(1) the world we perceive does come to be,

(1)   How is Aristotle’s teleology different from Plato’s? Is it better or worse? Lectures 6-7INTRODUCTIONTeleological theories are concerned with the end result of a process, the purpose or intention. In this essay I will summarise, contrast and compare Plato’s and Aristotle’s Teleologies. There is much debate around the translation and interpretation of both philosophers texts and I will try to offer different sides of a number of key debates.To decipher Aristotle’s works I will refer to texts by chiefly in the physics, and the metaphysics. For Plato the key dialogues I will discuss are the Timaeus and the Phaedo. To assist me in this rather large and daunting task I will use plato’s natural philosophy a study of the timaeus-critias by Thomas Kjeller Johansen, The Mad Craftsman of the Timaeus By David Keyt, Is Aristotle’s Teleology Anthropocentric? By David Sedley and Explanation and Teleology in Aristotle’s Science of Nature by Mariska LeunissenI will begin by considering that for Plato and Aristotle to subscribe to doctrines that are Teleological, there must some common ground. Plato and Aristotle both appear to share the same position; that things should be seen, judged and evaluated in relation to their purpose. Plato states that an organizing intelligence has created our Universe, and while there is an unchanging world beyond our sense perception, the world we perceive does come to be, and In his view nothing comes to be without the agency of some cause. Similarly In the Physics Aristotle’s reasoning for his teleology argues that “when an event takes place always or for the most part, it is not accidental or by chance. In natural products the sequence is invariable, if there is no impediment. It is absurd to suppose that purpose is not present because we do not observe the agent deliberating. Art does not deliberate. If the ship-building art were in the wood, it would produce the same results by nature. If, therefore, purpose is present in art, it is present also in nature. The best illustration is a doctor doctoring himself: nature is like that.” (Phys. ii.8 199b14–32, transl. Hardie and Gaye). Now we have this common ground established we can begin to look to what separates them. In Teleology and craftsmanship Johansen describes two common kinds of teleological accounts, one that looks at Intentional agency as being the cause of a process and another which doesn’t. This he suggests is seen by many to be a fault line which separates Plato (as intentional), and Aristotle (as unintentional). An exterior agent which works with intention or an inner nature which has influence over the creation and order of things, This is made explicit in Aristotle’s reference to the self healing doctor, a doctor that can heal himself is like a natural order which needs no outside help to influence or aid it. These two viewpoints can also be seen and referred to as an external or internal causePlato places at the center of his cosmological account an active agent with a moral motivation, an external cause which he uses the term “Demiurge” (Greek, d ?emiourgos), which translates as craftsman or artisan, to describe. He suggests that the Demiurge must be good and that wanted to make the world as good as possible. The fact that he (in Johansen’s text he uses the pronoun “he” and although I feel it incorrect to gender or personify the Demiurge I will follow his lead) is good and wanted to create the world to be as good as possible, this Plato’s Timaeus tell us, “is the most compelling principle or cause”. This is the core of a developing argument of the universe as built on a system of morality, provoked by an external cause.Aristotle’s theory looks to an internal cause, an internal principle of change, by first showing that the causation of natural things is different from artificial ones and then showing each natural thing to have its own internal nature. He comes to this conclusion by breaking down causation through trying to exhaust the answers to all of the possible “why” questions you could pose when defining the cause of something. This line of thinking developed what he called the “four causes”; the Material, Formal, Efficient, and Final cause. The Material or “that out of which” being the physical matter of which something is made. The Formal or “what it is to be” being the arrangement or shape its form takes.The Efficient or “that from what the origin of motion or rest comes from” being the agent which directly caused its creation or movement. And The Final cause or” that for the sake of which” being the purpose of its change, action or form. A basic artificial example would be; a table is wooden (material), needs legs and a top (Formal), is made by a carpenter (efficient), and serves a use for the people who use it (Final).There are 3 basic kinds of final cause identified by ?Leunissen in Aristotle’s Science of Nature. The first type of final cause he defines is the realisation of a potential for form, in both natural or artificial process. In the case of a human he refers to the semen as the potential for form and the source of the soul. What separates nature and art, are external and innate potential efficient causes, artificial production as opposed to natural generation. “what makes something natural is that it has or develops its own internal source of change and rest”. In artificial production a Craftsman, or external agent doesn’t reproduce his own form, but that of the art which he possess in his soul.The second types are potential for activities, as opposed to assumed forms. They are functions which are a contribution to the first type of final cause we just discussed. we can say that providing a dry place to stand is the final cause of an umbrella, which was itself an artificial product and the final cause of the potential of an artisan beforehand.The third proposed final cause are: objects of desire. They are again a type of action rather than a generation of some type. This where a conscious process has taken place between agents that involve desire and