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1 Matter underlies and persists through substantial changes A substance is generated destroyed by having matter take on lose form 1 A house is created when bricks boards etc are put together according to a certain plan and arranged in a certain form It is destroyed when the bricks boards etc lose that form 2 An animal is generated when matter contributed by the mother combines with form contributed by the father 2 This suggests that the primary substances of the Categories the individual plants and animals are when analyzed actually compounds of form and matter And in the Metaphysics Aristotle suggests that a compound cannot be a substance Z3 1029a30 3 This may seem a strange move for Aristotle to be making But the idea may be this a compound cannot be a basic ontological ingredient Cf these compounds a brown horse a scholar Each of these is a compound of substance attribute a brown horse a horse brownness a scholar a human education In these cases the compound is a compound of entities that are more basic A scholar is not an ontologically basic item in the world - a scholar is just a human with a liberal education 4 If then primary substance in the Metaphysics conception of primary substance cannot be a form-matter compound what is primary substance The possibilities seem to be matter and form Aristotle actually discusses more possibilities - this is a simplification 5 In Z3 Aristotle considers the claim of matter to be substance and rejects it Substance must be separable and a this something usually translated perhaps misleadingly as an individual 1 Separable to be separable is to be nonparasitic Qualities and other non-substances of the Categories are not separable They only exist in substances Separability then amounts to independent existence 2 This something there is much dispute over what Aristotle means by this
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