Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Q118 A2: Whether the intellectual soul is produced from the semen?

No. The rational soul is created by God because since it is an immaterial substance it cannot be caused through generation, but only through creation by God.

Animae rationales creantur a Deo quia cum sit immaterialis substantia, non potest causari per generationem, sed solum per creationem a Deo.

Therefore to hold that the intellectual soul is caused by the begetter, is nothing else than to hold the soul to be non-subsistent and consequently to perish with the body. It is therefore heretical to say that the intellectual soul is transmitted with the semen.

Ponere ergo animam intellectivam a generante causari, nihil est aliud quam ponere eam non subsistentem, et per consequens corrumpi eam cum corpore. Et ideo haereticum est dicere quod anima intellectiva traducatur cum semine.

Since the intellectual soul has an operation independent of the body, it is subsistent, as proved above (Q75 A2); therefore to be and to be made are proper to it.

Anima intellectiva, cum habeat operationem sine corpore, est subsistens, ut supra habitum est; et ita sibi debetur esse et fieri.

It is impossible for an active power existing in matter to extend its action to the production of an immaterial effect. Now it is manifest that the intellectual principle in man transcends matter, for it has an operation in which the body takes no part whatever. It is therefore impossible for the seminal power to produce the intellectual principle.

Impossibile est virtutem activam quae est in materia, extendere suam actionem ad producendum immaterialem effectum. Manifestum est autem quod principium intellectivum in homine est principium transcendens materiam, habet enim operationem in qua non communicat corpus. Et ideo impossibile est quod virtus quae est in semine, sit productiva intellectivi principii.

The body has nothing whatever to do in the operation of the intellect. Therefore the power of the intellectual principle, as intellectual, cannot reach the semen. Hence the Philosopher says (De Gener. Animal. ii, 3): "It follows that the intellect alone comes from without."

In operatione autem intellectus non communicat corpus. Unde virtus intellectivi principii, prout intellectivum est, non potest ad semen pervenire. Et ideo philosophus, in libro de Generat. Animal., dicit, "relinquitur intellectus solus de foris advenire."