more from Robert Pasnau

Single Idea 16769

[catalogued under 9. Objects / B. Unity of Objects / 3. Unity Problems / c. Statue and clay]

Full Idea

The unitarian view of substance says it cannot be divided. If the clay can survive the destruction of the statue, then that shows that the statue was not a substance at all, and that its shape (or whatever made it a statue) was merely a passing accident.

Gist of Idea

If clay survives destruction of the statue, the statue wasn't a substance, but a mere accident


Robert Pasnau (Metaphysical Themes 1274-1671 [2011], 25.3)

Book Reference

Pasnau,Robert: 'Metaphysical Themes 1274-1671' [OUP 2011], p.584

A Reaction

This seems to give the orthodox Aristotelian/Thomist reading, assuming that a substance only has one form, which unifies it. Since clay must have shape, and statues must have matter, I have never understood how there were two objects here.

Related Idea

Idea 15766 Megaran actualism is just scepticism about the qualities of things [Aristotle]