What Is Essence, What Does It Mean?July 2, 2021
All the materials that make an object what it is is called essence. Throughout history, different definitions have been made for essence. For example, essence, according to Plato, means idea. According to him, the essences of all beings are ideas.
Aristotle used the idiom in different meanings in his metaphysics and logic. In Aristotle’s metaphysics, essence is synonymous with substance. In this sense, the phrase essence differs from the phrase “substance” in that it is abstract and from the phrase “existence” in that it is intellectual.
In Aristotle’s logic, essence is concrete being. That is to say, Aristotle “man and horse are essence.” says. He divides these concrete essences into two as first and second essences. For Aristotle, the first essences are the essences considered individually, and the second essences as homogeneous.
According to the French existentialist Sartre, essence comes into existence with existence and does not exist before existence. Man is what he does and how he does it. All beings other than human beings come into existence according to a predetermined essence.
For example, to make a table, we first design the essence of the table, then we take the saw and timber and bring that essence into being. A pea pod consists of pea extract, a chamomile leaf consists of chamomile extract. Man, on the other hand, does not consist of a human essence, the essence of man is after his existence. According to Sartre, essence means that determines existence and it is stated that existence is not determined by any essence.
According to the German thinker Kant, the essence is the noumenon as the thing-in-itself and anti-phenomenon. It can never be known. We can only know the appearance of things, not what they are in themselves.
Prepared by: Sociologist Ömer Yıldırım