Saturday, May 18, 2013

Aquinas for May XVIII

Intellectus creatus intelligit Deum non per identitatem naturae, sed per unionem ad ipsum, quae est vel per aliquam similitudinem non quidem abstractam, sed effluxam a Deo in intellectum; et hunc modum intelligendi vocat Avicenna, per impressionem, dicens, intelligentias in nobis esse ex hoc quod impressiones earum in nobis sunt: vel per unionem ad ipsam essentiam lucis increatae, sicut erit in patria.

"A created understanding understands God not by identity of nature, but by union with the same, which is either through some likeness (not indeed abstracted, but infused by God into the understanding, and this way of understanding Avicenna calls 'by impression', saying, understanding in us comes be from the impressions of things in us) or through union to the very being of uncreated light, as will be the case when we are Home."

Super Sent., lib. 2 d. 17 q. 1 a. 1 ad 4

('Patria', homeland, is a standard way of talking about heaven in medieval Latin: the saints are 'in patria', at home; we are currently 'viatores', wayfarers.)

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