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Today I sit down with Dominican priest Fr. Nicancor Austriaco to discuss evolution, genesis and Adam and Eve.
Fr. Nicanor Austriaco is a Catholic priest in the Order of Friars Preachers. Born in the Philippines, he earned his Ph.D. degree in Biology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. After completing his doctoral studies, he was a fellow of the International Human Frontier Science Program at the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research at the University College London.
... Seriously if I kept going you'd be reading longer than it took to listen to this podcast. He's a smart dude, okay?
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Hey thomists, today I'm going to be reading a portion of Aquinas' commentary on Philippians.
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Yo, yo! What an episode! You're gonna love it.
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Today I'm joined by Fr Damian Ference to discuss epistemology (how we know stuff).
Show notes: http://pintswithaquinas.com/podcast/how-do-we-know-stuff-thomas-epistemology-with-fr-damian-ference/
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Today's episode will help you navigate the Summa. At least, that's the plan.
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Here's what Aquinas said in the ST on the third way:
The third way is taken from possibility and necessity, and runs thus. We find in nature things that are possible to be and not to be, since they are found to be generated, and to corrupt, and consequently, they are possible to be and not to be. But it is impossible for these always to exist, for that which is possible not to be at some time is not. Therefore, if everything is possible not to be, then at one time there could have been nothing in existence. Now if this were true, even now there would be nothing in existence, because that which does not exist only begins to exist by something already existing. Therefore, if at one time nothing was in existence, it would have been impossible for anything to have begun to exist; and thus even now nothing would be in existence — which is absurd. Therefore, not all beings are merely possible, but there must exist something the existence of which is necessary. But every necessary thing either has its necessity caused by another, or not. Now it is impossible to go on to infinity in necessary things which have their necessity caused by another, as has been already proved in regard to efficient causes. Therefore we cannot but postulate the existence of some being having of itself its own necessity, and not receiving it from another, but rather causing in others their necessity. This all men speak of as God.
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Here's the excerpt from the Summa Contra Gentiles that I read:
[Muhammad] seduced the people by promises of carnal pleasure to which the concupiscence of the flesh goads us. His teaching also contained precepts that were in conformity with his promises, and he gave free rein to carnal pleasure. In all this, as is not unexpected, he was obeyed by carnal men. As for proofs of the truth of his doctrine, he brought forward only such as could be grasped by the natural ability of anyone with a very modest wisdom. Indeed, the truths that he taught he mingled with many fables and with doctrines of the greatest falsity. He did not bring forth any signs produced in a supernatural way, which alone fittingly gives witness to divine inspiration; for a visible action that can be only divine reveals an invisibly inspired teacher of truth. On the contrary, Muhammad said that he was sent in the power of his arms—which are signs not lacking even to robbers and tyrants. What is more, no wise men, men trained in things divine and human, believed in him from the beginning, Those who believed in him were brutal men and desert wanderers, utterly ignorant of all divine teaching, through whose numbers Muhammad forced others to become his followers by the violence of his arms. Nor do divine pronouncements on the part of preceding prophets offer him any witness. On the contrary, he perverts almost all the testimonies of the Old and New Testaments by making them into fabrications of his own, as can be. seen by anyone who examines his law. It was, therefore, a shrewd decision on his part to forbid his followers to read the Old and New Testaments, lest these books convict him of falsity. It is thus clear that those who place any faith in his words believe foolishly
SCG 1, 6, 4.
Hey all, in this episode I share with you some exciting things that we're doing at Pints With Aquinas and some exciting projects we're planning.
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Today we're joined around the bar table by Father Thomas Joseph White to discuss predestination.
Learn more about the Hillbilly Thomists here: https://www.dominicanajournal.org/music/the-hillbilly-thomists/
Here's a couple of excerpts from Thomas on predestination from the Prima pars:
Here’s some of what Aquinas had to say on predestination:
It is fitting that God should predestine men. For all things are subject to His providence, as was shown above (I:22:2). Now it belongs to providence to direct things towards their end, as was also said (I:22:1 and I:22:2). The end towards which created things are directed by God is twofold; one which exceeds all proportion and faculty of created nature; and this end is life eternal, that consists in seeing God which is above the nature of every creature, as shown above (I:12:4). The other end, however, is proportionate to created nature, to which end created being can attain according to the power of its nature. Now if a thing cannot attain to something by the power of its nature, it must be directed thereto by another; thus, an arrow is directed by the archer towards a mark. Hence, properly speaking, a rational creature, capable of eternal life, is led towards it, directed, as it were, by God. The reason of that direction pre-exists in God; as in Him is the type of the order of all things towards an end, which we proved above to be providence. Now the type in the mind of the doer of something to be done, is a kind of pre-existence in him of the thing to be done. Hence the type of the aforesaid direction of a rational creature towards the end of life eternal is called predestination. For to destine, is to direct or send. Thus it is clear that predestination, as regards its objects, is a part of providence.
