Monday, August 31, 2009

Q117 A4: Whether the separate human soul can move bodies at least locally?

No. The separate soul cannot by its natural power move a body because no body is quickened by the separate soul.

Anima separata sua naturali virtute non potest movere aliquod corpus quia ab anima separata nullum corpus vivificatur.

There are certain spiritual substances whose powers are not determinate to certain bodies: such are the angels who are naturally unfettered by a body; consequently various bodies may obey them as to movement (Q110 A5).

Substantiae quaedam spirituales sunt, quarum virtutes non determinantur ad aliqua corpora: sicut sunt Angeli, qui sunt naturaliter a corporibus absoluti; et ideo diversa corpora eis possunt obedire ad motum.

But if the motive power of a separate substance is naturally determinate to move a certain body, that substance will not be able to move a body of higher degree, but only one of lower degree; thus according to philosophers the mover of the lower heaven cannot move the higher heaven.

Si tamen alicuius substantiae separatae virtus motiva determinetur naturaliter ad movendum aliquod corpus, non poterit illa substantia movere aliquod corpus maius, sed minus; sicut, secundum philosophos, motor inferioris caeli non posset movere caelum superius.

Wherefore, since the soul is by its nature determinate to move the body of which it is the form, it cannot by its natural power move any other body.

Unde cum anima secundum suam naturam determinetur ad movendum corpus cuius est forma, nullum aliud corpus sua naturali virtute movere potest.

As Augustine (De Civ. Dei x, 11) and Chrysostom (Hom. xxviii in Matt.) say, the demons often pretend to be the souls of the dead, in order to confirm the error of heathen superstition.

Dicit Augustinus X de Civ. Dei, et Chrysostomus super Matth., frequenter Daemones simulant se esse animas mortuorum, ad confirmandum gentilium errorem, qui hoc credebant.