The Qualities of the Glorified Body

Since the blessed soul, owing to its union with the first principle of all things, will be raised to the pinnacle of nobility and power, it will communicate substantial existence in the most perfect degree to the body that has been joined to it by divine action. And thus, holding the body completely under its sway, the soul will render the body subtle and spiritual. The soul will also bestow on the body a most, noble quality, namely, the radiant beauty of clarity. Further, because of the influence emanating from the soul, the body’s stability will not be subject to alteration by any cause; which means that the body will be impassible. Lastly, since the body will be wholly submissive to the soul, as a tool is to him who plies it, it will be endowed with agility. Hence the properties of the bodies belonging to the blessed will be these four: subtlety, clarity, impassibility, and agility.

This is the sense of the Apostle’s words in 1 Corinthians 15:42 ff.: In death the body “is sown in corruption, it shall rise in incorruption;” this refers to impassibility. “It is sown in dishonor, it shall rise in glory;” this refers to clarity. “It is sown in weakness, it shall rise in power,” and hence will have agility. “It is sown a natural body, it shall rise a spiritual body;” in other words, it will be endowed with subtlety.

Aquinas, Compendium Theologiae, 168.

What Ails Them

“At this point we are reminded by how far today we are afflicted by a certain kind of provinciality of mind, a reductivist mentality that can conceive of a question’s being worth asking only if we know in advance some routine procedure guaranteed to provide intelligible answers to it. It is indeed an exceedingly curious reversal of commonsense intellectual priorities that a pre-formed procedure for answering questions should be allowed to dictate the legitimacy of the questions that may be asked.”

Turner, Thomas Aquinas, 135

The Kind of Paragraph that Makes Brian Davies on Aquinas Valuable

“By ‘speculative intellect’ he means the mind as understanding at a purely theoretical level, and, under this heading, he distinguishes between ‘understanding’ (intellectus), ‘science’ (scientia), and ‘wisdom’ (sapientia). By ‘practical intellect’ he means the mind as understanding with a view to action. Under this heading he distinguishes between ‘art’ (ars) and ‘prudence’ (prudentia). ‘Understanding’ is a matter of grasping basic principles of reasoning. ‘Science’ is a matter of good reasoning using these principles to arrive at truth regarding different kinds of things in the world. ‘Wisdom’ is a matter of good reasoning concerning God. ‘Art’ is correct reason about things to be made. ‘Prudence’ is correct reason about things to be done and aims at the good of the agent.”

p 241

Classical Theism Stemming from . . .

He was the most acute of Christian Platonists and did much to lay the foundations for the synthesis between Christianity and classical theism stemming from Plato and Aristotle. Plotinus in the third century AD deeply influenced him by his systematization of the Platonic tradition, but Augustine also became one of the most penetrating of all critics of this philosophical tradition to which he himself owed so much.

-Henry Chadwick, Augustine: A Very Short Introduction, 4

On Lent

2nd London Baptist Confession,

CHAPTER 16

OF GOOD WORKS

Paragraph 1. Good works are only such as God has commanded in his Holy Word, and not such as without the warrant thereof are devised by men out of blind zeal, or upon any pretense of good intentions.

Aquinas on Arguments

As other sciences do not argue in proof of their principles, but argue from their principles to demonstrate other truths in these sciences: so this doctrine does not argue in proof of its principles, which are the articles of faith, but from them it goes on to prove something else; as the Apostle from the resurrection of Christ argues in proof of the general resurrection (1 Cor. 15). However, it is to be borne in mind, in regard to the philosophical sciences, that the inferior sciences neither prove their principles nor dispute with those who deny them, but leave this to a higher science; whereas the highest of them, viz. metaphysics, can dispute with one who denies its principles, if only the opponent will make some concession; but if he concede nothing, it can have no dispute with him, though it can answer his objections. Hence Sacred Scripture, since it has no science above itself, can dispute with one who denies its principles only if the opponent admits some at least of the truths obtained through divine revelation; thus we can argue with heretics from texts in Holy Writ, and against those who deny one article of faith, we can argue from another. If our opponent believes nothing of divine revelation, there is no longer any means of proving the articles of faith by reasoning, but only of answering his objections—if he has any—against faith. Since faith rests upon infallible truth, and since the contrary of a truth can never be demonstrated, it is clear that the arguments brought against faith cannot be demonstrations, but are difficulties that can be answered.

ST 1.1.9