God does reprobate some. For it was said above (Article 1) that predestination is a part of providence. To providence, however, it belongs to permit certain defects in those things which are subject to providence, as was said above (I:22:2). Thus, as men are ordained to eternal life through the providence of God, it likewise is part of that providence to permit some to fall away from that end; this is called reprobation. Thus, as predestination is a part of providence, in regard to those ordained to eternal salvation, so reprobation is a part of providence in regard to those who turn aside from that end. Hence reprobation implies not only foreknowledge, but also something more, as does providence, as was said above (I:22:1). Therefore, as predestination includes the will to confer grace and glory; so also reprobation includes the will to permit a person to fall into sin, and to impose the punishment of damnation on account of that sin.
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It behooved Christ to rise again, for five reasons:
First of all; for the commendation of Divine Justice, to which it belongs to exalt them who humble themselves for God's sake, according to Luke 1:52: "He hath put down the mighty from their seat, and hath exalted the humble." Consequently, because Christ humbled Himself even to the death of the Cross, from love and obedience to God, it behooved Him to be uplifted by God to a glorious resurrection; hence it is said in His Person (Psalm 138:2): "Thou hast known," i.e. approved, "my sitting down," i.e. My humiliation and Passion, "and my rising up," i.e. My glorification in the resurrection; as the gloss expounds.
Secondly, for our instruction in the faith, since our belief in Christ's Godhead is confirmed by His rising again, because, according to 2 Corinthians 13:4, "although He was crucified through weakness, yet He liveth by the power of God." And therefore it is written (1 Corinthians 15:14): "If Christ be not risen again, then is our preaching vain, and our [Vulgate: 'your'] faith is also vain": and (Psalm 29:10): "What profit is there in my blood?" that is, in the shedding of My blood, "while I go down," as by various degrees of evils, "into corruption?" As though He were to answer: "None. 'For if I do not at once rise again but My body be corrupted, I shall preach to no one, I shall gain no one,'" as the gloss expounds.
Thirdly, for the raising of our hope, since through seeing Christ, who is our head, rise again, we hope that we likewise shall rise again. Hence it is written (1 Corinthians 15:12): "Now if Christ be preached that He rose from the dead, how do some among you say, that there is no resurrection of the dead?" And (Job 19:25-27): "I know," that is with certainty of faith, "that my Redeemer," i.e. Christ, "liveth," having risen from the dead; "and" therefore "in the last day I shall rise out of the earth . . . this my hope is laid up in my bosom."
Fourthly, to set in order the lives of the faithful: according to Romans 6:4: "As Christ is risen from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we also may walk in newness of life": and further on; "Christ rising from the dead dieth now no more; so do you also reckon that you are dead to sin, but alive to God."
Fifthly, in order to complete the work of our salvation: because, just as for this reason did He endure evil things in dying that He might deliver us from evil, so was He glorified in rising again in order to advance us towards good things; according to Romans 4:25: "He was delivered up for our sins, and rose again for our justification."
ST III, Q. 53, A. 1.
Happy Easter, friends!
The music you can hear beneath Chrysostom's meditation is the Jesus Prayer "Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner!" You can find it on Youtube here.
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Here's the text from today's meditation:
That Christ should die was expedient.
1. To make our redemption complete. For, although any suffering of Christ had an infinite value, because of its union with His divinity, it was not by no matter which of His sufferings that the redemption of mankind was made complete, but only by His death. So the Holy Spirit declared speaking through the mouth of Caiaphas, It is expedient for you that one man shall die for the people (John xi. 50). Whence St. Augustine says, "Let us stand in wonder, rejoice, be glad, love, praise, and adore since it is by the death of our Redeemer, that we have been called from death to life, from exile to our own land, from mourning to joy."
