Download Alfarabi, Avicenna, and Averroes, on Intellect: Their by Herbert A. Davidson PDF

By Herbert A. Davidson

ISBN-10: 0195074238

ISBN-13: 9780195074239

"Nothing of similar breadth or intensity and caliber of study and argument exists in this subject today....Davidson's very good contribution to the examine of the certainty of mind within the center a while belongs not just in each study library but in addition within the own libraries of all critical scholars of Medieval philosophical and non secular thought."--Journal of Neoplatonic Studies

"The literary and philosophic themes addressed during this monograph are might be the main tough to decipher within the heritage of Western inspiration. due to Davidson's embattled "history of philosophic ideas" and his uncanny knack for checking out textual and conceptual confusions, the unique that means and next interpretations of Aristotelian cosmology and mind are not any longer so hazy and intimidatingly enigmatic."-- The magazine of the organization for Jewish reports

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Extra info for Alfarabi, Avicenna, and Averroes, on Intellect: Their Cosmologies, Theories of the Active Intellect, and Theories of Human Intellect

Sample text

Zeller, followed by Bruns, the editor of the De intellectu, therefore ingeniously conjectured that "Aristotle" is a copyist's error for "Aristokles," the name of Alexander's supposed teacher. See Zeller (n. 26 above) 815. P. Moraux, Der Aristotelismus bei den Griechen 2 (Berlin 1984) 83 and n. 6, has responded that Alexander had a teacher named Aristotle and that the reference is to him. See also F. Trabucco, "II problema del de Philosophia di Aristocle di Messene e la sua doctrina," Acme 11 (1958) 117, 119.

It has an active side, which "destroys ... " Similarly, the "acting \fdcil] intellect in us"—which here means the human material intellect, described in the lines immediately preceding as active—both "separates off forms through its active side and "takes hold" of them through its passive side. Lest anyone suppose that recognizing an active side of the human intellect leaves the transcendent active intellect otiose, the De intellectu insists: Although the human potential intellect develops spontaneously, the active intellect "acquired from without [nonetheless] .

Now, to be actually intelligible is to be actually thought by a thinking subject. And according to Aristotle, "actual intellect is identical with what is actually thought"; an intellect actually thinking an intelligible thought is identical with whatever thought it thinks. If a form exists independently of matter, is hence actually intelligible by its own nature, and contains nothing apart from what is actually intelligible, the subject thinking it would be wholly identical with it. A pure form would, in other words, be both an actual object of thought and also the subject having it as the object of thought.

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