In the realm of pure thought, there are concepts which do not have a physical representation. Nevertheless, these incorporeal concepts are very real in the sense that they have definite, quantifiable impacts on the sensory universe, both with their presence and with their absence. This grouping of ideas includes, but is not limited to, the concepts of Justice, Mercy, Peace, Kindness, Honor, Love, and Goodness, among others.
Since we cannot search the world to discover the very spot in space and time where any one of these ideas has a physical existence, we must undertake to describe them according to their effects upon the physical world. This necessarily gives rise to descriptions of the effects of their absence, as well, but we must be careful to note that this opposite result does not imply the existence of an actual opposite concept. For example, we know that Justice is real because we can recognize the condition of a society in which justice is present. However, Injustice is not a real and equal opposite to Justice, it is merely the absence of the real thing known as Justice. When Justice appears, there is no battle in which two equally powerful forces clash until one is the victor. Instead, injustice simply ceases to exist, instantly and totally.
The following illustration may help to give a visceral feel to such an amorphous truth: imagine a hole in the ground. The hole may be thought of as a definite ‘thing’, but in actuality it is merely the absence of dirt in that spot. When a sufficient quantity of dirt is shovelled in, the hole disappears. It has no existence of its own, and cannot fight to maintain its inherent “hole-ness”. The hole is simply what that spot looks like when dirt is absent.
In like fashion, Goodness is a real concept in and of itself, but Evil is merely the absence of Goodness. All strife and conflict in this arena is not, as many imagine, an epic battle between the two opposing forces of Goodness and Evil, where the outcome may be in doubt. Rather, it is a struggle between those who wish to introduce or increase Goodness, and those who wish to decrease or banish it. That is why Goodness will eventually win. It is inevitable, because nature abhors a vacuum. It would require a constant expenditure of infinite amounts of effort and energy to maintain this absence indefinitely, which is patently impossible.
As to the underlying nature of these pure though concepts, if we carry any one of them out to its logical ultimate expression, we arrive at perfection. In human systems, there will always be an admixture of the idea in part alongside a bastardization of itself, or a gap where full expression of the idea is lacking. This is because we humans are imperfect, and cannot by ourselves achieve pure perfection in anything.
God, on the other hand, is perfect in everything He does. When we follow Justice all the way out beyond human limitations to perfect justice, God is there. Perfect justice requires perfect knowledge of every facet and circumstance of the case at hand, every nuance of thought and motive and piece of evidence. For human judges, this is impossible. No one can know everything about everything, including hidden motives and secret intentions of the heart. No one, that is, except God. With God, all things are possible. This includes perfect expression of those ideals of thought which we tend to classify as noble and praiseworthy.
Perfect Love, perfect Goodness, perfect Mercy, perfect Knowledge, perfect Compassion, perfect Forgiveness; God is all these things and more.
Anthony Vaughan #308-236
P.O. Box 56
Lebanon Ohio 45036