By Frederick D. Wilhelmsen
Frederick D. Wilhelmsen’s Being and Knowing, rooted within the philosophy of St. Thomas Aquinas, rests on uncomplicated assertions: first, metaphysics is the technology of being in its first and supreme act, life (the act in which all issues show up themselves); moment, that lifestyles is understood no longer via staring at gadgets, yet in putting forward via judgments that those gadgets are topics of existence.
The chapters of this ebook discover those Thomistic doctrines. a few clarify St. Thomas Aquinas’s philosophy of being. Others probe his epistemology. The complexity and density of Aquinas’s conception of judgment (that fact is learned within the judgment of man), emphasised all through lots of the booklet, aspect not just to a deeper figuring out of the character of metaphysics, yet they open doorways to the rationalization of philosophical concerns germane to modern thought.
This paintings addresses a couple of metaphysical philosophical paradoxes. Wilhelmsen’s exploration of them demonstrates why he was once the preeminent American pupil of the Thomistic culture. This quantity is a part of Transaction’s sequence, the Library of Conservative Thought.
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Additional info for Being and Knowing: Reflections of a Thomist
Subsequent reasoning in the De Hebdomadibus establishing the same conclusion is drawn from the structure of participation. If esse cannot be a subject of itself then it follows that every subject of esse participates in “something” which is more common than itself. Drawing conventional instances of participation from the order of nature— Socrates participates in man; subjects participate in accidents; matter participates in form; effects participate in their causes—St. ” 27 The barn participates in white color which is broader than the barn, a quality more universal than the reality painted white because there are white things which are not barns.
29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 14 distinction is known to be real and not merely notional anterior to the proof for God’s existence. Thomas Aquinas, In de Divinis Nominibus, c. 5, lect. 2 (Torino: Marietti, 1950), n. 660, p. 245: “Deinde, cum dicit Dionysius . . Et ipsum . . ostendit quomodo esse se habeat ad Deum; et dicit quod ipsum esse commune est ex primo Ente, quod est Deus, et ex hoc sequitur quod esse commune aliter se habeat ad Deum quam alia existentia, quantum ad tria: primo quidem, quantum ad hoc quod alia existentia dependet ab esse communi, non autem Deus, sed magis esse commune dependet a Deo; et hoc est quod dicit Dionysius quod ipsum esse commune est ipsius Dei, tamquam ab Ipso dependet, et non ipse Deus est esse, idest ipsius esse communis, tamquam ab ipso dependens.
St. Thomas has already warned us that esse is not the subject of itself. Neither quasi-conceptualized “Is” nor quasi-conceptualized “Being” exists and we thus come full circle back to our original problem: how can we think and reason about an “Is” that, on the surface at least, seems refractory to efforts at bagging it conceptually? Hegel’s identity of being with nothing and Parmenides’ reduction of everything to a Being which itself is only thought but never experienced are two sides of the same coin.
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