Ockham on the Source of Divine Production

JT Paasch

in Divine Production in Late Medieval Trinitarian Theology

Published in print March 2012 | ISBN: 9780199646371
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191739293 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Theological Monographs

Ockham on the Source of Divine Production

Show Summary Details


Ockham argues that we should identify the source of productive activity in the same way we identify the cause of an effect. For Ockham, the cause of an effect is that which must be posited in order to posit the effect, and without which the effect cannot be posited at all. Similarly, says Ockham, the source of a production is that which must be posited in order to posit that production, and without which that production cannot be posited. In the divine case, that is just the divine essence, but this does not mean that the divine essence produces anything, nor does it mean that the productions themselves are produced. On the contrary, says Ockham, the divine essence is simply the source of production, whereas the two sides of each production (i.e. the correlative activities of “producing another” and “being produced”) serve to constitute a distinct producer and product.

Keywords: William Ockham; Peter Aureol; efficient causality; production; power; basis; action; divine essence; Trinity

Chapter.  5233 words. 

Subjects: Christian Theology

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.