I’m still preoccupied with originary biology
The animal-respecter has logged on.
I think it’s something about extreme misanthropy that leads me to this. If humans are seen to be so close to animals… you start to develop a sympathy for animals I guess?
Also, I’m one of those weirdos who wonders “What is life?” everyday and it seems like to answer that question we’d have to start with the most basic forms of life. And my years of war against scientism have led me to unduly dismiss this field of study. Aristotle talks about it in a way that makes me more interested in it than when I hear modern scientists talk about it.
He preferred plants and animals over the heavens. He found beauty in the all-pervasive TELOS found in the “works of nature”. Telos is a particularly important word so hopefully you haven’t been reading it and not knowing what it means when I’ve said it. It means the opposite of randomness. It’s the for-something’s-sake. I.e. he found beauty in the purpose he saw in nature. Things doing what they do. They don’t do it for no reason, they do it for a reason. This is telos.
One thing most people do know about Aristotle is his statement that philosophy begins with wonder. That’s what the animals evoked for him, wonder.
Again I always have to mention that Aristotle himself didn’t use these modern labels we do today. There was no word for biology in his day. Even if he’s the founder of the discipline (kind of ironic). His own self-perception was that he was studying physis. “Physike” translates to knowledge of nature.
In the plants and animals he was examining their capacities of soul.
These are the travels of Aristotle that we know of
This makes me feel like I’m tripping to be honest
It seems like this is a proper liftoff point for philosophy. What IS? Lots of basic matter. And then what else? Living beings. Living beings with basic matter as the background.
Oops did you just catch me admitting that I only study philosophy to return to the Eleusinian Mysteries?
THAT is what “science” should be, in my opinion. Modern science’s disconnection from philosophy and mysticism seems like a dire error.
I also wonder to what extent Aristotle was a “hipster” or just a rebel. For instance consider this-
You might recognize the method of division from the Sophist here. This is “extraction” of the unique physis of an animal. Don’t you think there’s something trivial about that compared to the extraction of the sophist’s essence? One almost wishes he left biology to his botanist friend Theophrastus and devoted his mind entirely to loftier matters. Hey, are YOU going to tell Aristotle what to focus on? I CAN imagine Plato laughing at him for this fixation though. Neechfreeks tend to forget that someone “turned Plato on his head” while Plato was still alive, and with so many pages on biology Aristotle is simply being consistent in that and taking it all the way.
Plato was a know-it-all, in a non-pejorative sense- he strove to Know the All. Aren’t animals part of the All? It seems disingenuous to leave those out of the picture.
I sense something almost cynical about this though. Seeing the heavens in the animals? That almost has an air of nihilism. I think there’s something Oedipal involved in Aristotle’s biology.
Leaving psychological motivations aside for now, it’s speculated that he derived much of his research from what is today known as the Kalloni lagoon
He was a real guy wandering around here. Yup, just a normal guy having some of the profoundest thoughts in history.
I’m trying to “prime” us into a certain mood. Jerusalem and the left can’t be trusted about biology. We need to go back to the drawing-board.
Here is a random observation he makes on animals
Breathing takes place as far as the chest; it cannot be done by the nostrils alone
We can’t approach reality like we Know Everything about it. What is the experience of seeing an animal for the first time?
the viviparous quadrupeds bend the front legs frontwards and the back legs backwards
This is also how we should approach the study of sophists. I.e. not approaching them like we already know what they are.
chameleon’s brain connected with its eyes
Animals of course don’t have the complexity of soul of a sophist, so they can only be of so much help.
Aristotle reports on 560 animal species in total. There are probably that many forms of golem and kikery too, yet they all can be contained under the label “animals”.
“That’s insensitive!” No, it’s really not. I don’t think they’re human, it’s just a statement of fact. Their crime operation needs to be terminated before it’s too late and actual humans are extinct.