I had intended to re-read Imago Contrafacta: Images and Facts in the Northern Renaissance but by accident I opened another paper sitting on my desk top. Yet another subject I do not know very much about but should look at more. Leave in note 4 and miss the others as it was the only thing I focused on. Taking it out of context and placing it in something more familiar but its helpfull to get a sense and a way in and watch how that alters over time.

The first sentance makes perfect sense at this moment. i.e I think I have ruled out the statement regarding  rhythm as being in error. With regard to fish I have no idea. It’s not an issue I think about.

Because a small error in the beginning grows enormous at the end, as the Philosopher remarks in Book 1 of On the Heavens and the World,1 and being and essence are the first things to be conceived by our understanding, as Avicenna declares in Book 1 of his Metaphysics,2 in order to avoid falling into error about them, and to reveal their difficulties, we should see what are signified by the names of being and essence, how these are found in various things, and how they are related to the logical intentions3 of genus, species, and difference. And since we need to arrive at the cognition of simple components from the cognition of what they compose, and from those that are posterior to those that are prior, so that the discussion may suitably progress from the easier subjects, we should proceed from the signification of the name of being to the signification of the name of essence.4


4 This passage is a neat expression of Aquinas’s general Aristotelian epistemological stance. We should start with the things with which we are more familiar, namely, the things given in our everyday experience, which are, nevertheless, metaphysically posterior to their simple components. But through the careful conceptual analysis of these things we may arrive at the understanding of their simple metaphysical constituents, which will then enable us to see how these constituents can be found even in things beyond our everyday experience.


Thomas Aquinas On Being and Essence


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