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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Can a moral theory be eudaemonological but not teleological?

Aristotle's moral theory is said to be both eudaemonological and teleological. But what is the difference between these two concepts? If a moral theory is eudaemonological, then happiness/beatitude is ...
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Are ideas things or just, eeeh, ideas?

We can read for the definition of idea, in the Cambridge dictionary: a suggestion or plan for doing something: I've had an idea - why don't we go to the coast? "Let's go swimming." "...
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How is the syllogism in my question called?

We all know the most famous syllogism introduced by Aristotle: All men (people) are mortal. Socrates is a man. Therefore Socrates is mortal. But what if we say: All mortals are men (people). Alice ...
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Did Aristotle discuss the distinction between syllogism and conditional?

Aristotle's Prior Analytics may be regarded as a theory of valid arguments (i.e. syllogisms). Aristotle spends most of his treatise proving that various particular "imperfect" syllogisms are ...
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Plato preempting Aristotle?

Did Plato ever anticipate and address the the Aristotelian position of identifying the existence of universals with their instantiations? If so, how have his arguments fared? Did Aristotle address ...
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What do Aristotle or Plato mean by improvement?

In this answer to this question I read: Plato has Socrates make the argument that punishment, when it is just anyway, actually improves the individual. So if you’ve done wrong you should want to be ...
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Mistake in Kenny's New History of Western Philosophy

I have been reading the chapter on logic in Ancient philosophy and I think I have noticed a mistake. On page 96, Kenny introduces Aristotle's syllogism with: Every Greek is human, Every human is ...
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Was Plato the idealist while Aristotle was more down to Earth?

When looking at Plato and Aristotle, where would we put them from the perspective of modern philosophy of science? For Plato, the abstract ideal geometric forms had more reality than their Earthly ...
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Is there a paradox in between Plato and Aristotle's theories regarding moral decision-making?

I was responding to a classmate's forum discussion post in a class of mine, and I want to know if I created a paradox or not regarding Plato and Aristotle's theories of moral decision-making. This is ...
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Aristotle: friendship between men > friendship between women?

Aristotle thought friendship between equals was greater than that between unequals, but did he think friendship among greater equals is greater than friendship between lesser equals? See: Ethics bk. 8 ...
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Aristotle's forms - how does he account for resemblances?

So Aristotle rejects Plato's forms, and replaces it with another kind of form which is solely in the particular. eg: The red table has a form of redness which is particular to the table. The red apple ...
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How is a mere substance different from an “individual substance”?

The Scholastic philosophers defined a person as "an individual substance of a rational nature" (e.g., Boethius, Aquinas). I understand how an individual could not be a substance (it would be ...
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According to Aristotle, how many unmoved movers are there in the universe?

In On The Heavens, Aristotle described there are multiple unmoved movers in different celestial spheres as the final causes of celestial movements, however, in the Physics, Aristotle concluded there ...
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Where are the words “potential infinity” and “actual infinity” originally from?

I just read Aristotle: The Physics, Books I-IV, and found nowhere the words "potential" and "actual" combined with "infinity", even if the principle is described. Now I ...
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Aristotle Politics

I need help in explaining or discussing about the Classification of Government has less or no application to modern times in government. (what are the recent modern political theories that have ...
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According to Aquinas, what is the relationship between the substantial form of a bodily being and its act of existing, ie. its esse?

Consider, for example, an existing bodily being. Because it is bodily, we know that it is composed of prime matter and substantial form. Also, because the bodily being is existing (not just made up in ...
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How does Aristotle motivate that there is no universal good?

I'm reading the Nicomachean Ethics written by Aristotle and there's this one statement (and it's motivations) that I'm really struggling with. In my version of the book it is written in rather ...
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Where does Aquinas get his “logical-metaphysical presuppositions”?

In the Summa, Aquinas frequently invokes (for lack of a better term) certain "logical-metaphysical presuppositions." Here are two examples drawn from I-II, qq. 90-91: "that which is ...
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Why bother with anything else besides Aristotle's syllogistic logic?

Disclaimer: this a "devil's advocate's question", meaning I know a lot of the answer, but for the sake of playing the Q&A game, I won't self-answer right away. The main reason I'm ...
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Does Plato hold that “the world experienced via the senses is what is real”?

According to the introduction of this article, Plato and Aristotle both held that "the world experienced via the senses is what is real." I do not doubt this point when it comes to Aristotle....
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“Either a Platonist or an Aristotelian”

In his introduction to "The Pocket Greek Reader," W.H. Auden said: one is born either a Platonist or an Aristotelian. (He immediately qualifies that remark with nods to Hippocrates and ...
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Do any philosophers discuss the ethics of the possible negative repercussions from doing what is morally good?

Aside from utilitarianism, most ethical systems seem to advocate actions that might hurt somebody or at least inconvenience them. For example, standing up to a bully might hurt them. Making a stand ...
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What are the differences between an argument and a syllogism?

What are the differences between an argument and a syllogism? Along with definitions and usages, I would like examples to understand the differences.
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Are there any books where Aristotlean quotations are collected?

Are there any books where Aristotle's quotations are available?
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Is there, in Aristotle, a broad concept of thinking ( noèsis) that includes imagination ? Or is imagination a purely sensible power?

In Aristotle's De Anima, Bk. III, Part 3 ( http://classics.mit.edu/Aristotle/soul.3.iii.html) one can read this : "Thinking is different from perceiving and is held to be in part imagination, in ...
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Aristotle on forgiveness?

