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Medieval Philosophy - Essay Example

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Aquinas believes that motion to be an easy way of proving the existence of God. He says that “in nature things that could either exist or not exist, since they are found to be…
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Medieval Philosophy
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Medieval Philosophy

Aquinas further says that “for what which can one day cease to exist must at some time have not existed” (Bowie, 59).
For all creatures that do exist, there must have been some time when they were not in life, a time when the first butterfly, for instance, came into existence. Aquinas proposes that butterflies weren’t always fluttering about, but rather that a first butterfly was created from which all following butterflies were procreated. Consequently, the bigger question turning to be what caused the creation of the first butterfly? Aquinas said: “If everything could cease to exist, then at one time there could have been nothing in existence” (Bowie, 59). This indicates that since all things in nature can cease to exist, or to never begin to exist, then at one time there would have been nothing in existence, since that the first thing came into life and procreated all successors. To this, Aquinas states that “if this were true, even now there would be nothing in existence, because that which does not exist only begins to exist by something already existing” (Bowie, 59). Thus, this indicates that if there was nothing in being, then there would be nothing in existence now, but we know this is not correct due to the immense amount of unique animals and plants on Earth, not to mention the immensity of space and surrounding galaxies. (Gilson, 1956)
Anything in motion, according to Aquinas, is moved by something else. He then describes one type of motion as the diminution of something from potentiality to realism, and states that nothing can make this movement apart from a thing that is already in realism in the same esteem as the first object is in potentiality. For instance, something which is in fact hot, like flames, makes something which is potentially hot, like wood, to be really hot. (Weisheipl, 1974)
Clearly stated, it is obvious to realize that those beings that can’t owe their existence ... Read More
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