Combining Philosophers

Ideas for George Engelbretsen, R Kaplan / E Kaplan and John Duns Scotus

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2 ideas

9. Objects / C. Structure of Objects / 2. Hylomorphism / d. Form as unifier
Matter and form give true unity; subject and accident is just unity 'per accidens' [Duns Scotus]
     Full Idea: From matter and form comes one thing per se. This is not so for subject and accident. Matter and form are instrinsic causes of a composite being, but whiteness and a human being are not. Humans can exist without whiteness, so it is one thing per accidens.
     From: John Duns Scotus (Oxford Commentary on Sentences [1301], II.12.1.14), quoted by Robert Pasnau - Metaphysical Themes 1274-1671
     A reaction: This isn't much of a theory, but at least it is focusing on an interesting question, and the distinction between genuinely unified, and unified by chance. Compare a loving couple with siblings who hate each other.
9. Objects / C. Structure of Objects / 8. Parts of Objects / c. Wholes from parts
What prevents a stone from being divided into parts which are still the stone? [Duns Scotus]
     Full Idea: What is it in this stone, by which ...it is absolutely incompatible with the stone for it to be divided into several parts each of which is this stone, the kind of division that is proper to a universal whole as divided into its subjective parts?
     From: John Duns Scotus (Ordinatio [1302], II d3 p1 q2 n48)
     A reaction: This is the origin of the concept of haecceity, when Scotus wants to know what exactly individuates each separate entity. He may have been mistaken in thinking that such a question has an answer.