The Gilson Lectures on Thomas Aquinas

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PIMS, 2008 - Religion - 246 pages
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Few men of modern times have influenced the study of the medieval past as profoundly as Professor Etienne Gilson. By the encyclopaedic range of his writings, teaching, lectures, and personal contacts, by his sensitive vision of Christian culture, present and past, and by the brave new ventures on which he embarked, he, as few others, is responsible for the strength and diversity of medieval studies in North America and Europe. In recognition of his achievement and to continue his work, the Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies commissioned an annual lecture to develop areas of his interest and expertise. Since 1979, there have been twenty four lectures given by senior medievalists. Among the distinguished contributors to the series are fellows of the Institute, past and present, Leonard E. Boyle, Jocelyn Hillgarth, Edouard Jeauneau, James K. McConica, M. Michèle Mulchahey, Joseph Owens, Walter H. Principe, James P. Reilly, Brian Stock, Edward A. Synan, and James A. Weispheipl, as well as such eminent scholars from Canada, Europe, and the United States, as Marcia Colish, Giles Constable, William J. Courtenay, Paul Dutton, Mark D. Jordan, F. Donald Logan, Karl F. Morrison, John D. North, Francis Oakley, Jaroslav Pelikan, Otto Hermann Pesch, Kenneth Schmitz, and John F. Wippel. To mark the thirtieth anniversary of Gilson's death and seventy-five years of scholarly publishing at the Institute, we are reprinting the nine Gilson lectures devoted to Thomas Aquinas.
 

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Contents

James A Weisheipl
1
The Setting of the Summa theologiae of Saint Thomas 1982
19
Who Read Thomas Aquinas? 1991
39
The Alleged Aristotelianism of Thomas Aquinas 1990
71
Propositions and Parables 1979
107
Thomas Aquinas on the Divine Ideas 1993
125
Saint Thomas on Law 1988
163
Thomas Aquinas Spirituality 1984
179
Christian Existence According to Thomas Aquinas 1989
204
General Index
231
Notes on the Contributors
244
Copyright

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About the author (2008)

Born in Paris, Etienne Gilson was educated at the University of Paris. He became professor of medieval philosophy at the Sorbonne in 1921, and in 1932 was appointed to the chair in medieval philosophy at the College de France. In 1929 he cooperated with the members of the Congregation of Priests of St. Basil, in Toronto, Canada, to found the Pontifical Institute of Medieval Studies in association with St. Michael's College at the University of Toronto. Gilson served as professor and director of studies at the institute. Like his fellow countryman Jacques Maritain, Etienne Gilson was a neo-Thomist for whom Christian revelation is an indispensable auxiliary to reason, and on faith he accepted Christian doctrine as advocated by the Roman Catholic church. At the same time, like St. Thomas Aquinas, he accorded reason a wide compass of operation, maintaining that it could demonstrate the existence of God and the necessity of revelation, with which he considered it compatible. Why anything exists is a question that science cannot answer and may even deem senseless. Gilson found the answer to be that "each and every particular existing thing depends for its existence on a pure Act of existence." God is the supreme Act of existing. An authority on the Christian philosophy of the Middle Ages, Gilson lectured widely on theology, art, the history of ideas, and the medieval world.

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