By Thomas Aquinas, Janice L. Schultz, Edward A. Synan
In his sixth-century paintings generally called the De hebdomadibus, Boethius (ca. 480-524) poses the query of the way created issues or elements might be reliable simply as they are--that is, solid simply by existing--without being almost like the resource of all goodness, God, who's understood to be Goodness Itself. In his remark written within the 13th century, St. Thomas Aquinas units out to provide an explanation for the matter Boethius is treating in addition to to clarify Boethius's answer. In doing so, although, the Angelic healthcare professional indicates a extra built research of goodness, in line with his personal metaphysical standpoint.
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Additional info for An Exposition of the 'On the Hebdomads' of Boethius
3, ed. J. 2, ed. , vol. 48, pp. 356–57. 53. l. 46, ed. , p. 269, l. 24–p. 270, l. 2. 54. 17, ed. , p. 104, ll. 1–3. 55. l. ipsum esse est perfectissimum omnium: comparatur enim ad omnia ut actus. 2 ad 3. I N T RODUC T I O N xxxix As will be seen, for Aquinas being (esse) and goodness are the same in reality, differing only in concept. Aquinas’s doctrine of being thus enables him to locate the goodness of the creature in its very act of being and, as we shall explain, provides a most satisfactory solution to the problem posed by Boethius in the De hebdomadibus.
See Stump’s note 10, p. 129. lii I N T RODUC T I O N sesses an act of being equivalent to goodness, and this allowed for Aquinas’s very real advance. Still, we hold that Aquinas attributed to Boethius, to the largest extent possible, his, Aquinas’s, own views. Today an exegete would strive not to “read into” another author one’s own views. Such, however, was not Aquinas’s attitude. Although we do not know his mind, one can construct a possible viewpoint based on what he actually did. This was to offer a solution he considered correct to an important philosophical problem in the context of another’s work and, moreover, to attribute to that author, Boethius, a solution incipient in that author’s thought and one which his language would bear.
He is Being Itself and Goodness Itself. This point leads us to pause here for some interpretation before finishing our summary. A question remains that Boethius does not seem to have addressed squarely. Are finite beings, creatures, good by substance I N T RODUC T I O N xxxv or by participation? Clearly they are not merely “good by participation” in one sense of that term, for this is the only way they might be good, according to Boethius, if they were not from the First Good. Now Boethius contrasts being good by participation with being good insofar as a thing is, and, as has been made evident, for him creatures are good insofar as they are, owing to the fact that they are from God.
An Exposition of the 'On the Hebdomads' of Boethius by Thomas Aquinas, Janice L. Schultz, Edward A. Synan