DOI: https://doi.org/10.15581/006.11.2.773-800

Actualidad de la doctrina tomista del conocimiento

 -Octavio N. Derisi


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Resumen

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To demonstrate that the Encyclical Aeterni Patris is relevant today, Msgr. Derisi examines the loss of the reality of knowledge in contemporary philosophy, and studies some particular consequences of this loss. He shows the importance - the urgency - of recovering the reality of this knowledge, and thus the importance of St. Thomas' teaching on this point.

Philosophy, from the beginning of the modern age, has disconnected the intelligence from its object, which is transcendental being or truth. It has thus stripped it of its ruling function - of which his Holiness Leo XIII spoke - in moral and practical activity, including political, economical and social aspects. Disastrous moral and social consequences inevitably follow this dismantling of the intelligence.

The validity of St. Thomas' doctrine stems from its being knowledge which, rather than being organised a priori, is based on the very demands made by the truth of being. It is the transparent expression of transubjective reality, grasped as reality is in itself, in its ontological exigencies. St. Thomas details the way in which the human mind, which has no intuition or direct apprehension of real being as it is in itself, grasps transcendental being as such, in the interior of its immanent act: by means of the objective concept abstracted from its notes, and then integrated into real being by means of the judgment.

On the solid foundation of transcendental being, present in the initial judgment of existence, the intelligence - always founded on the immediate apprehension of being - elaborates judgments, which develop the content of the essences (as happens, for example, in mathematical theorems) and formulates reasonings, which permit it to apprehend with ever greater amplitude and to establish itself with ever greater profundity in the immediate formal objects of the intelligence. From these it comes to apprehend other beings, not subject to its immediate apprehension, but required ontologically and essentially by them, as their principles and causes, to found and explain their essence and existence. The intellect thus arrives, illuminated always by the light or truth of transcendental being, apprehended in its essence and existence, to the Being of itself transcendent, unparticipated and infinite, first Cause of all other being in its essence and existence.

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Octavio N. Derisi e-mail (Inicie sesión)

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