Knowledge and Faith in Thomas Aquinas by John I. Jenkins

By John I. Jenkins

This e-book bargains a revisionary account of key epistemological thoughts and doctrines of St. Thomas Aquinas, really his proposal of scientia (science). It proposes a brand new interpretation of the aim and composition of Aquinas' such a lot mature and influential paintings, the Summa theologiae, which has characteristically been considered as a piece for neophytes in theology. John Jenkins' entire and unique research could be of curiosity to readers in philosophy, theology and medieval reviews.

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God is wholly perfect, simple and self-sufficient. In Him all perfections exist in the highest mode, for they exist in God's perfect unity and utter . I"lClty. 24 H e IireeIy created the world so that it would reflect the sImp divine goodness. 2 SCIENTIA AS AN ANALOGOUS TERM Problems arise for the identity thesis even apart from any consideration of the central scientia of the Summa theologiae, sacred doctrine. For in the Summa Aquinas speaks at length about various scientiae which are certainly not countenanced in the text of the Posterior AnalYtics, and which seem clearly at odds with its analysis.

For the human intellect, which reasons discursively, this requires that one have a demonstrative syllogism whose premises state the cause and whose conclusion states the effect. Moreover, the doxastic causality condition requires that one's belief in the conclusion be caused by one's belief in the cause. Since God's scientia is wholly immediate and non-discursive, demonstrations can play no role. But although God does not apprehend a cause prior to apprehension of its effect, He nevertheless knows all other things in Himself, their cause.

The principles of sacred doctrine, then, are the divinely revealed articles of faith to which one assents. As Aquinas writes, although in non-subaltern, merely human scientiae indemonstrable principles are grasped "by the light of the natural intellect",16 nevertheless "there are some [scientiae] which proceed from principles known by the light of a higher scientia. •. "17 That is, this scientia is a subaltern scientia whose principles are taken from another scientia, and one had by other subjects, viz.

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