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[1064a] [1] e.g., the sciences of medicine and physical culture do this, and so does each of the other productive and mathematical sciences. Each one of these marks out for itself some class of objects, and concerns itself with this as with something existent and real, but not qua real; it is another science distinct from these which does this.Each of the said sciences arrives in some way at the essence in a particular class of things, and then tries to prove the rest more or less exactly. Some arrive at the essence through sense-perception, and some by hypothesis; hence it is obvious from such a process of induction that there is no demonstration of the reality or essence.

Now since there is a science of nature, clearly it must be different from both practical and productive science. In a productive science the source of motion is in the producer and not in the thing produced, and is either an art or some other kind of potency; and similarly in a practical science the motion is not in the thing acted upon but rather in the agent.But the science of the natural philosopher is concerned with things which contain in themselves a source of motion. From this it is clear that natural science must be neither practical nor productive, but speculative; since it must fall under one of these classes.And since every science must have some knowledge of the essence [20] and must use it as a starting-point, we must be careful to observe how the natural philosopher should define, and how he should regard the formula of essence—whether in the same way as the term "snub," or rather as the term "concave."For of these the formula of "snub" is stated in conjunction with the matter of the object, whereas that of "concave" is stated apart from the matter; since snubness is only found in the nose, which is therefore included in the formula, for "the snub" is a concave nose . Thus it is obvious that the formula of "flesh" and "eye" and the other parts of the body must always be stated in conjunction with their matter.

Since there is a science of Being qua Being and separately existent, we must inquire whether this should be regarded as identical with natural science or rather as a distinct branch of knowledge. Physics deals with things which contain a source of motion in themselves, and mathematics is speculative and is a science which deals with permanent things, but not with things which can exist separately.Hence there is a science distinct from both of these, which deals with that which exists separately and is immovable; that is, if there really is a substance of this kind—I mean separately existent and immovable—as we shall endeavor to prove.1 And if there is an entity of this kind in the world of reality, here surely must be the Divine, and this must be the first and most fundamental principle.

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