Thomas Aquinas And The Existence Of God



Thomas Aquinas tried to come up with a theory to prove the existence of God. Aquinas tried to prove that God exists in his first cosmological argument by using seven steps. In order to understand Aquinas’s argument you have to understand what it means to me moved. To be moved does not mean to be set in motion or physically moved from one location to another by pushing, shifting etc. To be moved means that you are changed from a state of actuality to a state of potentiality or from a state of potentiality to a state of actuality.
In step number one Aquinas said “Nothing can be moved except it is in potentiality to that towards which is moved.” He means that an object starts as a ...

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For example, in order for a house (which is in the state of actuality), to potentially become a pile of ashes something in the actual state (like a flame), has to cause the house to move from being actually a house and potentially a pile of ashes to actually a pile or ashes. In his third step Aquinas says, “Now it is not possible that the same thing should be at once in actuality and potentiality in the same respect.” He means that something cannot be in both the actual state and the potential state at the same time. For example, a house cannot be actually a house and actually a pile of ashes at the same time, but it can be actually a house and potentially a pile of ashes. Aquinas then draws the first conclusion in the argument, “It is therefore impossible that in the same respect and in the same way a thing should be both mover and moved.” In order for something in the state of actuality to be moved into the state of potentiality there has to be something in the actual ...

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Added: 3/24/2004 08:05:45 PM
Category: Religion
Words: 876
Pages: 4

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