Thursday, April 30, 2009

Q91 A2: Whether the human body was immediately produced by God?

Yes. The first human body was of necessity made immediately by God because no pre-existing body had been formed whereby another body of the same species could be generated.

Necesse fuit quod primum corpus hominis immediate formaretur a Deo quia corpus humanum nunquam formatum fuerat, cuius virtute per viam generationis aliud simile in specie formaretur.

Forms cannot be made in themselves, but only in the composite, as we have explained (Q65, A4).

Formis non competit per se fieri, sed composito, ut supra expositum est.

Although the angels are the ministers of God, as regards what He does in bodies, yet God does something in bodies beyond the angels' power, as, for instance, raising the dead, or giving sight to the blind: and by this power He formed the body of the first man from the slime of the earth. Nevertheless the angels could act as ministers in the formation of the body of the first man, in the same way as they will do at the last resurrection by collecting the dust.

Etsi Angeli aliquod ministerium Deo exhibeant in his quae circa corpora operatur; aliqua tamen Deus in creatura corporea facit, quae nullo modo Angeli facere possunt; sicut quod suscitat mortuos, et illuminat caecos. Secundum quam virtutem etiam corpus primi hominis de limo terrae formavit. Potuit tamen fieri ut aliquod ministerium in formatione corporis primi hominis Angeli exhiberent; sicut exhibebunt in ultima resurrectione, pulveres colligendo.

Because the agent must be like its effect, it is not fitting that a pure form, not existing in matter, should produce a form which is in matter, and which form is only made by the fact that the composite is made.

Et quia oportet agens esse simile facto non convenit quod forma pura, quae est sine materia, producat formam quae est in materia, quae non fit nisi per hoc quod compositum fit.

So a form which is in matter can only be the cause of another form that is in matter, according as composite is made by composite.

Et ideo oportet quod forma quae est in materia, sit causa formae quae est in materia, secundum quod compositum a composito generatur.

Now God, though He is absolutely immaterial, can alone by His own power produce matter by creation: wherefore He alone can produce a form in matter, without the aid of any preceding material form.

Deus autem, quamvis omnino sit immaterialis, tamen solus est qui sua virtute materiam producere potest creando. Unde ipsius solius est formam producere in materia absque adminiculo praecedentis formae materialis.

An effect may be said to pre-exist in the causal aspects of creatures, in two ways.

Secundum rationes causales in creaturis dicitur aliquid praeexistere dupliciter.

First, both in active and in passive potentiality, so that not only can it be produced out of pre-existing matter, but also that some pre-existing creature can produce it.

Uno modo, secundum potentiam activam et passivam, ut non solum ex materia praeexistenti fieri possit, sed etiam ut aliqua praeexistens creatura hoc facere possit.

Secondly, in passive potentiality only; that is, that out of pre-existing matter it can be produced by God. In this sense, according to Augustine, the human body pre-existed in the previous works in their causal aspects.

Alio modo, secundum potentiam passivam tantum, ut scilicet de materia praeexistenti fieri possit a Deo. Et hoc modo, secundum Augustinum, corpus hominis praeextitit in operibus productis secundum causales rationes.

The movement of the heavens causes natural changes; but not changes that surpass the order of nature, and are caused by the Divine Power alone, as for the dead to be raised to life, or the blind to see: like to which also is the making of man from the slime of the earth.

Motus caeli est causa transmutationum naturalium, non tamen transmutationum quae fiunt praeter naturae ordinem, et sola virtute divina, sicut quod mortui resuscitantur, quod caeci illuminantur. Quibus est simile quod homo ex limo terrae formatur.

It is written (Sirach 17:1): "God created man out of the earth."

Dicitur Eccli. XVII, "Deus de terra creavit hominem."

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Q91 A1: Whether the body of the first man was made of the slime of the earth?

Yes. The body of man is said to have been formed from the slime of the earth, because earth and water mingled are called slime, and for this reason man is called "a little world", because all creatures of the world are in a way to be found in him.

Dicitur corpus hominis de limo terrae formatum, quia limus dicitur terra aquae permixta. Et propter hoc homo dicitur "minor mundus", quia omnes creaturae mundi quodammodo inveniuntur in eo.

As God is perfect in His works, He bestowed perfection on all of them according to their capacity: "God's works are perfect" (Deuteronomy 32:4). He Himself is simply perfect by the fact that "all things are pre-contained" in Him, not as component parts, but as "united in one simple whole," as Dionysius says (Div. Nom. v); in the same way as various effects pre-exist in their cause, according to its one virtue.

Cum Deus perfectus sit, operibus suis perfectionem dedit secundum eorum modum; secundum illud Deut. XXXII, "Dei perfecta sunt opera". Ipse autem simpliciter perfectus est, ex hoc quod "omnia in se praehabet", non per modum compositionis, sed "simpliciter et unite", ut Dionysius dicit, eo modo quo diversi effectus praeexistunt in causa, secundum unam eius essentiam.

This perfection is bestowed on the angels, inasmuch as all things which are produced by God in nature through various forms come under their knowledge. But on man this perfection is bestowed in an inferior way. For he does not possess a natural knowledge of all natural things, but is in a manner composed of all things, since he has in himself a rational soul of the genus of spiritual substances, and in likeness to the heavenly bodies he is removed from contraries by an equable temperament. As to the elements, he has them in their very substance.

Ista autem perfectio ad Angelos quidem derivatur, secundum quod omnia sunt in eorum cognitione quae sunt a Deo in natura producta, per formas diversas. Ad hominem vero derivatur inferiori modo huiusmodi perfectio. Non enim in sua cognitione naturali habet omnium naturalium notitiam, sed est ex rebus omnibus quodammodo compositus, dum de genere spiritualium substantiarum habet in se animam rationalem, de similitudine vero caelestium corporum habet elongationem a contrariis per maximam aequalitatem complexionis, elementa vero secundum substantiam.

It is written (Genesis 2:7): "God made man of the slime of the earth."

Dicitur Gen. II, "formavit Deus hominem de limo terrae."

Q91: The production of the first man's body

  1. The matter from which it was produced
  2. The author by whom it was produced
  3. The disposition it received in its production
  4. The mode and order of its production

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Q90 A4: Whether the human soul was produced before the body

No. Since the soul is the proper act of the body, the soul was produced in the body, because the proper act is produced in its proper potentiality.

Cum ergo anima sit proprius actus corporis, anima producta est in corpore quia actus proprius fit in potentia propria.

The soul is united to the body as its form, and is naturally a part of human nature.

Anima unitur corpori ut forma, et est naturaliter pars humanae naturae.

The soul, as a part of human nature, has its natural perfection only as united to the body. Therefore it would have been unfitting for the soul to be created without the body.

Anima autem, cum sit pars humanae naturae, non habet naturalem perfectionem nisi secundum quod est corpori unita. Unde non fuisset conveniens animam sine corpore creari.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Q90 A3: Whether the rational soul is produced by God immediately?

Yes. Since the rational soul cannot be produced by a change in matter, it cannot be produced, save immediately by God.

Quia anima rationalis non potest produci per transmutationem alicuius materiae, ideo non potest produci nisi a Deo immediate.

God alone can create; for the first agent alone can act without presupposing the existence of anything; while the second cause always presupposes something derived from the first cause, as above explained (Q75, A3): and every agent, that presupposes something to its act, acts by making a change therein. Therefore everything else acts by producing a change, whereas God alone acts by creation.

Solus autem Deus potest creare. Quia solius primi agentis est agere, nullo praesupposito, cum semper agens secundum praesupponat aliquid a primo agente, ut supra habitum est. Quod autem agit aliquid ex aliquo praesupposito, agit transmutando. Et ideo nullum aliud agens agit nisi transmutando; sed solus Deus agit creando.

Some have held that angels, acting by the power of God, produce rational souls. But this is quite impossible, and is against faith. For it has been proved that the rational soul cannot be produced except by creation (Q90, A2).

Quidam posuerunt quod Angeli, secundum quod operantur in virtute Dei, causant animas rationales. Sed hoc est omnino impossibile, et a fide alienum. Ostensum est enim quod anima rationalis non potest produci nisi per creationem.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Q90 A2: Whether the soul was produced by creation?

Yes. The rational soul can be made only by creation (which, however, is not true of other forms); the reason is because, since to be made is the way to existence, a thing must be made in such a way as is suitable to its mode of existence.

Anima rationalis non potest fieri nisi per creationem (quod non est verum de aliis formis); cuius ratio est quia, cum fieri sit via ad esse, hoc modo alicui competit fieri, sicut ei competit esse.

Now that properly exists which itself has existence; as it were, subsisting in its own existence. Wherefore only substances are properly and truly called beings; whereas an accident has not existence, but something is (modified) by it, and by this formal aspect is it called a being; for instance, whiteness is called a being, because by it something is white.

Illud autem proprie dicitur esse, quod ipsum habet esse, quasi in suo esse subsistens, unde solae substantiae proprie et vere dicuntur entia. Accidens vero non habet esse, sed eo aliquid est, et hac ratione ens dicitur; sicut albedo dicitur ens, quia ea aliquid est album.

