Aquinas Conflating Person and Essence in God

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“Since a relation, insasmuch as it is something real in God, is the divine essence itself, and the essence is the same as a person, as we have already made clear, it must be that the relation is the same as a person.”

(ST Ia.40.I, response)

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16 Responses to “Aquinas Conflating Person and Essence in God”

  1. Tap Says:

    Was wondering what denomination you are, or are you in transition? if so which are you coming out of?

  2. Tap Says:

    Sorry, the above question is directed at “MG” thanks

  3. Ø Says:

    Tap–

    All of the authors of this blog are members of the Eastern Orthodox Church, MG included.

  4. Tap Says:

    I see, thanks for the answer.

  5. MG Says:

    Tap–

    Yea, what Zakk says is right, we are EO converts from Protestantism of various sorts.

    I don’t mean to bug, but would you be so kind as to identify yourself? We appreciate it when people post on this blog with some kind of identification.

  6. photios Says:

    “Since a relation, insasmuch as it is something real in God, is the divine essence itself, and the essence is the same as a person, ”

    That is just nuts. I mean why would any Christian EVER say that.

  7. Krause Says:

    You got me photios. These quotes come from my reading that I’ve been doing for my philosophy senior thesis project which is on the incompatibility of ADS and Christian theism. Aquinas makes much of the argument a little too easy 😛

  8. Tap Says:

    I don’t mean to bug, but would you be so kind as to identify yourself?

    by indentify if you mean what religion, then i’m Catholic (Latin Rite). If however you are asking for my actual name, then you i will ask you to refer to me as Tapioca Ben Manihot Esculenta or Tap. You can read about my history here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manihot_esculenta

  9. Krause Says:

    TAP, MG seems to be misunderstanding what I wanted. I obviously don’t need your real name, just some accurate email info. TAP is thoroughly sufficient.

    The request for email isn’t a demand…just a request. It’s just nice to have real emails so we can contact people in private if necessary or keep people accountable (we’ve had certain people pop up under different names with no email that have just showed up to cause trouble).

    Just something for the future. If you aren’t willing to list a real email, It’s not that big of a deal. It’d just be nice. Thanks.

  10. Tap Says:

    Responding to this MG’s post on the energeticprocession site:

    I’ll try to seek truth, though, and consider the Roman view more seriously (something I am in the process of doing).

    Don’t know if you’ve alread read it, but if you want a non-copyrighted version of Herbert Rees’ 1948 translation of Vladimir Solovyev’s “Russia and the Universal Church” let me know

    It’s just nice to have real emails so we can contact people in private if necessary or keep people accountable (we’ve had certain people pop up under different names with no email that have just showed up to cause trouble).

    Fair enough my email was added with this post.

  11. Krause Says:

    Thanks TAP 🙂

  12. Bryan Cross Says:

    To be fair to Aquinas, you ought to provide his argumentation for this ‘conflation’, which argumentation is given in ST I Q.28 a.2. Otherwise, risk misrepresenting his position.

    In the peace of Christ,

    – Bryan

  13. Ø Says:

    Bryan –

    I agree that the background would be important if one were trying to understand why Aquinas’s position should be accepted or rejected. However, I believe Krause’s point in posting this (and the other Aquinas quotation found here) is simply to prove that Aquinas says these things. It has been difficult, to my knowledge, to convince a number of people that Aquinas conflated Person and Essence, and so this plain and obvious text is useful for proving that our reading of Aquinas isn’t completely insane.

    Does that seem fair?

  14. Bryan Cross Says:

    Treating it as “conflation” is already unfair, because Aquinas’ position is nuanced, both in Q.28 a.2, and in Q.39 a.1. It can’t fairly be reduced to a one-line summary.

    In the peace of Christ,

    – Bryan

  15. Aquinas Conflating Person and Essence in God, Redux « The Well of Questions Says:

    […] April 14, 2009 Posted by Ø in Aquinas, Person, Quotations, Western Theology. trackback In a previous post, Krause presented us with a quotation that seemed to show, in language all too plain, that Aquinas […]

  16. Ø Says:

    Bryan –

    I don’t really see how those two sections do anything but strengthen Krause’s interpretation, but, in the interest of fairness, I have presented them in another post on this blog.

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