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Pints With Aquinas

If you could sit down with St. Thomas Aquinas over a pint of beer and ask him any one question, what would it be? Every episode of Pints With Aquinas revolves around a question, a question that St. Thomas addresses in his most famous work, The Summa Theologica. So get your geek on, pull up a bar stool, and grab a cold one. Here we go!
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Now displaying: August, 2019
Aug 27, 2019

Today we're going to talk with Aquinas about backbiting, slander, and calumny.

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Become a patron to support our work and get access to our upcoming Flannery O'Connor book study!

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We're reading from the Secunda Secundae, Q. 73. A. 1;4.

On the contrary, It is written (Ecclesiastes 10:11): "If a serpent bite in silence, he is nothing better that backbiteth."

I answer that, Just as one man injures another by deed in two ways—openly, as by robbery or by doing him any kind of violence—and secretly, as by theft, or by a crafty blow, so again one man injures another by words in two ways—in one way, openly, and this is done by reviling him, as stated above (II-II:72:1)—and in another way secretly, and this is done by backbiting. Now from the fact that one man openly utters words against another man, he would appear to think little of him, so that for this reason he dishonors him, so that reviling is detrimental to the honor of the person reviled. On the other hand, he that speaks against another secretly, seems to respect rather than slight him, so that he injures directly, not his honor but his good name, in so far as by uttering such words secretly, he, for his own part, causes his hearers to have a bad opinion of the person against whom he speaks. For the backbiter apparently intends and aims at being believed. It is therefore evident that backbiting differs from reviling in two points: first, in the way in which the words are uttered, the reviler speaking openly against someone, and the backbiter secretly; secondly, as to the end in view, i.e. as regards the injury inflicted, the reviler injuring a man's honor, the backbiter injuring his good name.

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On the contrary, Jerome says (Ep. ad Nepot. lii): "Take care not to have an itching tongue, nor tingling ears, that is, neither detract others nor listen to backbiters."

I answer that, According to the Apostle (Romans 1:32), they "are worthy of death . . . not only they that" commit sins, "but they also that consent to them that do them." Now this happens in two ways. First, directly, when, to wit, one man induces another to sin, or when the sin is pleasing to him: secondly, indirectly, that is, if he does not withstand him when he might do so, and this happens sometimes, not because the sin is pleasing to him, but on account of some human fear.

Accordingly we must say that if a man list ens to backbiting without resisting it, he seems to consent to the backbiter, so that he becomes a participator in his sin. And if he induces him to backbite, or at least if the detraction be pleasing to him on account of his hatred of the person detracted, he sins no less than the detractor, and sometimes more. Wherefore Bernard says (De Consid. ii, 13): "It is difficult to say which is the more to be condemned the backbiter or he that listens to backbiting." If however the sin is not pleasing to him, and he fails to withstand the backbiter, through fear negligence, or even shame, he sins indeed, but much less than the backbiter, and, as a rule venially. Sometimes too this may be a mortal sin, either because it is his official duty to cor. rect the backbiter, or by reason of some consequent danger; or on account of the radical reason for which human fear may sometimes be a mortal sin, as stated above (II-II:19:3).

Aug 20, 2019

This is the first part in a three part series on happiness. Buckle up! We take you into the writings of Aquinas and show how his advice can help you today.

Please consider supporting me on Patreon, here.

Read what Aquinas has to say on happiness here: http://www.newadvent.org/summa/2002.htm

Aug 15, 2019

Click here to listen to Munificentissimus Deus, by Pope Pius XII (PATRONS ONLY)

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Happy feast of the assumption of Mary, y’all!

Today I talk a little about the assumption of Mary. I respond to what Protestant apologist Norm Geisler has to say regarding Aquinas and the dogma of the assumption.

And then (….drum roll….), I share a portion of a brand new audio book, Pope Pius XII’s apostolic constitution in which he defines as dogma Mary’s assumption into Heaven

Aug 13, 2019

This is the first part in a three part series on happiness. Buckle up! We take you into the writings of Aquinas and show how his advice can help you today.

Please consider supporting me on Patreon, here.

Read what Aquinas has to say on happiness here: http://www.newadvent.org/summa/2002.htm

Aug 6, 2019

This is the first part in a three part series on happiness. Buckle up! We take you into the writings of Aquinas and show how his advice can help you today.

Please consider supporting me on Patreon, here.

Some of Aquinas' text:

Article 1. Whether happiness is something uncreated?

Objection 1. It would seem that happiness is something uncreated. For Boethius says (De Consol. iii): "We must needs confess that God is happiness itself."

Objection 2. Further, happiness is the supreme good. But it belongs to God to be the supreme good. Since, then, there are not several supreme goods, it seems that happiness is the same as God.

Objection 3. Further, happiness is the last end, to which man's will tends naturally. But man's will should tend to nothing else as an end, but to God, Who alone is to be enjoyed, as Augustine says (De Doctr. Christ. i, 5,22). Therefore happiness is the same as God.

On the contrary, Nothing made is uncreated. But man's happiness is something made; because according to Augustine (De Doctr. Christ. i, 3): "Those things are to be enjoyed which make us happy." Therefore happiness is not something uncreated.

I answer that, As stated above (I-II:1:8; I-II:2:7), our end is twofold. First, there is the thing itself which we desire to attain: thus for the miser, the end is money. Secondly there is the attainment or possession, the use or enjoyment of the thing desired; thus we may say that the end of the miser is the possession of money; and the end of the intemperate man is to enjoy something pleasurable. In the first sense, then, man's last end is the uncreated good, namely, God, Who alone by His infinite goodness can perfectly satisfy man's will. But in the second way, man's last end is something created, existing in him, and this is nothing else than the attainment or enjoyment of the last end. Now the last end is called happiness. If, therefore, we consider man's happiness in its cause or object, then it is something uncreated; but if we consider it as to the very essence of happiness, then it is something created.

Reply to Objection 1. God is happiness by His Essence: for He is happy not by acquisition or participation of something else, but by His Essence. On the other hand, men are happy, as Boethius says (De Consol. iii), by participation; just as they are called "gods," by participation. And this participation of happiness, in respect of which man is said to be happy, is something created.

Reply to Objection 2. Happiness is called man's supreme good, because it is the attainment or enjoyment of the supreme good.

Reply to Objection 3. Happiness is said to be the last end, in the same way as the attainment of the end is called the end.

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