Friday, April 17, 2020

Thought Laboratory

Comparing how one perfection or another (life, knowledge, language, love) is achieved in a pure spirit and in a human being allows us to determine simultaneously the analogically universal stable nucleus of this perfection and the particular features that it assumes in man. The specificity of the human condition stands out all the more clearly as a result. For example, the study of such an exotic topic as the language of the angels allows us to sort out the fundamental structures of all communication and to identify the things in our experience of language that depend on specifically human modalities. Moreover, an examination of the metaphysical structure of an angel reveals, like a photographic image chemically developed in a darkroom, the fundamental truth of the composition of being and essence in every creature. In short, angelology is a "thought laboratory" that allows the philosopher to distill and refine his metaphysical or noetic concepts and to define further what is properly human.

Serge-Thomas Bonino, O.P., Angels and Demons, Miller, tr. The Catholic University of America Press (Washington, DC: 2016), p. 2.

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