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Questions tagged [aristotle]

Aristotle was a Greek philosopher, famous for his prolific writings on a vast array of subjects, including logic, ethics, aesthetics, metaphysics, politics, and even the natural sciences. He is widely considered a "founding figure" in Western philosophy.

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Is Aquinas's "act is the principle of action" a tautology?

In Summa Contra Gentiles II.6.7, Aquinas suddenly claims that "act is the principle of action" (actus autem actionis principium est). Is this phrase supposed to be a definition of act? Or a ...
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How do numbers and quantities relate in Aristotle's philosophy?

I'm trying to find out how numbers (and other mathematical objects) and quantities relate in Aristotles philosophy. For example if the distance between point A and point B is "287 miles", ...
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Where in Aristotle's Metaphysics is Aquinas citing his claim about "two sorts of operations"?

In the beginning of book II of Aquinas's Summa Contra Gentiles, Aquinas writes Now the operation of a thing is twofold, as the Philosopher teaches in 9 Metaphysics ... A footnote is provided which ...
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How should I pronounce words from Ancient Greek philosophy?

A somewhat unusual question here. Naturally, while reading through Ancient Greek philosophy, I've encountered many Ancient Greek words like παιδεία, οὐσία, as well as sentences like 'πάντες ἄνθρωποι ...
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How is the logos of a well-functioning entity related to that entity's telos?

The question I'm asking is essentially how the formal cause of an entity is related to its final cause, though I'd also appreciate feedback on whether these questions are the same. From what I know, ...
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Any consensus on Łukasiewicz' idea that Aristotle's syllogisms were systematically misrepresented in the academic literature?

Is there a consensus today on Jan Łukasiewicz' 1957 assertion that Aristotle's syllogisms were systematically misrepresented in the academic literature? Łukasiewicz, in Aristotle's Syllogistic from ...
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How do complex propositions and Aristotle's logic work?

Is it allowed to create a syllogism with complex propositions? Here is my example where P is a sequence of actions and M is a final cause. S = "Cake maker" P = "Finding of ingredients, ...
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Is this Barbara syllogism of a final cause right?

Hi i'm trying to learn how to make an explanation of a final cause in the form of a Barbara syllogism but I don't know if I have the terms in the right order. The Barbara definition I'm using is from ...
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The square of opposition and Boolean algebra

I know that Aristotle was the first to create 'The square of opposition' by expressing a syllogism as a 'The square of opposition'. And George Boole discovered the problem with Aristotle's 'The square ...
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All syllogism is addressed to that within the soul: Did Aristotle really said that?

All syllogism and therefore a fortiori demonstration, is addressed not to outward speech but to that within the soul. Did Aristotle really said that, and if so, where? The claim that he did is in I. ...
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Which author(s) first talked of Aristotle's syllogistic as a logic of terms?

Which author(s) first talked of Aristotle's syllogistic as a logic of terms? Thank you for any scholarly references. Aristotle does defines the notion of "term" in Prior Analytics: I call a ...
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Distinction between classical essential (primary) and non-essential (secondary) properties of matter vs. modern primary-secondary qualities?

Primary qualities according to modernity (Galileo, Descartes, Hobbes) are qualities that are quantitative/mathematical. Everything else cannot be reduced to mathematics—e.g., a sensible is a secondary ...
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How does mathematical atomism do away with the classical conception of man?

I've been reading E.A. Burtt, The Metaphysical Foundations of Modern Science. I keep going back to Galileo and his idea of motion, space, and time. I still can't internalize what he means by man ...
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How can immaterial soul exist without matter but immaterial redness can't?

So as the title says Aristotle and Aquinas held that soul which is substantial form of living things can exist even after separation from body. This is because soul is taken as immaterial substantial ...
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Why is self-sufficiency considered by Aristotle to be an important characteristic of a city-state?

