Four Causes Of Cause Aristotle

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For each situation there are many possible causes some are inherent in the creature or object itself while other causes are external to it. According to Aristotle in his book, Physics, there are four categories of these of causes; material, formal, efficient, and final. These categories of causes are defined at II.3, 194b23-41. Aristotle states that we use cause in four ways. To describe these causes, I will be using the example of a deer running from a predator.
Cause can be used in relation to what an object is made of. This is known as material cause. In Physics, the example of a bowl being made of silver is used. In this case it could be said that the material cause of the deer running, is that prey animals are made to run from predators.
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This is usually external and called the efficient cause. In this case the wolf caused the deer to run.
Finally, there is final cause. Aristotle states that final cause is when cause is used to define the end or “what something is for,” (194b33). In this case the creature’s running is done in order to survive.
All of these forms of cause work together. This is why in psychology multiple measures are taken to examine all four forms of cause. When assessing a patient for a serious neurological disorder their neurologist will ask for multiple things; a brain scan (EEG or FMRI as appropriate), a neuropsychologist analyst, and a meeting with the patient themselves.
The brain scan examines how the patient’s brain functions. An irregular EEG (too much or little activity in certain areas of the brain) or irregular fMRI (too much/little activity and unusual brain structure) would mean the neurological disorder has a material cause. The patient’s actions can be explained with biology, or how they are made.
A neuropsychologist will ask the patient to take part in many activities as well as talk about themselves. In this the neuropsychologist looks for patterns in their behavior. They are finding the possible formal causes of a patient’s
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Final cause is specific is important because it examines an action’s purpose. The deer may be made to run, regularly run while scared, and the predator may have originally caused it to run, but without the final cause it is hard to explain why all of this is important for the deer. The same can be said for the patient. Their brain may be irregular, they may have patterns of a particular behavior, and a situation may have exaggerated the behavior, but the final cause provides a purpose for the

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