[FL3321]  Thomistic Existentialism and Cosmological Reasoning

Semester II
wednesday 16:30 - 18:15

Course Information

Professor: KNASAS, John
Email: [email protected]
Language: English

ECTS: 3
Schedule:
Semester II
wednesday 16:30 - 18:15

Content

The course has three theses. First, the course argues that many of the standard objections to Leibniz’s classic cosmological arguments derive from an unsophisticated understanding of existence. Aquinas’s De Ente et Essentia reasoning for God as essetantum contains a more nuanced view of existence that avoids these objections and others. Second, the course delineates a more robust version of the De Ente reasoning which is shown to be the hermeneutical context of all of Aquinas’s God proofs. Third, by the study of Aquinas’s understanding of actus essendi, the course endeavors to reawaken interest in a species of Thomistic interpretation that flourished in the 1950’s – Thomistic Existentialism. In Fides et Ratio (1998) St. John Paul II recommends it for theology as “the philosophy of being based upon the act of being.” (para. 97)

Bibliography

BIBLIOGRAPHY
Ashley, Benedict. The Way Toward Wisdom: An Interdisciplinary and Intercultural Introduction to
Metaphysics. Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press, 2006.

Baisnée, Jules A. “St. Thomas Aquinas’s Proofs of the Existence of God Presented Their Chronological Order.” In Philosophical Studies in Honor of the Very Reverend Ignatius Smith, O. P., edited by John K. Ryan, 29–64. Westminster, MD.: Newman Press, 1952.

Edwards, Paul. “The Cosmological Argument.” In The Cosmological Arguments, A Spectrum of Opinion, edited by David Burrill, 101–24. Garden City, New York: Doubleday and Company, Inc., 1967.

Kenny, Anthony. Aquinas on Being. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 2002.

Owens, Joseph. “The Causal Proposition – Principle or Conclusion?” The Modern Schoolman 32, nos. 2–4 (1955): 159–71, 257–70, 323–39.

Pruss, Alexander R. “The Leibnizian Cosmological Argument.” In The Blackwell Companion to Natural Theology, edited by William Lane Craig and J. P. Moreland, 24–99. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2009.

Wippel, John F. The Metaphysical Thought of Thomas Aquinas: From Finite Being to Uncreated Being. Washington, D.C.: The Catholic University of America Press, 2000.