Hence it is said Metaph. vii, Did. vi, 1 that an accident should be described as "of something rather than as something." The same aspect is to be said of all non-subsistent forms. Therefore, properly speaking, it does not belong to any non-existing form to be made, but such are said to be made through the composite substances being made.

Et propter hoc dicitur in VII Metaphys., quod accidens dicitur "magis entis quam ens". Et eadem ratio est de omnibus aliis formis non subsistentibus. Et ideo nulli formae non subsistenti proprie competit fieri, sed dicuntur fieri per hoc quod composita subsistentia fiunt.

On the other hand, the rational soul is a subsistent form, as above explained (Q75, A2). Wherefore it is competent to be and to be made. And since it cannot be made of pre-existing matter--whether corporeal, which would render it a corporeal being--or spiritual, which would involve the transmutation of one spiritual substance into another, we must conclude that it cannot exist except by creation.

Anima autem rationalis est forma subsistens, ut supra habitum est. Unde sibi proprie competit esse et fieri. Et quia non potest fieri ex materia praeiacente--neque corporali, quia sic esset naturae corporeae--neque spirituali, quia sic substantiae spirituales in invicem transmutarentur, necesse est dicere quod non fiat nisi per creationem.

The soul's simple essence is as the material element, while its participated existence is its formal element; which participated existence necessarily co-exists with the soul's essence, because existence naturally follows the form.

In anima est sicut materiale ipsa simplex essentia, formale autem in ipsa est esse participatum; quod quidem ex necessitate simul est cum essentia animae, quia esse per se consequitur ad formam.

The same formal aspect holds if the soul is supposed to be composed of some spiritual matter, as some maintain; because the said matter is not in potentiality to another form, as neither is the matter of a celestial body; otherwise the soul would be corruptible. Wherefore the soul cannot in any way be made of pre-existent matter.

Et eadem ratio esset, si poneretur composita ex quadam materia spirituali, ut quidam dicunt. Quia illa materia non est in potentia ad aliam formam, sicut nec materia caelestis corporis, alioquin anima esset corruptibilis. Unde nullo modo anima potest fieri ex materia praeiacente.

The production of act from the potentiality of matter is nothing else but something becoming actually that previously was in potentiality. But since the rational soul does not depend in its existence on corporeal matter, and is subsistent, and exceeds the capacity of corporeal matter, as we have seen (Q75, A2), it is not educed from the potentiality of matter.

Actum extrahi de potentia materiae, nihil aliud est quam aliquid fieri actu, quod prius erat in potentia. Sed quia anima rationalis non habet esse suum dependens a materia corporali, sed habet esse subsistens, et excedit capacitatem materiae corporalis, ut supra dictum est, propterea non educitur de potentia materiae.

Q90 A1: Whether the soul was made or was of God's substance?

Yes. It is evidently false that the soul is of the substance of God because it is not a pure act like God.

Manifeste falsum est animam esse de substantia Dei quia non est actus purus, sicut Deus.

Although the soul is a simple form in its essence, yet it is not its own existence, but is a being by participation.

Etsi sit forma simplex secundum suam essentiam, non tamen est suum esse, sed est ens per participationem.

The human soul is sometimes in a state of potentiality to the act of intelligence -- acquires its knowledge somehow from things--and thus has various powers; all of which are incompatible with the Divine Nature, Which is a pure act--receives nothing from any other--and admits of no variety in itself.

Anima humana est quandoque intelligens in potentia, et scientiam quodammodo a rebus acquirit, et habet diversas potentias, quae omnia aliena sunt a Dei natura, qui est actus purus, et nihil ab alio accipiens, et nullam in se diversitatem habens.

Augustine (De Orig. Animae iii, 15) mentions certain opinions which he calls "exceedingly and evidently perverse, and contrary to the Catholic Faith," among which the first is the opinion that "God made the soul not out of nothing, but from Himself."

Augustinus, in libro de origine animae, enumerat quaedam quae dicit esse multum aperteque perversa, et fidei Catholicae adversa; inter quae primum est, quod quidam dixerunt "Deum animam non de nihilo, sed de seipso fecisse".

Q90: The first production of man's soul

  1. Was man's soul something made, or was it of the Divine substance?
  2. If made, was it created?
  3. Was it made by angelic instrumentality?
  4. Was it made before the body?

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Q89 A8: Whether separated souls know what takes place on earth?

No. By natural knowledge, of which we are treating now, the souls of the dead do not know what passes on earth because the separated soul has knowledge of singulars, by being in a way determined to them, either by some vestige of previous knowledge or affection, or by the Divine order.

Secundum naturalem cognitionem, de qua nunc hic agitur, animae mortuorum nesciunt quae hic aguntur quia anima separata cognoscit singularia per hoc quod quodammodo determinata est ad illa, vel per vestigium alicuius praecedentis cognitionis seu affectionis, vel per ordinationem divinam.

The souls departed are in a state of separation from the living, both by Divine order and by their mode of existence, whilst they are joined to the world of incorporeal spiritual substances; and hence they are ignorant of what goes on among us.

Animae autem mortuorum, secundum ordinationem divinam, et secundum modum essendi, segregatae sunt a conversatione viventium, et coniunctae conversationi spiritualium substantiarum quae sunt a corpore separatae. Unde ea quae apud nos aguntur ignorant.

The souls of the blessed who see God do know all that passes here. For they are equal to the angels, of whom Augustine says that they know what happens among those living on earth. But as the souls of the blessed are most perfectly united to Divine justice, they do not suffer from sorrow, nor do they interfere in mundane affairs, except in accordance with Divine justice.

Animae sanctorum Deum videntes, omnia praesentia quae hic aguntur cognoscant. Sunt enim Angelis aequales, de quibus etiam Augustinus asserit quod ea quae apud vivos aguntur non ignorant. Sed quia sanctorum animae sunt perfectissime iustitiae divinae coniunctae, nec tristantur, nec rebus viventium se ingerunt, nisi secundum quod iustitiae divinae dispositio exigit.

The souls of the departed may care for the living, even if ignorant of their state; just as we care for the dead by pouring forth prayer on their behalf, though we are ignorant of their state. Moreover, the affairs of the living can be made known to them not immediately, but the souls who pass hence thither, or by angels and demons, or even by the revelation of the Holy Spirit.

Animae mortuorum possunt habere curam de rebus viventium, etiam si ignorent eorum statum; sicut nos curam habemus de mortuis, eis suffragia impendendo, quamvis eorum statum ignoremus. Possunt etiam facta viventium non per seipsos cognoscere, sed vel per animas eorum qui hinc ad eos accedunt, vel per Angelos seu Daemones, vel etiam spiritu Dei revelante.

That the dead appear to the living in any way whatever, is either by the special dispensation of God (in order that the souls of the dead may interfere in affairs of the living--and this is to be accounted as miraculous), or else such apparitions occur through the instrumentality of bad or good angels, without the knowledge of the departed.

Hoc quod mortui viventibus apparent qualitercumque, vel contingit per specialem Dei dispensationem (ut animae mortuorum rebus viventium intersint, et est inter divina miracula computandum), vel huiusmodi apparitiones fiunt per operationes Angelorum bonorum vel malorum, etiam ignorantibus mortuis.

Q89 A7: Whether local distance impedes the knowledge in the separated soul?

No. Knowledge in the separated soul is not hindered by local distance because the soul when separated understands singulars by species derived from the Divine light, which is indifferent to what is near or distant.

Distantia localis nullo modo impedit animae separatae cognitionem quia intelligit anima separata singularia per influxum specierum ex divino lumine, quod quidem lumen aequaliter se habet ad propinquum et distans.

Some have held that the separated soul knows the singular by abstraction from the sensible. If that were so, it might be that local distance would impede its knowledge; for either the sensible would need to act upon the soul, or the soul upon the sensible; and in either case a determinate distance would be necessary. This is, however, impossible because abstraction of the species from the sensible is done through the senses and other sensible faculties which do not remain actually in the soul apart from the body.

Quidam posuerunt quod anima separata cognosceret singularia abstrahendo a sensibilibus. Quod si esset verum, posset dici quod distantia localis impediret animae separatae cognitionem; requireretur enim quod vel sensibilia agerent in animam separatam, vel anima separata in sensibilia; et quantum ad utrumque, requireretur distantia determinata. Sed praedicta positio est impossibilis, quia abstractio specierum a sensibilibus fit mediantibus sensibus et aliis potentiis sensitivis, quae in anima separata actu non manent.

The future, which is distant in time, does not actually exist, and therefore is not knowable in itself, because so far as a thing falls short of being, so far does it fall short of being knowable. But what is locally distant exists actually, and is knowable in itself.

Futura, quae distant secundum tempus, non sunt entia in actu. Unde in seipsis non sunt cognoscibilia, quia sicut deficit aliquid ab entitate, ita deficit a cognoscibilitate. Sed ea quae sunt distantia secundum locum, sunt entia in actu, et secundum se cognoscibilia.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Q89 A6: Whether the act of knowledge acquired here remains in the separated soul?

Yes. The act of knowledge here acquired remains in the separated soul, but in a different way, because through the intelligible species acquired in this life, the soul apart from the body can understand what it understood formerly, but in a different way; not by turning to phantasms, but by a mode suited to a soul existing apart from the body.

