Monday, February 27, 2006

Q5 A5: Whether the essence of goodness consists in mode, species and order?

Yes. The essence of goodness, so far as it consists in perfection, consists also in mode, species and order because perfection is manifested in the whole order of causality.

Mode refers to material or efficient causality.

Species refers to formal causality.

Order refers to final causality.

Note that Aquinas here is simply showing the compatibility of the Aristotelian doctrine of causality (as just discussed in Q5 A4) with what was then more traditional vocabulary (e.g., from Augustine) for discussing goodness.