Download Aquinas's Ethics: Metaphysical Foundations, Moral Theory, by Rebecca Konyndyk DeYoung PDF

By Rebecca Konyndyk DeYoung

The function of Aquinas's Ethics is to put Thomas Aquinas's ethical conception in its complete philosophical and theological context and to take action in a manner that makes Aquinas (1224/5-1274) quite simply available to scholars and common readers, together with these encountering Aquinas for the 1st time. Rebecca Konyndyk DeYoung, Colleen McCluskey, and Christina Van Dyke commence through explaining Aquinas's theories of the human individual and human motion, considering those floor his ethical thought. of their interpretation, Aquinas's theological commitments crucially form his account of the human individual, human capacities for motion, and human flourishing. The authors improve a complete photograph of Aquinas's inspiration, that's designed to aid scholars know how his suggestion of happiness and the great lifestyles are a part of a coherent, theologically-informed worldview.

Many reports of Aquinas evidently specialise in sure components of his suggestion and have a tendency to imagine a basic wisdom of the total. Aquinas's Ethicstakes the other technique: it deliberately hyperlinks his metaphysics and anthropology to his motion idea and ethics to light up how the ethical thought is outfitted on foundations laid in other places. The authors emphasize the combination of suggestions of advantage, common legislations, and divine grace inside Aquinas's ethics, instead of treating such themes in isolation or competition. Their strategy, awarded in transparent and intentionally non-specialist language, finds the coherent nature of Aquinas's account of the ethical existence and of what fulfills us as people. the result's a wealthy and fascinating framework for extra research of Aquinas's proposal and its applications.

"Aquinas’s Ethicsis an ideal creation to at least one of the main subtle and influential moral structures in Western proposal. DeYoung, McCluskey, and Van Dyke trap the bright readability of Aquinas’s ethical imaginative and prescient, providing an illuminating viewpoint actual to either the theoretical intensity and sensible richness of Aquinas’s writings. these new to Aquinas’s rules will locate this ebook eminently readable. Everyone—students and students alike—will relish its direct, distinct voice and transparent philosophical intelligence." —Scott MacDonald, Norma ok. Regan Professor in Christian reviews, Cornell University

"Aquinas's Ethicsis a superb contribution to the literature on Aquinas and ethics, supplying an built-in and strong account of the connection among a metaphysics of human nature, traditional legislations idea, and advantage conception. displaying those inextricable connections, it's very very similar to the paintings of St. Thomas himself, and indicates why such a lot of lesser theories of ethics are unsatisfying for his or her loss of intensity and complete reach." —John Kavanaugh, S.J., Saint Louis University
“DeYoung, McCluskey, and Van Dyke have written the correct creation to Aquinas’s ethics, situating it within the broader context of his brooding about human nature and action. Although Aquinas cared extra about—and wrote extra about—ethics than approximately the other philosophical subject, it continues to be the main unjustly ignored point of his suggestion. i do know of no greater advisor to that territory than this book.” —Robert Pasnau, college of Colorado at Boulder

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Extra info for Aquinas's Ethics: Metaphysical Foundations, Moral Theory, and Theological Context

Sample text

In short, although the vegetative and sensory capacities play an important part in human life, the rational capacities rank higher; they are what distinguish human functioning from the functioning of other animals. Vegetative capacities are necessary for maintaining basic metabolic function and sustaining life. Sensory, locomotive, and appetitive capacities go beyond that in providing us with certain information, what Aquinas often calls "sensible forms"-the building blocks of human cognition. What makes human cognition and human flourishing possible, however, are the rational capacities, which have as their proper objects abstract concepts such as tru,th and justice.

Ticular objects of desire. In virtue of the will, we find ourselves attracted to various things out there in the world. Human action is neither random nor arbitrary; it is purposive. According to Aquinas, it is always directed toward a particular goal or end; if it is not so directed, it does not count as a human action.! Instead, it is what Aquinas calls a mere "act of a human being," such as aimlessly scratching one's face or rubbing one's eye. ''Acts of a human being" for him are brute responses to external stimuli.

What makes human cognition and human flourishing possible, however, are the rational capacities, which have as their proper objects abstract concepts such as tru,th and justice. According to Aquinas, there are two main reasons to consider the rational capacities superior to our other capacities. B We hear what sounds like a friend calling to us in the distance, and we decide we should walk toward the noise to find out from whom it is coming. In this case, our rational capacities direct our locomotive capacities to move us closer to the noise so that our sensory capacities can gather more information.

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