On Aristotle Physics 1.4-9 (Ancient Commentators on by Philoponus

By Philoponus

Aristotle's Physics 1.4-9 explores more than a few questions about the fundamental constitution of fact, the character of leading subject, the rules of swap, the relation among shape and topic, and the difficulty of even if issues can come into being out of not anything, and if that is so, in what experience that's precise. Philoponus' commentaries don't basically document and clarify Aristotle and the opposite thinkers whom Aristotle is discussing. also they are the philosophical paintings of an self sustaining philosopher within the Neoplatonic culture. Philoponus has his personal, sometimes idiosyncratic, perspectives on a couple of vital concerns, and he occasionally disagrees with different academics whose perspectives he has encountered possibly in written texts and in oral supply. a couple of exact passages of philosophical significance ensue during this a part of booklet 1, within which we see Philoponus at paintings on concerns in physics and cosmology, in addition to good judgment and metaphysics. This quantity includes an English translation of Philoponus' statement, in addition to a close advent, remark notes and a bibliography.

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We shall therefore undermine the most exact of all the sciences, geometry and astronomy. And evidently Anaxagoras is under the impression that he possesses science of things when he thus instructs us about them. So that if Anaxagoras is an expert, then the principles of things are not infinite; or if they are infinite, then he is not an expert. But if he is not an expert, we shall not believe his presentation concerning the things he does not know. This, then is the first objection, which is a reductio, as I said, not factual.

Since contraries could not ever become productive of the contraries (for the contrary is rather more destructive of the contrary, not productive of it at all) there is every necessity that hot bits must subsist within the cold body, and the development of the hot occurs when they separate out. Hence the contrarieties must be together in the same things. But each is named from the one that predominates; for what has more hot bodies in it is called hot, and similarly cold, white and so on. Having said these things Aristotle embarks upon the criticisms.

In Phys. 184,8-12) Here Philoponus is commenting on the fact that Plato did not sufficiently articulate the distinction between the matter out of which something comes and the privation which is replaced by the form when it develops, a distinction that Philoponus has just been exploring over some pages. Was this a mark of failure on Plato’s part? Not really, replies Philoponus. For Aristotle himself was aware of his debt to his predecessors, who had sown the seeds and established the first principles.

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