As St. Thomas was influenced by Aristotle, he then had to appreciate what Aristotle believed. Aristotle was a firm believer that knowledge was knowledge of nature. In order to understand how things in nature were created, he then creates the four causes and calls the “good”, the prime mover. Each of the four causes are designed to define how an object is created. Starting with the material cause, Aristotle asks the question of what is the object made of. Secondly, the formal cause, asking what is the object essentially. Thirdly, the efficient cause, asking what brought this object about. Lastly, the final cause, asking what is the object made for. Taking all this information in, St. Thomas begins to understand that in order for all these causes to be true, and for items to exist, there has to be designer.
Upon understanding the four causes, take a statue for example. What is the statue made of (material cause)? A statue can be made of ...
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...in how did that oak tree become come into existence in order to achieve that particular goal? Going back to the third (formal) cause of Aristotle’s four causes, that oak tree has a designer. To Aquinas God was the answer. God was the designer of the oak tree. He also gave the oak tree the purpose grow acorns. This example can also be brought to describe the existence of humans. We all have a goal in life, but in order for that goal to be brought about we needed to exist first.
St. Thomas Aquinas went into great lengths to present his five proofs of God’s existence. Attaching some of his own ideas to his great influence, Aristotle, he is able to explain with reasonably why our and other existence explain God’s. To Aquinas, even though we cannot see or feel God, our existence should be enough in order to explain why something greater than us has to existence first.
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- St. Thomas Aquinas, a catholic priest, was a philosopher, theologian, and scholar. Along with some of his own ideas, he was also influenced by the previous famous philosopher- Aristotle. Under the influence of Aristotle, Aquinas asked himself the question of whether we can have knowledge of God’s existence or not. Then he forms the argument of the five proofs of God’s existence. In order to prove these five existence he also includes Aristotle’s four causes- material cause, formal cause, efficient cause, and final cause.... [tags: Aristotle, Causality, Metaphysics, Existence]
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