Aristotle and the prime/mover causes

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  • Created by: Kaitlyn
  • Created on: 23-02-15 18:14

Aristotle and the prime mover/four causes

Key things about Aristotle and what he believed:

  • He was impiricist ----> Truth is arrived at through the senses
  • Had different notions from Plato
  • Materialist
  • In 367 BC Aristotle was 17 and Plato was 60
  • He studied for 20 years
  • The answers are in the physical world
  • Prime mover = Final Cause


  • Aristotle realised that the world changes
  • Nothing comes from nothing = Creatio ex Nihilo
  • Chain of events to an ultimate cause
  • Something that is eternal is good, things that change bad as there's always room for improvement
  • The prime mover can't move
  • His version of God is perfect and so can't think of anything but itself
  • Could be Aristotle's idea of God - Can't pray or have a relationship with it but can apprechiate it
  • Forms are object of rational thought - but not proof that they exist beyond this world
  • Forms can only exist as part of things in this world


  • There are no separate relms, unlike what Plato thought
  • Only place that we have true knowledge is our world that we live in
  • Telos is achieving our end purpose which is discovering true knowledge

PRIME MATTER = Anything that lacks a well defined form - not organised in any particular structure matter - no form

ARISTOTLE'S IDEA OF GOD = Only thing that has a form without matter


  • Objects change in a number of ways and these changes are cause - Nature doesn't act without a purpose
  • If there's change then something must initiate it
  • Final cause behind everything is the unmoved mover (thought or intelligence)




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