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Reality Roots
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Reality
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SUBSTANCE
PRINCIPLE

Of Substnce we may say:
"Substance, together with its Attributes, constitues the
Essence of Being".

The colloquial use of the term Substance conveys different meanings dependent upon the frame of reference. The primary definition according to Webster's Dictionary is "{a) essential nature : ESSENCE (b) a fundamental or characteristic part or quality ". Other meanings refer to "ultimate reality that underlies all outward manifestations and change", "physical material from which something is made", "a definite chemical solution", even "Substance abuse".
roots Arrow substance

These definitions are hardly adequate nor do they apply to our discussion of Substance, the Principle. We come to have knowledge of Substance, not through perception, for to perceive is to gain knowledge through human senses, but rather our ability to experience Substance the principle. David Hume, famous British philosopher of the 18th century, was so adamant that Substance could not be perceived that he declared that Substance, not even as a principle, could even exit. Philosophers, as far back as Aristotle and down through the ages, have wrestled with the theory of Substance or what some call the substance attribute theory. Knowledge of Substance through experience is not unlike the way by which humans come to know and experience Existence & Form.

As we have seen from a previous presentation (Emergence), Substance comes about through a phenomena, from the Roots of Reality, from Existence and Form, conjugate pair that are themselves Principles from which Substance emerges. Those philosophers who believe that Substance is real, declare that Substance, the principle, is a thing-in-itself, a property bearer distinguished from the properties it bears. This definition is troublesome and the trouble lies in the use of the word "thing". Humans perceive things, they are known through the senses. David Hume was right. We cannot perceive Substance, that is, know it through our senses, therefore it seems wrong to state that Substance is a "thing-in-itself". Properly it is "in-itself" , but it is not a thing and Entity known through the senses.

So if Substance is not a THING, understood as an entity, what is it?

To provide an analysis let us compare the characteristics of Substance to that from which Substance emerges, namely Existence & Form:

1. Existence & Form, both PRINCIPLES, are known intuitively through experience, not perceived.
2. A Principle is basic, a primary source -- origin -- a fundamental law, doctrine or assumption
3. A Principle cannot be predicated, that is, be from another source, or come from something other.
4. A principle is known to be in-itself---

a. With Existence, that which it is, is the "is", "in-itself", a property.
b. With Form, that which it is, is "structure", "in-itself", a property.
c. With Substance, that which it is, is a "property- bearer", "in-itself".

5. A property is that which is possessed. However, a property is distinguished from that which possess the property.

Substance is defined to be in-itself, to be a property-bearer, that is to carry properties. Further, these properties are distinguished from the principle it-self. Now, by being in-itself Substance may predicate. However, by being in it-self Substance, in it-self, may not be predicated. Therefore, from these premises it is proper to call Substance a Principle. So, if Substance is a Principle it should be known through experience and not be perceivable, nor be predicated, however, should possess the characteristics of a primary source, an origin from which something comes. So it is with Substance, a Principle from which comes an Entity with properties and the bearer of Attributes.

So if Substance is a property-bearer what is the nature of that which it bears?

There is much to the understanding of Substance, the principle, to the nature of the principle and its relation to its properties and attributes, and how these properties and attributes are borne.

Substance Principle, bearer of Properties & Attributes ( SEE Analogy below).

PROPERTIES:
Substance emerges from Existence & Form. Through this phenomena Substance bears the properties of Roots:

a. Existence -- to pass to an Entity an essential property, "Act of Existence" which provides the Entity's individuality.
b. Form -- to pas to an Entity an essential property of "Structure" which provides the Entity's Shape, i.e. particles, humans, etc.

ATTRIBUTES:
Attributes are what modify (provide variations) to the structure of the Entity. Aristotle used the term "accident". Attributes do not change the Form, but, so to speak, enhance the Shape:

a. Quantity -- an extension or multiplicity of an Entity that may be discrete or continuous.
b. Quality -- determinant of the characteristic of the Entity, i.e. color, size, etc.
c. Relation -- modes or methods to associate, connect or interrelate.
* Where -- local, place
* When -- time, sequence
* Position -- posture, attitude, parts association
* State -- rest, movement
* Action -- change
* Affection -- agency, cause and effect, result

ANALOGY: Substance principle

Soup & Bowl Analogy to understanding Substance Principle Property Bearer: (Substance is a principle separate from what it carries)

Bowl -- an Entity, whose function it is to contain. The Bowl has two essential properties existence & form. These properties are carried by the substance principle with its attributes. Humans understand that the bowl is made of a substance, not the substance principle, (substance that describes the bowl is a generic term for the material of which the bowl is made). The Attributes that enhance the shape of the bowl structure - round, deep, quantity of space it takes up & what can be held, on a table, at this time, at rest, etc., enhance the structure in the manifestation of the bowl, entity.

