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Auquinas study guide - INTRODUCTION TO PHILOSOPHY...

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INTRODUCTION TO PHILOSOPHY AQUINAS--Stumpf Note that I’ve inserted some ideas in braces { } What was Aquinas trying to do with theology and classical thought?  What was  his view of Aristotle?   He was trying to meld theology and classical thought. His views were mostly  shared with Aristotle. What were the views of Aquinas’s teacher, Albert Magus? [169-71] He believed that the Christian thinker should master Christian as well as secular thinking in all of its forms. He more clearly defined the distinction between philosophy and theology, drawing a line between reason and faith. Aristotle was the greatest of the philosophers. What were characteristics of scholasticism? [169] It was an attempt to put together a coherent system of traditional thought rather than create new insights. A melding of theology and philosophy, it relied mainly on Plato and especially Aristotle. It used a dialectical method in which theology was always dominant over philosophy. Why did Aquinas’s contemporary, Bonaventura, reject Aristotle’s view about  universals? { Recall that Aristotle held that universals had no real existence  apart from the things in which they inhere.    The reason a chair is a chair is that  it has both the form and the matter in it.    Bonaventura preferred Plato’s view,  that universals have some real existence apart from individual things.} [172.    Bonaventura thought that if universals had no real existence, then God could  not know all things; He could not know the concrete and particular world. {In  other words, if God could not know the idea of “human,” He could not know  individual people.}    And if He did not know individual people, then He could  not control the universe.    The universe would be a product of chance or  mechanical processes--and there could be no providence.    God could not have  even created individual persons (or anything else) if He did not know the  general idea of human.]
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What was Siger of Brabant’s view? [172.   There is only one eternal intellect,  and individuals who are born and die partake of this one intellect, which always  remains the same. ] PHILOSOPHY AND THEOLOGY In Aquinas’s view, what is the relationship between philosophy and theology?  [172f.   Philosophy and theology are complementary.    Philosophy works from  human reason, discovering causes and first principles {first principles are those  foundational ideas on which knowledge is based; they are known not because  they are supported by other ideas, but they are known in and of themselves.    They are obvious to us as soon as we understand them.} Through philosophical  thought, therefore, we can know that God exists by knowing what He causes.
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