In chapter V we saw that intellection is mere actualization of the real as real, and we have analyzed what it is to be mere actuality. It is not actuity, i.e., it is not an act, because it neither adds, subtracts, nor modifies in any way the physical notes which constitute the real. But while it is not an act, actuality is a physical moment of the real. And at this juncture the question inevitably arises as to what this moment adds to the real. Actuality, in fact, is not some empty moment, so to speak; but has its own structure determined by that in which the real is just real. What actuality adds to the real is precisely this being "in" the intellection. We saw what intellection is and what reality is in the two previous chapters. So now we must see what reality is "in" intellection, and we shall proceed in two stages:

1. What, formally, is this intellective "in"? That is, What, formally, does it mean that the real is just actualized "in" intellection? That is what I term real truth.

2. What are the structural moments of this "in"? They are the dimensions of real truth.




A real thing is apprehended as real in and by itself; it is de suyo what it is. Since this moment of formality is a prius of things, it follows that reality does not consist formally nor is it necessarily exhausted in being known intellectively. Hence, on account of its intellectively knowing what a thing is, we say that intellection is true. What the mere actualization of the real adds to reality is, then, its truth.

What is understood by truth? At first glance truth seems to be a quality of a judgment. But this is not so because a judgment is only a mode of intellection. Intellection is neither exclusively nor primarily judgmental. Rather, it consists formally in apprehending something as real, and this intellection also has its truth. As I just said, truth is intellection qua apprehending what is real and present as real. Truth adds nothing to reality in terms of notes; but does add to it its intellective actualization. Hence, the question of what truth is, is a question which concerns intellection as such, and not just the judgmental intellection.

Reality and truth are not identical. Intellection, and therefore truth, are aspects of actualization. And actuality, I repeat, adds no physical note to the real. Nonetheless, it does add the actuality of truth to it. And since not every reality is actualized nor has to be, if follows that not every reality has truth.{231}

For the same reason, reality and truth are not correlative, either; i.e., reality does not consist in being a correlate of truth. Every truth involves reality; but not every reality involves truth.

Reality grounds truth. Reality is what gives truth to intellection when it is just actualized therein. And this actualization is true because it involves reality. Reality, then, is what gives truth, and I generally refer to this "truth giving" with the expression to truthify. Reality truthifies in intellection. Thus, the "in" in which intellective actuality consists is nothing but truthifying. For this reason, not only is truth not something correlative to reality; they are not even related. It is, rather, respectivity, a moment of pure actualization, pure truthifying. Truth is purely and simply the moment of the real intellective presence of reality.

Bearing this in mind it is necessary to purge two conceptions of truth which, by dint of continual repetition, are acceded to without examination, but which in my opinion are false.

The first is the conception according to which truth is objective consciousness. This is the conception upon which all of Kant's philosophy is erected; though in fact it goes back several centuries before him. The problem with this view is not just that it is false, but something much more serious: it is an incorrect analysis of the fact of intellection. The ideas of consciousness and object resound in this conception. Yet intellection is not an act of consciousness, but an act of apprehension; and what is intellectively known does not just have objective independence, but real independence. The conception of truth as objective consciousness is, then, flawed at its heart.

The second conception consists in an appeal to the fact of error: there are intellections which are not true. And from here one goes on {232} to say that truth and error are two qualities which function ex aequo, and that intellection as such is "neutral" with respect to this difference. Intellection would thus be something neutral in itself and, therefore, its proper nature would not be to have truth, but to be an aspiration for truth. Deep down, this was Descartes conception, associated immediately with the idealistic analysis of intellection. Nonetheless it involves a string of serious errors. In the first place, the truth and error of which it speaks are the truth and error of judgment. Now, as we have repeatedly said, judgment is never the primary form of intellection; there is an anterior mode. And so it must at least be said that whether this primary mode of intellection includes truth and error is debatable. It is necessary for us to examine that question, and we shall do so immediately. But, in the second place, even with respect to judgmental intellection, the indisputable fact of erroneous judgments is in no way equivalent to putting truth and error on an equal footing. Errors of judgment are possible only because truth grounds the possibility of error. An error of judgment does not, therefore, consist in a mere "lack" of truth; but is formally and rigorously a "privation" of truth. The judgmental intellection, therefore, is not something neutral. It is not the case that judgmental intellection "can be" true "and" false, but that in fact it "has to be" of necessity either true or false because the judgmental intellection has to be true de suyo. Hence, truth and error cannot be put on the same footing as qualities which supervene upon an intellection which is in itself neutral. Intellection, even judgmental intellection, is something more than aspiration. Therefore, truth is neither objective consciousness {233} nor one quality of intellection that is opposed to another which is error. Truth is the moment of actualization of the real in sentient intellection as such. How exactly does this work?

