Home | Texts by category | | Quick Search:   
Works by Aristotle
Pages of On The Soul

Previous | Next

On The Soul   

qualities or attributes of the material which are in fact

inseparable from the material, and without attempting even in

thought to separate them? The physicist is he who concerns himself

with all the properties active and passive of bodies or materials thus

or thus defined; attributes not considered as being of this

character he leaves to others, in certain cases it may be to a

specialist, e.g. a carpenter or a physician, in others (a) where

they are inseparable in fact, but are separable from any particular

kind of body by an effort of abstraction, to the mathematician, (b)

where they are separate both in fact and in thought from body

altogether, to the First Philosopher or metaphysician. But we must

return from this digression, and repeat that the affections of soul

are inseparable from the material substratum of animal life, to

which we have seen that such affections, e.g. passion and fear,

attach, and have not the same mode of being as a line or a plane.


For our study of soul it is necessary, while formulating the

problems of which in our further advance we are to find the solutions,

to call into council the views of those of our predecessors who have

declared any opinion on this subject, in order that we may profit by

whatever is sound in their suggestions and avoid their errors.

The starting-point of our inquiry is an exposition of those

characteristics which have chiefly been held to belong to soul in

its very nature. Two characteristic marks have above all others been

recognized as distinguishing that which has soul in it from that which

has not-movement and sensation. It may be said that these two are what

our predecessors have fixed upon as characteristic of soul.

Some say that what originates movement is both pre-eminently and

primarily soul; believing that what is not itself moved cannot

originate movement in another, they arrived at the view that soul

Previous | Next
Site Search