§4. The Dyad 1)


326. A dyad consists of two subjects brought into oneness. These subjects have their modes of being in themselves, and they also have their modes of being, as first and second, etc., in connection with each other. They are two, if not really, at least in aspect. There is also some sort of union of them. The dyad is not the subjects; it has the subjects as one element of it. It has, besides, a suchness of monoidal character; and it has suchness, or suchnesses, peculiar to it as a dyad. The dyad brings the subjects together, and in doing so imparts a character to each of them. Those characters are, in some sense, two. The dyad has also two sides according to which subject is considered as first. These two sides of the dyad form a second pair of subjects attached to the dyad; and they have their mode of union. Each of them also has a special character as a subject of the dyad.

This description shows that the dyad, in contrast to the monad, has a variety of features; and all these features present dyadic relations.

327. As an example of a dyad take this: God said, Let there be light, and there was light. We must not think of this as a verse of Genesis, for Genesis would be a third thing. Neither must we think of it as proposed for our acceptance, or as held for true; for we are third parties. We must simply think of God creating light by fiat. Not that the fiat and the coming into being of the light were two facts; but that it is in one indivisible fact. God and light are the subjects. The act of creation is to be regarded, not as any third object, but merely as the suchness of connection of God and light. The dyad is the fact. It determines the existence of the light, and the creatorship of God. The two aspects of the dyad are, first, that of God compelling the existence of the light, and that of the light as, by its coming into existence, making God a creator. This last is in the present example merely a mere point of view, without any reality corresponding to it. That is one of the special features of the particular example chosen. Of the two aspects of the dyad, then, one is in this instance, fundamental, real, and primary, while the other is merely derivative, formal, and secondary.

328. I chose this instance because it is represented as instantaneous. Had there been any process intervening between the causal act and the effect, this would have been a medial, or third, element. Thirdness, in the sense of the category, is the same as mediation. For that reason, pure dyadism is an act of arbitrary will or of blind force; for if there is any reason, or law, governing it, that mediates between the two subjects and brings about their connection. The dyad is an individual fact, as it existentially is; and it has no generality in it. The being of a monadic quality is a mere potentiality, without existence. Existence is purely dyadic.

329. It is to be noted that existence is an affair of blind force. »The very hyssop that grows on the wall exists in that chink because the whole universe could not prevent it.« No law determines any atom to exist. Existence is presence in some experiential universe — whether the universe of material things now existing, or that of laws, or that of phenomena, or that of feelings — and this presence implies that each existing thing is in dynamical reaction with every other in that universe. Existence, therefore, is dyadic; though Being is monadic.


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