Matter and the intelligibility of motion

This is one reason why it is so important to study Aristotle’s Physics.

Just Thomism

Matter has always been understood as something that underlies a change. To the extent that we can break something down into what is more fundamental, it is the more fundamental thing that is seen as really matter. In fact, the “fundamental” in “fundamental particle” is verified by what can’t be broken down in a change or a motion.

Historically, there are two opinions about motion. The pre-modern idea is that it is the vaguest and most difficult idea in the intelligible order, and that it must resolve to principles that are more intelligible in themselves, namely the division of act (and/or perfection and/or entelekia) and potency. On this account, motion can only be understood by relation to its terms. Motion, to be sure, is intelligible and even the object of science, but only through the terminating points that define its imperfect actuality. This seems to be at least a…

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