Nature and supernatures

If mind is the paradigm for the supernatural and we follow Aristotle’s account of it, then the natural is actual before acting and the supernatural is not. Mind is not built out of substructure that is put in place and then knows.  In not-knowing mind does not fall back into a stasis or dormancy like an eye before it opens, with a structure in place that is waiting to be used. Mind is a subject in that it does an action, not in the sense that it is a power in some actual thing that remains actual whether we are acting or not. All this obviously rules out it being built out of cells or being the action of a central nervous system.

In nature, the power of the subject to act is in an actual thing before the action is performed; at the height of supernature the subject is only an agent and his action is not an accident; in the middle there is an accident that is not a power in an actual thing before the action of knowing.

This is why nature is in time: something actual must be constantly present to support times both of action and stasis. In the middle we have a sort of moment-time, like the premises of an argument which are discrete but not measured by some actual subject shifting from action to dormancy, and so smearing over all the time from one point to another. At the height of supernature, all division in action falls away, with its action not at one point while it fails to be at another.

Said another way: nature’s being actual before it acts either generates or requires continuous time; mind not being actual before it acts allows for the discrete time of logical connection; God being entirely united and without division in his action is eternity.

Advertisements
%d bloggers like this: