Tuesday, April 30, 2013

De ente Outline, Chapter 4

Chapter 4: How essence exists in separated substances

  • [1] Intelligences are not composed of matter and form
    • This is repugnant: They are called "separated" substances, that is, separated from matter
    • A demonstration that they are immaterial
      • Forms are not intelligible in act except when separated from matter and its conditions
      • Nor are they intelligible except through the power of an understanding substance
      • Therefore, an understanding substance must be free from matter and its conditions
  • [2] One cannot even say there is a special kind of matter that belongs to intelligences
    • If unintelligibility belonged to matter insofar as it was bodily matter, then it would belong to bodily matter in virtue of some bodily form
    • But form is the principle of intelligibility in things, and even the bodily form is intelligible when separated from matter
    • Therefore, unintelligibility belongs to matter itself
    • And therefore, intelligences do not have any matter
  • [3] It is possible for forms to exist without matter
    • Whatever things are such that one is the cause of existence in the other, that one is able to exist without the other (this is not convertible)
    • Form and matter are such that form gives existence to the matter; therefore, matter cannot exist without form but form can exist without matter
  • [4] Differences between the essences of composed and simple substances
    • Main difference:
      • Essence of composed substance contains both form and matter
      • Essence of simple substance is only the form
    • First consequent difference:
      • Essence of composed substance can be signified as whole (man) or part (humanity); and only as it is signified as whole can it be predicated of individual (Pete is a man, but Pete is not humanity)
      • Essence of simple substance can only be signified as whole, for there is no other part to which the essence would stand (as form stands to matter in the composed)
    • Second consequent difference:
      • Essences of composed things are multiplied according to the division of designated matter; there can be many individuals in one species
      • Essences of simple substances cannot be received into matter and therefore cannot be multiplied; there is only one individual of each species
  • [5] Existence (esse) is not part of every essence
    • No essence can be understood without those things that are parts of its essence
    • However, every essence can be understood without understanding anything of its existence (e.g. one can consider man without considering his existence)
    • Therefore, existence is something other than essence
      (except for the following...)
  • [5] There is at most one being which has its existence the same with its essence
    • Multiplication comes about in the following ways
      • Addition of a difference (as nature of genus is multiplied into species)
      • Form is received into diverse matters (as nature of species multiplied into individuals)
    • Cannot be through the addition of a difference
      • If something were existence alone, then to add a difference would mean that it is no longer existence alone
    • Cannot be through the addition of matter
      • Then it would not be subsistent existence, but a material thing
    • Therefore, allowing that something is the same with its existence, there can only be one of these
  • [6] There is at least one being has its existence the same with its existence; a proof for God’s existence
    • Everything whose existence is other than its nature would have existence from another
    • Everything which has something through another is led back to one (as to a first cause) which has that something through itself
    • Therefore, there is something which is the cause of existence for all things that is existence itself
    • Otherwise, one would go on infinitely
    • (Note: Even though God is the same with his existence, this does not mean that his existence is self-evident to us. Since God’s essence is hidden to us, we can only learn through argument that God exists and that he is the same with his existence.)
  • [7] There is potency in separated substances (even without matter/form)
    • Everything that receives something is in potency with respect to that
    • That which has been received is the act of the one receiving
    • Therefore, the essence which is an intelligence is in potency to the existence which it received from God, and the received existence is its act
  • [8] There is a multitude of separated substances
    • It would be impossible for a multitude unless there were potency
    • The multitude is possible because there is a distinction between them according to grade of act and potency
      • The higher intelligence, closer to the first, has more of act and less of potency
      • One way of conceiving this is that by one concept, many things are understood; and the higher the intellect, the more can be understood through a single concept
      • The extremes of this are man, who must join his concepts and use arguments to go from considering one thing to another, and God, who understands all things through one concept
  • [9] On the act and potency in the human soul and material things

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