Tag Archives: physics

Wordy Wednesday: Prime mover

The term “prime mover” comes from book 12 of Aristotle’s Metaphysics where he argues for the existence of an unmoved mover which sets all causes and effects in motion.

In recent times it has been popular to think of the prime mover in terms of a cue ball which starts a chain reaction of balls hitting other balls on a pool table so that, while the prime mover was involved and required for the initial impact, it’s effect and influence on the resulting chain reaction of causes and effects is essentially nill.

However, in Aristotle’s view, the prime mover was required not only for the initial cause (ie. big bang) but for subsequent reactions as well since they all derive their energy from the prime mover1 which must remain in the picture for there to be any subsequent causes or effects.

For in him we live and move and have our being.’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’ -Acts 17:28

  1. Aristotle considered the prime mover to be raw energy or a ‘force’. []
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