I reiterate that we are dealing with the truth of sentient intellection as such, i.e., with the primary and radical nature of the sentient actualization of the real. Thus we are not dealing with just any intellective actualization. As we have already seen, sentient intellection in its primary and radical form is that in which what is apprehended is in and for itself, that is, what is apprehended is there directly, immediately, and unitarily apprehended. Now, in this sentient actualization what is apprehended is so de suyo. And this moment of formality of the de suyo is a moment of a thing anterior (prius) to its own being here-and-now apprehendedand precisely therein does its reality consist. But to be sure, this de suyo which is prior to the apprehension is nonetheless apprehended in its own anteriority; i.e., is present in sentient intellection. Hence, this de suyo as anterior to the apprehension is reality. And this de suyo, this reality, qua present in the apprehension is just truth. Truth is reality present in intellection qua really present therein. Thus the primary and radical truth of sentient intellection is not identified with reality; nor does it add to the real anything different from its own reality. What it does add is a kind of ratification by which what is apprehended as real is present in its apprehension; and this is just ratification of the de suyo, ratification of the reality proper. Ratification is the primary and radical form of the truth of sentient intellection; it is what I call real truth. {234}

It is truth because it is a moment which is not formally identical to reality. Reality is a formality of a thing, but truth is a quality of intellection insofar as the real is present in it. This and nothing else is the difference between reality and truth: real truth is ratification of reality.

It is real because it is reality itself which is in this truth; it is the real itself which truthifies. To be sure, we are dealing with reality as formality of the de suyo, and not with reality as beyond apprehension; it is the reality of what is apprehended just as it is apprehended in its apprehension. I shall immediately return to this idea.

Here we have the essential nature of real truth: the real is "in" the intellection, and this "in" is ratification. In sentient intellection truth is found in that primary form which is the impression of reality. The truth of this impressive actuality of the real in and by itself is precisely real truth.

Three observations may serve to bring this idea into sharper focus.

Above all, we are dealing only with ratification; and this is essential. Classically philosophy has gone astray on this matter and always thought that truth is constituted in the reference to a real thing with respect to what is conceived or asserted about that thing. It is because of this that I believe that the classical idea of truth is always what I term dual truth. But in real truth we do not leave the real thing at all; the intelligence of this truth is not conceptualized but sentient. And in this intellection nothing is primarily conceived or judged; rather, there is simply the real actualized as real and therefore ratified in its reality. Real truth is ratification, and {235} therefore is simple truth. For greater clarity, and though anticipating some ideas which will appear in the other two parts of the book, I will say that truth can adopt diverse forms. In the first place, there is simple truth, i.e., real truth in which we do not leave the order of the real; it is truth as ratification. In it, not only do we not leave the order of the real, but moreover there is a positive and difficult act of not doing so; this is the very essence of the ratification. In the second place, there is dual truth, wherein we have left the real thing and gone toward its concept, toward a judgment, or toward an explanation of the thing. If we return to the thing from its concept, that is truth as authenticity. If we return to the thing from a judgement, that is truth as conformity. And if we return to the thing from some explanation of it, that is truth as fulfillment. As we shall see, this third form has never been considered by classical philosophy. Authenticity, conformity, and fulfillment are the three forms of dual truth. But in contrast to the case of dual truth, in real truth there are not two terms which are primarily foreign to each other, such as the real thing on one hand, and its concept on the other; or similarly its judgement on one hand and its explanation on the other. There is but a single term, the real thing in its two internal moments: its own actuality and its own ratification. It is because of this that every dual truth is grounded upon real truth. In real truth, the real is ratifying. In the truth of authenticity, the real is authenticating. In the truth of conformity, the real is truth-stating, i.e. the real is stating its truth. In the truth of reason, the real is verifying. Authenticating, truth-stating, and verifying are three forms of dually modalizing real truth, i.e., ratification. Therefore this real truth is, as we shall see at the appropriate time, the foundation of dual truth. {236}

