Cognitive Science / History / Philosophy

De Thomae Aquinatis “Summa Theologica” annotamentum

An article written some time ago (aboout a book written some more time ago…)

The Bubbling of my Thoughts


(A note on Thomas Aquinas’ “Summa Theologica”)

I am imagining Thomas Aquinas sitting at his desk, writing a chapter of his “Summa Theologica”…

Aquinas derives his theory of human nature from Aristotle’s “De Anima”. In the antique view, as can be found in Aristotle, what was called “psyche” (ψυχή) in Greek or “anima”in Latin, often translated as “soul” is the life-giving principle that distinguishes a dead body from a living one. Using the translation “soul” here is a bit misleading since the meaning of this concept changed in early modern times. For example, Descartes distinguished a material “res extensa” (extended thing) from what he called “res cogitans” (thinking thing). A living animal in Descartes sense is res extensa. Here, the “soul” no longer is the life-giving principle but it is restricted to those aspects of the human that we would connect with what we call the “mind”. In antiquity, on…

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One thought on “De Thomae Aquinatis “Summa Theologica” annotamentum

  1. Thank you for this interesting post! Just in these days I met Thomas Aquinas experience and thinking while working on an ancient code/book from XII/XIII Century (his author was in good relationship with Thomas Aquinas).

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