immanent action

(Latin: actio immanens, action remaining in)

An operation whose term or effect remains in the agent eliciting the action; e.g., thought, elicited or performed by the mind and terminating in this same faculty. Immanent action is the scholastic definition of life; only organic beings have the capacity for this kind of action. It is opposed to transient action, which is proper to inorganic beings, i.e., action which terminates in an object distinct from the eliciting agent. Immanent action is perfect or imperfect according as it terminates in the same faculty or in another faculty of the eliciting agent.

New Catholic Dictionary

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