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Aquinas's Way to GodThe Proof in De Ente et Essentia$
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Gaven Kerr

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780190224806

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190224806.001.0001

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The Causal Principle

The Causal Principle

(p.93) 4 The Causal Principle
Aquinas's Way to God

OP Gaven Kerr

Oxford University Press

This chapter delves thoroughly into the proof of God proper in the De Ente. It thus opens with an analysis of Aquinas’s causal principle, with which he begins his argument, to the effect that for any property possessed non-essentially there is a cause for such a property. This principle is defended against the charge that there could be non-essential, uncaused properties. Next, the more general issue of Aquinas’s causal realism is addressed and defended, focussing especially on post-Humean and post-Kantian challenges to such causal realism. The chapter ends with an articulation of how Aquinas applies his causal principle to the case of esse, thereby inaugurating a causal regress in terms of causes of esse.

Keywords:   cause, effect, causal realism, Hume, Kant

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