Manet in anima separata actus scientiae hic acquisitae, sed non secundum eundem modum, quia secundum species intelligibiles hic acquisitas, anima separata intelligere possit quae prius intellexit; non tamen eodem modo, scilicet per conversionem ad phantasmata, sed per modum convenientem animae separatae.

Action offers two things for our consideration--its species and its mode. Its species comes from the object, whereto the faculty of knowledge is directed by the (intelligible) species, which is the object's similitude; whereas the mode is gathered from the power of the agent.

In actu est duo considerare, scilicet speciem actus, et modum ipsius. Et species quidem actus consideratur ex obiecto in quod actus cognoscitivae virtutis dirigitur per speciem, quae est obiecti similitudo, sed modus actus pensatur ex virtute agentis.

Thus that a person see a stone is due to the species of the stone in his eye; but that he see it clearly, is due to the eye's visual power.

Sicut quod aliquis videat lapidem, contingit ex specie lapidis quae est in oculo, sed quod acute videat, contingit ex virtute visiva oculi.

The acts which produce a habit are like the acts caused by that habit, in species, but not in mode. For example, to do just things, but not justly, that is, pleasurably, causes the habit of political justice, whereby we act pleasurably. (Cf. Aristotle, Ethic. v, 8: Magn. Moral. i, 34).

Actus per quos acquiritur habitus, sunt similes actibus quos habitus causant, quantum ad speciem actus, non autem quantum ad modum agendi. Nam operari iusta, sed non iuste, idest delectabiliter, causat habitum iustitiae politicae, per quem delectabiliter operamur.

Q89 A5: Whether the habit of knowledge here acquired remains in the separated soul?

Yes. Knowledge acquired in the present life does not remain in the separated soul, as regards what belongs to the sensitive powers; but as regards what belongs to the intellect itself, it must remain; because it is evident that human knowledge is not corrupted through corruption of the subject, for the intellect is an incorruptible faculty; and neither can the intelligible species in the passive intellect be corrupted by their contrary, for there is no contrary to intelligible "intentions," above all as regards simple intelligence of "what a thing is."

Quantum ergo ad id quod aliquis praesentis scientiae habet in inferioribus viribus, non remanebit in anima separata, sed quantum ad id quod habet in ipso intellectu, necesse est ut remaneat; quia manifestum est quod per corruptionem subiecti, scientia quae est in intellectu humano, corrumpi non potest, cum intellectus sit incorruptibilis; similiter etiam nec per contrarium corrumpi possunt species intelligibiles quae sunt in intellectu possibili, quia intentioni intelligibili nihil est contrarium; et praecipue quantum ad simplicem intelligentiam, qua intelligitur quod quid est.

Since knowledge resides in the intellect, which is "the abode of species," as the Philosopher says (De Anima iii, 4), the habit of knowledge here acquired must be partly in the aforesaid sensitive powers and partly in the intellect. This can be seen by considering the very actions from which knowledge arises. For "habits are like the actions whereby they are acquired" (Ethic. ii, 1).

Sed quia scientia est in intellectu, qui est locus specierum, ut dicitur in III de anima; oportet quod habitus scientiae hic acquisitae partim sit in praedictis viribus sensitivis, et partim in ipso intellectu. Et hoc potest considerari ex ipsis actibus ex quibus habitus scientiae acquiritur, nam "habitus sunt similes actibus ex quibus acquiruntur", ut dicitur in II Ethic.

Now the actions of the intellect, by which knowledge is here acquired, are performed by the mind turning to the phantasms in the aforesaid sensitive powers. Hence through such acts the passive intellect acquires a certain facility in considering the species received: and the aforesaid sensitive powers acquire a certain aptitude in seconding the action of the intellect when it turns to them to consider the intelligible object.

Actus autem intellectus ex quibus in praesenti vita scientia acquiritur, sunt per conversionem intellectus ad phantasmata, quae sunt in praedictis viribus sensitivis. Unde per tales actus et ipsi intellectui possibili acquiritur facultas quaedam ad considerandum per species susceptas; et in praedictis inferioribus viribus acquiritur quaedam habilitas ut facilius per conversionem ad ipsas intellectus possit intelligibilia speculari.

But as the intellectual act resides chiefly and formally in the intellect itself, whilst it resides materially and dispositively in the inferior powers, the same distinction is to be applied to habit.

Sed sicut actus intellectus principaliter quidem et formaliter est in ipso intellectu, materialiter autem et dispositive in inferioribus viribus, idem etiam dicendum est de habitu.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Q89 A4: Whether the separated soul knows singulars?

Yes. The intellect does not know the singular by way of abstraction; neither does the separated soul know it thus, because the knowledge of the separated soul is confined to those species or individuals to which the soul has some kind of determinate relation.

Intellectus per viam abstractionis non est cognoscitivus singularium; sic autem anima separata non intelligit, quia ad illarum rerum species vel individua cognitio animae separatae determinatur, ad quae anima separata habet aliquam determinatam habitudinem.

The separated soul has not the same relation to all singulars, but one relation to some, and another to others.

Anima separata non se habet aequaliter ad omnia singularia, sed ad quaedam habet aliquam habitudinem quam non habet ad alia.

Separated souls know some singulars, but not all, not even all present singulars. To understand this, we must consider that there is a twofold way of knowing things, one by means of abstraction from phantasms, and in this way singulars cannot be directly known by the intellect, but only indirectly, as stated above (Q86, A1).

Animae separatae aliqua singularia cognoscunt, sed non omnia, etiam quae sunt praesentia. Ad cuius evidentiam, considerandum est quod duplex est modus intelligendi. Unus per abstractionem a phantasmatibus, et secundum istum modum singularia per intellectum cognosci non possunt directe, sed indirecte, sicut supra dictum est.

The other way of understanding is by the infusion of species by God, and in that way it is possible for the intellect to know singulars. For as God knows all things, universal and singular, by His Essence, as the cause of universal and individual principles (Q14, A2), so likewise separate substances can know singulars by species which are a kind of participated similitude of the Divine Essence.

Alius modus intelligendi est per influentiam specierum a Deo, et per istum modum intellectus potest singularia cognoscere. Sicut enim ipse Deus per suam essentiam, inquantum est causa universalium et individualium principiorum, cognoscit omnia et universalia et singularia, ut supra dictum est; ita substantiae separatae per species, quae sunt quaedam participatae similitudines illius divinae essentiae, possunt singularia cognoscere.

There is a difference, however, between angels and separated souls in the fact that through these species the angels have a perfect and proper knowledge of things; whereas separated have only a confused knowledge.

In hoc tamen est differentia inter Angelos et animas separatas, quia Angeli per huiusmodi species habent perfectam et propriam cognitionem de rebus, animae vero separatae confusam.

Hence the angels, by reason of their perfect intellect, through these species, know not only the specific natures of things, but also the singulars contained in those species; whereas separated souls by these species know only those singulars to which they are determined by former knowledge in this life, or by some affection, or by natural aptitude, or by the disposition of the Divine order; because whatever is received into anything is conditioned according to the mode of the recipient.

Unde Angeli, propter efficaciam sui intellectus, per huiusmodi species, non solum naturas rerum in speciali cognoscere possunt, sed etiam singularia sub speciebus contenta. Animae vero separatae non possunt cognoscere per huiusmodi species nisi solum singularia illa ad quae quodammodo determinantur, vel per praecedentem cognitionem, vel per aliquam affectionem, vel per naturalem habitudinem, vel per divinam ordinationem, quia omne quod recipitur in aliquo, determinatur in eo secundum modum recipientis.

Q89 A3: Whether the separated soul knows all natural things?

No. Separated souls know all natural things not with a certain and proper knowledge but in a general and confused manner because the separated soul, like the angels, understands by means of species, received from the influence of the Divine light; nevertheless, as the soul by nature is inferior to an angel, to whom this kind of knowledge is natural, the soul apart from the body through such species does not receive perfect knowledge.

Animae separatae de omnibus naturalibus cognitionem habent, non certam et propriam, sed communem et confusam quia anima separata intelligit per species quas recipit ex influentia divini luminis, sicut et Angeli, sed tamen, quia natura animae est infra naturam Angeli, cui iste modus cognoscendi est connaturalis, anima separata per huiusmodi species non accipit perfectam rerum cognitionem.

Separated souls, therefore, have the same relation through such species to imperfect and confused knowledge of natural things as the angels have to the perfect knowledge thereof. Now angels through such species know all natural things perfectly; because all that God has produced in the respective natures of natural things has been produced by Him in the angelic intelligence, as Augustine says (Gen. ad lit. ii, 8).

Sicut igitur se habent Angeli ad perfectam cognitionem rerum naturalium per huiusmodi species, ita animae separatae ad imperfectam et confusam. Angeli autem per huiusmodi species cognoscunt cognitione perfecta omnia naturalia, quia omnia quae Deus fecit in propriis naturis, fecit in intelligentia angelica, ut dicit Augustinus, super Gen. ad Litt.

As the soul separated from the body does not perfectly understand separate substances, so neither does it know all natural things perfectly.