In Politics, Book I, Aristotle wrote A complete community constituted out of several villages, once it reaches the limit of total SELF-SUFFICIENCY, practically speaking, is a city-state. Why does he ...
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Did Aristotle’s philosophy hold back the discovery of calculus?

In this question on HSM I asked about the obstacles that made the discovery of calculus very late ? I mean that calculus is not that difficult or hard and yet took more than 1000 year to be ...
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Synthesis of Aristotle and Plato

I would like to know if there are any systematic and comprehensive texts on synthesising Aristotle and Plato (mainly that come from a Neoplatonism stand point since I know this joining of the two ...
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Converting a Euclidian proposition to a syllogism format

I am attempting to analyze Euclid's proof demonstrating that the interior angles of a triangle are equal to two right angles (book 1, prop 32). In particular, I'm looking for a way to convert the ...
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Has anyone recast Aristotle's Law of Noncontradiction as a law of recontextualization?

Aristotle's Law of Noncontradiction (LNC) is translated in a variety of ways: Let us next state what this principle is."It is impossible for the same attribute at once to belong and not to ...
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According to Aristotle are actions substances?

Actions can have qualities and be subjects, like when we say "walking is good for health". Would Aristotle say that actions are substances?
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How would an existentialist like Sartre respond to Aristotles function argument?

I have been reading Aristotle's NE and a bit of Existentialism is a Humanism and was wondering how Sartre (or another existentialist) might defend his position that humans do not have some function ...
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Whats the point of the human function in the Nicomachean Ethics?

Is "the good" Aristotle mentions for a human just the same as saying the eudaimonia for a human (since that would seem to connect the two)? Otherwise, I do not see how he arrives at a ...
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Aristotle's soul: is it an abstraction?

I have been reading Aristotle's Politics book and I struggle to understand what is his idea behind soul. From what I found on the internet the "soul" seems to be not spiritual but rather ...
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How the third excluded principle in Aristotle's Metaphysics should be understood?

I'm having trouble understanding Aristotle's argument for the Third Excluded Principle (from Book 4, part 7). What I mean, I try to read the two paragraphs of that part but what I can't figure out is: ...
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Justification for Aristotle's principle of causality?

[W]hen... a potential is actualized.. something already actual must be what actualizes it. This is sometimes called the principle of causality. (Feser, Edward. Five Proofs of the Existence of God. ...
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How could we have defined time, had matter in our universe not been atomic?

A thought occurred reflecting upon SI and its system of units. The definition of the unit meter (the distance a light beam in a vacuum travels in 1/299,792,458 of a second) is a perfect definition of ...
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According to Aristotle, do all substances have final causes?

I know that in order to know something, in some cases we don't necessarily need to know its final cause, because sometimes the efficient cause might be enough to give a full explanation. But I wonder ...
Frank Booth's user avatar
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Is there a meaningful difference between Aristotle's reasoning through induction and reasoning through example in chap 23-24 in prior analytics?

Aristotle presents reasoning through induction and reasoning through example as two different methods in chapters 23 and 24 of the Prior Analytics. He claims that induction is valid on the grounds ...
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Why was Aristotle almost like the only Greek philosopher studied during the Middle Ages?

Reading about scholasticism, medieval natural philosophy, liberal arts, it appears to me that, of all the Ancient Greece philosophers, only Aristotle was studied. For instance, this passage (Blair ...
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How do quantities apply to subjects in Aristotles work?

Quantities like '10 degrees celcius', '5 feet long' and '15 miles per hour' apply to subjects but I can't figure out what the connection is. For example, we say things like 'that cars speed is 15 ...
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What is the difference between temporal logic and Dialectical Logic (Hegel)?

I have been reading Hegel's Science of Logic where he critiques its generation understanding of logic known as Formal Logic. As I have come to understand one of the main differences between Hegel's ...
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Which one of Aristotle's four causes is this?