imagination. This has implications beyond the interrelations of humans and animals and can be used to explain wider cosmological issues.This breaking down of his causality allows us to understand the role of the internal nature in his teleology and its relationship with the artificial. There is a developing hierarchy of causation where the nature of something is able to be seen as cause into itself. With this all in mind we should look to Plato’s causality, which is based around his theory of the existence of forms. In the theory he splits everything it two realms, the everyday world of sense perception and the eternal realm where the true and perfect “models” of everything we perceive and experience in our everyday life are a crude versions of. There is much debate on the forms and how he intended us to read them, but what his worth considering when dealing with his cosmology and teleology are that they are the best possible version of something without imperfection.Plato decides that the Demiurge would have wanted the the world to have intelligence, “as everything is better that has intelligence” Sedley 109, and in order for that to happen it would need a soul. This is an interesting conflation of mind and soul which breathes a moral order in to the early stages of the formation of the universe.An interesting way to look at Plato’s Demiurge is see it through the lens of Aristotle’s efficient cause, when considering the efficient cause Aristotle didn’t see the craftsman themselves so much as the cause, but the art of the craft or “the art which he possess in his soul”. This reframes the Demiurge in a new way which strips it of any persona or morality, making it simply an intelligence and divine mover.Aristotle himself also proposes “that there must be an immortal, unchanging being, ultimately responsible for all wholeness and orderliness in the sensible world”. (Physics viii). He suggests the idea that things that are in motion and must be moved by something else. Which begs the question that there needs to be either; something that can initiate movement, an unmoved mover, or; an infinite number of movers that work upon each other, a series of moved movers. As In the second case it would result in an infinite number as per the eternality of motion Aristotle sees that as a bigger problem and states ‘there must necessarily be something eternal, whether one or many, that first imparts motion, and this first mover must be unmoved’ (Phys viii). When comparing the differing the two proposals there is one striking difference which underpins a big gap in the way they both approach their work, that of the place that humans play within the schemes they divided. Plato had a an explicitly anthropomorphic view which he seems to imbue the Demiurge with, whereas Aristotle seems to be able to disengage the human perspective from his work. Plato goes as far as to suggest humans as plants that grow not from the earth but from heaven. He describes a biological hierarchy that puts us on top; We have upright bodies that walk on two legs and our spine is drawn upwards, we have a responsibility to develop their knowledge and understanding of the world, and when we fail in our use of our time and don’t aspire to this end we are reincarnated as lesser forms of animal. Birds are the first stage, four legged creatures are closer to the ground, reptiles slither and are closer to the ground still, but fish are lower down the hierarchy stil as they are robbed of air for their transgressions.Although in some passages it is true that Aristotle aswell can be seen as Anthropocentric, for instance he shows the food chain as being hierarchical. But he also talks about nature as a whole, and when his causality is tested against some of his suggestions it creates a more complex picture. Aristotle work shows that in the often discussed case of the rain falling on crops to make them grow may be to our advantage but isn’t their actual purpose, we just use it to our own benefit as artisans manipulating nature. If there is hierarchy in his theory, it is that art is secondary to nature and imitates it. He never refers to one animal as a benefit of another, only that its inner nature serves to benefit itself. Allowing us to see things as objective with their own causes and not just in relation to ourselves.The question asks us to evaluate which of the two approaches is “better or worse”, this is not as easy to evaluate as the judgement needs to be made with context, better for whom, what, when and so on. It’s true that Plato’s work feels to be filled with comfortable notions that the soul and  human moral system is more than just empty and mechanical, that goodness came from the highest power and permeates the universe, this is a deeply exciting revelation and i’m sure tapped into by religious groups for many years. Whereas Aristotle invested in to the ability to objectively collate knowledge grounded in the empirical measurable real world, rejecting obscure external causes, devising a way to study things and develop knowledge about specific systems and categorise the world around us, in a way that Plato seems all too happy to turn away from ?Having said that I believe there is obvious value in Plato’s work he created a powerful series of proposals which through their investigation of “external causations” are I would propose full of risk and creativity, essential ingredients for scientific furtherment and incredibly valuable in their own way. The Timaeus as Sedley puts it is “part myth, fable, prayer, scientific analysis and philosophical argument”. It is compelling, intriguing and promotes the use of creative powers as an implement in science. Explanation and Teleology in Aristotle’s Science of Nature by Mariska LeunissenAristotle  physics, and the metaphysicsPlato Timaeus and the Phaedo. plato’s natural philosophy a study of the timaeus-critias by Thomas Kjeller Johansen, The Mad Craftsman of the Timaeus By David Keyt, Is Aristotle’s Teleology Anthropocentric? By David Sedley Explanation and Teleology in Aristotle’s Science of Nature by Mariska Leunissen