Anima separata non perfecte intelligit substantias separatas ita nec omnia naturalia perfecte cognoscit, sed sub quadam confusione.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Q89 A2: Whether the separated soul understands separate substances?

Yes. The soul apart from the body has perfect knowledge of other separated souls, but it has an imperfect and defective knowledge of the angels, so far as its natural knowledge is concerned, because, as Augustine says (De Trin. ix, 3), "our mind acquires the knowledge of incorporeal things by itself"--i.e., by knowing itself (Q88, A1, ad 1).

De aliis animabus separatis perfectam cognitionem habet, de Angelis autem imperfectam et deficientem, loquendo de cognitione naturali animae separatae, quia sicut Augustinus dicit in IX de Trin., "mens nostra cognitionem rerum incorporearum per seipsam accipit", idest cognoscendo seipsam.

Therefore from the knowledge which the separated soul has of itself, we can judge how it knows other separate things. Now it was said above (Q89, A1), that as long as it is united to the body the soul understands by turning to phantasms, and therefore it does not understand itself save through becoming actually intelligent by means of ideas abstracted from phantasms; for thus it understands itself through its own act, as shown above (Q87, A1).

Per hoc ergo quod anima separata cognoscit seipsam, accipere possumus qualiter cognoscit alias substantias separatas. Dictum est autem quod quandiu anima corpori est unita, intelligit convertendo se ad phantasmata. Et ideo nec seipsam potest intelligere nisi inquantum fit actu intelligens per speciem a phantasmatibus abstractam, sic enim per actum suum intelligit seipsam, ut supra dictum est.

When, however, it is separated from the body, it understands no longer by turning to phantasms, but by turning to simply intelligible objects; hence in that state it understands itself through itself. Now, every separate substance "understands what is above itself and what is below itself, according to the mode of its substance" (De Causis viii): for a thing is understood according as it is in the one who understands; while one thing is in another according to the nature of that in which it is. And the mode of existence of a separated soul is inferior to that of an angel, but is the same as that of other separated souls.

Sed cum fuerit a corpore separata, intelliget non convertendo se ad phantasmata, sed ad ea quae sunt secundum se intelligibilia, unde seipsam per seipsam intelliget. Est autem commune omni substantiae separatae quod intelligat id quod est supra se, et id quod est infra se, per modum suae substantiae, sic enim intelligitur aliquid secundum quod est in intelligente; est autem aliquid in altero per modum eius in quo est. Modus autem substantiae animae separatae est infra modum substantiae angelicae, sed est conformis modo aliarum animarum separatarum.

The separated soul understands the angels by means of divinely impressed ideas; which, however, fail to give perfect knowledge of them, inasmuch as the nature of the soul is inferior to that of an angel.

Anima separata intelligit Angelos per similitudines divinitus impressas. Quae tamen deficiunt a perfecta repraesentatione eorum, propter hoc quod animae natura est inferior quam Angeli.

Man's ultimate happiness consists not in the knowledge of any separate substances; but in the knowledge of God, Who is seen only by grace. The knowledge of other separate substances, if perfectly understood, gives great happiness, yet not final and ultimate happiness. But the separated soul does not understand them perfectly.

In cognitione substantiarum separatarum non quarumcumque, consistit ultima hominis felicitas, sed solius Dei, qui non potest videri nisi per gratiam. In cognitione vero aliarum substantiarum separatarum est magna felicitas, etsi non ultima, si tamen perfecte intelligantur. Sed anima separata naturali cognitione non perfecte eas intelligit.

Q89 A1: Whether the separated soul can understand anything?

Yes. The soul can understand when it is apart from the body because it has a proper operation and above all that which consists in intelligence.

Anima intelligit sine corpore existens quia habet aliquam operationem propriam et maxime eam quae est intelligere.

The separated soul does not understand by way of innate species, nor by species abstracted then, nor only by species retained ... but the soul in that state understands by means of participated species arising from the influence of the Divine light, shared by the soul as by other separate substances, though in a lesser degree.

Anima separata non intelligit per species innatas, nec per species quas tunc abstrahit, nec solum per species conservatas ... sed per species ex influentia divini luminis participatas, quarum anima fit particeps sicut et aliae substantiae separatae, quamvis inferiori modo.

Hence as soon as it ceases to act by turning to corporeal [phantasms], the soul turns at once to the superior things; nor is this way of knowledge unnatural, for God is the author of the influx of both of the light of grace and of the light of nature.

Unde tam cito cessante conversione ad corpus, ad superiora convertitur. Nec tamen propter hoc cognitio non est naturalis, quia Deus est auctor non solum influentiae gratuiti luminis, sed etiam naturalis.

As nothing acts except so far as it is actual, the mode of action in every agent follows from its mode of existence. Now the soul has one mode of being when in the body, and another when apart from it, its nature remaining always the same; but this does not mean that its union with the body is an accidental thing, for, on the contrary, such union belongs to the formal aspect of its nature.

Cum nihil operetur nisi inquantum est actu, modus operandi uniuscuiusque rei sequitur modum essendi ipsius. Habet autem anima alium modum essendi cum unitur corpori, et cum fuerit a corpore separata, manente tamen eadem animae natura; non ita quod uniri corpori sit ei accidentale, sed per rationem suae naturae corpori unitur.

The soul, therefore, when united to the body, consistently with that mode of existence, has a mode of understanding, by turning to corporeal phantasms, which are in corporeal organs; but when it is separated from the body, it has a mode of understanding, by turning to simply intelligible objects, as is proper to other separate substances.

Animae igitur secundum illum modum essendi quo corpori est unita, competit modus intelligendi per conversionem ad phantasmata corporum, quae in corporeis organis sunt; cum autem fuerit a corpore separata, competit ei modus intelligendi per conversionem ad ea quae sunt intelligibilia simpliciter, sicut et aliis substantiis separatis.

Hence it is as natural for the soul to understand by turning to the phantasms as it is for it to be joined to the body; but to be separated from the body is beyond the formal aspect of its nature, and likewise to understand without turning to the phantasms is beyond its nature; and hence it is united to the body in order that it may have an existence and an operation suitable to its nature.

Unde modus intelligendi per conversionem ad phantasmata est animae naturalis, sicut et corpori uniri, sed esse separatum a corpore est praeter rationem suae naturae, et similiter intelligere sine conversione ad phantasmata est ei praeter naturam. Et ideo ad hoc unitur corpori, ut sit et operetur secundum naturam suam.

Now it is clear that in the natural order human souls hold the lowest place among intellectual substances. But the perfection of the universe required various grades of being. If, therefore, God had willed souls to understand in the same way as separate substances, it would follow that human knowledge, so far from being perfect, would in general be confused.

Manifestum est autem inter substantias intellectuales, secundum naturae ordinem, infimas esse animas humanas. Hoc autem perfectio universi exigebat, ut diversi gradus in rebus essent. Si igitur animae humanae sic essent institutae a Deo ut intelligerent per modum qui competit substantiis separatis, non haberent cognitionem perfectam, sed confusam in communi.

Therefore to make it possible for human souls to possess perfect and proper knowledge, they were so made that their nature required them to be joined to bodies, and thus to receive the proper and adequate knowledge of sensible things from the sensible things themselves; thus we see in the case of uneducated men that they have to be taught by sensible examples.

Ad hoc ergo quod perfectam et propriam cognitionem de rebus habere possent, sic naturaliter sunt institutae ut corporibus uniantur, et sic ab ipsis rebus sensibilibus propriam de eis cognitionem accipiant; sicut homines rudes ad scientiam induci non possunt nisi per sensibilia exempla.

The Philosopher says (De Anima i, 1), "If the soul had no proper operation, it could not be separated from the body."

Philosophus dicit, in I de anima, quod "si non est aliqua operationum animae propria, non contingit ipsam separari."

Q89: The knowledge of the separated soul

  1. Can the soul separated from the body understand?
  2. Does it understand separate substances?
  3. Does it understand all natural things?
  4. Does it understand individuals and singulars?
  5. Do the habits of knowledge acquired in this life remain?
  6. Can the soul use the habit of knowledge here acquired?
  7. Does local distance impede the separated soul's knowledge?
  8. Do souls separated from the body know what happens here?

Friday, April 17, 2009

Q88 A3: Whether God is the first object known by the human mind?

No. God is not the first object of our knowledge because the first object of our knowledge in this life is the definable structure of a material thing, which is the proper object of our intellect.

Deus non est primum quod a nobis cognoscitur quia primum quod intelligitur a nobis secundum statum praesentis vitae, est quidditas rei materialis, quae est nostri intellectus obiectum.

The human intellect in the present state of life cannot understand even immaterial created substances; much less can it understand the essence of the uncreated substance.

Intellectus humanus, secundum statum praesentis vitae, non possit intelligere substantias immateriales creatas; multo minus potest intelligere essentiam substantiae increatae.

Rather do we know God through creatures, according to the Apostle (Romans 1:20), "the invisible things of God are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made".

Sed magis per creaturas in Dei cognitionem pervenimus, secundum illud apostoli ad Rom. I, "invisibilia Dei per ea quae facta sunt, intellecta, conspiciuntur."

