Thursday, September 6, 2007

Scotistic Infelicities

I came across a rather odd passage, that seems to contradict his very explicit comments elsewhere (in d.8). He seems to be saying that a common univocal term, in this case 'voluntas', is related to the particular term or to the term conceived with its intrinsic mode in the way in which genus and species are related, that is, by a contraction by means of a specific difference. In d. 8 he argues precisely against this, as it entails composition in God. Obviously, here it is only serving as an example and may not meant to be taken as a directly analogous case. But the terminology is the same in both passages: Specific difference, pure or irreducible perfections (perfectio simpliciter). Here it is, I've only translated the last bit.

Ord. II d. 34-37 q. 1-5, n. `17-28.
...quo modo differentia dicitur accidere generi. Hoc enim modo illud quo voluntas nostra specifice est ‘haec voluntas,’ accidit ‘voluntati in communi’, quia ‘voluntas in communi’ est perfectio simpliciter (propter quod ponitur formaliter in Deo), et voluntas sub ista ratione non est proxima causa etiam contingens respectu peccati, quia tunc quodlibet inferius sub ea haberet talem rationem causalitatis, et ita voluntas divina. Sed voluntas, contracta per differentiam aliquam ad voluntatem creatam (quam circum loquimur per hoc quod est ‘limitatum’), est proxima causa defectiva et per accidens respectu peccati...

Ita in proposito. Illam differentiam specificam qua ‘voluntas in communi’ contrahitur ad voluntatem creatam (quae contractio vel differentia nos modo latet), circum loquimur per hoc quod est ‘esse limitatum’ vel ‘defectible’ vel ‘ex nihilo’....

"So is in the question at hand. We speak about that specific difference by which the will in common is contracted to the created will (the contraction or difference is not known to us now)..."


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