Definition of efficient cause in English:

efficient cause

noun

Philosophy
  • An agent that brings a thing into being or initiates a change.

    • ‘Aristotle, however, does not regard efficient causes as radically different from material and formal causes.’
    • ‘By contrast, intelligent design as he sees it is about final causes, not efficient causes.’
    • ‘However, on a deeper level, there must be an efficient cause to explain why a city-state acquires its constitution in the first place.’
    • ‘The agent intellect, according to this explanation, is the intrinsic efficient cause of the soul.’
    • ‘It would not surprise many to hear that the professional study of religion was a more efficient cause of secularization than the natural sciences.’