The second observation concerns what I pointed out earlier: real truth is not the opposite of error for the simple reason that the primary intellection of the real does not admit of the possibility of error. Every primary apprehension of reality is ratifying of what is apprehended and, therefore, is always constitutively and formally real truth. There is no possibility whatsoever of error. Truth is ratification of the real in its actuality. This has nothing to do with the question of whether there is or is not an actuation of a real thing in order for it to be apprehended. If we situate ourselves in the real outside of apprehension, it is possible that this actuation deforms the thing and that therefore what is apprehended is not the same as what the thing is outside of perception. But this does not prevent what is apprehended from being real "in" the apprehension itself, whether or not it is real outside of the apprehension. In the case of any error whatsoever, for example, that of illusion, one leaves the realm of what is apprehended and goes beyond it. Illusion is therefore a phenomenon of duality. But the mere actuality of what is apprehended "in" the apprehension itself is not dual; it is a series of notes which pertain to what is apprehended "of its own", i.e., de suyo. Hence, error consists in identifying the real which is apprehended with the real beyond or outside of the apprehension; in no way does it consist in what is apprehended being unreal "in" the apprehension and yet being taken as real. In an apprehension the apprehended content is real in and by itself; when ratified as such it constitutes real truth. There is no possibility of error. The same can be said about errors owing to things such as malformations of the sensory organs themselves, e.g. Daltonism. In one type of Daltonism, the subject sees a dark grey color where a normal person sees red. But in both cases, and within each perception, the grey {237} which the afflicted person sees is no less real than the red which the normal person sees; nor is that red any more real outside of perception than the grey. Every sentient intellection in which something is seen in and by itself is always and constitutively real truth. Reality is nothing but the formality of the de suyo, and real truth is this de suyo ratified as de suyo in the apprehension. Error is only possible when we leave this intellection and venture out to a dual intellection which goes beyond the apprehension.

Finally, a third observation. Real truth, as I have just said, is simple truth. But it is necessary to conceptualize this simplicity in the correct manner. For Aristotle, to be simple consists in not having any multiplicity whatsoever, in being "purely simple" so to speak; thus sensible qualities as the proper formal object of each sense would be ta hapla. But this is not correct. What is apprehended in sentient intellection has, in general, a great variety of notes; indeed, it is a substantive system of notes. The simplicity of this apprehension does not consist, then, in the "pure simplicity" of what is apprehended; but in the fact that all of its internal variety is apprehended in and by itself in a unitary fashion. Thus we are not dealing with a simplicity of content (something which in fact is never given), but rather with the simplicity of the mode of apprehension, viz. the mode of apprehending something directly, immediately, and unitarily; i.e., per modum unius. To see a landscape, or to see a book en bloc, so to speak, without stopping to apprehend each of its notes or any combinations of them, is a simple apprehension in the unitary sense. This unitary vision of a system, ratified in the intellection of what is thus presented, is its simple real truth. It could also be called its elemental truth. {238}

Thus we have the essential nature of real truth: ratification. And this truth has some extremely concrete dimensions.





In real truth, it is reality which in and by itself is truthifying in the intelligence; i.e., it is reality which directly, immediately, and unitarily is giving its truth to the intellection. As we have seen, this reality has structurally speaking three dimensions: totality, coherence, and duration. Now, the ratification of each of these dimensions is a dimension of real truth. These dimensions are formal respects; they are the ratification of the different moments of the respectivity in which the real consists. When I discussed the dimensions of the real I explained that what was said with respect to systems of notes is applicable to each of them by itself; thus I may excuse myself here from referring to anything but systems.

A) Everything real as a system of notes has that dimension of being a systematic whole; this is the dimension of totality. When a real thing is actualized in its formal respect of totality, its reality is ratified in a very precise way, viz. as the richness of what is apprehended. Richness is not the totality of notes of the real, but that totality qua ratified in sentient intellection. It is a dimension of real truth, the dimension of totality of the real as ratified in intellection.

B) Everything real is a coherent system of notes. Formal coherence is a dimension of the real. But this coherence ratified in intellection constitutes {240} real truth as truth of the coherence; this is what we call the what of something. It is a dimension of real truth. To be "what" is the ratification of the real coherence of the system in intellection.

C) Everything real is a durable system in the sense of enduring. If it did not have the quality of durability, a thing would not have reality. Now, the ratification of durability in intellection constitutes the truth of this durability, viz. stability. Stability means here the character of being something established. Being here-and-now established is the dimension of duration, of presenting the being of the real, ratified in intellection. Being here-and-now established is just what constitutes the ratification of the presenting being here-and-now. The reader can observe that this idea of stability is conceptualized here in this problem in a different way than in other publications of mine.

