, being and good differ formally: the first simply denotes existence ; the second, existence as a perfection, or the power of contributing to the perfection of a being.
The objective idea is not indwelling in the essences of those things which fall within the scope of our corresponding universal concept, but the thing borrows or derives something from the idea.
While the being or existence proper to the world of things is imperfect, unstable, essentially transitory, and therefore not truly deserving of the name of being, whcih implies permanence, ideas on the contrary are incorruptible, unchangeable, and truly existence.
The series of means and ends either stretches out indefinitely, or it must terminate in some desired object or objects which are ends in themselves.
Again we sometimes call a thing good because it possesses completely, or in a high degree, the perfections proper to its nature, as a good painting, good respiration.