Author Topic: St. Thomas gives a classic pro-life argument.  (Read 685 times)

Offline Geremia

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St. Thomas gives a classic pro-life argument.
« on: June 17, 2019, 10:51:08 PM »
Super Sent. lib. 4 d. 32 q. 1 a. 1 ad 4 (=Summa suppl. q. 64 a. 1 ad 4):
Quote
uxor etiam viro leproso tenetur reddere debitum [] et quamvis proles generetur infirma, tamen melius est ei sic esse quam penitus non esse.

a wife is bound to pay the debt even to a leprous husband [] And though the child begotten of them be diseased, it is better to be thus than not at all.
Elige vitam.

Offline Philip G.

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Re: St. Thomas gives a classic pro-life argument.
« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2019, 12:20:33 PM »
Super Sent. lib. 4 d. 32 q. 1 a. 1 ad 4 (=Summa suppl. q. 64 a. 1 ad 4):
Quote
uxor etiam viro leproso tenetur reddere debitum [] et quamvis proles generetur infirma, tamen melius est ei sic esse quam penitus non esse.

a wife is bound to pay the debt even to a leprous husband [] And though the child begotten of them be diseased, it is better to be thus than not at all.
Elige vitam.

I wonder if Thomas ever read the Talmud.  "If you are going to tell a lie, tell a big lie."
« Last Edit: June 21, 2019, 12:24:36 PM by Philip G. »
For the stone shall cry out of the wall; and the timber that is between the joints of the building, shall answer.  Woe to him that buildeth a town with blood, and prepareth a city by iniquity. - Habacuc 2,11-12
 

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Re: St. Thomas gives a classic pro-life argument.
« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2019, 12:42:03 PM »
Super Sent. lib. 4 d. 32 q. 1 a. 1 ad 4 (=Summa suppl. q. 64 a. 1 ad 4):
Quote
uxor etiam viro leproso tenetur reddere debitum [] et quamvis proles generetur infirma, tamen melius est ei sic esse quam penitus non esse.

a wife is bound to pay the debt even to a leprous husband [] And though the child begotten of them be diseased, it is better to be thus than not at all.
Elige vitam.

I wonder if Thomas ever read the Talmud.  "If you are going to tell a lie, tell a big lie."

?
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Offline Chestertonian

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Re: St. Thomas gives a classic pro-life argument.
« Reply #3 on: June 21, 2019, 01:46:22 PM »
didn't he believe that life doesn't begin at conception
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Offline Philip G.

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Re: St. Thomas gives a classic pro-life argument.
« Reply #4 on: June 21, 2019, 02:06:11 PM »
A wife is bound to care for a leprous husband.  But, to bind her to pay the debt is monstrous twofold at the very least.  One, women are vain for lack of a better word, and two, the state is not bound to confess Christ.  To argue it from the standpoint of "better to be thus than not at all" is faulty.  Without homeland, what are we?  Without mother, what are we?

Psalm 26,10 "for my father and my mother have left me, but the lord hath taken me up."  Left to a non christian prince/kingdom, the solution to leprosy is the leper colony.  The leper colony exists because the state is not bound to confess Christ.  Are we going to deny that non christian kingdoms/princes exist(ed) past, present, and/or future?

Isaias 49,15 "can a woman forget her infant, so as not to have pity on the son of her womb?  and if she should forget, yet not will I forget thee."  Yes, there is a strong bond between mother an infant, but, God even admits the possibility that even a mother can reject her child/infant.  Yes, God does say "yet not will I forget thee", but Jesus also said to satan "we are not to tempt the Lord our God" either.  Binding the marital debt on the spouse of a leper is tempting God.  If Jesus heals the leprosy of strangers, and he does, then I have to believe a wife can heal the leprosy of her husband.  In which case, she can then continue rendering the debt.  But, to bind her to almost certain personal infection/disease from sexual relations is evil.  And, to bind her child to the same is likewise.  The end of marriage is the corporal increase of the church.

When you factor leprosy into this equation, the problem is magnified to the extreme.  You have to consider that, and it has to be considered from the standpoint of the fall of Adam and the Redemption of Jesus.  Jesus heals leprosy.  He doesn't multiply it.
« Last Edit: June 21, 2019, 02:11:59 PM by Philip G. »
For the stone shall cry out of the wall; and the timber that is between the joints of the building, shall answer.  Woe to him that buildeth a town with blood, and prepareth a city by iniquity. - Habacuc 2,11-12
 

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Re: St. Thomas gives a classic pro-life argument.
« Reply #5 on: June 21, 2019, 02:15:48 PM »
I'm not following the logic on "better to be thus than not at all."