Reality, then, has three dimensions: totality, coherence, and duration. These dimensions are ratified in real truth and constitute the three dimensions of this truth: totality is ratified in richness; coherence is ratified in "what"; and duration is ratified in stability. Richness, "what", and stability are, then, the three dimensions of real truth. But ratification itself is not some amorphous character, so to speak; rather, in each case there is a proper mode of ratification. Totality is ratified in richness according to its own mode of ratification, viz. manifestation. Manifestation is not the same as making evident, because what is evident is certainly manifest, but it is evident because it is manifested. Manifesting is the mode of ratification of the totality in richness; a thing manifests the richness of all its notes. Reality is coherent, and is ratified in a "what" according to a proper mode of ratification, viz. {241} firmness. What we call the "what" of a thing is just that in which it consists and therefore which gives it its own firmness: it is iron, it is a dog, etc. The mode in which this coherence is ratified is, then, just firmness; the real has the firmness of being a "what". Finally, durable reality is ratified in stability according to its own mode, viz., corroboration or steadiness. Steadiness is not apprehension of some mere fact; it is a mode of ratification, the apprehension of presenting being here-and-now.

To summarize, the three dimensions of the real (totality, coherence, duration) are ratified in the three dimensions of real truth (richness, "what", stability) via three modes of ratification (manifestation, firmness, steadiness). The intrinsic unity of these three dimensions of ratification and its corresponding modes constitutes the radical part of real truth, the radical part of the ratification of reality in intellection.

This idea of ratification is not just a conceptual clarification, but something which touches the most essential part of sentient apprehension of the real. By being sentient, this apprehension is impressive; and every impression, as we saw in Chapter II, has three moments: affection, otherness (content and formality), and force of imposition. The sentient intelligence is essentially constituted by the impression of reality. As impressive, this intellection is sentient. Inasmuch as it senses the other as otherness "of itself", de suyo, this sensing is intellective. Inasmuch as apprehended reality is ratified in the impression itself, it is real truth. Ratification is the force of imposition of the impression of reality; it is the force of reality in intellection. And since this impressive intellection is just actualization, {242} it follows that it is not we who go to real truth, but that real truth has us so to speak in its hands. We do not possess real truth; rather, real truth has possessed us by the force of reality. This possession is not just some mental state or anything of that sort; rather, it is the formal structure of our very intellection. Every form of intellection subsequent to the primary and radical intellection is determined by the real itself; the determination is thus a "dragging along". We are possessed by real truth and dragged along by it to subsequent intellections. How? That is the problem of the subsequent modes of intellection; it will be the theme of the other two parts of the book. But before going on to them it is fitting to conclude this first part with a modal consideration. Let me explain.

What has been done up to now is analysis of the formal structure of intellection as such; this is sentient intellection. But in many passages I have pointed out that we were dealing with the primary and radical intellection. This indicates that there are intellections which are not primary and radical but which, nonetheless, are intellections; i.e. they have the formal structure of intellection. This means that in our analysis we have simultaneously treated the questions of what is intellection and what is its primary mode. Now it is necessary to delineate these two formal and modal moments of intellection with greater precision. That will be the theme of the following chapter






Once again I prefer to group in an appendix those concepts which go beyond the limits of pure analysis of the apprehension of reality. Here I would like to do two things: (1) by way of illustration, to share certain linguistic facts which are very well known; (2) to point out the possible dimensions of real truth in subsequent intellection.

I. As is well known, the Greeks called truth a-letheia, discovery, patentization or revealing. But this is not the only term by which truth is designated in our modern languages. I here reproduce a page which I wrote and published on this subject in 1944:

For the sake of accuracy, it is important to point out that the primary meaning of the word aletheia is not "discovery," or "revealing". Although the word contains the root *la-dh, "to be hidden," with the -dh- suffix of state (Latin lateo form *la-t [Benveniste]; ai, rahu-, the demon who eclipses the sun and the moon; perhaps the Greek alastos, he who does not forget his feelings, his resentments, the violent one, etc.), the word aletheia has its origin in the adjective alethes, of which it is the abstract form. In turn, alethes derives from lethos, lathos, which means "forgetfulness" (the only passage is Theocritus 23, 24).[1] In its primary meaning, aletheia connotes, then, something which is not forgotten; something which has not fallen into "complete" oblivion [Kretschmer, Debrunner]. {244} The only revealing to which aletheia alludes then is simply that of remembrance. Whence aletheia later came to mean simple revealing, the discovery of something, truth.