Other things than God are known because of God; not as if He were the first known object, but because He is the first cause of our faculty of knowledge.

Propter Deum autem alia cognoscuntur, non sicut propter primum cognitum, sed sicut propter primam cognoscitivae virtutis causam.

We see and judge of all things in the light of the first truth, inasmuch as the light itself of our mind, whether natural or gratuitous, is nothing else than the impression of the first truth upon it, as stated above (Q12, A2).

In luce primae veritatis omnia intelligimus et iudicamus, inquantum ipsum lumen intellectus nostri, sive naturale sive gratuitum, nihil aliud est quam quaedam impressio veritatis primae, ut supra dictum est.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Q88 A2: Whether our intellect can understand immaterial substances through its knowledge of material things?

No. We are not able perfectly to understand immaterial substances through material substances because immaterial substances differ altogether in formal aspect from the definable structures of material things.

Per substantias materiales non possumus perfecte substantias immateriales intelligere quia substantiae immateriales sunt omnino alterius rationis a quidditatibus materialium rerum.

However much our intellect abstracts the definable structure of material things from matter, it could never arrive at anything similar to immaterial substance.

Quantumcumque intellectus noster abstrahat quidditatem rei materialis a materia, nunquam perveniet ad aliquid simile substantiae immateriali.

From material things we can rise to some kind of knowledge of immaterial things, but not to the perfect knowledge thereof, for there is no proper and adequate proportion between material and immaterial things; and the likenesses drawn from material things for the understanding of immaterial things are very dissimilar therefrom, as Dionysius says (Coel. Hier. ii).

Ex rebus materialibus ascendere possumus in aliqualem cognitionem immaterialium rerum, non tamen in perfectam, quia non est sufficiens comparatio rerum materialium ad immateriales; sed similitudines si quae a materialibus accipiuntur ad immaterialia intelligenda, sunt multum dissimiles, ut Dionysius dicit, II cap. Cael. Hier.

But we may have a scientific knowledge of them by way of negation and by their relation to material things.

Sed de eis nobis in scientiis documenta traduntur per viam remotionis et alicuius habitudinis ad res materiales.

Created immaterial substances are not in the same natural genus as material substances, for their formal aspect does not agree in power or in matter; but they belong to the same logical genus, because even immaterial substances are in the predicament of substance, since their definable structure is not their existence.

Substantiae immateriales creatae in genere quidem naturali non conveniunt cum substantiis materialibus, quia non est in eis eadem ratio potentiae et materiae; conveniunt tamen cum eis in genere logico, quia etiam substantiae immateriales sunt in praedicamento substantiae, cum earum quidditas non sit earum esse.

But God has no connection with material things, as regards either natural genus or logical genus; because God is in no genus, as stated above (Q3, A5). Hence through the likeness derived from material things we can know something positive concerning the angels, according to some common formal aspect, though not according to the specific formal aspect; whereas we cannot acquire any such knowledge at all about God.

Sed Deus non convenit cum rebus materialibus neque secundum genus naturale, neque secundum genus logicum, quia Deus nullo modo est in genere, ut supra dictum est. Unde per similitudines rerum materialium aliquid affirmative potest cognosci de Angelis secundum rationem communem, licet non secundum rationem speciei; de Deo autem nullo modo.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Q88 A1: Whether the human soul in the present state of life can understand immaterial substances in themselves?

No. Immaterial substances which do not fall under sense and imagination, cannot first and "per se" be known by us, according to the mode of knowledge which experience proves us to have, because our intellect in its present state of life has a natural relationship to the natures of material things; and therefore it can only understand by turning to the phantasms.

Substantias immateriales, quae sub sensu et imaginatione non cadunt, primo et per se, secundum modum cognitionis nobis expertum, intelligere non possumus, quia intellectus noster, secundum statum praesentis vitae, naturalem respectum habet ad naturas rerum materialium; unde nihil intelligit nisi convertendo se ad phantasmata.

In the opinion of Plato, immaterial substances are not only understood by us, but are the objects we understand first of all. For Plato taught that immaterial subsisting forms, which he called "Ideas," are the proper objects of our intellect, and thus first and "per se" understood by us; and, further, that material objects are known by the soul inasmuch as phantasy and sense are mixed up with the mind. Hence the purer the intellect is, so much the more clearly does it perceive the intelligible truth of immaterial things.

Secundum opinionem Platonis, substantiae immateriales non solum a nobis intelliguntur, sed etiam sunt prima a nobis intellecta. Posuit enim Plato formas immateriales subsistentes, quas ideas vocabat, esse propria obiecta nostri intellectus, et ita primo et per se intelliguntur a nobis. Applicatur tamen animae cognitio rebus materialibus, secundum quod intellectui permiscetur phantasia et sensus. Unde quanto magis intellectus fuerit depuratus, tanto magis percipit immaterialium intelligibilem veritatem.

The active intellect is not a separate substance, but a faculty of the soul, extending itself actively to the same objects to which the passive intellect extends receptively; because, as is stated (De Anima iii, 5), the passive intellect is "all things potentially," and the active intellect is "all things in act." Therefore both intellects, according to the present state of life, extend to material things only, which are made actually intelligible by the active intellect, and are received in the passive intellect. Hence in the present state of life we cannot understand separate immaterial substances in themselves, either by the passive or by the active intellect.

Intellectus agens non est substantia separata, sed virtus quaedam animae, ad eadem active se extendens, ad quae se extendit intellectus possibilis receptive, quia, ut dicitur in III de anima, intellectus possibilis est quo est omnia fieri, intellectus agens quo est omnia facere. Uterque ergo intellectus se extendit, secundum statum praesentis vitae, ad materialia sola; quae intellectus agens facit intelligibilia actu, et recipiuntur in intellectu possibili. Unde secundum statum praesentis vitae, neque per intellectum possibilem, neque per intellectum agentem, possumus intelligere substantias immateriales secundum seipsas.

There must needs be some proportion between the object and the faculty of knowledge; such as of the active to the passive, and of perfection to the perfectible. Hence that sensible objects of great power are not grasped by the senses, is due not merely to the fact that they corrupt the organ, but also to their being improportionate to the sensitive power. And thus it is that immaterial substances are improportionate to our intellect, in our present state of life, so that it cannot understand them.

Requiritur aliqua proportio obiecti ad potentiam cognoscitivam, ut activi ad passivum, et perfectionis ad perfectibile. Unde quod excellentia sensibilia non capiantur a sensu, non sola ratio est quia corrumpunt organa sensibilia; sed etiam quia sunt improportionata potentiis sensitivis. Et hoc modo substantiae immateriales sunt improportionatae intellectui nostro, secundum praesentem statum, ut non possint ab eo intelligi.

Q88: How the human soul knows what is above itself

  1. Can the human soul in the present state of life understand the immaterial substances called angels, in themselves?
  2. Can it arrive at the knowledge thereof by the knowledge of material things?
  3. Is God the first object of our knowledge?

Friday, April 10, 2009

Q87 A4: Whether the intellect understands the act of the will?

Yes. The act of the will is understood by the intellect because whatever is intelligibly in an intelligent subject, is understood by that subject: both inasmuch as one knows that one wills; and inasmuch as one knows the nature of this act, and consequently, the nature of its principle which is the habit or power.

Actus voluntatis intelligitur ab intellectu quia quod intelligibiliter est in aliquo intelligente, consequens est ut ab eo intelligatur: et inquantum aliquis percipit se velle; et inquantum aliquis cognoscit naturam huius actus, et per consequens naturam eius principii, quod est habitus vel potentia.

Augustine says (De Trin. x, 11), "I understand that I will."

Augustinus dicit, X de Trin., "intelligo me velle."

Q87 A3: Whether our intellect knows its own act?

Yes. The intellect can understand its own act because the first thing understood of the intellect is its own act of understanding.

Intellectus potest suum actum intelligere quia primum quod de intellectu intelligitur, scilicet ipsum eius intelligere.

The object of the intellect is something universal, namely, "being" and "the true," in which the act also of understanding is comprised.

Obiectum intellectus est commune quoddam, scilicet ens et verum, sub quo comprehenditur etiam ipse actus intelligendi. Unde intellectus potest suum actum intelligere.

But not primarily, since the first object of our intellect, in this state of life, is not every being and everything true, but "being" and "true," as considered in material things, as we have said above (Q84, A7), from which it acquires knowledge of all other things.

Sed non primo, quia nec primum obiectum intellectus nostri, secundum praesentem statum, est quodlibet ens et verum, sed ens et verum consideratum in rebus materialibus, ut dictum est, ex quibus in cognitionem omnium aliorum devenit.

The human intellect neither is its own act of understanding, nor is its own essence the first object of its act of understanding, for this object is the nature of a material thing. And therefore that which is first known by the human intellect is an object of this kind, and that which is known secondarily is the act by which that object is known; and through the act the intellect itself is known, the perfection of which is this act of understanding. For this reason did the Philosopher assert that objects are known before acts, and acts before powers (De Anima ii, 4).

