Many times in our lives we ask if God truly exists. We marvel how can a Great Being be real if I cannot see or feel him? Many people doubt God’s existence. And some even deny that he even exists. But St. Thomas Aquinas, a Catholic Church scholar and expert proved God’s existence not by myths but by the power of philosophy.
Who is St. Thomas?
St. Thomas is one of the greatest teachers and philosophers known in the Western World. He was a champion of God and the Catholic faith. At the time when Gentiles and non-believers expanded, St. Thomas proved the existence of God; not by dogma but by logic and reasoning.
St. Thomas Aquinas was born around the year 1225 in Roccasecca, Italy. St. Thomas was one of the eight children of a wealthy family. His father was the count of Aquino, named Landulph and his mother was the countess of Teano named Theodora. His lineage dates back to the great families of Emperor Henry I and Henry VI. Although they were from the emperor’s line, their family were not of high nobility but a still had considerable riches.
When his mother was pregnant with him, a hermit told her that Thomas would one day be a holy man and would enter the Order of Friars. The hermit said that Thomas will be a scholar and would achieve great heights in both wisdom and holiness.
At the age of five, Thomas was sent to the Abbey in Monte Cassino where he stayed at until he was 13. There he learned the scriptures. He was often seen as a pleasant and intuitive boy who often asked “What is God?”.
Growth in Spirit
From the age 13 to 18, St. Thomas attended a Benedictine House in Naples. There he learned about philosophy and wanted to move towards the life of spiritual service rather being sheltered all the time in an Abbey.
In 1239, he started going to the University of Naples. In 1243, he joined the Dominican monks and received his habit in 1244. His family did not agree with this decision. They kidnapped Thomas and imprisoned him in San Giovanni. He did not change his mind about his Dominican beliefs and was released in 1245. From there he continued to learn with the Dominicans until 1252. He was ordained as a priest in 1250.
Because Thomas was always quiet and did not speak much, many of his peers thought that he was slow and stupid. But his teacher, St. Albertus Magnus saw his thesis and proclaimed Thomas to be one of his brightest students.
Psychic, Psyche and the Soul
St Thomas Aquinas recognised that all living organisms have a soul or ‘anima’ although he felt that only human souls go on to be immortal. For those interested in metaphysics and psychic powers as well as the wellbeing of the psychological whole, Aquinas has useful things to offer us. Much of what he says about psychic powers can be related to what Buddha said about Abijna or the six psychic/higher powers. Whilst the Bible sometimes gives us conflicting messages about whether or not it is acceptable to make use of psychic powers, my feeling is that if it is done with a pure heart and with God in mind, that it is ok, so if you are looking to get a good psychic reading then you might want to try this oranum review by a buddhist.
Another interesting point about Thomas Aquinas is that unlike Descartes and other scholars, he tries to avoid the dualism of seeing the soul and body as separate and almost independent entities. And yet at the same time he realises that they are not the same but instead intricately intwined. Both require each other but yet the intellect is not the soul alone:
“because it is one and the same man who is conscious both that he understands and that he senses. But one cannot sense without a body, and therefore the body must be some part of man. ” (Summa Theologiae Ia 76, 1).
In this way Aquinas seems very ahead of his time, as this is the kind of position that many peoples of spirituality currently reside comfortably within today.
Proving God Logically
In those years, many people believed that God and his existence was difficult to explain in logical way. But Thomas was able to prove God through his writing such as the Summa Theologica and Summa Contra Gentiles. He proved God was existent by writing his Five Ways:
1. The unmoved mover;
2. The first cause;
3. The argument from contingency;
4. The argument from degree;
5. The teleological argument (“argument from design”).
Through this five ways, one can logically confer that God does exist.
1. The Unmoved Mover – St. Thomas argues that God exists because all motion comes from a source of motion. The world is in motion and all the entities in space are also in motion. So if things move, then someone moved them. This is the source of all movement. And this source is the Unmoved Mover, which can refer to as God.
2. The First Cause – All things come from something. The egg comes from the chicken but the chicken also comes from the egg. And if everything comes from something, then it means that there is an original source of everything. This is the Main Source. The Main Source of all things is then therefore God.
3. The Argument of Contingency – The argument of contingency means that everything is contingent or everything has an end and can die or perish. But in the case that all things can die or disappear, why is that things do still exist now? It all means that there is something that does is not perishable; there is something infinite and in-contingent. This Incontingent Matter helps the cycle of continuity of all matter. This is the One who Never dies but rather ensures everything continues.
4. The Argument of Degree – The argument of degree is also known as the argument of perfection. It states that we compare the perfection, goodness, beauty, kindness of things. There is always something better than one thing. Like if you see a beautiful woman there is always someone who looks better than her. This only means that if there is always something more beautiful than something then there is a source to which we can compare all greatness to. It means that there is this one Perfect Being that is the source of all that is great and beautiful.
5. The Teleological Argument or the Argument of Non-sentient things – This arguments states that things who do not have reasoning like trees, rocks, water and all other things in this world that do not think behave in regular way. They cannot think but they can have predictable behavior. Thus if their behavior are all predictable, then it means that there is someone who predicts their movement. There is God to govern such things.
St. Thomas was a champion of the Catholic Church. He wanted people to stay with God when modern science and philosophy tells them that God does not exist. Through his teachings, he was able to help the human mind see the truth: GOD DOES EXIST