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Thought Experiments In Late Medieval Debates On Atomism

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Chapter Summary

In Averroes's view, when Aristotle talked about a hypothesis that, though impossible, is treated as possible, he did not refer to the criticized position itself, but rather to the additional hypothesis according to which all those things that are moved form a whole with their movers. In addition to his commentaries on Aristotle's Physics, Averroes wrote nine small independent treatises on physics, several of which pertain to questions concerning the first mover. Aquinas assumed that the possibilities of a thing are determined by its genus, species, and matter. Something that is possible for it as a member of a genus can be impossible for it as a member of a species. Buridan thought that the distinction between natural and supernatural modalities was embedded in Aristotle's arguments. His evidence for this is that otherwise Aristotle's proofs would not demonstrate anything.

Keywords:Aquinas; Aristotle; Averroes; Buridan



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