Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Q14 A1: Whether there is knowledge in God?

Yes. In God there exists the most perfect knowledge because the immateriality of a thing is the reason why it is cognitive: the mode of knowledge is according to the mode of immateriality.

Since God is in the highest degree of immateriality (Q7, A1), it follows that He occupies the highest place in knowledge (cognitio).

Intelligent beings are distinguished from non-intelligent beings in that the latter possess only their own form; whereas the intelligent being is naturally adapted to have also the form of some other thing; for the idea of the thing known is in the knower.

Now the contraction of the form comes from the matter. Hence, as we have said above (Q7, A1), forms, according as they are the more immaterial, approach more nearly to a kind of infinity.

Plants do not know, because they are wholly material. But sense is cognitive because it can receive images free from matter, and the intellect is still further cognitive, because it is more separated from matter and unmixed.

Note RO2: Man has different kinds of knowledge (habet diversas cognitiones), according to the different objects of his knowledge (secundum diversa cognita).

He has "intelligence" (intelligentia) as regards the knowledge of principles.

He has "science" (scientia) as regards knowledge of conclusions.

He has "wisdom" (sapientia) according as he knows the highest cause.

He has "counsel" (consilium) or "prudence" (prudentia) according as he knows what is to be done.

Note RO3: Divine knowledge does not exist in God after the mode of created knowledge.