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Re: The Cosmological Argument for God.

And another important distinction that I didn't mention is that between different modes of modality as bases of causation - natural causation, extensional causation, temporal causation, spatial causation. These are not the same.

Also note, the ideas behind the words "essential" and "accidental" - the former refers to essences, i.e. the idea of a static characteristic upholding another or depending on another; while the later refers to accidents, i.e. the idea that dynamic events are not essentials (because change is involved) but therefore accidents. In Aristotle's four causes, these are the Formal cause and the Efficient cause.

This vision of things is naive because a motion can be an essence (some things are defined with reference to motions), and because a static character can be a so-called accident (because it is not universal to that kind of thing, or because it is temporary).

Moreover, when you have "if static C, then static E - and if static not-C, then static not-E" causation, a dynamic causation is implicit in flipping from one side to the other - i.e. when "static C is replaced by static not-C" (in place or time), then you have a motion; and likewise for E and not-E.

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Re: The Cosmological Argument for God.

So Aristotle's argument for a prime mover is weak because Aristotle's understanding of causation is limited?

Sorry if I misunderstood, but is that the weakness of the prime mover argument?

Re: The Cosmological Argument for God.

Also, can you give me an example or explanation of motion as an essence? Would this mean that motion is a substance?

Re: The Cosmological Argument for God.

Dave
So Aristotle's argument for a prime mover is weak because Aristotle's understanding of causation is limited?

Sorry if I misunderstood, but is that the weakness of the prime mover argument?
I didn't say that. I said the picture is much larger and more complex than it seems.

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Re: The Cosmological Argument for God.

Dave
Also, can you give me an example or explanation of motion as an essence? Would this mean that motion is a substance?
Motion is not a substance. (Indeed, what is a substance? Just an analogical term, reflecting Aristotle's Material cause. But that's a wider issue.)
Examples of motion as essence are plentiful. The essence of a runner is that he or it runs. The essence of a clock is that it measures or reflects the passage of time. And so forth.
Also, the purposes of man-made objects are often motions, note well. Like the said clock. For example, a car is a vehicle made to move people. This is Aristotle's fourth cause - the Final cause.
There is also the quasi-purposive in Nature - for instance the functions of bodily organs in the sustenance of the organism's life.

Dave, I suggest we stop this conversation and you read some of my works on causality. You'll find all answers there, if you are really looking for them. Best regards, Avi.

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