Non-existence is an ontological zero, so there is neither loss or gain since the "person" does not exist.

"And what use are the victories on the battlefield if we are ourselves are defeated in our innermost personal selves?" - St. Maximilian Kolbe

Providence is a present mystery by which our hope is confirmed and our faith solidified, if we give not into despair or disbelief.
 

Offline Sempronius

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Re: St. Thomas gives a classic pro-life argument.
« Reply #6 on: June 21, 2019, 03:23:49 PM »
didn't he believe that life doesn't begin at conception

They followed aristotelian philosophy and believed life started 40 days after conception. (Remember that I read that sometime ago, but it can be wrong)
 
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Re: St. Thomas gives a classic pro-life argument.
« Reply #7 on: June 21, 2019, 03:53:41 PM »
didn't he believe that life doesn't begin at conception

They followed aristotelian philosophy and believed life started 40 days after conception. (Remember that I read that sometime ago, but it can be wrong)

Which shows the complete lack of biological understanding as affecting spiritual realities in this system as concerns human life in its conception, and its lack of coherence in dealing with the same. 

Aristotelian philosophy demands 1 of 3 types of souls: vegetative, sensitive, or rational.

Conception without a soul is... what? Just matter? If such were true, then abortion prior to ensoulment/animation/quickening would be nothing. It would be worse to kill a plant, frankly. At least a plant would have an anima. Nor, really, am I aware of anything within the system which posits that an unanimated human embryo has a vegetative or sensitive soul. How could it? And if it did, then it would be no worse than killing a plant or a chicken, etc.

Hence, St. Thomas' answer on the Immaculate Conception, which is just wrong, fails to provide guidance in any coherent form of the issue in the supplement (which is spurious anyway as to whether or not he really believed such things at the time of his death, since he wrote very little of the Supplement).

But the reality of Original Sin is to do with the soul (anima), so matter without a soul cannot have Original Sin because the soul doesn't exist. Moreover, only a rational creature can be subject to Original Sin, not just any soul (i.e., an animal cannot be subject, nor a plant). So the answer in the supplement makes very little sense within the accepted Thomistic system at the time of its writing.



"And what use are the victories on the battlefield if we are ourselves are defeated in our innermost personal selves?" - St. Maximilian Kolbe

Providence is a present mystery by which our hope is confirmed and our faith solidified, if we give not into despair or disbelief.
 
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Offline Philip G.

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Re: St. Thomas gives a classic pro-life argument.
« Reply #8 on: June 22, 2019, 03:42:04 AM »
I'm not following the logic on "better to be thus than not at all."

Non-existence is an ontological zero, so there is neither loss or gain since the "person" does not exist.

Matthew 26,24 - "The son of man indeed goeth as it is written of him, but woe to that man by whom the son of man shall be betrayed, it were better for him if that man had not been born". 

For the stone shall cry out of the wall; and the timber that is between the joints of the building, shall answer.  Woe to him that buildeth a town with blood, and prepareth a city by iniquity. - Habacuc 2,11-12
 

Offline Philip G.

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Re: St. Thomas gives a classic pro-life argument.
« Reply #9 on: June 22, 2019, 03:39:11 PM »
This teaching by Thomas Aquinas is so radical that it appears to be a new type of original sin doctrine.  Original sin is passed on from Adam to and through Eve.  And, women are bound to this fate as a result of their sin in giving Adam the forbidden fruit.  This passes on through sex/procreation.  With this doctrine by Aquinas, leprosy passes on from the man into and through the woman and into the child.  But, is woman responsible for leprosy?  What does Woman with a capital W have to do with the occurrence of leprosy?  How is it her fault as with Eve and the forbidden fruit?  If leprosy is not womans fault, then why must she be punished for it by being bound to personal leprosy through sexual relation with a leper husband, and how is she bound to a leper child, mimicking/mocking our doctrine of original sin? 

