Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Q79 A10: Whether intelligence is a power distinct from intellect?

No. Intelligence is not another power than the intellect because intelligence is not distinct from intellect, as power is from power, but as act is from power.

Intelligentia non est alia potentia praeter intellectum quia intelligentia ab intellectu non distinguitur sicut potentia a potentia, sed sicut actus a potentia.

For every difference of acts does not make the powers vary, but only what cannot be reduced to the one same principle, as we have said above (Q78, A4).

Non enim omnis differentia actuum potentias diversificat; sed solum illa quae non potest reduci in idem principium, ut supra dictum est.

And such a division is recognized even by the philosophers. For sometimes they assign four intellects--namely, the "active" and "passive" intellects, the intellect "in habit," and the "actual" intellect. Of which four the active and passive intellects are different powers; just as in all things the active power is distinct from the passive.

Invenitur enim talis divisio etiam a philosophis. Quandoque enim ponunt quatuor intellectus, scilicet intellectum agentem, possibilem, et in habitu, et adeptum. Quorum quatuor intellectus agens et possibilis sunt diversae potentiae; sicut et in omnibus est alia potentia activa, et alia passiva.

But three of these are distinct, as three states of the passive intellect, which is sometimes in potentiality only, and thus it is called passive; sometimes it is in the first act, which is knowledge, and thus it is called intellect in habit; and sometimes it is in the second act, which is to consider, and thus it is called intellect in act, or actual intellect.

Alia vero tria distinguuntur secundum tres status intellectus possibilis, qui quandoque est in potentia tantum, et sic dicitur possibilis; quandoque autem in actu primo, qui est scientia, et sic dicitur intellectus in habitu; quandoque autem in actu secundo, qui est considerare, et sic dicitur intellectus in actu, sive intellectus adeptus.

This word "intelligence" properly signifies the intellect's very act, which is to understand. However, in some works translated from the Arabic, the separate substances which we call angels are called "intelligences," and perhaps for this reason, that such substances are always actually understanding. But in works translated from the Greek, they are called "intellects" or "minds."

Hoc nomen "intelligentia" proprie significat ipsum actum intellectus qui est intelligere. In quibusdam tamen libris de Arabico translatis, substantiae separatae quas nos Angelos dicimus, "intelligentiae" vocantur; forte propter hoc, quod huiusmodi substantiae semper actu intelligunt. In libris tamen de Graeco translatis, dicuntur "intellectus" seu "mentes".

All those acts which Damascene enumerates belong to one power--namely, the intellectual power. For this power first of all only apprehends something; and this act is called "intelligence."

Omnes illi actus quos Damascenus enumerat, sunt unius potentiae, scilicet intellectivae. Quae primo quidem simpliciter aliquid apprehendit, et hic actus dicitur intelligentia.

Secondly, it directs what it apprehends to the knowledge of something else, or to some operation; and this is called "intention." And when it goes on in search of what it "intends," it is called "invention." When, by reference to something known for certain, it examines what it has found, it is said to know or to be wise, which belongs to "phronesis" or "wisdom"; for "it belongs to the wise man to judge," as the Philosopher says (Metaph. i, 2). And when once it has obtained something for certain, as being fully examined, it thinks about the means of making it known to others; and this is the ordering of "interior speech," from which proceeds "external speech."

Secundo vero, id quod apprehendit, ordinat ad aliquid aliud cognoscendum vel operandum, et hic vocatur "intentio". Dum vero persistit in inquisitione illius quod "intendit", vocatur "excogitatio". Dum vero id quod est excogitatum examinat ad aliqua certa, dicitur scire vel sapere; quod est "phronesis", vel "sapientiae", nam "sapientiae est iudicare", ut dicitur in I Metaphys. Ex quo autem habet aliquid pro certo, quasi examinatum, cogitat quomodo possit illud aliis manifestare, et haec est dispositio "interioris sermonis"; ex qua procedit "exterior locutio".

Boethius takes intelligence as meaning that act of the intellect which transcends the act of the reason. Wherefore he also says that reason alone belongs to the human race, as intelligence alone belongs to God, for it belongs to God to understand all things without any investigation.

Boethius accipit intelligentiam pro actu intellectus qui transcendit actum rationis. Unde ibidem dicit quod "ratio tantum humani generis est, sicut intelligentia sola divini", proprium enim Dei est quod absque omni investigatione omnia intelligat.