Actuality & Potency

What is moved from potential to actual can only be moved by something which is already actual, for no potency can move itself into act. A pile of lumber cannot make itself into a building. Thus if the lumber is moved from a potential building to an actual building, it must be done by something outside of itself (not part of the pile) which is already in act.

One cannot truly “self-actualize” as Maslow states, at least not in the sense of being. One can have self-caused becoming, but not self-caused being. Thus I can cause myself to get heavier or stronger or faster, but I cannot cause myself to move from potentially being to actually being. The self-caused becoming can only happen because I am a composed being, composed of both act and potency, and because I am an agent. Thus anything that has no act and is not an agent cannot have self-caused becoming, nor self-caused being.

Does this not apply to the universe?


About humblesmith

Christian Apologist & Philosopher
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