But the idea of truth itself has its primary expression in other words. Latin, Celtic, and Germanic languages all express the idea of truth based on the root *uero, whose original meaning is difficult to pin down; it is found as the second term in a Latin compound se-verus (se[d]-verus), "strict", "serious", which would lead one to suppose that *uero must mean to happily trust in; whence heorte, festival. Truth is the property of something which merits confidence, security. The same semantic process appears in Semitic languages. In Hebrew, aman, "to be trustworthy"; in Hiph., "to trust in," which gave emunah, "fidelity", "steadfastness"; amen, "truly, thus it is"; emeth, "fidelity, truth"; in Akhadian, ammatu, "firm foundation"; perhaps emtu [Amarna], "truth". On the other hand, Greek and Indoiranian start from the root *es-, "to be". Thus Vedic satya-, Awadhi haithya-, "that which truly, really is." The Greek derives from the same root the adjective etos, eteos, from *s-e-to, "that which is in reality"; eta=alethe [Hesych.]. Truth is the property of being real. The same root gives rise to the verb etazo, "to verify", and esto, "substance", ousia.

From the linguistic viewpoint, then, there are three inseparable dimensions articulated in the idea of truth, whose clarification should be one of the central themes of philosophy: reality (*es-), security (*uer), and revealing (*la-dh-).

The radical unity of these three dimensions is just real truth. For this reason I have called upon these linguistic data {245} as an illustration of a philosophical problem."[2]

II. Real truth, i.e., the ratification of reality in intellection, then, has three modes: manifestation, firmness, and steadiness. As I wrote in my book On Essence,[3] every real truth essentially and indissolubly possesses these three dimensions. None of them has any preferential rank or perogative over the other two. The three are congeneric as structural moments of the primary intellective actualization of a real thing. Nonetheless, they are formally different; so much so that their deployment in subsequent intellection fundamentally modifies mans attitude toward the problem of the truth of the real.

Man, in a word, can move about intellectually according to his preference amid the "unfathomable" richness of the thing. He sees in its notes something like its richness in eruption. He is in a state of insecurity with respect to every and all things. He does not know whether he will reach any part, nor does the paucity of clarity and security which he may encounter on his path disturb him overmuch. What interests him is to stir up reality, to make manifest and to unearth its riches; to conceive them and to classify them with precision. It is a perfectly defined kind of intellection: intellection as adventure. Other times, moving cautiously and, as it were, in the twilight, as he must in order not to stumble or to become disoriented in his movements, man seeks in things securities on which to base himself intellectually with firmness. [He seeks certainties, certainties about the things that are in reality.] It is possible that, proceeding in this fashion, he may let fall by the way great riches in things; but this, however, is the price of reaching what is secure in them, their "what". He pursues the firm as "the true"; {246} the rest, no matter how rich it may be, is no more than the shade of reality and truth, the "verisimilar." It is intellection as achievement of the reasonable. On other occasions, finally, he precisely restricts the range and the figure or pattern of his intellectual movements amid reality. He seeks the clear constatation [steadiness] of his own reality, the aristate [finely edged] profile of what he effectively is. In principle, nothing remains excluded from this pretension; however, even when it is necessary to carry out painful amputations, he accepts them; he prefers that everything in which he does not achieve the ideal of clarity should remain outside the range of intellection. It is intellection as science, in the widest sense of that term.[4]

Every subsequent true intellection has something of an adventure in reality, something of a certain firmness, and something of a science (in the wide sense), because manifestation, firmness, and steadiness are three dimensions constitutive of real truth, and hence cannot be renounced. But the predominance of some of these qualities over others in the development of intellection modifies the intellectual attitude. Because of that predominance, they constitute three types of intellectual attitude.


[1] [okti gr se, kre, qlw lupen poc' rmenoj, ll badzw nqa t meu katkrinaj, pV lgoj men terpwn xunn tosin rsi t frmakon, nqa t lqoj. Idyllia 23, lines 21-24-trans.]^

[2] Naturaleza, Historia, Dios, 1st ed., p. 29, 1944 [English edition, p. 14-15-trans.].^

[3] 1962, p. 131 [English edition., p. 151-trans.].^

[4] On Essence, p. 131 [English edition., p. 152, with bracketed material added-trans.].^