Descartes, Rene - The concept of shared function
Type of Spiritual Experience
This has enormous repercussions despite its apparent simplicity.
Functions can be shared between different types of thing, thus not only is there sharing of form based constructs, but also functional constructs as well.
In effect, reuse applies in the creation to both form and function.
Furthermore the functions which we have are shared with things which are very unlike us.
'Heat' as a function is an example, applying to all warm blooded creature and to a multitude of inanimate objects as well
A description of the experience
Rene Descartes – Key Philosophical Writings
this part of us, distinct from the body, of which it has been said that its nature is to think, [has] contributing to it, functions which are identically the same as those in which animals lacking reason may be said to resemble us. For all that I could not find in these functions any which, being dependent on thought, pertain to us alone, inasmuch as we are men …............
He kindled in the heart …. 'fires without light' which I have already described and which I did not conceive of as in any way different from that which makes the hay heat when shut up before it is dry, and which makes new wine grow frothy when it is left to ferment....