Consider this exchange spoken in a hypothetical dialogue about man choosing his own personality: Every phlegmatic man is made when he realizes that his original fiery disposition will become his own ...
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Aristotle and the Platonic Footnotes Alluded to by Whitehead

In Process and Reality, Alfred North Whitehead famously states: The safest general characterization of the European philosophical tradition is that it consists of a series of footnotes to Plato. I do ...
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What is the difference between Aristotelian logic and mathematical logic?

I don't have much prior knowledge on this topic, but I am looking for a fundamental difference/difference between Aristotelian logic and mathematical logic. The difference, which I read previously ...
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Can something have multiple functions according to Aristotle?

I was reading Aristotle’s function argument and I’m having trouble figuring out if things could have multiple functions. It seems like he implies that things cannot have multiple functions but this is ...
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In Aristotelian virtue ethics, what is the virtue-vice-vice pattern for obtuseness?

From Albert Einstein: All this occurs quietly and demurely. Even the children are spiritless and look obtuse. (Source: "The Travel Diaries of Albert Einstein") In Aristotelian virtue ...
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What are the key challenges or limitations of Nicomachean Ethics when applied to the complexities and values of modern life?

Among the obvious ones I have come across are Aristotel's views on slavery and gender bias. I think Bernard Russel was unsatisfied with too much focus on rationality and overlooking emotions.
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Predication for Aristotle

According to Aristotle’s predication, in saying “Socrates is a philosopher” would the philosopher be a predication? If so, would referring to a philosopher alone (for example “the philosopher is wise”)...
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Aristotle's Happiness Argument [closed]

In Aristotle's view and Nicomachean Ethics, why does a person always have happiness if he once has happiness?
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Aristotle's virtue

In NE 1.7 1098a15, Aristotle claims that "human good turns out to be activity of soul exhibiting virtue, and if there are more than one virtue, in accordance with the best and most complete."...
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Aristotle's function argument

My question lies in the reconstruction of Aristotle's argument that "The human good turns out to be activity of the soul exhibiting virtues, and if there are more than one virtue, in accordance ...
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How to express an is/too-much gap?

Phrases like "too much" and "not enough" can be morally charged fairly easily, so how would we express the fact/value distinction in these terms? I was thinking of using special ...
Kristian Berry's user avatar
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Correspondence between chapters and Bekker numbers in Metaphysics

Where can I find a table of correspondences such that if one work cites Aristotle's metaphysics by book and chapter, I can find the passage in an edition with Bekker numbers but no chapter divisions?
John Harvey's user avatar
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When is mental illness a meaningful failure of wisdom?

Some philosophers think mental illness is a failure of function, to act rationally, others a failure of doing, but it can also at least involve failures of self appraisal, to accurately judge what is ...
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Under what conditions can we say that two things are ontological distinct?

I am curious as to under what conditions we say that two things are ontologically distinct. My hunch is that we say two things are ontologically distinct if they differ in their essential properties. ...
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Seeking Guidance for Reading Aristotle's Metaphysics

I've recently embarked on a journey to explore Aristotle's Metaphysics, but I must admit, I'm finding it quite challenging to grasp. As a newcomer to Aristotle's works, I wonder if there's a guide or ...
Bryan C's user avatar
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When the soul is with the body, does the soul change the body, or does it make the body as perfect as possible?

I would be grateful if you could answer the question above. When the soul is with the body, does the soul change the body or does it make the body perfect [or should I say that as perfect as the body ...
Frank Booth's user avatar
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Does Aristotle provide a mean for Phronesis? And if so, what is it?

From what I've tried to understand, Aristotle believed that practical wisdom (phronesis) is an intellectual virtue. And also, virtues are found at the mean between excess and deficiency. It seems to ...
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The priority of locomotion in Aristotelian physics - what are qualities then?

Reading through the Physics I came across a passage whose significance I had not adequately appreciated, in VIII.7 260b7-14, when he's arguing for the causal and temporal priority of locomotion to ...
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Did Socrates say: "Strong minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; weak minds discuss people."?

Where did Socrates say or did Aristotle quote Socrates saying: Strong minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; weak minds discuss people.
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