Intellectus humanus nec est suum intelligere, nec sui intelligere est obiectum primum ipsa eius essentia, sed aliquid extrinsecum, scilicet natura materialis rei. Et ideo id quod primo cognoscitur ab intellectu humano, est huiusmodi obiectum; et secundario cognoscitur ipse actus quo cognoscitur obiectum; et per actum cognoscitur ipse intellectus, cuius est perfectio ipsum intelligere. Et ideo philosophus dicit quod obiecta praecognoscuntur actibus, et actus potentiis.

Augustine says (De Trin. x, 11), "I understand that I understand."

Augustinus dicit, X de Trin., "intelligo me intelligere."

Q87 A2: Whether our intellect knows the habits of the soul by their essence?

No. Habits, like the powers, are known by their acts, because nothing is known but as it is actual.

Habitus per actus cognoscuntur, sicut et potentiae, quia nihil cognoscitur nisi secundum quod est actu.

A habit is a kind of medium between mere power and mere act.

Habitus quodammodo est medium inter potentiam puram et purum actum.

Habits are present in our intellect, not as its object since, in the present state of life, our intellect's object is the nature of a material thing as stated above (Q84, A7), but as that by which it understands.

Habitus sunt praesentes in intellectu nostro, non sicut obiecta intellectus (quia obiectum intellectus nostri, secundum statum praesentis vitae, est natura rei materialis, ut supra dictum est); sed sunt praesentes in intellectu ut quibus intellectus intelligit.

Although faith is not known by external movement of the body, it is perceived by the subject wherein it resides, by the interior act of the heart. For no one knows that he has faith unless he knows that he believes.

Etsi fides non cognoscatur per exteriores corporis motus, percipitur tamen etiam ab eo in quo est, per interiorem actum cordis. Nullus enim fidem se habere scit, nisi per hoc quod se credere percipit.

Q87 A1: Whether the intellectual soul knows itself by its essence?

No. The intellect knows itself not by its essence, but by its act, because it understands itself according as it is made actual by the species abstracted from sensible things, through the light of the active intellect, which not only actuates the intelligible things themselves, but also, by their instrumentality, actuates the passive intellect.

Non per essentiam suam, sed per actum suum se cognoscit intellectus noster quia seipsum intelligat intellectus noster, secundum quod fit actu per species a sensibilibus abstractas per lumen intellectus agentis, quod est actus ipsorum intelligibilium, et eis mediantibus intellectus possibilis.

An angel apprehends his own essence through itself: not so the human mind, which is either altogether in potentiality to intelligible things (as is the passive intellect) or is the act of intelligible things abstracted from the phantasms (as is the active intellect).

Angelus suam essentiam per seipsum apprehendit. Non autem intellectus humanus, qui vel est omnino in potentia respectu intelligibilium (sicut intellectus possibilis) vel est actus intelligibilium quae abstrahuntur a phantasmatibus (sicut intellectus agens).

It is said (De Anima iii, 4) that "the intellect understands itself in the same way as it understands other things." But it understands other things, not by their essence, but by their similitudes. Therefore it does not understand itself by its own essence.

Dicitur in III de anima, quod "intellectus intelligit seipsum sicut et alia". Sed alia non intelligit per essentias eorum, sed per eorum similitudines. Ergo neque se intelligit per essentiam suam.

Q87: How the intellectual soul knows itself and all within itself

  1. Does the soul know itself by its own essence?
  2. Does it know its own habits?
  3. How does the intellect know its own act?
  4. How does it know the act of the will?

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Q86 A4: Whether our intellect can know the future?

No. It is not natural for the soul to know the future when withdrawn from the senses because it is connatural to our intellect to know things, not thus, but by receiving its knowledge from the senses.

Non est secundum naturam animae quod futura cognoscat cum a sensibus alienatur quia iste modus cognoscendi non est connaturalis intellectui nostro, sed magis ut cognitionem a sensibus accipiat.

Rather does it know the future by the impression of superior spiritual and corporeal causes; of spiritual causes, when by Divine power the human intellect is enlightened through the ministry of angels, and the phantasms are directed to the knowledge of future events; or, by the influence of demons, when the imagination is moved regarding the future known to the demons, as explained above (Q57, A3).

Sed magis per impressionem aliquarum causarum superiorum spiritualium et corporalium. Spiritualium quidem, sicut cum virtute divina ministerio Angelorum intellectus humanus illuminatur, et phantasmata ordinantur ad futura aliqua cognoscenda; vel etiam cum per operationem Daemonum fit aliqua commotio in phantasia ad praesignandum aliqua futura quae Daemones cognoscunt, ut supra dictum est.

The soul is naturally more inclined to receive these impressions of spiritual causes when it is withdrawn from the senses, as it is then nearer to the spiritual world, and freer from external distractions. The same may also come from superior corporeal causes. For it is clear that superior bodies influence inferior bodies.

Huiusmodi autem impressiones spiritualium causarum magis nata est anima humana suscipere cum a sensibus alienatur, quia per hoc propinquior fit substantiis spiritualibus, et magis libera ab exterioribus inquietudinibus. Contingit autem et hoc per impressionem superiorum causarum corporalium. Manifestum est enim quod corpora superiora imprimunt in corpora inferiora.

Hence, in consequence of the sensitive faculties being acts of corporeal organs, the influence of the heavenly bodies causes the imagination to be affected, and so, as the heavenly bodies cause many future events, the imagination receives certain images of some such events.

Unde cum vires sensitivae sint actus corporalium organorum, consequens est quod ex impressione caelestium corporum immutetur quodammodo phantasia. Unde cum caelestia corpora sint causa multorum futurorum, fiunt in imaginatione aliqua signa quorundam futurorum.

Brute animals have no power above the imagination wherewith to regulate its phantasms, as man does with formal aspect, and therefore their imagination follows entirely the influence of the heavenly bodies. Thus from such animals' movements some future things, such as rain and the like, may be known rather than from human movements directed by reason.

Animalia bruta non habent aliquid supra phantasiam quod ordinet phantasmata, sicut habent homines rationem; et ideo phantasia brutorum animalium totaliter sequitur impressionem caelestem. Et ideo ex motibus huiusmodi animalium magis possunt cognosci quaedam futura, ut pluvia et huiusmodi, quam ex motibus hominum, qui moventur per consilium rationis.

Speaking, however, of the knowledge of the future in a general way, we must observe that the future may be known in two ways: either in itself, or in its cause. The future cannot be known in itself save by God alone; to Whom even that is present which in the course of events is future, inasmuch as from eternity His glance embraces the whole course of time, as we have said above when treating of God's knowledge (Q14, A13).

Ut tamen communiter de cognitione futurorum loquamur, sciendum est quod futura dupliciter cognosci possunt, uno modo, in seipsis; alio modo, in suis causis. In seipsis quidem futura cognosci non possunt nisi a Deo; cui etiam sunt praesentia dum in cursu rerum sunt futura, inquantum eius aeternus intuitus simul fertur supra totum temporis cursum, ut supra dictum est cum de Dei scientia ageretur.

But inasmuch as it exists in its cause, the future can be known by us also. And if, indeed, the cause be such as to have a necessary connection with its future result, then the future is known with scientific certitude, just as the astronomer foresees the future eclipse. If, however, the cause be such as to produce a certain result more frequently than not, then can the future be known more or less conjecturally, according as its cause is more or less inclined to produce the effect.

Sed prout sunt in suis causis, cognosci possunt etiam a nobis. Et si quidem in suis causis sint ut ex quibus ex necessitate proveniant, cognoscuntur per certitudinem scientiae; sicut astrologus praecognoscit eclipsim futuram. Si autem sic sint in suis causis ut ab eis proveniant ut in pluribus, sic cognosci possunt per quandam coniecturam vel magis vel minus certam, secundum quod causae sunt vel magis vel minus inclinatae ad effectus.

We must apply the same distinction to future things, as we applied above (Q86, A3) to contingent things. For future things considered as subject to time are singular, and the human intellect knows them by reflection only, as stated above (Q86, A1). But the formal aspects of future things are able to be universal, and thus perceptible by the intellect, and about them there can even be scientific knowledge.

De cognitione futurorum eodem modo distinguendum est, sicut de cognitione contingentium. Nam ipsa futura ut sub tempore cadunt, sunt singularia, quae intellectus humanus non cognoscit nisi per reflexionem, ut supra dictum est. Rationes autem futurorum possunt esse universales, et intellectu perceptibiles, et de eis etiam possunt esse scientiae.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Q86 A3: Whether our intellect can know contingent things?

Yes. The intellect knows contingent things because some sciences are of the contingent things, as the moral sciences, the objects of which are human actions subject to free choice, and again, the natural sciences in as far as they relate to things generated and corruptible.

Intellectus est cognoscitivus contingentium quia quaedam scientiae sunt de contingentibus, sicut scientiae morales, quae sunt de actibus humanis subiectis libero arbitrio, et etiam scientiae naturales, quantum ad partem quae tractat de generabilibus et corruptibilibus.

Contingent things can be considered in two ways; either as contingent, or as containing some element of necessity, since every contingent thing has in it something necessary: for example, that Socrates runs, is in itself contingent; but the relation of running to motion is necessary, for it is necessary that Socrates move if he runs.

