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Aristotle A Comprehensive View on Nature and Society In order to fully understand Aristotles views on a natural system itis necessary to first explain some general principles of his philosophy It is in his workthe Categories that Aristotle presents the concept of substance a concept which willserve as the foundation for much of his philosophical system Substance for Aristotle isnot a universal but rather it is the particular substance is not a suchbut a this Thus substance is neither in nor is it said of a subject as arequalities Rather it is that which makes the subject numerically one it is that whichmakes the subject the individual Substance is an individual man and or anindividual horse Aristotle still classifies universals as substances for theydefine what constitutes the substance and without these universals a substance would notbe what is There are four characteristics of substances a substance is athis not a qualification or a such which stresses individuality asubstance has no contraries to it there are no opposites of a substance a substancedoes not admit more or less there are not degrees of a substance and a substance canadmit contraries while remaining numerically one In the Physics Aristotle addresses that which constitutes NaturalObjects as substances He states that all Natural Substances consist of both form andmatter Matter is that out of which the substance arises and form is that into which thematter develops In building a table the wood nails etc are the matter and the ideaof a table what the end result will be is the form according to Aristotle Matter andform are inseparable from each other there is no form apart from concrete thingsAristotle explains that all substances contain within themselves the origin of theirchange and movement He continues by stating that the change which can occur is due tofour possible natural causes formal cause material cause efficient cause and finalcause Formal and material cause are self explanatory in that it is the form
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