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How do Thomists prove that: "Everything that exists must exist by something."?

Thomists affirm theism, but God would be a counterexample to your proposition as stated: God is something "that exists" in Himself; He does not "exist by something [else]". ...
Geremia's user avatar
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8 votes

Thomas of Aquino vs. William of Ockham

One view is that Ockham invented his Nominalism in order to justify his being against the papacy. The Thomist semiotician John Deely, in his Four Ages of Understanding pp. 394 ff., shows how the ...
Geremia's user avatar
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What does Aquinas mean when he refers to things being "identical numerically" or "specifically identical" with things?

The efficient cause is not numerically identical with the effect because the "things" involved into the "production process" are different individials : the father of John generates John but he is a ...
Mauro ALLEGRANZA's user avatar
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How can souls and angels be pure forms if only matter undergoes change?

On the 7th of the 24 Thomistic Theses, Creatura spiritualis est in sua essentia omnino simplex. Sed remanet in ea compositio duplex: essentiae cum esse et substantiae cum accidentibus. The ...
Geremia's user avatar
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How can souls and angels be pure forms if only matter undergoes change?

The key to understanding what is meant by Aquinas' use of the term potential with the matter and form of Angels is to go back to Artistotle's use of the terms: energeia or entelecheia, and dynamis. ...
ClearMountainWay's user avatar
6 votes

How do Thomists prove that: "Everything that exists must exist by something."?

There isn't really a ubiquitous reading of the principle of sufficient reason (PSR), so I think it's worth going over some distinctions and different formulations. There are at least two major ...
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What are all attributes of God and what is the manner of knowing them according to Aquinas?

God's attributes known negatively Following St. Damascene (De Fide Orth. i, 4), St. Thomas Aquinas writes (Summa Theologica I q. 2 a. 2 arg. 2): we cannot know in what God's essence consists, but ...
Geremia's user avatar
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Question about the Thomistic view of God's attributes

What you seem to be running into here is the change in philosophy from the schoolmen to the moderns. In the course of that transition, several philosophical concepts were replaced with other concepts ...
David Gudeman's user avatar
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Was Aquinas a foundationalist?

St. Thomas follows Aristotle in his solution of the regress problem: There must be an indemonstrable first principle because if everything were demonstrable, there would be an infinite regress; cf. ...
Geremia's user avatar
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How can the soul be a form in Aristotle's metaphysics but continue to exist after the body's destruction?

What seems to be omitted is that Aristotle was a realist about forms. He does call them secondary substances whose existence depends on the existence of primary substances (particulars, e.g. material ...
Conifold's user avatar
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Why does Thomas Aquinas say that "in every composite there must be potentiality and actuality"?

See the first of the 24 Thomistic Theses: Potentia et actus ita dividunt ens, ut quidquid est, vel sit actus purus, vel ex potentia et actu tamquam primis atque intrinsecis principiis necessario ...
Geremia's user avatar
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How to understand the identity of matter in Aristotelianism?

See J. Lukasiewicz, E. Anscombe and K. Popper, Symposium: The Principle of Individuation (1953), page 93-on (Anscombe) : The statement that matter is the principle of individuation does not mean ...
Mauro ALLEGRANZA's user avatar
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Why must the first mover be unmovable?

The philosophical axiom that something cannot give what it does not havenemo dat quod non habet(cf. I q. 2 a. 3) applies here. If the First Mover were movable (i.e., not pure actuality, actus ...
Geremia's user avatar
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Did Aquinas or Aristotle discuss what happens to the man when he feels bored?

There could be difficulty in finding precise comments by both Aristotle and Thomas Aquinas on 'boredom', as generally conceived as "being weary due to being unoccupied or lacking interest in one's ...
Kurt Gödel's user avatar
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Where does Thomas Aquinas give this definition of beauty?

I believe you are looking for Summa Theologica, First Part, Question 5, Article 4, Reply to Objection 1. In the Benziger translation (1920) the passage reads: Beauty and goodness in a thing are ...
Bumble's user avatar
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What is the definition of 'will' according to Thomas Aquinas?

Disputes There are different understandings of Aquinas' position on the will. There is a dispute between voluntaristic and intellectualist interpretations as well as disagreement over developmental ...
Geoffrey Thomas's user avatar
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Why did Aquinas distinguish his first three "cosmological argument" for God?

Part 1, question 2, article 3 from Aquinas, Thomas: Summa Theologiae enumerates five ways to prove the existence of God: 1) God as the first mover (primum movens) 2) God as first cause (causa ...
Jo Wehler's user avatar
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What are the similarities and differences in the ways Aristotle and Thomas Aquinas define the "Analogy of Being"?

Thomas Aquinas's short work De Principiis Naturæ concisely summarizes the three types of predication: […] "Being" [ens], however, is not a genus because it is not predicated univocally, but only ...
Geremia's user avatar
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According to St. Thomas Aquinas, do "being" (ens) and "truth" (verum) differ?

It doesn't seem your counterexample works. Do twin primes and prime numbers differ conceptually? St. Thomas answers his objection in Disputed Questions on Truth q. 1 a. 1 ad 3: 3. “Something can ...
Geremia's user avatar
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3 votes

How can souls and angels be pure forms if only matter undergoes change?

This is a good observation, the answer is that the notion of matter shifted away from the Aristotelian one around the time of Aquinas, and he was instrumental in effecting the change. According to the ...
Conifold's user avatar
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3 votes

How are “causal” loops avoided in Aristotelian-Thomistic metaphysics?

If we take Aquinas' first way, for example, the inference that a chain of movers exist, is readily made, but no defense for this assumption is given. He proves "that everything that is moved is moved ...
Geremia's user avatar
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Why must the first mover be unmovable?

See Aristotle Physics, Bk.VII : [242a50] Since everything that is in motion must be moved by something, let us take the case in which a thing is in locomotion and is moved by something that is ...
Mauro ALLEGRANZA's user avatar
3 votes

Why must the first mover be unmovable?

Here is the question: Why does the first mover need to be unmovable? Why can it not have some potencies which are not ever actualized? This answer only tries to address the first question hoping ...
Frank Hubeny's user avatar
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How did Suarez defend objectivity of human knowledge (cognition)?

Footnote #2 by John Deely (✝2017) in his translation of the Tractatus de Signis pp. 44-45 by John of St. Thomas (✝1644) quotes the relevant passages of the 1597 Disputationes Metaphysicæ by Francisco ...
Geremia's user avatar
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Where did Suárez say the principle of non-contradiction does not apply to the Trinity?

Francisco Suárez Suárez discusses the applicability to the Persons of the Trinity of this form of the principle of non-contradiction, A = C B = C ∴ A = B in On the Various Kinds of Distinctions p. ...
Geremia's user avatar
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3 votes

Where did Suárez say the principle of non-contradiction does not apply to the Trinity?

Perhaps we can here begin to show, without specifically answering the question posted on this page, that a regular use of two-valued Aristotelian logic, useful though it is in its own right and realm ...
Sébastien Renault's user avatar
3 votes

What does the phrase "predicated of" mean in the context of scholastic theology?

To predicate X of Y is to say that Y is X or that Y is an X. This terminology comes from syllogistic logic, where they tend to be loose about the distinction between a property, a class, and an ...
David Gudeman's user avatar
3 votes

What does the phrase "predicated of" mean in the context of scholastic theology?

Predicates A predicate (prædicare = "to assert") is, according to the Dictionary of Scholastic Philosophy (p. 95), that which is affirmed or denied of a subject in a categorical proposition....
Geremia's user avatar
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