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Old 01-30-2008, 07:22 PM   #1
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Aristotle: Metaphysics, v.1, 31 Jan 2008.

Translated by W D Ross. Available under a creative commons licence (see the text for more information).

The book is about existence, change and causation (including a discussion of God as the unmoved first mover).

In Aristotle’s research school, the Lyceum, this topic was taught after the Physics course. Hence the title: meta ta phusika: ‘After the Physics.’

Aristotle explains his aims thus:

‘There is a science which investigates being as being and the attributes which belong to this in virtue of its own nature. Now this is not the same as any of the so-called special sciences; for none of these others treats universally of being as being. They cut off a part of being and investigate the attribute of this part; this is what the mathematical sciences for instance do. Now since we are seeking the first principles and the highest causes, clearly there must be some thing to which these belong in virtue of its own nature. If then those who sought the elements of existing things were seeking these same principles, it is necessary that the elements must be elements of being not by accident but just because it is being. Therefore it is of being as being that we also must grasp the first causes.’
(Book IV, ch.1)
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