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Aristotle and truth Video

Aristotle on Truth in Theory and in Action (Nicomachean Ethics bk 6) - Philosophy Core Concepts aristotle and truth. Aristotle and truth

In that post, we explored some possible overlap between Aristotle and Augustine and the nature of being.

The "iron rule" of modern science

In this post, we will continue the conversation as it relates to being and truth. The first theme one comes to is the relationship between truth and being—an examination of the connection between what is, with what is true 1.

aristotle and truth

Aristotle and Augustine ground the truth of things in being, or reality. For example, Aristotle in his Metaphysics makes aristotle and truth connection between that which is and that which is true: It is right also that philosophy should be called knowledge of the truth. For the end of theoretical knowledge is truth, aristotle and truth that of practical knowledge is action for even if they consider how things are, practical men do not study the eternal, but what is relative and in the present.

Now we do not know a truth without its cause; and a thing has a quality in a higher degree than other things if in virtue of it the similar quality belongs to the other things as well e. Hence the principles of eternal things must be always most true for they are not merely sometimes true, nor is there any cause of their being, but they themselves are the cause of the being of other thingsso that as each thing is in respect of being, so is it in respect of truth. Aristotle indicates that universal things, like being or truth, are in some sense eternal, or transcendent, because they are what particular things, which are temporal and always changing, participate in.

If there is something that demonstrates truth, there must be a higher source which is the cause of that truth, because Aristotle is interested in investigating the primary causes of things. Similarly, in prayer-like fashion to God, Augustine writes in his Confessions: I looked at other things too and saw that they owe their being to you.

I saw that all finite things are in you, not as though you were a place that contained them, but in a different manner. They are in you because you hold all things in your truth as though they were in your hand, and all things are true in so far as they have being. Falsehood is nothing but the supposed existence of something which has no being. First, each thinker holds that the being of things are true in as aristotle and truth as they correspond to reality. And second, it is the eternal or transcendent things which provide the foundation for the things of this world. What is it these philosophers are trying to explain?

If one does not get the nature of reality right, she runs aristotle and truth risk of getting everything else about it wrong. Augustine reminds readers that things are true in so far as they have being, and false if they have no being. And Aristotle makes a similar claim when he says that as each thing is in respect of being, so is it in respect to truth.

aristotle and truth

Augustine and Aristotle are telling readers that a thing or perhaps concept must correspond to reality in order to be considered true. If something has no being or actuality in reality, it is not true. This is simply a restatement of the correspondence theory of truth—truth is that which corresponds to reality. Truth is grounded in being or reality.

Excruciating minutiae

Each thinker agrees with this. But do they have good reasons that support this position? Aristotle and Augustine would point to the laws of logic for support.

aristotle and truth

Aristotle and Augustine believe the basic laws of logic reflect the nature of reality or being.]

One thought on “Aristotle and truth

  1. The authoritative answer, it is tempting...

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