2. To increase our faith, our hope and our charity. With regard to faith the Psalm says (Ps. cxl. 10), I am alone until I pass from this world, that is, to the Father. When I shall have passed to the Father, then shall I be multiplied. Unless the grain of wheat falling into the ground die itself remaineth alone (John xii. 24).
As to the increase of hope St, Paul writes, He that spared not even his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how hath he not also, with him, given us all things? (Rom. viii. 32). God cannot deny us this, for to give us all things is less than to give His own Son to death for us. St. Bernard says, "Who is not carried away to hope and confidence in prayer, when he looks on the crucifix and sees how Our Lord hangs there, the head bent as though to kiss, the arms outstretched in an embrace, the hands pierced to give, the side opened to love, the feet nailed to remain with us."
Come, my dove, in the clefts of the rock (Cant. ii. 14). It is in the wounds of Christ the Church builds its nest and waits, for it is in the Passion of Our Lord that she places her hope of salvation, and thereby trusts to be protected from the craft of the falcon, that is, of the devil.
With regard to the increase of charity, Holy Scripture says, At noon he burneth the earth (Ecclus. xliii. 3), that is to say, in the fervour of His Passion He burns up all mankind with His love. So St. Bernard says, "The chalice thou didst drink, O good Jesus, maketh thee lovable above all things." The work of our redemption easily, brushing aside all hindrances, calls out in return the whole of our love. This it is which more gently draws out our devotion, builds it up more straightly, guards it more closely, and fires it with greater ardour.
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Here is the text from Aquinas:
Perfection for man consists in the love of God and of neighbor. Now, the three Commandments which were written on the first tablet pertain to the love of God; for the love of neighbor there were the seven Commandments on the second tablet. But we must “love, not in word nor in tongue, but in deed and in truth” [1 Jn 3]. For a man to love thus, he must do two things, namely, avoid evil and do good. Certain of the Commandments prescribe good acts, while others forbid evil deeds. And we must also know that to avoid evil is in our power; but we are incapable of doing good to everyone. Thus, St. Augustine says that we should love all, but we are not bound to do good to all. But among those to whom we are bound to do good are those in some way united to us. Thus, “if any man does not take care of his own, especially of those of his house, he has denied the faith” [1 Tim 5:8]. Now, amongst all our relatives there are none closer than our father and mother. “We ought to love God first,” says St. Ambrose, “then our father and mother.” Hence, God has given us the Commandment: “Honor your father and your mother.”
The Philosopher also gives another reason for this honor to parents, in that we cannot make an equal return to our parents for the great benefits they have granted to us; and, therefore, an offended parent has the right to send his son away, but the son has no such right [Ethics V]. Parents, indeed, give their children three things. The first is that they brought them into being: “Honor your father, and forget not the groanings of your mother; remember that through them you were born” [Sir 7:29-30]. Secondly, they furnished nourishment and the support necessary for life. For a child comes naked into the world, as Job relates (1:24), but he is provided for by his parents. The third is instruction: “We have had fathers of our flesh for instructors” [Hb 12:9]. “Do you have children? Instruct them” [Sir 7:25].
Parents, therefore, should give instruction without delay to their children, because “a young man according to his way, even when he is old will not depart from it” [Prov 22:6]. And again: “It is good for a man when he has borne the yoke from his youth” [Lam 3:27]. Now, the instruction which Tobias gave his son (Tob 4) was this: to fear the Lord and to abstain from sin. This is indeed contrary to those parents who approve of the misdeeds of their children. Children, therefore, receive from their parents birth, nourishment, and instruction.
Now, because we owe our birth to our parents, we ought to honor them more than any other superiors, because from such we receive only temporal things: “He who fears the Lord honors his parents, and will serve them as his masters that brought him into the world. Honor your father in work and word and all patience, that a blessing may come upon you from him” [Sir 3:10]. And in doing this you shall also honor thyself, because “the glory of a man is from honor of his father, and a father without honor is the disgrace of his son” [Sir 3:13].
