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By Philoponus

In a single of the main unique books of past due antiquity, Philoponus argues for the Christian view that subject could be created by way of God out of not anything. It wishes no past subject for its production. while, Philoponus transforms Aristotle's notion of best topic as an incorporeal 'something - i do know no longer what' that serves because the final topic for receiving extension and characteristics. to the contrary, says Philoponus, the final word topic is extension. it really is three-d extension with its special dimensions and any characteristics unspecified. additionally, such extension is the defining attribute of physique. consequently, to this point from being incorporeal, it's physique, and in addition to being leading topic, it truly is shape - the shape that constitutes physique. This makes use of, yet completely disrupts, Aristotle's conceptual equipment. ultimately, in Aristotle's scheme of different types, this extension isn't to be labeled less than the second one class of volume, yet less than the 1st classification of substance as a considerable volume. This quantity comprises an English translation of Philoponus' remark, unique notes and advent, and a bibliography.

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Extra resources for Against Proclus On the Eternity of the World 9-11 (Ancient Commentators on Aristotle)

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89 Proclus, having, as he believed, demonstrated from the cosmos’ being a god that it contains nothing evil and therefore contains nothing able to destroy [it],90 next91 attempts to demonstrate from this that it has not even come to be. For, he says, destruction and generation have the same cause, but when controlled [it is the cause] of generation, and when it has the control, of destruction. Should, then, he says, the ordered and well-arranged universe be destroyed, it could not be destroyed by anything other than disorder and disarray;92 for this is the evil of a thing that is ordered and well-arranged.

Those, then, who seek to misinterpret Plato by means of such subtleties make it clear, by the very fact that they are ashamed to admit that he arranged things thus, that they believe, along with everyone else, that this is a bad (atopos) business, and by being unable to defend him against the charge they themselves are finding him liable for the badness of the law. That is all [I have to say] on these topics. There are countless other subjects on which it could be shown that Plato was wide of the truth; but, so as not to prolong this digression, even what we have said is sufficient to prove that not everything that Plato says hits the mark.

After all, its parts are embraced within the universe. Indeed, the whole, or universe, is nothing other than the mutual relation of all of its parts and their coming together in one place. At all events, it is as a result of this [kind of thinking] that people have so insulted the glory of God as to drag the divine majesty and name down to the level of the very beasts and inanimate objects and the most shameful of human evils. If, then, the cosmos is observed to be body and to undergo change and alteration and if it is impossible for it to be exempt from change and if the race of gods is unreceptive of change, then it is impossible for the cosmos to be a god.

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