Download Aristotle on the Apparent Good: Perception, Phantasia, by Jessica Moss PDF

By Jessica Moss

Aristotle holds that we hope issues simply because they seem solid to us--a view nonetheless dominant in philosophy now. yet what's it for anything to seem strong? Why does excitement specifically are likely to seem stable, as Aristotle holds? and the way do appearances of goodness inspire wish and motion? No sustained examine of Aristotle has addressed those questions, or perhaps famous them as worthy asking. Jessica Moss argues that the idea of the plain strong is important to knowing either Aristotle's mental conception and his ethics, and the relation among them.
Beginning from the parallels Aristotle attracts among appearances of items pretty much as good and usual perceptual appearances corresponding to these desirous about optical phantasm, Moss argues that on Aristotle's view issues seem reliable to us, simply as issues look around or small, in advantage of a mental means accountable for quasi-perceptual phenomena like desires and visualization: phantasia ("imagination"). after we detect that the appearances of goodness which play so significant a job in Aristotle's ethics are literal quasi-perceptual appearances, Moss indicates we will be able to use his distinctive debts of phantasia and its relation to conception and concept to realize new perception into the most debated parts of Aristotle's philosophy: his money owed of feelings, akrasia, moral habituation, personality, deliberation, and wish. In Aristotle at the obvious Good, Moss provides a new--and controversial--interpretation of Aristotle's ethical psychology: one that enormously restricts the position of cause in moral concerns, and provides a completely principal position to excitement.

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Extra resources for Aristotle on the Apparent Good: Perception, Phantasia, Thought, and Desire

Example text

Thus the MA first presents practical cognition as evaluative (see Chapter 1: every episode of motivation has a cause equivalent to an intellectual “premise of the good”), and then presents it as essentially pleasurable or painful (and hence essentially motivating). One might think that these are two separate points, but we have already seen that on Aristotle’s view pleasure and evaluation are closely linked: the pleasant appears good. We need now to investigate more closely the relation between feeling pleasure in something and finding it good.

Someone who accepts this reading will find confirmation in the lines which follow, and which are evidently meant as a summary of 1a-d: 14 T H E A P PA R E N T G O O D 1e. In this way, then, animals set out to move and to act, desire being the proximate cause of the movement, and this coming about either through perception or through phantasia and thought (ªØíïìÝíÅs j äØ’ ÆNóŁÞóåøò j äØa çÆíôÆóßÆò ŒÆd íïÞóåøò). (701a33-36) A general desire like 1d’s appetite for drink is converted, by means of an instrumental cognition like “This is drink,” into a specific desire of the kind that directly causes locomotion.

7-10). 7 Aristotle must mean either the passions he goes on to mention in the next sentence or the physical aspects or accompaniments of them. 26 T H E A P PA R E N T G O O D of a part and some of the whole body. e. heatings and chillings]. (702a3-7) The most prominent members of the class of heatings and chillings are thus the familiar physical aspects of pleasurable or painful emotions and desires: warm flushes and tingles, cold shivers and chills. (The class also includes the smaller, less noticeable relatives of these, as we see from the comment on the rudder: Aristotle’s claim is that whenever we have a practical cognition we experience heating or chilling, but sometimes these reactions are so subtle that we barely register them.

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