The Soul's Anatomy

Norman Kretzmann

in The Metaphysics of Creation

Published in print October 2001 | ISBN: 9780199246540
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191597879 | DOI:
 The Soul's Anatomy

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A discussion of Aquinas's concern with the metaphysical and psychological aspects of philosophy of mind, which was, in Aquinas's own view, largely a picture of Aristotle's philosophy of mind. Aquinas discusses special features of the soul's union with the body as well as giving a detailed account of the nature and activities of the intellect. The human soul is the intellective (or rational) soul, the culminating substantial form in pre‐natal human development, superseding a merely sensory soul, which supersedes a merely nutritive soul. He has little to say about the powers and activities of the nutritive part of the human soul, but with respect to the cognitive powers, sensory as well as intellective, he takes sensory cognition to be the basis of intellective cognition and the proper objects of intellective cognition to be the real universal natures of sensible things. He argues that the human intellect uses no organ of the body in its distinctively intellective activity.

Keywords: Aquinas; Aristotle; cognition; intellect; nutritive; philosophy of mind; rational; sensory; soul

Chapter.  21459 words. 

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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