Elämän monimuotoisuus Aristoteleella

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Aristotle on the Varieties of Life

In recent scholarly literature, Aristotle's claim that life is said in many ways has been analysed in terms of his notion of core-dependent homonymy. This means that the various definitions of what it is for different kinds of living things to be living must be related to some one thing that is prior to the other forms of life. The main part of this article concentrates on a critical analysis of the interpretations made by Gareth Matthews and Christopher Shiel­ds. Towards the end, a new suggestion is proposed. In the Metaphysics, the unmoved mover, an Aristotelian god and an eternal thinker, is identified as being the highest living thing. This implies that the highest and best definition of life consists in being divine and eternal. Aristotle points out that all sub-lunar living things (animals and plants) are living to the extent that they take part in eternity and divinity, i.e., the eternal cycle of living, where one individual of a certain kind is succeeded by another. This indicates that the core of life consists of eternity and divinity.