Soup -- an Entity of manifested Energy, consumable food, whose function is to replace expended human energy. The food has existence & form. These two properties carried by substance the principle in substance food (substance that describes the food content, water, vegetables, etc. is the generic term of the contents, not the principle). The Attributes - quantity, color, taste, smell, liquid, vegetable parts, in place in bowl, change raw to cooked, etc., enhance the manifested entity of food.

 

 

 

soup

Soup

The concept of Substance is fundamental to ontology (study of the nature of being) and metaphysics. Substance theory, or substance attribute theory concerns inherence of attributes or properties contingent within substance or borne by Substance principle, borne in a manner distinct or at least distinguishable from Substance.

Bundle theory is in direct opposition to Substance theory. The basic premise of Bundle theory is that all concrete particulars are merely constructions or "bundles" of attributes, or qualitative properties.

Aristotle was one the first to write about Substance. His writings "Categories" (see below for details) spoke of four (4) forms of predication:

1. Order -- Substance is primary, that is "a thing-in-itself, therefore Substance cannot be an attribute or be in something else. That which is predicated (affirmed or declared as an attribute or quality) of Substance is secondary such that, what is said of an attribute is said of Substance.
2. Quantity -- is an attribute of extension, the bases of mathematics , i.e. amounts, size, etc.
3. Quality -- is an attribute determining characteristics of the nature of the entity, i.e. color, behavior, etc.
4. Relation -- six (6) basic attributes, Where, When, Position, State, Action, Affection.

Excerpts from "Categories" -- Aristotle
From the writings of Aristotle, particularly "Categories", we find reference to Substance. The works of Aristotle permeated both Western and Islamic culture, first by the Greek Peripatetic school and later by Neo-Platonist. After the translation of the writings from Greek into Arabic and later Latin, several Islamic philosophers, particularly the Arab Averroes and in Western philosophy Thomas Aquinas, found wide support for Aristotle's teachings. Many of these teachings became the bases of both the Islamic & Christian religion.
The basic premise states that Substance is a thing-in-self , a property bearer that is distinguished from the properties that it bears.

"Categories" , a text from Aristotle's Organon, identifies what he believed to be all the possible attributes of a thing which can be the subject or predicate of a proposition about a thing. The explanations or arguments for his conclusions were in a form called "Predicaments".

PRE-PREDICAMENTS: as a prelude to the Predicament arguments there is an explanation which distinguishes between:

1. What is said "OF" a subject -- the kind of thing that it is as a whole, which answers the question "what is it".
2. what is "IN" a subject -- is a predicate that does not describe it as a whole, but cannot exist without the subject, that is its form, i.e. shape, (conjugates existence & form).

Of all the things that exist:
1. There are some things that may be predicated of a subject, but are in no subject -- as woman may be predicated of Mary or Alice, but is not in any subject.
2. There are some things that are in a subject, but cannot be predicated of any subject -- certain individual knowledge can be in myself as in a subject, but it cannot be predicated of any subject; because it is an individual thing.
3. There are some things that are both in a subject and able to be predicated of a subject -- philosophy can be in the mind as in a subject, and yet may be predicated of metaphysics as of a subject.
4. There are some things that neither can be in any subject nor can be predicated of any subject. These are individual substances, which cannot be predicated, because they are individuals; and cannot be in a subject, because they are substances.

PREDICAMENTS: These are the Categories of Aristotle which take four forms of predication:
1. SUBSTANCE -- Substance is that which cannot be predicated of anything or be said to be in anything. SUBSTANCE IS PRIMARY, as Aristotle is a primary substance, while his manhood is secondary. Therefore, that which is predicated of man is predicated of Aristotle.
2. QUANTITY -- Quantity is the extension of a thing which may be discrete (SpaceTime particles) or continuous (TimeSpace)., in addition its parts may or may not have relative positions to each other. Quantity forms the bases of all mathematical concepts.
3. QUALITY -- Quality determines the characteristic nature of things. Aristotle used the term 'accidents" to describe various qualities such as, color -- white or black, behavior -- good or bad, etc.
4. RELATION -- Relation addresses several questions how things related to one another;
WHERE -- Place or space considering environment.
WHEN -- Time related to events.
BEING-IN-POSITION -- posture, attitude, parts association.
STATE -- Condition of rest, movement to rest.
ACTION -- Change
AFFECTION -- Reception of change, as in Cause /Effect

POST-PREDICAMENT: Four ways in which things may be considered contrary to one another. Six form of movement-- generation, destruction, increase, diminution, alteration and change of place.


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