Boethius’s tangent

The tomb of Boethius in Pavia, Italy (photo credit, D. Gallorto; WikiMedia) At a key juncture in his Consolation of Philosophy, Boethius ask Lady Philosophy a certain pressing question that has arisen to the forefront of his mind. Lady Philosophy responds that Boethius is asking about a tangential matter, something of a side issue. Here … Continue reading Boethius’s tangent

A complete act of the mind

To the minds of some, the articles of the Angelic Doctor’s Summa Theologiae are captive in a historical or tradition-bound cell from which they cannot emerge. What a pity—for the articles of St. Thomas’s great Summa are complete or perfect acts of the mind. “Perfect” signifies that which lacks none of the parts due its … Continue reading A complete act of the mind

Cajetan on contingency in the stars

In preparation for an upcoming symposium talk on the Aristotelian-Thomistic understanding of chance and indeterminism in nature, I had the opportunity to read Cardinal Cajetan’s commentary on ST, Ia, q. 115, a. 6, where St. Thomas wonders “whether heavenly bodies impose necessity on things subject to their action?” This article and Cajetan’s commentary is used … Continue reading Cajetan on contingency in the stars

New book review at Thomistica

See Thomistica.net for a recent review of mine of Fr. Stephen Brock’s book The Light That Binds. An excerpt: The Light that Binds is an erudite work of Thomistic scholarship and will serve those with sufficient familiarity of Aquinas and his sources as an insightful philosophical guide to a deeper understanding of the Angelic Doctor’s … Continue reading New book review at Thomistica

Thomistic Institute, Summer 2021

After being cancelled last year, the Thomistic Institute is hosting its third philosophy and natural science symposium, entitled “Chance and Indeterminacy in the Natural World.” Please see the link for more information or to register, and please forward it to interested philosophy and natural science graduate students!

Coronalogic

WikiMedia Commons CC (credit) A recent study of mask effectiveness is hailed by two Oxford professors of evidence-based medicine in the following terms: Yesterday marked the publication of a long-delayed trial in Denmark which hopes to answer that very question. The ‘Danmask-19 trial’ was conducted in the spring with over 3,000 participants, when the public were not … Continue reading Coronalogic

On health as a common good

It seems that health is not a common good, because health characterizes an individual. In scholastic terms, it is a qualitative accident of a living substance, an organism. Thus: An individual’s life and health are particular goods, not common goods. It is an obvious metaphysical truth that my health and my life can only be … Continue reading On health as a common good

Silencing the bells of Nagasaki

Funeral Mass near the ruins of the Urakami Cathedral, held on November 23, 1945, for the victims of the atomic bomb. (WikiMedia) Seventy-five years ago today, the USAAF B-29 Bockscar dropped one of the last bombs of the Second World War in the Urakami valley, on the industrial port city of Nagasaki, Japan. Tens of … Continue reading Silencing the bells of Nagasaki

Trying to take the good out of things

Vasily Perov, The Drowned (1867; WikiMedia) In a recent post at The Josias, “The New Natural Law Theory as the Source of Bostock’s Error,” James Berquist analyzes a particular case of the general mistake made by the “new” natural law theory. The core of his philosophical criticism of the jurisprudence of Bostock lies in the … Continue reading Trying to take the good out of things

The insubordination of economics

Caravaggio, Christ Driving the Money-Changers from the Temple (1610; WikiMedia) Paul Oslington’s essay—“Why are Philosophers and Theologians so Hostile to Economics?”—provides a case study of the academic phenomenon of failure to obtain joinder of issue. The essay is an underwhelming and confused mix of agreement and critique. My interest was drawn to reading it through … Continue reading The insubordination of economics