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Eliasson – objetos de deliberação (bouleusis)

quinta-feira 3 de fevereiro de 2022


Aristotle   in EN III.3 distinguishes what is—and what is not—ἐφ’ ἡμῖν. The context here is the question of which things are sound objects of deliberation (βούλευσις  ), and which are not. The account of τά ἐφ’ ἡμῖν here is indirect. Still, Aristotle’s statement that ‘we deliberate about what depends on us’ shows that he takes what he says about the objects of deliberation to be valid for τά ἐφ’ ἡμῖν as well  , and we can thus safely take many of the descriptions of the objects of deliberation as characterizations of τά ἐφ’ ἡμῖν as well.

The account of objects of deliberation and thus of τά ἐφ’ ἡμῖν amounts to the fact that they are: (i) that which can be done; (ii) what can be done by ourselves; (iii) things that happen through us, yet not always in the same way; (iv) things that happen for the most part, but are unclear as to how they will turn out, things undecided; and (v) the means to some end. Apart from these characterizations of τά ἐφ’ ἡμῖν, Aristotle also presents numerous examples.

Correspondingly, the following things turn out to not be ἐφ’ ἡμῖν: (i’) impossible things; (ii’) eternal things, (i.e. eternally being in the same way); (iii’) things that change but always happen in the same way; (iv’) irregular occurrences; and (v’) the results of chance.

The above characterizations are also related to a corresponding list of causes, including (a) nature (φύσις  ); (b) necessity (άνάγκη); (c) chance (τύχη  ); and (d) intelligence and all that is by man (νοῦς   καί παν   τὸ δι’ ἀνθρώπου). Aristotle’s point with listing these causes seems to be to place the realm of τά ἐφ’ ἡμῖν within a somewhat larger, ontological picture, where the notion τά ἐφ’ ἡμῖν depicts a distinct class of things of a certain kind. [Eliasson  ]

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