Contingentia dupliciter possunt considerari. Uno modo, secundum quod contingentia sunt. Alio modo, secundum quod in eis aliquid necessitatis invenitur, nihil enim est adeo contingens, quin in se aliquid necessarium habeat. Sicut hoc ipsum quod est Socratem currere, in se quidem contingens est; sed habitudo cursus ad motum est necessaria, necessarium enim est Socratem moveri, si currit.

Now contingency arises from matter, for contingency is a potentiality to be or not to be, and potentiality belongs to matter; whereas necessity results from the aspect of form, because whatever is consequent on form is of necessity in the subject. But matter is the individualizing principle, whereas the universal aspect comes from the abstraction of the form from the particular matter.

Est autem unumquodque contingens ex parte materiae, quia contingens est quod potest esse et non esse; potentia autem pertinet ad materiam. Necessitas autem consequitur rationem formae, quia ea quae consequuntur ad formam, ex necessitate insunt. Materia autem est individuationis principium, ratio autem universalis accipitur secundum abstractionem formae a materia particulari.

Moreover it was laid down above (Q86 A1) that the intellect of itself and directly has the universal for its object; while the object of sense is the singular, which in a certain way is the indirect object of the intellect, as we have said above (Q86 A1).

Dictum autem est supra quod per se et directe intellectus est universalium; sensus autem singularium, quorum etiam indirecte quodammodo est intellectus, ut supra dictum est.

Therefore contingent things, considered as such, are known directly by sense and indirectly by the intellect, while the universal and necessary aspects of contingent things are known only by the intellect.

Sic igitur contingentia, prout sunt contingentia, cognoscuntur directe quidem sensu, indirecte autem ab intellectu, rationes autem universales et necessariae contingentium cognoscuntur per intellectum.

Hence if we consider the universal aspects of knowable things, then all science is of necessary things. But if we consider the things themselves, thus some sciences are of necessary things, some of contingent things.

Unde si attendantur rationes universales scibilium, omnes scientiae sunt de necessariis. Si autem attendantur ipsae res, sic quaedam scientia est de necessariis, quaedam vero de contingentibus.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Q86 A2: Whether our intellect can know the infinite?

No. Neither actually nor habitually can our intellect know the infinite, but only potentially, because the nature of our mind is to know species abstracted from phantasms.

Nec actu nec habitu intellectus noster potest cognoscere infinita, sed in potentia tantum, quia intellectus noster natus est cognoscere species per abstractionem a phantasmatibus.

Therefore it cannot know actually or habitually species of numbers or figures that are not in the imagination, except in a general way and in their universal principles; and this is to know them potentially and confusedly.

Et ideo illas species numerorum et figurarum quas quis non est imaginatus, non potest cognoscere nec actu nec habitu, nisi forte in genere et in principiis universalibus; quod est cognoscere in potentia et confuse.

As we have said above (Q7, A1), God is called infinite, because He is a form unlimited by matter; whereas in material things, the term 'infinite' is applied to that which is deprived of any formal term. And form being known in itself, whereas matter cannot be known without form, it follows that the material infinite is in itself unknowable.

Sicut supra dictum est, Deus dicitur infinitus sicut forma quae non est terminata per aliquam materiam, in rebus autem materialibus aliquid dicitur infinitum per privationem formalis terminationis. Et quia forma secundum se nota est, materia autem sine forma ignota, inde est quod infinitum materiale est secundum se ignotum.

But the formal infinite, God, is of Himself known; but He is unknown to us by reason of our feeble intellect, which in its present state has a natural aptitude for material objects only. Therefore we cannot know God in our present life except through material effects. In the future life this defect of intellect will be removed by the state of glory, when we shall be able to see the Essence of God Himself, but without being able to comprehend Him.

Infinitum autem formale, quod est Deus, est secundum se notum, ignotum autem quoad nos, propter defectum intellectus nostri, qui secundum statum praesentis vitae habet naturalem aptitudinem ad materialia cognoscenda. Et ideo in praesenti Deum cognoscere non possumus nisi per materiales effectus. In futuro autem tolletur defectus intellectus nostri per gloriam, et tunc ipsum Deum in sua essentia videre poterimus, tamen absque comprehensione.

As our intellect is infinite in power, so does it know the infinite. For its power is indeed infinite inasmuch as it is not terminated by corporeal matter. Moreover it can know the universal, which is abstracted from individual matter, and which consequently is not limited to one individual, but, considered in itself, extends to an infinite number of individuals.

Sicut intellectus noster est infinitus virtute, ita infinitum cognoscit. Est enim virtus eius infinita, secundum quod non terminatur per materiam corporalem. Et est cognoscitivus universalis, quod est abstractum a materia individuali, et per consequens non finitur ad aliquod individuum, sed, quantum est de se, ad infinita individua se extendit.

The intelligible species enter into our intellect successively; since many things cannot be actually understood at the same time: and therefore there must be a definite and not an infinite number of species in our intellect.

Sed species intelligibiles ingrediuntur intellectum nostrum successive, quia non multa simul actu intelliguntur. Et ideo oportet numeratas, et non infinitas species esse in intellectu nostro.

Now in material things the infinite does not exist actually, but only potentially, in the sense of one succeeding another, as is said Phys. iii, 6. Therefore infinity is potentially in our mind through its considering successively one thing after another: because never does our intellect understand so many things, that it cannot understand more.

In rebus autem materialibus non invenitur infinitum in actu, sed solum in potentia, secundum quod unum succedit alteri, ut dicitur in III Physic. Et ideo in intellectu nostro invenitur infinitum in potentia, in accipiendo scilicet unum post aliud, quia nunquam intellectus noster tot intelligit, quin possit plura intelligere.

On the other hand, our intellect cannot understand the infinite either actually or habitually. Not actually, for our intellect cannot know actually at the same time, except what it knows through one species. But the infinite is not represented by one species, for if it were it would be something whole and complete.

Actu autem vel habitu non potest cognoscere infinita intellectus noster. Actu quidem non, quia intellectus noster non potest simul actu cognoscere nisi quod per unam speciem cognoscit. Infinitum autem non habet unam speciem, alioquin haberet rationem totius et perfecti.

Consequently it cannot be understood except by a successive consideration of one part after another, as is clear from its definition (Phys. iii, 6): for the infinite is that "from which, however much we may take, there always remains something to be taken." Thus the infinite could not be known actually, unless all its parts were counted: which is impossible.

Et ideo non potest intelligi nisi accipiendo partem post partem, ut ex eius definitione patet in III Physic., est enim infinitum cuius quantitatem accipientibus semper est aliquid extra accipere, et sic infinitum cognosci non posset actu, nisi omnes partes eius numerarentur, quod est impossibile.

For the same reason we cannot have habitual knowledge of the infinite: because in us habitual knowledge results from actual consideration: since by understanding we acquire knowledge, as is said Ethic. ii, 1.

Et eadem ratione non possumus intelligere infinita in habitu. In nobis enim habitualis cognitio causatur ex actuali consideratione, intelligendo enim efficimur scientes, ut dicitur in II Ethic.

Wherefore it would not be possible for us to have a habit of an infinity of things distinctly known, unless we had already considered the entire infinity thereof, counting them according to the succession of our knowledge: which is impossible.

Unde non possemus habere habitum infinitorum secundum distinctam cognitionem, nisi consideravissemus omnia infinita, numerando ea secundum cognitionis successionem, quod est impossibile.

Monday, April 06, 2009

Q86 A1: Whether our intellect knows singulars?

No. Our intellect cannot know the singular in material things directly and primarily. The reason of this is that the principle of singularity in material things is individual matter, whereas our intellect understands by abstracting the intelligible species from such matter.

Singulare in rebus materialibus intellectus noster directe et primo cognoscere non potest. Cuius ratio est, quia principium singularitatis in rebus materialibus est materia individualis, intellectus autem noster intelligit abstrahendo speciem intelligibilem ab huiusmodi materia.

The higher power can do what the lower power can, but in a more eminent way. Wherefore what the sense knows materially and concretely, which is to know the singular directly, the intellect knows immaterially and in the abstract, which is to know the universal.

Virtus superior potest illud quod potest virtus inferior, sed eminentiori modo. Unde id quod cognoscit sensus materialiter et concrete, quod est cognoscere singulare directe, hoc cognoscit intellectus immaterialiter et abstracte, quod est cognoscere universale.

Intelligibility is incompatible with the singular not as such, but as material, for nothing can be understood otherwise than immaterially. Therefore if there be an immaterial singular such as the intellect, there is no reason why it should not be intelligible.

Singulare non repugnat intelligibilitati inquantum est singulare, sed inquantum est materiale, quia nihil intelligitur nisi immaterialiter. Et ideo si sit aliquod singulare immateriale, sicut est intellectus, hoc non repugnat intelligibilitati.

Now what is abstracted from individual matter is the universal. Hence our intellect knows directly the universal only.

Quod autem a materia individuali abstrahitur, est universale. Unde intellectus noster directe non est cognoscitivus nisi universalium.

