"Dialecticians of the day," replied the Spirit of the River, "all say that the infinitesimally small has no form, and that the infinitesimally great is beyond all measurement. Is that so?"
"If we regard greatness as compared with that which is small," said the Spirit of the Ocean, "there is no limit to it; and if we regard smallness as compared with that which is great, it eludes our sight.
- That is, if we proceed from the concrete to the abstract. Given a large or a small thing, there is no limit to the smallness or greatness with which each may be respectively compared.
The infinitesimal is a subdivision of the small; the colossal is an extension of the great. In this sense the two fall into different categories.
"Both small and great things must equally possess form. The mind cannot picture to itself a thing without form, nor conceive a form of unlimited dimensions. The greatness of anything may be a topic of discussion, or the smallness of anything may be mentally realized. But that which can be neither a topic of discussion nor be realized mentally, can be neither great nor small.
"Therefore, the truly great man, although he does not injure others, does not credit himself with charity and mercy.
- These are natural to him.
He seeks not gain, but does not despise his followers who do. He struggles not for wealth, but does