Thursday, October 28, 2010

Bilocation: Albert the Great


This is partly in response to the discussion found here.

Albert the Great

In IV Sententiae, d. 44, A, art. 4: Whether two glorified bodies can be in the same place [at the same time]

It seems that they can from the words of the Masters, for:

  1. The ancients say that the glorified body has its quantity at the command of the will: therefore, if it wills, it can fill a place through itself: and if it does not will, it does not fill. Therefore, it is able to be in the same place with another if it wills. And that it has quantity at its command is proved this way: the glorified are beatified [and the beatified have all things through charity, which is located in the will], therefore it has all at will, therefore even quantity.
  2. Further, it has its visibility at will, therefore quantity, for they are seen when they will and not seen when they will. [Perhaps this refers to saints appearing to people on earth.]

On the contrary: to this it is objected: it is impossible for quantity to remain quantity unless it becomes lesser in its contraction, or greater in its extension [and to be in two places implies greater extension]: therefore it is impossible to have quantity at will that is greater and lesser [in some respect], and with another body in the same place, and per se in place [for this would imply greater extension without an increase in quantity].

Responsio: To this, I think it must be said [N.B. the “puto” is unusual for him in a response] that the glorified body does not have its quantity at will such that its quantity may be varied at will: but it does have quantity and quality at will, for concerning these nothing may be contrary to their will.

Regarding the proof, where it is said that the beatified have all things at will, it must be said that these things are understood regarding those things which are of the substance of beatitude: and to have other things, for concerning these nothing may be contrary to their will. [Perhaps he is referring to the gifts of the glorified body, such as clarity, agility, etc. Such are had at will and cannot be taken away from them]


Michael Sullivan said...

Good. Reading the opening arguments I was going, "Hey, wait a minute!" Then I anticipated Albert's own response. I was relieved when I got to it.

What silly undergraduate said that since the blessed have all things voluntarily therefore they can will to not follow the laws of nature?

awatkins909 said...

I have heard of many saints having the ability of bilocation.

Asello Guzman said...

Some of the saints said to have bilocated: St. Martin de Porres, St. Alphonsus Liguori, St. Padre Pio.

The question is, how is bilocation possible? Is it truly being in two places at the same time? Another question: can two bodies be in the same place at the same time in the same respect?

Lee Faber said...

Isn't there another problem here? The saints who have bilocated did not possess glorified bodies... or did they?