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  1/10/2017 Thomism - Wikipedia 1/24 Thomism From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Thomism  is the philosophical school that arose as a legacy of the work and thought of  Thomas Aquinas (1225–1274), philosopher, theologian,and Doctor of the Church. In philosophy, Aquinas' disputed questionsand commentaries on Aristotle are perhaps his most well-known works.In theology, his Summa Theologica  is one of the most influentialdocuments in medieval theology and continues to be the central point of reference for the philosophy and theology of the Catholic Church. Inthe 1914 encyclical  Doctoris Angelici [1]  Pope Pius X cautioned that theteachings of the Chur ch cannot be understood without the basic philosophical underpinnings of Aquinas' major theses:The capital theses in the philosophy of St. Thomas are notto be placed in the category of opinions capable of beingdebated one way or another, but are to be considered as thefoundations upon which the whole science of natural anddivine things is based; if such principles are once removedor in any way impaired, it must necessarily follow thatstudents of the sacred sciences will ultimately fail to perceive so much as the meaning of the words in which thedogmas of divine revelation are proposed by themagistracy of the Church. [2] The Second Vatican Council described Aquinas' system as the Perennial Philosophy . [3] Contents 1Thomistic philosophy1.1General1.224 Thomistic Theses1.2.1Ontology1.2.2Cosmology1.2.3Psychology1.2.4God2Metaphysics2.1Predication2.2Being2.3Causality2.4Goodness2.5Existence of God2.6View of God3Anthropology3.1Soul3.2Ethics3.3Law3.4Free will4Epistemology5Impact5.1Influence on Jewish thought6Connection with Jewish thought Thomas Aquinas (c. 1225–1274)  1/10/2017 Thomism - Wikipedia 2/24 7Scholarly perspectives7.1Individual thinkers7.1.1René Descartes7.1.2G. K. Chesterton8History8.1First Thomistic School8.21325 to the Council of Trent8.3Council of Trent to  Aeterni Patris 8.4  Aeterni Patris  to Vatican II9Recent schools and interpretations9.1Scholastic Thomism9.2Cracow Circle Thomism9.3Existential Thomism9.4River Forest Thomism9.5Transcendental Thomism9.6Lublin Thomism9.7Analytical Thomism10See also11References12External links Thomistic philosophy General Thomas Aquinas believed that truth is to be accepted no matter where it is found. His doctrines draw fromGreek, Roman, Jewish, philosophers. Specifically, he was a realist (i.e., he, unlike the skeptics, believed that theworld can be known as it is). He largely followed Aristotelian terminology and metaphysics, and wrotecomprehensive commentaries on Aristotle, often affirming Aristotle's views with independent arguments.Aquinas respectfully referred to Aristotle simply as the Philosopher . [4]  He also adhered to some neoplatonic principles, for example that it is absolutely true that there is first something which is essentially being andessentially good, which we call God, ... [and that] everything can be called good and a being, inasmuch as it articipates  in it by way of a certain assimilation... [5] Shortly before Aquinas died, his friend Reginald of Piperno implored him to finish his works. Aquinas replied, I cannot, because all that I have written seems like straw to me. [6] 24 Thomistic Theses With the decree  Postquam sanctissimus  of 27 July 1914, [7]  Pope Pius X declared that 24 theses formulated by teachers from various institutions ... clearly contain the principles and more important thoughts of Aquinas.Principal contributors to the Church's official statement of the 24 Theses of Thomism include Dominican philosopher and theologian Edouard Hugon of the Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas,  Angelicum and Jesuit philosopher theologian Guido Mattiussi of the Pontifical Gregorian University. Ontology 1. Potency and Act divide being in such a way that whatever is, is either pure act, or of necessity it iscomposed of potency and act as primary and intrinsic principles.2. Since act is perfection, it is not limited except through a potency which itself is a capacity for perfection.Hence in any order in which an act is pure act, it will only exist, in that order, as a unique and unlimitedact. But whenever it is finite and manifold, it has entered into a true composition with potency.3. Consequently, the one God, unique and simple, alone subsists in absolute being. All other things that participate in being have a nature whereby their being is restricted; they are constituted of essence and  1/10/2017 Thomism - Wikipedia 3/24  being, as really distinct principles.4. A thing is called a being because of esse . God and creature are not called beings univocally, nor whollyequivocally, but analogically, by an analogy both of attribution and of proportionality.5. In every creature there is also a real composition of the subsisting subject and of added secondary forms,i.e. accidental forms. Such composition cannot be understood unless being is really received in anessence distinct from it.6. Besides the absolute accidents there is also the relative accident, relation. Although by reason of its owncharacter relation does not signify anything inhering in another, it nevertheless often has a cause inthings, and hence a real entity distinct from the subject.7. A spiritual creature is wholly simple in its essence. Yet there is still a twofold composition in the spiritualcreature, namely, that of the essence with being, and that of the substance with accidents.8. However, the corporeal creature is composed of act and potency even in its very essence. These act and potency in the order of essence are designated by the names form and matter respectively. Cosmology 9. Neither the matter nor the form have being of themselves, nor are they produced or corrupted of themselves, nor are they included in any category otherwise than reductively, as substantial principles.10. Although extension in quantitative parts follows upon a corporeal nature, nevertheless it is not the samefor a body to be a substance and for it to be quantified. For of itself substance is indivisible, not indeed asa point is indivisible, but as that which falls outside the order of dimensions is indivisible. But quantity,which gives the substance extension, really differs from the substance and is truly an accident.11. The principle of individuation, i.e., of