By Gaven Kerr
Gaven Kerr offers the 1st book-length learn of St. Thomas Aquinas's a lot overlooked evidence for the life of God in De Ente et Essentia bankruptcy four. He deals a modern presentation, interpretation, and safeguard of this evidence, starting with an account of the metaphysical rules utilized by Aquinas after which describing how they're hired in the facts to set up the life of God. alongside the best way, Kerr engages modern authors who've addressed Aquinas's or comparable reasoning.
The evidence constructed within the De Ente is, on Kerr's interpreting, self reliant of a few of the different proofs in Aquinas's corpus and proof against the conventional classificatory schemes of proofs of God. through employing a ancient and hermeneutical information of the philosophical concerns offered through Aquinas's suggestion and comparing such philosophical matters with analytical precision, Kerr is ready to go through the facts and overview what Aquinas is announcing, and even if what he's announcing is true.
By technique of an research of 1 of Aquinas's earliest proofs, Kerr highlights a foundational argument that's current in the course of the even more typically studied Thomistic writings, and brings it to undergo in the context of analytical philosophy, displaying its relevance to the modern reader.
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Extra info for Aquinas’s Way to God: The Proof in De Ente et Essentia
19. This of course anticipates the participation relationship of the finite creature in its act of being, a theme that predominates Aquinas’s metaphysics of esse and is crucial in understanding his solution to the problem of the one and the many. I shall touch on this theme in Chapter 3 when I discuss the composition of essence and esse in creatures, though I shall not dwell on it in any great amount of depth. The most important discussions of it are as follows: Louis-Bertrand Geiger, La Participation dans la philosophie de s.
7 A full discussion (and defence) of the Thomistic notion of essence will have to wait until the next chapter, but suffice to say, the essence of a (material) thing for Aquinas is the unity of its matter and form, in which case a knowledge of essence is attained through a knowledge of the thing’s form as individuated by its matter. Essence then is not identified with and not understood through a series of essential notes. The understanding of essence, then, cannot be the understanding of all of the (essential) intelligible notes of a thing (vide Aquinas’s denial that we can even know all the essential differences of sensible things above in n.
6 Secondly (ii), what role do the examples of man and phoenix play in the argument? Clearly men exist and one can talk about their essences, but can one really talk about the essence of non-existing things such as phoenixes? Is Aquinas suggesting that there is something like a Meinongian slum of non-existing essences that can be understood with regard to their essential natures but not with regard to their esse? Surely one can cut through the latter and say that with regard to non-existing essences, such as a phoenix, there is precisely nothing to understand—the phoenix example is at best irrelevant and at worst an embarrassment.
Aquinas’s Way to God: The Proof in De Ente et Essentia by Gaven Kerr