Discussing "complaints" in friendship (Ethics book 8), Aristotle does not mention the role of forgiveness in resolving such complaints (ἐγκλήματα) or quarrels (μέμψεις). Does Aristotle ...
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translate Greek quote at the start of Boethius Consolation of Philosophy? Something about kalon [closed]

I was wondering if someone could translate the following quote into English for me. ὄμως δὲ και ἐν τούτοις διαλάμπει τὸ καλὸν, ἐπειδὰν φέρῃ τις εὐκόλως πολλὰς καὶ μεγάλας ἀτυχίας, μη δι᾿ ἀναλγησίαν, ...
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Does sensation/ perception count as knowledge according to Aristotle? And what word does he use to denote this kind of knowledge?

When one wants to take a synoptic view of the history of epistemology, one notices that Aristotle's contribution is almost always explained in terms of scientific knowledge resting on demonstration. ...
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Why does Thomas Aquinas conclude that the First Mover is God?

It appears to me that the First Mover of any motion must not move only with respect to the change it is producing, but otherwise could be moved in a way unrelated to what it is changing, or moved ...
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What is “lack” in Aristotle's “three starting-points” of form, lack and matter?

The following quote from Aristotle's Metaphysics is utterly baffling to me: The causes and starting-points of distinct things are distinct in a way, but in a way--if we are speaking universally and ...
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List of books which teaches historical Aristotelian logic

Background: I want to study philosophy and I think a good way is to first learn logic, so I tried reading The Categories. But even after trying so hard, I didn't understand it. The writing is very ...
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Need Help Interpreting Preface to Aristotle’s Ethics

I’m currently reading the translator’s preface to Aristotle’s Ethics and read a sentence that I simply cannot figure out the meaning behind. It states There is, Aristotle insists, no difference of ...
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The purpose of law-making: Aristotle and his theory of virtues

In Aristotle's best known work The Nicomachean Ethics, he elaborated on the theory of virtues (moral virtues and intellectual virtues). Here moral virtues are qualities like generosity, courage, ...
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Aristotle on the uselessness of metaphysics

I'm sure I read once that Aristotle comments that the 'first philosophy' - what later became called metaphysics - has no practical use, that it's something that is studied for the sake of ...
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Where did Aristotle say that the more self-evident something is, the more difficult it is to see?

18:45 of this claims that Aristotle said that the more self-evident something is, the more difficult it is to see (reminiscent of: "hidden in plain sight"). Where did Aristotle say this?
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How do Aquinas' and Aristotle's mixed regimes differ?

Both Aristotle and Aquinas seem to subscribe to the idea of a mixed constitution as the form of government best disposed to the common good. By "mixed constitution", I mean mixing between ...
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Where does Aristotle first treat willing-as-ends in the Nicomachean Ethics?

Aristotle begins the 4th chapter of the 3rd book of the Nicomachean Ethics with the line As was stated before, willing is concerned with the end. Unfortunately it's not clear where this claim was &...
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Is an element being in multiple categories a valid classic category?

I was going through the categorization article in Wikipedia and happened to read this line: In the classical view, categories need to be clearly defined, mutually exclusive and collectively ...
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Do Kant or Aristotle ever comment on the line between self-interest/preservation and helping others?

Im wondering whether either of them ever talked about limits to helping others and when we should choose ourselves. Ive tried doing some research but unfortunately to not avail.
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Understanding the Four Causes of Aristotle

I'd like to better understand some concepts from Aristotle's Metaphysics. I'd like to know what does he mean by a "substance" (Ousia), does he just mean anything that exists? Can any ...
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A thought experiment: will the following observations lead you to question Aristotle's syllogism?

Many philosophers think that logic are "inherently right" and cannot be refuted by empirical observations. Below is a thought experiment that questions this view. Let's take Aristotle's ...
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Is Aristotle’s virtue theory somewhat similar to the Doctrine of the mean?

Doctrine of the mean: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doctrine_of_the_Mean The two theories strike me as surprisingly similar in how they emphasize “the right amount”: not lacking and also not in ...
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What does Aristotle mean by “the whole” and “sphere of the whole” in Physics Book IV?

In discussing time, Aristotle frequently mentions "the whole" and "the sphere itself." I have the intuition that it is related to his physical cosmology, but fail to see anything ...
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Why did the mid-19th century and earlier thinkers fixate on one-place predicates?

A book I'm reading mentions the following: A major barrier to the development of first-order logic had been the concentration on one-place predicates to the exclusion of many-place relational ...
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How is it that “both a man and a picture are animals”?

I just began reading Aristotle's Categories, and stumbled on the second sentence: a man and a picture are not animals; while a man is an animal, a picture is not, even a picture of a man. In one ...
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Where does ethics place the line between self interest and altruism?

Assuming I were to decide between getting Benefit A myself or somebody else getting A. All things being equal (need, desire, etc), is it correct to say most ethical theories (other than egoism) would ...
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What are the advantages of Aristotle's term logic over predicate logic?

I have read Wikipedia's term logic entry, and the quote by Gareth Evans in the Revival section that's supposed to argue for term logic's advantages over predicate logic: "I come to semantic ...
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Difference between Differentia and Quality [duplicate]

No matter how many ways I think of it - just how Socrates is a Man, any differentia is a Quality. So for eg, one much used example is 'rational' - man is a rational animal, where man is species, ...
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Why isn't differentia just quality in Aristotle?

I will make it clear beforehand, that the little bit I know about Aristotle is from Aquinas (secondary material) and Deleuze (Difference and Repetition), so there may be some misunderstandings on my ...
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Where in Aristotle's Topics did he say there's no exact/clear way to distinguish two concepts?

I've heard that Aristotle supposed in his Topics that there's no exact/clear way to distinguish two concepts. What exactly did he say?

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