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Thomas Aquinas

Basic Philosophical Writings: From the Summa Theologiae and The Principles of Nature (13th Century CE)

Steven Baldner (editor)

ISBN: 9781554813728

Publication Date: Dec 2018

Format: Paperback

Contains new translations of the philosophical writings of Thomas Aquinas from the Summa Theologiae and The Principles of Nature. The texts address the fundamental principles of nature; causality; the existence of God; how God can be known; how language can be used to describe God; human nature; happiness; ethics; and natural law.
£14.95

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  • Full Description
  • More Information
  • Table of Contents
  • Author Biography
  • Customer Reviews
This volume contains new translations of the essential philosophical writings of Thomas Aquinas from the Summa Theologiae and The Principles of Nature. The included texts represent the breadth of Aquinas's thought, addressing: the fundamental principles of nature; causality; the existence of God; how God can be known; how language can be used to describe God; human nature (including the nature of the soul, free will, and epistemology); happiness; ethics; and natural law. The goal of these translations is twofold: to allow Aquinas to speak for himself, but also to make his thought accessible to the contemporary reader without the burden of unnecessary adherence to convention. A thorough yet accessible introduction is included, as are a series of useful appendices connecting Aquinas's arguments to those of Anselm, Scotus, and others.

Reviews

"Steven Baldner has put together an excellent introduction to the philosophical thought of Thomas Aquinas. He succeeds both in helping first-time readers past the challenges of Thomas's technical language and in providing a substantial offering of his thought. With a very readable and informative introduction to Thomas's life and works, Baldner prepares the way for a presentation of key philosophical writings. To aid the first-time reader, Baldner has provided a lively translation (free but accurate) and a student-friendly editing of the texts to assure maximum ease and accuracy of comprehension. This book will do a lot to bring the brilliance of Thomas Aquinas to a new generation of readers. Well done!" – Montague Brown, St. Anselm College

"The need for a new volume of selections from the works of Aquinas could easily be doubted, but reviewing Steven Baldner's Basic Philosophical Writing quiets one's skepticism in this regard. This judgment is owing to a number of student-friendly features, most importantly the very readable biography and the introduction, which pulls together the various texts into a manageable whole. Other notable properties of this volume are the brief lexicon of technical terms used by Aquinas; a ‘cast of characters,' namely, short entries on the philosophers and theologians whose work Aquinas refers to; and a selection of ‘contrasting texts,' for example, both Descartes and Anselm on proving God's existence." – Mary Catherine Sommers, University of St. Thomas

"Baldner's volume is a worthy addition to the already burgeoning market of edited collections of Aquinas's writings. The fluency of Baldner's translation, the accessible formatting of the selections from the Summa Theologiae, his excellent introductory material, and useful appendices make this volume an invaluable resource for those encountering the thought of St. Thomas for the first time." – Fr. Justin Gable, Teaching Philosophy

Pages 256
Dimensions 216 x 140 x 12
Date Published 30 Dec 2018
Publisher Broadview Press
Subject/s Western philosophy: Medieval & Renaissance, c 500 to c 1600  
  • Introduction
  • Thomas Aquinas: A Brief Chronology
  • Part 1: The Principles of Nature
  • Chapter 1: The Three Principles
  • Chapter 2: Privation and Matter
  • Chapter 3: The Four Causes
  • Chapter 4: Relations among the Four Causes
  • Chapter 5: The Modes of the Causes
  • Chapter 6: The Predication of Terms
  • Part 2: God (Texts from Summa theologiae I)
  • A. Theology and Philosophy
  • B. The Existence of God
  • C. Properties of God
  • D. Analogy: Language about God
  • Part 3: Human Nature (Texts from Summa theologiae I)
  • A. Soul and Body
  • B. Will and Choice
  • C. Knowledge
  • Part 4: Ethics (Texts from Summa theologiae I-II)
  • A. The Goal: Happiness
  • B. Voluntary Actions
  • C. The Moral Goodness of Human Acts
  • D. Habits and Virtues
  • E. Law and Natural Law
  • Appendix 1: Anselm's Argument
  • Appendix 2: Bonaventure on God
  • Appendix 3: Scotus' Proof of God
  • Appendix 4: Ockham on God
  • Appendix 5: Descartes's Ontological Argument
  • Appendix 6: Scotus on Immortality
  • Appendix 7: Ockham on Soul
  • Appendix 8: Scotus on Will
  • Appendix 9: Ockham on Will
  • Bibliography
Steven Baldner is Professor of Philosophy at St. Francis Xavier University.

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