Aristotle was a Greek philosopher and scientist who lived from 384 to 322 BC. He is considered one of the greatest thinkers in the history of Western philosophy and played a central role in the development of logic, metaphysics, ethics, politics, and biology.
Aristotle was born in Stagira, a city in northern Greece, and was the son of a physician to the royal court. As a young man, he studied under Plato at the Academy in Athens, where he became one of Plato's most promising students. After Plato's death, Aristotle left Athens and traveled to Asia Minor, where he became the tutor of Alexander the Great.
One of Aristotle's most famous contributions to philosophy was his development of the syllogism, a method of deductive reasoning that is still used today. Aristotle also developed a system of logic that was based on the idea that all knowledge begins with experience and that the mind is able to abstract general concepts from specific examples.
Aristotle is best known for his work in metaphysics, where he argued that everything in the universe can be classified into one of four categories: substance, quantity, quality, and relation. He believed that the ultimate reality of the universe is the "prime mover," an unmoved mover that is the cause of all motion in the world.
In addition to his work in metaphysics, Aristotle also made important contributions to ethics and politics. He believed that the ultimate goal of human life is happiness, which he defined as the contemplation of eternal truths. He argued that the best way to achieve happiness is through the practice of virtue, and he developed a system of virtues that included courage, generosity, and justice.
Aristotle's ideas about politics were also influential, and he is considered one of the founders of political science. He argued that the best form of government is a constitutional monarchy, in which a king or queen is advised by a council of nobles. He also believed that the government should be based on the principle of "the golden mean," which holds that the best course of action is one that lies between extremes.
In the field of biology, Aristotle made many important observations and contributions, including the classification of animals into species and the identification of the functions of different organs. He also believed in the concept of the "great chain of being," in which all living things are ranked in a hierarchy from the most simple to the most complex.
Overall, Aristotle's contributions to philosophy, science, and politics have had a lasting impact on Western thought, and his ideas continue to be studied and debated by philosophers and scholars today.
Aristotle the Philosopher
Habituation thus does not stifle nature, but rather lets nature make its appearance. Whereas science relies upon premises which are necessary and known to be so, a dialectical discussion can proceed by relying on endoxa, and so can claim only to be as secure as the endoxa upon which it relies. Campbell also warned guests that the property can be dangerous to visit, pointing out a laundry list of physical hazards and noting on his website that tourists visit 'at their own risk. We remember from above that there are two sorts of necessity: conditional and absolute. Some possible errors that could be made in this order for example might be mistaking certain animal behaviors for an end for which they were not intended.
Minimally, this is to be understood as the view that any given body is the body that it is because it is organized around a function which serves to unify the entire organism. In a similar way, Aristotle adapts his logical theory of genus and species to biology. He wrote several treatises on ethics, most notably including the Aristotle taught that virtue has to do with the proper function ergon of a thing. If that is correct, the entities categorized by the categories are the sorts of basic beings that fall below the level of truth-makers, or facts. He thinks, that is, that organisms have final causes, but that they did not come to have them by dint of the designing activities of some intentional agent or other.
When discussing biological science, Aristotle presents the reader two directions: a the modes of discovery genetic order and b the presentation of a completed science logical order. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. A hexis is an active condition, a state in which something must actively hold itself, and that is what Aristotle says a moral virtue is. Aristotle himself never uses the term "esoteric" or "acroamatic". The trouble, as so often in these matters, is the intrusion of Latin. Most of his ideas and writing during this period slightly run in contrast to his earlier works. Again in the case of the generation of a statue, we may say that the bronze is potentially a statue, but that it is an actual statue when and only when it is informed with the form of a statue.
It seems odd to conclude that they are nothing at all, or that the compound in particular is nothing in actuality; yet it is difficult to contend that they might belong to some category other than substance. Importantly, just as Aristotle sees a positive as well as a negative role for dialectic in philosophy, so he envisages in addition to its destructive applications a philosophically constructive role for homonymy. Penn State University Press. Retrieved 14 November 2018. I think this does happen, but in an unexpected way.
Aristotle Quotes (Author of The Nicomachean Ethics)
So, suggests Aristotle, health is not only a homonym, but a core-dependent homonym: while not univocal neither is it a case of rank multivocity. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. If we were to confront a statue without first recognizing what it was, we would, thinks Aristotle, spontaneously ask a series of questions about it. These sorts of judgments begin with a biological understanding of what it means to be a human being and how one may fulfill her biological function based on her possession of the human rational soul understood in one of the sub-categories of reason. Refrain tonight, And that shall lend a kind of easiness To the next abstinence; the next more easy; For use almost can change the stamp of nature… Hamlet is talking to a middle-aged woman about lust, but the pattern applies just as well to five-year-olds and candy.
We may, for instance, wish to know why trees lose their leaves in the autumn. According to Aristotle, when we have identified these four causes, we have satisfied a reasonable demand for explanatory adequacy. Economics Main article: Aristotle made substantial contributions to Politics, Aristotle offers one of the earliest accounts of the origin of Aristotle's discussions on Aristotle gave a summary of the function of money that was perhaps remarkably precocious for his time. An eye is only a good eye in so much as it can see, because the proper function of an eye is sight. In speaking this way, Aristotle supposes that if we wish to know what a human being is, we cannot identify transient or non-universal features of that kind; nor indeed can we identify even universal features which do not run explanatorily deep. It is worth repeating that the mean is not the 3 ounces of mousse on which you settled, since if two friends had come to visit you would have been willing to eat 2 ounces.
Although the matter is disputed, his recognition of this science evidently turns crucially on his commitment to the core-dependent homonymy of being itself. Then again we find someone objecting to our account that even the notion of the present is troubling. That discussion is therefore mostly negative. For Aristotle there are four causes: material, efficient, formal, and final. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1989. Still, it was not in potentiality butter or a beach ball.
This involves the active agency of the mind. Aristotelian Philosophy: Ethics and Politics from Aristotle to MacIntyre, Polity Press. However we arrive at secure principles in philosophy and science, whether by some process leading to a rational grasping of necessary truths, or by sustained dialectical investigation operating over judiciously selected endoxa, it does turn out, according to Aristotle, that we can uncover and come to know genuinely necessary features of reality. Dante built up the philosophy of the Comedy with the works of Aristotle as a foundation, just as the scholastics used Aristotle as the basis for their thinking. Aristotle and the Later Tradition. An endoxon is the sort of opinion we spontaneously regard as reputable or worthy of respect, even if upon reflection we may come to question its veracity.