Thursday, January 30, 2014

New Class! New Questions!

Today we begin again with Thomas and his thought.  This term, we will be posting a little differently.  At the end of each class, students will be asked a question regarding the day's materials, and all answers will be published in one post.

Today, we covered the medieval realm surrounding Thomas, particularly regarding the interplay of faith and reason at the University of Paris in the thirteenth century; an overview of the types of writings Thomas left us; and a glimpse into his commentary on Boethius' De Trinitate.

With all that in mind, what new or bright light do you think others should know about?

Did you know Thomas Aquinas was condemned after his death by his adversary John Peckham who followed the medieval /Augustinian thought that condemned the idea that we need to know everything about creation?  Thank goodness that didn't last!

- David-

Aquinas explains that the Catholic faith is universal not only in the sense of a faith for all humanity, but a faith that applies to the spiritual and temporal life, the entirety of the human person.

- Lorenzo -

Thomas had a unique talent for uniting seemingly contradictory bits of truth in a systematic way. We can learn a lot from this practice today, especially when information is routinely "chopped up" into small parts. How can we unite these small pieces in order to understand the Truth (God) more fully?

- Brent -

Thomas and his teacher Albert the Great had inexhaustible thirst for knowledge. For Thomas and Albert, truth could be found in creation and in other sources. Since God is the ultimate Truth, these sources are reflective of the Truth.

- Anonymous -

The debates during St. Thomas Aquinas' time have a great deal of relevance today, particularly that conflict between the Augustinians and the secularists. It is often the case in the history of the Church that innovation is viewed as threatening to the Catholic faith. More often than not these suspicions had validity, but because of overreaction on the part of more conservative forces, those they were attempting to counter had a tendency to radicalize and entrench (if not already radicalized and entrenched). In such cases, truth suffers. Aquinas serves as a calm and prudent example for all of us on how to reconcile conflicts through carefully making distinctions, and by offering syntheses that allow truth to rise above both fear and arrogance.

- Brian -

The fact that Thomas’ work was condemned right after his death only to later become a strong foundation of Christian theology, intrigues the group.  We wonder how current theological ideologies and issues will be remembered in the future?  How will the future Church view the controversial theologians of our day?

- Ambrose, David, Luke -

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