Again, since we receive nourishment from our parents in our childhood, we must support them in their old age: “Son, support the old age of your father, and grieve him not in his life. And if his understanding fail, have patience with him; and do not despise him when you are in your strength... Of what an evil fame is he who forsakes his father! And he is cursed of God who angers his mother” [Sir 3:14,15]. For the humiliation of those who act contrary to this, Cassiodorus relates how young storks, when the parents have lost their feathers by approaching old age and are unable to find suitable food, make the parent storks comfortable with their own feathers, and bring back food for their worn-out bodies. Thus, by this affectionate exchange the young ones repay the parents for what they received when they were young” [Epist. II].
We must obey our parents, for they have instructed us. “Children, obey your parents in all things” [Col 3:20]. This excepts, of course, those things which are contrary to God. St. Jerome says that the only loyalty in such cases is to be cruel [Ad Heliod]: “If any man hate not his father and mother... he cannot be My disciple” [Lk 14:26]. This is to say that God is in the truest sense our Father: “Is not He your Father who possessed you, made you and created you?” [Deut 32:6].
“Honor your father and your mother.” Among all the Commandments, this one only has the additional words: “that you may be long-lived upon the land.” The reason for this is lest it be thought that there is no reward for those who honor their parents, seeing that it is a natural obligation. Hence it must be known that five most desirable rewards are promised those who honor their parents.
Grace and Glory.—The first reward is grace for the present life, and glory in the life to come, which surely are greatly to be desired: “Honor your father... that a blessing may come upon you from God, and His blessing may remain in the latter end” [Sir 3:9-10]. The very opposite comes upon those who dishonor their parents; indeed, they are cursed in the law by God [Deut 27:16]. It is also written: “He who is unjust in that which is little, is unjust also in what is greater” [Lk 16:10]. But this our natural life is as nothing compared with the life of grace. And so, therefore, if you do not acknowledge the blessing of the natural life which you owe to your parents, then you are unworthy of the life of grace, which is greater, and all the more so for the life of glory, which is the greatest of all blessings.
A Long Life.—The second reward is a long life: “That you may be long-lived upon the land.” For “he who honors his father shall enjoy a long life” [Sir 3:7]. Now, that is a long life which is a full life, and it is not observed in time but in activity, as the Philosopher observes. Life, however, is full inasmuch as it is a life of virtue; so a man who is virtuous and holy enjoys a long life even if in body he dies young: “Being perfect in a short space, he fulfilled a long time; for his soul pleased God” [Wis 4:13]. Thus, for example, he is a good merchant who does as much business in one day as another would do in a year. And note well that it sometimes happens that a long life may lead up to a spiritual as well as a bodily death, as was the case with Judas. Therefore, the reward for keeping this Commandment is a long life for the body. But the very opposite, namely, death is the fate of those who dishonor their parents. We receive our life from them; and just as the soldiers owe fealty to the king, and lose their rights in case of any treachery, so also they who dishonor their parents deserve to forfeit their lives: “The eye that mocks his father and despises the labor of his mother in bearing him, let the ravens pick it out, and the young eagles eat it” [Prov 30:17]. Here “the ravens” signify officials of kings and princes, who in turn are the “young eagles.” But if it happens that such are not bodily punished, they nevertheless cannot escape death of the soul. It is not well, therefore, for a father to give too much power to his children: “Do not give to a son or wife, brother or friend, power over you while you live; and do not give your estate to another, lest you repent” [Sir 33:20].
The third reward is to have in turn grateful and pleasing children. For a father naturally treasures his children, but the contrary is not always the case: “He who honors his father shall have joy in his own children” [Sir 3:6]. Again: “With what measure you measure, it shall be measured to you again” [Mt 7:2]. The fourth reward is a praiseworthy reputation: “For the glory of a man is from the honor of his father” [Sir 3:13]. And again: “Of what an evil fame is he who forsakes his father?” [Sir 3:18]. A fifth reward is riches: “The father’s blessing establishes the houses of his children, but the mother’s curse roots up the foundation” [Sir 3:11].
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Here's some of the stuff we spoke about in the conversation:
Made for Love: Same-Sex Attraction and the Catholic Church by Fr. Mike Schmitz
Why I Don't Call Myself Gay: How I Reclaimed My Sexual Reality and Found Peace by Dan Mattson
Groups in the Church:
Hey all, today I chat with my mate, Fr.Chris Pietraszko about divine simplicity. This is fun one!
Show notes here.
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