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Eros UnveiledPlato and the God of Love$
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Catherine Osborne

Print publication date: 1996

Print ISBN-13: 9780198267669

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198267669.001.0001

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The Power of the Beloved: Aristotle on the Unmoved Mover

The Power of the Beloved: Aristotle on the Unmoved Mover

Chapter:
(p.117) 5 The Power of the Beloved: Aristotle on the Unmoved Mover
Source:
Eros Unveiled
Author(s):

CATHERINE OSBORNE

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198267669.003.0005

This chapter examines whether the sun, moon, stars, and planets are alive, and whether one needs to attribute consciousness to them. That may seem a rather odd and antiquated question to ask; but it is not really any more odd as a question now than it was in the days of Aristotle and of St Thomas Aquinas, when it was a real issue and much ink was spilt on the subject. Their texts serve as the chapter's starting point. Aristotle was, of course, keenly interested in biology and an expert on the behaviour of animals and on the structure and functions of their parts. It seems unlikely that the observations available in the field of astronomy would offer much to suggest an analogy between the behaviour or the bodily structure of the heavenly bodies and that of familiar living organisms on Earth.

Keywords:   sun, moon, stars, planets, Aristotle, St Thomas Aquinas, biology, astronomy, behavior, Earth

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