And, it begs the question.  If Woman is the proximate cause of leprosy, then she has the proximate cure, just as Jesus needed a new Eve, Mary.  But, according to Thomas Aquinas, she is not tasked with curing her leper husband.  No, she is tasked with becoming diseased as well.  She is tasked with multiplying diseased offspring.  According to Aquinas, she is not only tasked, she is bound!  It is a disgusting.  It is wrong.  It is another one of Thomas Aquinas' errors of abstraction. 
« Last Edit: June 22, 2019, 04:17:37 PM by Philip G. »
For the stone shall cry out of the wall; and the timber that is between the joints of the building, shall answer.  Woe to him that buildeth a town with blood, and prepareth a city by iniquity. - Habacuc 2,11-12
 

Offline Kreuzritter

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Re: St. Thomas gives a classic pro-life argument.
« Reply #10 on: June 24, 2019, 06:19:17 AM »
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On the contrary, As the slave is in the power of his master, so is one spouse in the power of the other (1 Cor. 7:4). But a slave is bound by an obligation of precept to pay his master the debt of his service according to Rm. 13:7, "Render . . . to all men their dues, tribute to whom tribute is due," etc. Therefore husband and wife are mutually bound to the payment of the marriage debt.

And that's just question-begging.
 

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Re: St. Thomas gives a classic pro-life argument.
« Reply #11 on: June 24, 2019, 02:48:41 PM »
I would tend to think that, though one might be objectively bound, they would recognize the lack of charity in asking such a thing of a spouse when it would be almost definitely harmful. But I'd have to think about it, and I see no reason to do so since neither my wife or myself have leprosy.
"And what use are the victories on the battlefield if we are ourselves are defeated in our innermost personal selves?" - St. Maximilian Kolbe

Providence is a present mystery by which our hope is confirmed and our faith solidified, if we give not into despair or disbelief.
 
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Offline Philip G.

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Re: St. Thomas gives a classic pro-life argument.
« Reply #12 on: June 25, 2019, 03:57:54 PM »
Does not Mary's fiat imply that even God had to ask?  She is referred to as the spouse of the holy ghost yet already betrothed to St. Joseph. 

Contrast that with the male ruler who demands an heir/a male child, and devours as many wives as it requires in order to get one.  Try as hard as these wives may, they cannot perform a miracle. 

For the wife of the leper, try as hard as she may, "bound" to relations with her leper, she cannot perform a miracle. 

How many women and children must the tyrant sacrifice?  How many women and children must the leper sacrifice? 
For the stone shall cry out of the wall; and the timber that is between the joints of the building, shall answer.  Woe to him that buildeth a town with blood, and prepareth a city by iniquity. - Habacuc 2,11-12
 

Offline Geremia

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Re: St. Thomas gives a classic pro-life argument.
« Reply #13 on: June 30, 2019, 11:28:32 AM »
Another pro-life / anti-contraceptive motif is in St. Thomas's commentary on Matt. 19:18, where he explains why ☧ omitted mentioning the First Tablet's commandments (1st-4th, ∵ he know the rich young man already loved God), but mentions the 5th-8th, and explains why they are ordered that way:
Quote
non homicidium facies, quod est contra vitam in actu; non adulterabis, quod est contra vitam in potentia
Thou shalt do no murder, which is opposed to actual life: Thou shalt not commit adultery, which is opposed to life in potency
(Interestingly, ☧ didn't mention 9th or 10th, and so the rich young man doesn't lie in v. 20 when, although he committed the sin of covetousness, he says "All these have I kept from my youth".)

Existence (≡ divine essence!) is sacred! St. Thomas's pithy summary of the 6th commandment reminded me of that.

Elige vitam semper.

Offline Geremia

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Eugenics isn't always evil.
« Reply #14 on: June 30, 2019, 11:29:13 PM »
Casti Connubii 66:
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66. What is asserted in favor of the social and eugenic "indication" may and must be accepted, provided lawful and upright methods are employed within the proper limits; but to wish to put forward reasons based upon them for the killing of the innocent is unthinkable and contrary to the divine precept promulgated in the words of the Apostle: Evil is not to be done that good may come of it. [Rom., III, 8.]
St. Thomas gives a eugenic argument in Summa suppl. q. 64 a. 3 co. (=Super Sent. lib. 4 d. 32 q. 1 a. 2 qc. 2 co.):
It is "a moral precept" not "to approach to a menstruous woman" "on account of the harm that frequently results to the offspring from such intercourse".