Aquinas's Way to God

Aquinas's Way to God : The Proof in De Ente et Essentia

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This book focuses upon St Thomas Aquinas's much neglected proof for the existence of God in De Ente et Essentia Chapter 4. It offers both a contemporary presentation and interpretation of this proof and also a defense. Beginning with the distinction between essence and esse in Aquinas's thought, the book moves from an account of these metaphysical principles to their use by Thomas in establishing that there is a single unique primary cause from which all
that is comes to be. Along the way, important themes in metaphysics, such as (i) essence, (ii) existence, (iii) causality, (iv) causal infinities are addressed, dealt with, and defended within a Thomistic perspective. The outlook of the book is not parochial, but engages contemporary authors who either (i)
misinterpret or (ii) disagree with Aquinas. By the end it is established that Aquinas is on firmer ground than all of his detractors, and that the success of this proof of God has ramifications for how we think about the nature of creation. This book is intended to fill a lacuna in the Thomistic studies literature which until now has not given the proof from the De Ente et Essentia the attention it deserves.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 232 pages
  • 142 x 213 x 21mm | 352g
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 0190224800
  • 9780190224806
  • 1,138,493

Table of contents

Preface ; Acknowledgements ; Part I: Essence/Esse Distinction and Composition ; Chapter 1 - The Argumentation for Real Distinction in De Ente, Cap. 4 ; Chapter 2 - Essence ; Chapter 3 - Esse ; Part II: The Proof of God ; Chapter 4 - The Causal Principle ; Chapter 5 - The Per Aliud Principle and Infinite Regress ; Chapter 6 - Esse Tantum ; Chapter 7 - Creation ; Bibliography ; Index
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Review quote

Gaven Kerr's book offers a vista on Thomas's thought on a range of metaphysical questions ... Most of all, however, it stands as a De Ente et Essentia for our own times: a defence and exploration of 'being' and 'essence' as the primary metaphysical categories, and a consideration about what that suggests when it comes to thinking about God. * Andrew Davison, Times Literary Supplement * Aquinas's Way to God is a sophisticated work of scholarship that will help philosophers and academic theologians to retrieve proper understandings of Aquinas's natural theology. * Glenn B Siniscalchi, Decatur, IL, Religious Studies Review * Aquinas's De Ente et Essentia was an early work of Aquinas. But it contains a line of thought that characterizes Aquinas's thinking as a whole. Gaven Kerr has mastered this line of thought and presents it in an extremely clear and judicious way. His book is one that anyone interested in Aquinas or in arguments for the belief that God exists should certainly read. * Brian Davies, author of Thomas Aquinas's Summa Theologiae: A Guide and Commentary * In this superb study of an early lapidary 'proof' where Thomas Aquinas argues that only what is being can bestow it on others, Gaven Kerr employs a delightfully uncomplicated style to show the central role this spare assertion plays in Aquinas' metaphysics of creation. Elucidating his unique treatment of esse and essentia allows Kerr to contrast Aquinas with contemporary and classical alternatives as he faces formidable critics by offering free
creation as the key to a tour de force as theological as it is metaphysical. * David Burrell, C.S.C., Hesburgh Professor emeritus, University of Notre Dame * This is a really interesting book, thought provoking and refreshing in its strict philosophical approach to Aquinas's ontology in De Ente et Essentia and for the defense of his ideas about being and God to a contemporary public of professionals schooled in analytical philosophy. * R.A. te Velde, Assistant Professor, Department of Systematic Theology and Philosophy, Tilburg School of Catholic Theology * What Kerr primarily adds to the wealth of literature already available on this subject is a lucidity of argument within the framework of contemporary philosophical analysis. In the end, he presents a superbly comprehensive and clear account of this powerful piece of philosophical theology, which, at the very least, should leave no room for misunderstanding by either believers or critics. * P. A. Streveler, CHOICE * reading this book is highly recommended to anyone interested in Aquinas's metaphysics, in his philosophical thought broadly conceived, and also in his theological views. * Maria S Vaccarezza, Philosophical Quarterly *
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About Gaven Kerr

Gaven Kerr, OP is Teaching Assistant in Philolosphy at Queen's University Belfast.
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Rating details

8 ratings
4.25 out of 5 stars
5 38% (3)
4 50% (4)
3 12% (1)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
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