Faith and Reason: Is There a Sharp Divide? (Part 3)

Upon review, Plato and Aristotle, while more sophisticated then the pre-Socratics, were in fact trying to do the same thing. And what was that? They both tried to come up with an all important principle that unites elements of reality. This principle would provide the basis for categories that we use to make sense of individual things. They were doing this through reasoning; in order to start they had to assume that reality was a certain way. Plato assumed the existence of the Forms (Question: if forms were perfect is there a form of filth?). If you need the Forms to make sense of everything else, how can you prove the existence of the Forms? Aristotle assumed the existence of matter, but matter has no qualities apart from Form. So the question becomes, what is Form a form of? Matter, strictly speaking is nothing (no-thing) according to Aristotle.

Their unifying principles proved to be no more effective then the Pre-Socrates’ “all is…” It is important to keep in mind that their arguments were based on assumptions/foundational beliefs that were not proven but rather served as standards that were used to prove everything else. Plato believed in the Forms, the same way that Aristotle believed in the unmoved mover, through blind faith.

Posted on November 12, 2007, in Faith and Reason. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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