But indirectly, and as it were by a kind of reflection, it can know the singular, because, as we have said above (Q85, A7), even after abstracting the intelligible species, the intellect, in order to understand, needs to turn to the phantasms in which it understands the species, as is said De Anima iii, 7. Therefore it understands the universal directly through the intelligible species, and indirectly the singular represented by the phantasm.

Indirecte autem, et quasi per quandam reflexionem, potest cognoscere singulare, quia, sicut supra dictum est, etiam postquam species intelligibiles abstraxit, non potest secundum eas actu intelligere nisi convertendo se ad phantasmata, in quibus species intelligibiles intelligit, ut dicitur in III de anima. Sic igitur ipsum universale per speciem intelligibilem directe intelligit; indirecte autem singularia, quorum sunt phantasmata.

Q86: What our intellect knows in material things

  1. Does it know singulars?
  2. Does it know the infinite?
  3. Does it know contingent things?
  4. Does it know future things?

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Q85 A8: Whether the intellect understands the indivisible before the divisible?

No. In the acquisition of knowledge, principles and elements are not always known first, because sometimes from sensible effects we arrive at the knowledge of principles and intelligible causes.

In accipiendo scientiam, non semper principia et elementa sunt priora, quia quandoque ex effectibus sensibilibus devenimus in cognitionem principiorum et causarum intelligibilium.

But if our intellect understood by participation of certain separate indivisible (forms), as the Platonists maintained, it would follow that a like indivisible is understood primarily; for according to the Platonists what is first is first participated by things.

Si autem intellectus noster intelligeret per participationem indivisibilium separatorum, ut Platonici posuerunt, sequeretur quod indivisibile huiusmodi esset primo intellectum, quia secundum Platonicos, priora prius participantur a rebus.

The object of our intellect in its present state is the definable structure of a material thing, which it abstracts from the phantasms, as above stated (Q84, A7). And since that which is known first and of itself by our cognitive power is its proper object, we must consider its relationship to that definable structure in order to discover in what order the indivisible is known.

Obiectum intellectus nostri, secundum praesentem statum, est quidditas rei materialis, quam a phantasmatibus abstrahit, ut ex praemissis patet. Et quia id quod est primo et per se cognitum a virtute cognoscitiva, est proprium eius obiectum, considerari potest quo ordine indivisibile intelligatur a nobis, ex eius habitudine ad huiusmodi quidditatem.

Now the indivisible is threefold, as is said De Anima iii, 6.

Dicitur autem indivisibile tripliciter, ut dicitur in III de anima.

The third kind of indivisible is what is altogether indivisible, as a point and unity, which cannot be divided either actually or potentially. And this indivisible is known secondarily, through the privation of divisibility.

Tertio modo dicitur indivisibile quod est omnino indivisibile, ut punctus et unitas, quae nec actu nec potentia dividuntur. Et huiusmodi indivisibile per posterius cognoscitur, per privationem divisibilis.

This indivisible has a certain opposition to a corporeal being, the definable structure of which is the primary and proper object of the intellect.

Et huius ratio est, quia tale indivisibile habet quandam oppositionem ad rem corporalem, cuius quidditatem primo et per se intellectus accipit.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Q85 A7: Whether one person can understand one and the same thing better than another can?

Yes. Experience shows that some understand more profoundly than do others because one who carries a conclusion to its first principles and ultimate causes understands it better than the one who reduces it only to its proximate causes.

Per experimentum inveniuntur aliqui aliis profundius intelligentes, sicut profundius intelligit qui conclusionem aliquam potest reducere in prima principia et causas primas, quam qui potest reducere solum in causas proximas.

Those in whom the imaginative, cogitative, and memorative powers are of better disposition, are better disposed to understand.

Illi enim in quibus virtus imaginativa et cogitativa et memorativa est melius disposita, sunt melius dispositi ad intelligendum.

The truth of the intellect consists in the intellect understanding a thing as it is.

Veritas enim intellectus in hoc consistit, quod intelligatur res esse sicuti est.

Friday, April 03, 2009

Q85 A6: Whether the intellect can be false?

No. In regard to those propositions, which are understood immediately when the definable structure of the terms is cognized, the intellect cannot err, as in the case of first principles from which arises infallible truth in the certitude of scientific conclusions, because the proper object of the intellect is the definable structure of a material thing.

Circa illas propositiones errare non potest, quae statim cognoscuntur cognita terminorum quidditate, sicut accidit circa prima principia, ex quibus etiam accidit infallibilitas veritatis, secundum certitudinem scientiae, circa conclusiones, quia obiectum proprium intellectus est quidditas rei.

And hence, properly speaking, the intellect is not at fault concerning this definable structure; whereas it may go astray as regards those things which accompany the essence of the thing or the definable structure, in referring one thing to another, as regards composition or division, or also in the process of reasoning discursively.

Unde circa quidditatem rei, per se loquendo, intellectus non fallitur. Sed circa ea quae circumstant rei essentiam vel quidditatem, intellectus potest falli, dum unum ordinat ad aliud, vel componendo vel dividendo vel etiam ratiocinando.

The intellect, however, may be accidentally deceived regarding that structure which is definable in composite things; not by the defect of its organ, for the intellect is a faculty that is independent of an organ, but on the part of the composition affecting the definition, when, for instance, the definition of a thing is false in relation to something else.

Per accidens tamen contingit intellectum decipi circa quod quid est in rebus compositis; non ex parte organi, quia intellectus non est virtus utens organo, sed ex parte compositionis intervenientis circa definitionem, dum vel definitio unius rei est falsa de alia.

Hence, as regards simple objects, not subject to composite definitions, we cannot be deceived; unless, indeed, we understand nothing whatever about them.

Unde in rebus simplicibus, in quarum definitionibus compositio intervenire non potest, non possumus decipi; sed deficimus in totaliter non attingendo.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Q85 A5: Whether our intellect understands by composition and division?

Yes. The human intellect must of necessity understand by composition and division because although the intellect abstracts from the phantasms, it does not understand actually without turning to the phantasms, and inasmuch as it turns to the phantasms, composition and division of the intellect involves time.

Intellectus humanus necesse habet intelligere componendo et dividendo quia intellectus et abstrahit a phantasmatibus et tamen non intelligit actu nisi convertendo se ad phantasmata, et ex ea parte qua se ad phantasmata convertit, compositioni et divisioni intellectus adiungitur tempus.

The likeness of a thing is received into the intellect according to the mode of the intellect, not according to the mode of the thing. Wherefore something on the part of the thing corresponds to the composition and division of the intellect; but it does not exist in the same way in the intellect and in the thing. For the proper object of the human intellect is the definable structure of a material thing, which comes under the action of the senses and the imagination.

Similitudo rei recipitur in intellectu secundum modum intellectus, et non secundum modum rei. Unde compositioni et divisioni intellectus respondet quidem aliquid ex parte rei; tamen non eodem modo se habet in re, sicut in intellectu. Intellectus enim humani proprium obiectum est quidditas rei materialis, quae sub sensu et imaginatione cadit.

Since the intellect passes from potentiality to act, it has a likeness to things which are generated, which do not attain to perfection all at once but acquire it by degrees: so likewise the human intellect does not acquire perfect knowledge by the first act of apprehension; but it first apprehends something about its object, such as the definable structure of the thing itself, which is the first and proper object of the intellect; and then it understands the properties, accidents, and the various relations implicated in the essence of the thing. Thus it necessarily compares one [apprehended] thing with another by composition or division; and from one composition and division it proceeds to another, which is the process of reasoning.

Cum enim intellectus humanus exeat de potentia in actum, similitudinem quandam habet cum rebus generabilibus, quae non statim perfectionem suam habent, sed eam successive acquirunt. Et similiter intellectus humanus non statim in prima apprehensione capit perfectam rei cognitionem; sed primo apprehendit aliquid de ipsa, puta quidditatem ipsius rei, quae est primum et proprium obiectum intellectus; et deinde intelligit proprietates et accidentia et habitudines circumstantes rei essentiam. Et secundum hoc, necesse habet unum apprehensum alii componere vel dividere; et ex una compositione vel divisione ad aliam procedere, quod est ratiocinari.

But the angelic and the Divine intellect, like all incorruptible things, have their perfection at once from the beginning. Hence the angelic and the Divine intellect have the entire knowledge of a thing at once and perfectly; and hence also in knowing the definable structure of a thing they know at once whatever we can know by composition, division, and reasoning. Therefore the human intellect knows by composition, division and reasoning. But the Divine intellect and the angelic intellect know, indeed, composition, division, and reasoning, not by the process itself, but by understanding the simple definable structure.

Intellectus autem angelicus et divinus se habet sicut res incorruptibiles, quae statim a principio habent suam totam perfectionem. Unde intellectus angelicus et divinus statim perfecte totam rei cognitionem habet. Unde in cognoscendo quidditatem rei, cognoscit de re simul quidquid nos cognoscere possumus componendo et dividendo et ratiocinando. Et ideo intellectus humanus cognoscit componendo et dividendo, sicut et ratiocinando. Intellectus autem divinus et angelicus cognoscunt quidem compositionem et divisionem et ratiocinationem, non componendo et dividendo et ratiocinando, sed per intellectum simplicis quidditatis.