Additional Information In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content: Metaphysical Themes in Thomas Aquinas. Studies in Philosophy and the History of Philosophy, Vol.
Aristotle himself called the subject of these texts first philosophy, theology, or sometimes wisdom; the phrase ta meta ta physika biblia "the books after the books on nature" is not used by Aristotle himself and was apparently introduced by the editors traditionally by Andronicus of Rhodes in the first century BCE who classified and cataloged his works.
Later, classical and medieval philosophers took this title to mean that the subjects discussed in the Metaphysics came "after the things of nature" because they were further removed from sense perception and, therefore, more difficult to understand; they used Aristotle's frequent contrast of things "prior and better known to us" with things "prior and better known in themselves" to explain why the treatises on first philosophy should come "after the books on physics.
Especially since Immanuel Kant metaphysics has often meant a priori speculation on questions that cannot be answered by scientific observation and experiment. Popularly, "metaphysics" has meant anything abstruse and highly theoretical—a common eighteenth-century usage illustrated by David Hume 's occasional use of metaphysical to mean "excessively subtle.
In modern philosophical usage metaphysics refers generally to the field of philosophy dealing with questions about the kinds of things there are and their modes of being. Its subject matter includes the concepts of existence, thing, property, event; the distinctions between particulars and universals, individuals and classes; the nature of relations, change, causation; and the nature of mind, matter, space, and time.
In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries metaphysics was used broadly to include questions about the reality of the external world, the existence of other minds, the possibility of a priori knowledge, and the nature of sensation, memory, abstraction, and so on.
In present usage these questions are included in the study of epistemology. The Classical Period The history of metaphysics in Western philosophy taking "metaphysics" in the contemporary sense began with speculations by the Ionian cosmologists in the sixth century BCE about the origin of the physical universe, the matter or stuff from which it is made, and the laws or uniformities everywhere present in nature.
Our knowledge of these early cosmologists comes mostly from Aristotle and other classical authors; the main figures were the Milesians Thales, Anaximander, and AnaximenesPythagoras, and Heraclitus.
These characteristics are, first, the conception of philosophy as an attempt to understand the universe by means of a logical investigation that is a priori, appealing to meanings of terms rather than to the evidence of the senses.
This method is in contrast to the method of natural science, which relies on sense perception. Second is a more or less explicit use of very general principles viewed as sufficient to arrive at a true account of reality.
Such principles were, for example, noncontradiction and something like a principle of sufficient reason, which is expressed in Parmenides' poem: Thus it must Be absolutely, or not at all.
Third is the paradoxical contrast between apparent reality and true reality and the association of the truly real with singleness and unchangingness. Of these features of Parmenides' writings, the first is fundamental; it can be taken as a defining characteristic of metaphysics. Like the natural scientist, the metaphysician gives an account of the universe; unlike the scientist, he does not base his account on observations and experiments, at least not on any special observations and experiments made for the purpose.
His account is based primarily on analysis of concepts; if he does appeal to the evidence of the senses, he appeals to something generally familiar, not to new evidence he is adding to knowledge.
Parmenides himself apparently believed he had done all that could be done by way of a philosophical account of the universe. His account consists in pointing to what he believed were the logical consequences of saying "It is. His position was not naive; it is not easy to see how a metaphysician can give an account of reality based on logic alone unless reality in some sense has the features of necessity and vacuous generality belonging to logical truths.
And doctrines similar to Parmenides' logical monism have frequently reappeared in the history of metaphysics—for example, in Neoplatonism, in Benedict de Spinoza, and in nineteenth-century Hegelianism.
Hegel's Absolute as understood by a metaphysician like F. Perhaps the underlying reasoning is that recognizing that metaphysics gives an account of the world based on analysis of concepts rather than on empirical evidence, these philosophers have felt that logic alone should be sufficient basis for making assertions about the world; since whatever is logically true is thought to be necessarily and always true, they have concluded that the world itself must be unchanging and in some sense necessarily what it is.Start studying Intro to Philosophy,Epistemology, and Metaphysics.
Learn vocabulary, terms, and more with flashcards, games, and other study tools. The Metaphysical Thought of Thomas Aquinas. About us. Editorial team. Dr. DeMarco illustrates in this essay how Maritain's Catholic Faith led him to develop a philosophic personalism based upon the teachings of St.
Thomas. This key element in his thought may serve as a counter current to the contemporary world's exaltation of selfishness. In the last five, Aquinas's thought is brought to bear on contemporary philosophical discussions of metaphysical, ethical and social issues.
In the first essay, Kenneth L. Schmitz explores the centrality of "esse" in Aquinas's thought and chronicles the changing currents in its .
This essay explores the impact of Søren Kierkegaard upon the important Italian Thomist, Cornelio Fabro. Faculty of Philosophy, Theology, and Religious Studies, Radboud University, Nijmegen, The Metaphysical Thought of Thomas Aquinas: From Finite Being to Uncreated Being (Washington, DC: Catholic University of America.
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Richard Mohline The Nature of St. Augustine and St. Aquinas Saint Augustine and Saint Aquinas were both important figures of the church in medieval times.