more from Aristotle

Single Idea 5084

[catalogued under 9. Objects / D. Essence of Objects / 8. Essence as Explanatory]

Full Idea

The nature of a thing is a certain principle and cause of change and stability in the thing.

Gist of Idea

A thing's nature is what causes its changes and stability


Aristotle (Physics [c.337 BCE], 192b20)

Book Reference

Aristotle: 'Physics', ed/tr. Waterfield,Robin [OUP 1996], p.33

A Reaction

A helpful contribution to the discussion, as most thinkers just boggle when asked to specify the core of something's identity. Aristotle's proposal links identity to causation, which is very appealing to a physical account of all of reality. Cf 5086.

Related Idea

Idea 5086 The nature of a thing is its end and purpose [Aristotle]