Abelard and Aquinas Essay

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Peter Abelard was a renowned dialectician from 1079 to 1142. He subjected theological doctrines to logical analysis. In other words, he used rational argument to discover truth. Saint Thomas Aquinas, was a believer in the power of reason, giving St. Augustine's theory an alternate approach. He taught in Paris and Italy during the years 1225 to 1274. Both of these new age thinkers changed the way Catholic followers viewed the "natural world."

Peter Abelard was one of the new thinkers that applied scholasticism to his theological aspects. According to the excerpt "Scholastic thinkers assumed that some teachings of Christianity, which thy accepted as true by faith, could also be demonstrated to be true by reason" (238). Peter
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His greatest work was

Summa Theologica. In this work he attempted to merge faith with reason, and the works of Aristotle with the scriptures. Historically, he is seen as an alternate approach to St. Augustine's view of the city of man versus the city of God. Augustine and Aquinas shared the belief that the original sin was Adam and Eve's venture through the garden of good and evil. On page 239, "Aquinas held that both faith and reason came from God, they were not in opposition to each other; properly understood, they supported each other.." He did not want people to shun the idea of reason, he wanted the world to see that it was not evil. Combining Christianity with Aristotelian knowledge, he shed light upon the difficulty to distinguish common ground between the natural world and the supernatural world. The excerpt is divided into two different sections, Whether, Besides the Philosophical Sciences, Any Further Doctrine Is Required? and Whether God Exists?. In the second section he proves five ways God exists by using Aristotle's technique in philosophy, they are motion, nature of efficient cause, possibility and necessity, the graduation to be found in things, and the governance of the world. The way he words his logic is extremely confusing. For example, "Now it is not possible that the same thing should be at one in actuality and potentiality in the same respect, but only in different respects. For what is actually hot cannot
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