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Aristotle's understanding of reality

we learn about reality through observation of the physical world.


Aristotle is an empiricist, what does this mean?

we gain knowledge primarily through are experience of the world, and we have this experience through our senses.


to Aristotle potentiality Is what?

what something can become.


To Aristotle actuality is what?

what something is.


What does Aristotle believe about the prime mover?

there has to be some sort of prime mover to account for the fact that everything I the physical world is changing.


the prime mover is what?

the final cause of the universe.
can only think of its self.
not loving or personal.
transcendent+ separate
It causes change or motion in everything else by attraction- everything in the universe is drawn towards perfection.


the prime mover is unmoved what does this mean?

unmoved- pure actuality- it cant be anything other than what it is.


cause and action, what is Aristotle's idea of cause?

action- concept of explanation+ origin



theology, purpose/ goal of universe in terms of ends achieved/ final cause.
--- living things- to reach telos= functions eg. goldfish, swim, eat, reproduce.


Plato's rationalism& Aristotle's Empiricism

No- evidence for world of forms- pure speculation.
sense experience lets us down- have to rely on reason logic.


sense experience is what?

scientific experience- scientific value- eg by medical experiences.


What is Aristotle on Plato- 3rd main argument?

is there a form of a form? if so, is there a form of form of a form?


problems with the four causes?

the material cause- doesn't odd anything/ can be assumed.
not everything has a final cause- evolution+ random chance


platos form of good?

Form of good participates in all other forms- shows us the extent to which something lacks perfection.


What does the form of good enable?

the form of good enables- true sight of other objective- as represented by the sun in the analogy of the cave.


what is the analogy of the sun?

things"grow" towards the sun- they "grow" in goodness.


The form of good is at the top of what?

The top of the hierarchy.


Plato saw forms as being what?



How does plato see reality?

there is 2 worlds-
the world of particulars aka the sensible world- the world is in constant change.
- the world of forms- eg.- super sensible world.- world of ideas, where certain knowledge is possible.


what does plato say about the natural world?

is in constant state of lux- can know nothing through sense experience- Plato= rationalist.


Platos analogy of the cave is what?

It is republic- is a dialogue between Socrates+ Glaucon
=Plato's epistemology
theory of knowledge- cave- sensible world.- prisoners bound by neck- humane


sun is what?

a form of good


the return of the prisoner is what?

philosophers duty to teach others about nature of duty.


prisoner leaves the cave and is enlightened by what?

by the form of good, giving him knowledge of the world as it really is.


the physical cave represents what?

demonstrates how knowledge gained through the senses if often partial or misleading.