The World Explored, the World Suffered Science and tech Issue Nr. 12 November 2018(clone) - Page 4

We  become  what  we  become  partly  because  we  are  what  we  are.  Just  as  the  animal   organ  system  is  determinative  of  the  form  of  life  the  animal  will  lead  so  it  is  with  us   human  beings.  Our  organ  system  results  in  speech  and  reason  and  a  more  complex  form   of  life  in  which  it  is  not  sufficient,  as  it  is  in  the  case  of  animals,  to  preserve  one's  life  in   accordance  with  survival  mechanisms.  The  complexity  of  our  capacities  which  build   upon  each  other  and  are  integrated  with  each  other  results  in  a  form  of  life  in  which   survival  and  preservation  are  important  but  only  because  they  are  necessary  conditions   of  a  natural  striving  which  human  beings  possess  to  lead  the  good  life,  the  flourishing   life.  In  the  course  of  the  use  of  these  capacities,  truth  becomes  an  important  aspect  of   speech  because  truthfulness  is  important  for  the  political  animal  leading  his  political  life.   Here  the  truth  function  of  language  will  obviously  be  integrated  with  the  communicative   and  expressive  forms  of  language  we  encounter  in  political  discussions.  The  life  of  a  city-­‐ state,  then,  for  Aristotle  is  not  an  arbitrary  conventional  construction  brought  about  by   the  linear  causal  mechanisms  of  science  but  rather  a  matter  of  Logos,  a  matter  of  logic.   There  is  a  logical  relation  between  Logos  and  the  political  form  of  life  expressed  thus  by   Smith:   Aristotle discusses the various forms of friendship that one encounters in the city and settles on the categorical form which involves trusting one another. Smith feels that this pevents the Aristotelian city state from having cosmopolitan ambitions. The lecture comments thus on this issue: Smith  does  go  on  to  argue  that  Aristotle  believes  that  only  a  small  city-­‐state  can  house   the  kind  of  trust  involved  in  the  political  form  of  friendships  required  for  the  polis  to   fulfill  its  political  functions.  He  asks  specifically  and  rhetorically  :     "Does  this  mean  that  the  city  can  never  be  a  universal  cosmopolitan  state?"     The  implied  answer  is  in  the  negative.  He  goes  on  to  confirm  this  position:     "It  appears  that  Aristotle's  polis  must  be  small  enough  to  be  governed  by  a  common   language,  common  memories,  and  common  customs.  This  may  imply  a  criticism  of  our   modern  societies,  this  may  be  a  suggestion  that  our  cities  and  nations  are  not  healthy."     The argument continues that this is not a necessary limitation since it is possible that the universality of the logos of the political regime could permit a cosmopolitan regime of the kind envisaged by Kant, i.e. a regime which did not involve a world government. Slavery is discussed and Aristotle’s view is defended as appropriate for the times he lived in: a time when the state did not take responsibility for its citizens.