Download Aristotle's Concept of Chance: Accidents, Cause, Necessity, by John Dudley PDF

By John Dudley

The 1st exhaustive research of Aristotle’s idea of likelihood. This landmark publication is the 1st to supply a finished account of Aristotle’s inspiration of likelihood. probability is invoked via many to provide an explanation for the order within the universe, the origins of lifestyles, and human freedom and happiness. An figuring out of Aristotle’s idea of probability is crucial for an appreciation of his perspectives on nature and ethics, perspectives that experience had an important effect at the improvement of Western philosophy. writer John Dudley analyzes Aristotle’s account of likelihood within the Physics, the Metaphysics, in his organic and moral treatises, in addition to in his different works. very important complementary concerns reminiscent of Aristotle’s feedback of pre-Socratic philosophers, really Empedocles and Democritus; Plato’s notion of likelihood; the chronology of Aristotle’s works; and the relevance of Aristotle’s notion to evolution and quantum thought also are coated extensive. this can be a vital booklet for students and scholars of Western philosophy. John Dudley is learn Fellow within the De Wulf-Mansion Centre for historic, Mediaeval and Renaissance Philosophy on the collage of Leuven in Belgium.

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Extra info for Aristotle's Concept of Chance: Accidents, Cause, Necessity, and Determinism

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II, iii Aristotle does not restrict them to those that neither always nor usually inhere in a per se cause. All concurrent or coincidental causes are accidental causes. Thus if one says that a house was built by a fair-skinned man or a musician, the fair-skinned man or the musician is an example of an accidental cause. But if one says that the statue was sculpted by a man or by a living being, that is also an example of an accidental or rather a concurrent cause,45 as it is the sculptor qua sculptor who is the cause.

E. unnaturally) generated natural substances (infra Ch. 5). 271-2: “Man wird enttäuscht werden, wenn man in der aristotelischen Analyse mehr als den Nachweis sucht, daß wir die Begrifflichkeit von Zweck und Worumwillen, die wir schon immer 26 ARISTOTLE’S CONCEPT OF CHANCE subsequent to it. The outcome of thought is not merely parallel to the working of Nature, but posterior to it. 22 This observation is of capital importance. Thus the human experience of thinking and of acting for a purpose provides a privileged access for man to the kind of thing that Nature is doing for a purpose without the use of reason.

However, the problem is only apparent, since (i) whatever occurred in such a way that it might have been done due to thought or have been the outcome of nature has as a per se cause that which was done due to thought or nature (this view is that of Porphyry ap. Simplic. In Phys. 336, 27-29), and (ii) that which was due to thought or nature results not in the end aimed at, but in another end which might have been due to thought or nature, because of a meaningful coincidence. ” The truth would appear to be the reverse.

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