numerical distinction of one individual from another with the samespecific nature, is matter designated by quantity. Thus in pure spirits there cannot be more than oneindividual in the same specific nature.12. By virtue of a body's quantity itself, the body is circumscriptively in a place, and in one place alonecircumscriptively, no matter what power might be brought to bear.13. Bodies are divided into two groups; for some are living and others are devoid of life. In the case of theliving things, in order that there be in the same subject an essentially moving part and an essentiallymoved part, the substantial form, which is designated by the name soul, requires an organic disposition,i.e. heterogeneous parts. Psychology 14. Souls in the vegetative and sensitive orders cannot subsist of themselves, nor are they produced of themselves. Rather, they are no more than principles whereby the living thing exists and lives; and sincethey are wholly dependent upon matter, they are incidentally corrupted through the corruption of thecomposite.15. On the other hand, the human soul subsists of itself. When it can be infused into a sufficiently disposedsubject, it is created by God. By its very nature, it is incorruptible and immortal.16. This rational soul is united to the body in such a manner that it is the only substantial form of the body.By virtue of his soul a man is a man, an animal, a living thing, a body, a substance and a being.Therefore, the soul gives man every essential degree of perfection; moreover, it gives the body a share inthe act of being whereby it itself exists.17. From the human soul there naturally issue forth powers pertaining to two orders, the organic and the non-organic. The organic powers, among which are the senses, have the composite as their subject. The non-organic powers have the soul alone as their subject. Hence, the intellect is a power intrinsicallyindependent of any bodily organ.18. Intellectuality necessarily follows upon immateriality, and furthermore, in such manner that the further the distance from matter, the higher the degree of intellectuality. Any being is the adequate object of understanding in general. But in the present state of union of soul and body, quantities abstracted fromthe material conditions of individuality are the proper object of the human intellect.19. Therefore, we receive knowledge from sensible things. But since sensible things are not actuallyintelligible, in addition to the intellect, which formally understands, an active power must beacknowledged in the soul, which power abstracts intelligible likeness or species from sense images in theimagination.  1/10/2017 Thomism - Wikipedia 4/24 20. Through these intelligible likenesses or species we directly know universals, i.e. the natures of things. Weattain to singulars by our senses, and also by our intellect, when it beholds the sense images. But weascend to knowledge of spiritual things by analogy.21. The will does not precede the intellect but follows upon it. The will necessarily desires that which is presented to it as a good in every respect satisfying the appetite. But it freely chooses among the manygoods that are presented to it as desirable according to a changeable judgment or evaluation.Consequently, the choice follows the final practical judgment. But the will is the cause of it being thefinal one. God 22. We do not perceive by an immediate intuition that God exists, nor do we prove it a priori . But we do prove it a posteriori , i.e., from the things that have been created, following an argument from the effectsto the cause: namely, from things which are moved and cannot be the adequate source of their motion, toa first unmoved mover; from the production of the things in this world by causes subordinated to oneanother, to a first uncaused cause; from corruptible things which equally might be or not be, to anabsolutely necessary being; from things which more or less are, live, and understand, according todegrees of being, living and understanding, to that which is maximally understanding, maximally livingand maximally a being; finally, from the order of all things, to a separated intellect which has ordered andorganized things, and directs them to their end.23. The metaphysical motion of the Divine Essence is correctly expressed by saying that it is identified withthe exercised actuality of its own being, or that it is subsistent being itself. And this is the reason for itsinfinite and unlimited perfection.24. By reason of the very purity of His being, God is distinguished from all finite beings. Hence it follows, inthe first place, that the world could only have come from God by creation; secondly, that not even by wayof a miracle can any finite nature be given creative power, which of itself directly attains the very beingof any being; and finally, that no created agent can in any way influence the being of any effect unless ithas itself been moved by the first Cause. Metaphysics Aquinas says that the fundamental axioms of ontology are the principle of non-contradiction and the principleof causality. Therefore, any being that does not contradict these two laws could theoretically exist, [8]  even if said being were incorporeal. [9] Predication Aquinas noted three forms of descriptive language when predicating: univocal, analogical, and equivocal. [10] Univocality  is the use of a descriptor in the same sense when applied to two objects or groups of objects.For instance, when the word milk is applied both to milk produced by cows and by any other femalemammal. Analogy  occurs when a descriptor changes some but not all of its meaning. For example, the word healthy is analogical in that it applies both to a healthy person or animal (those that enjoy of goodhealth) and to some food or drink (if it is good for the health). Equivocation  is the complete change in meaning of the descriptor and is an informal fallacy. For example, when the word bank is applied to river banks and financial banks. Modern philosophers talk of ambiguity.Further, the usage of definition that Aquinas gives is the genus of the being, plus a difference that sets it apartfrom the genus itself. For instance, the Aristotelian definition of man is rational animal ; its genus beinganimal, and what sets apart man from other animals is his rationality. [11] Being
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