Wednesday, February 03, 2010

1a 2ae q14 a3: Whether counsel is only of things that we do? Yes.

Consilium est circa ea quae aguntur a nobis quia inquisitio consilii proprie pertinet ad contingentia singularia.

Counsel is about things done by us because counsel's investigation is concerned, properly speaking, with contingent singulars.

Consilium non solum est de his quae aguntur, sed de his quae ordinantur ad operationes. Et propter hoc consultatio dicitur fieri de futuris eventibus, inquantum homo per futuros eventus cognitos dirigitur ad aliquid faciendum vel vitandum.

Counsel is not only about what is done, but also about whatever has relation to what is done. And for this reason we speak of consulting about future events, insofar as man is induced to do or omit something, through the knowledge of future events.

Est autem considerandum quod in particularibus contingentibus, ad hoc quod aliquid certum cognoscatur, plures conditiones seu circumstantias considerare oportet, quas ab uno non facile est considerari, sed a pluribus certius percipiuntur, dum quod unus considerat, alii non occurrit; in necessariis autem et universalibus est absolutior et simplicior consideratio, ita quod magis ad huiusmodi considerationem unus per se sufficere potest.

Now we must take note that in contingent particular cases, in order that anything be known for certain, it is necessary to take several conditions or circumstances into consideration, which it is not easy for one to consider, but are considered by several with greater certainty, since what one takes note of, escapes the notice of another; whereas in necessary and universal things, our view is brought to bear on matters much more absolutely and simply, so that one man by himself may be sufficient to consider these things.

Cognitio autem veritatis in talibus non habet aliquid magnum, ut per se sit appetibilis, sicut cognitio universalium et necessariorum, sed appetitur secundum quod est utilis ad operationem, quia actiones sunt circa contingentia singularia.

Now the knowledge of the truth in such matters [i.e., contingent singulars] does not rank so high as to be desirable of itself, as is the knowledge of things universal and necessary, but it is desired as being useful towards action, because actions bear on things singular and contingent.