Utrum prudentia praestituat finem virtutibus moralibus
Whether prudence appoints the end to moral virtues?
Ad sextum sic proceditur. Videtur quod prudentia praestituat finem virtutibus moralibus. Cum enim prudentia sit in ratione, virtus autem moralis in vi appetitiva, videtur quod hoc modo se habeat prudentia ad virtutem moralem sicut ratio ad vim appetitivam. Sed ratio praestituit finem potentiae appetitivae. Ergo prudentia praestituit finem virtutibus moralibus.
Objection 1: It would seem that prudence appoints the end to moral virtues. Since prudence is in the reason, while moral virtue is in the appetite, it seems that prudence stands in relation to moral virtue, as reason to the appetite. Now reason appoints the end to the appetitive power. Therefore prudence appoints the end to the moral virtues.
Praeterea, homo excedit res irrationales secundum rationem, sed secundum alia cum eis communicat. Sic igitur se habent aliae partes hominis ad rationem sicut se habent creaturae irrationales ad hominem. Sed homo est finis creaturarum irrationalium ut dicitur in I Politic. ergo omnes aliae partes hominis ordinantur ad rationem sicut ad finem. Sed prudentia est recta ratio agibilium, ut dictum est. Ergo omnia agibilia ordinantur ad prudentiam sicut ad finem. Ipsa ergo praestituit finem omnibus virtutibus moralibus.
Obj. 2: Further, man surpasses irrational beings by his reason, but he has other things in common with them. Accordingly the other parts of man are in relation to his reason, what man is in relation to irrational creatures. Now man is the end of irrational creatures, according to Polit. i, 3. Therefore all the other parts of man are directed to reason as to their end. But prudence is right reason applied to action, as stated above (A. 2). Therefore all actions are directed to prudence as their end. Therefore prudence appoints the end to all moral virtues.
Praeterea, proprium est virtutis vel artis seu potentiae ad quam pertinet finis ut praecipiat aliis virtutibus seu artibus ad quas pertinent ea quae sunt ad finem. Sed prudentia disponit de aliis virtutibus moralibus et praecipit eis. Ergo praestituit eis finem.
Obj. 3: Further, it belongs to the virtue, art, or power that is concerned about the end, to command the virtues or arts that are concerned about the means. Now prudence disposes of the other moral virtues, and commands them. Therefore it appoints their end to them.
Sed contra est quod philosophus dicit, in VI Ethic., quod virtus moralis intentionem finis facit rectam, prudentia autem quae ad hanc. Ergo ad prudentiam non pertinet praestituere finem virtutibus moralibus, sed solum disponere de his quae sunt ad finem.
On the contrary, The Philosopher says (Ethic. vi, 12) that moral virtue ensures the rectitude of the intention of the end, while prudence ensures the rectitude of the means. Therefore it does not belong to prudence to appoint the end to moral virtues, but only to regulate the means.
Respondeo dicendum quod finis virtutum moralium est bonum humanum. Bonum autem humanae animae est secundum rationem esse; ut patet per Dionysium, IV cap. de Div. Nom. Unde necesse est quod fines moralium virtutum praeexistant in ratione.
I answer that, The end of moral virtues is human good. Now the good of the human soul is to be in accord with reason, as Dionysius declares (Div. Nom. iv). Wherefore the ends of moral virtue must of necessity pre-exist in the reason.
Sicut autem in ratione speculativa sunt quaedam ut naturaliter nota, quorum est intellectus; et quaedam quae per illa innotescunt, scilicet conclusiones, quarum est scientia, ita in ratione practica praeexistunt quaedam ut principia naturaliter nota, et huiusmodi sunt fines virtutum moralium, quia finis se habet in operabilibus sicut principium in speculativis, ut supra habitum est; et quaedam sunt in ratione practica ut conclusiones, et huiusmodi sunt ea quae sunt ad finem, in quae pervenimus ex ipsis finibus. Et horum est prudentia, applicans universalia principia ad particulares conclusiones operabilium. Et ideo ad prudentiam non pertinet praestituere finem virtutibus moralibus, sed solum disponere de his quae sunt ad finem.
Now, just as, in the speculative reason, there are certain things naturally known, about which is understanding, and certain things of which we obtain knowledge through them, viz. conclusions, about which is science, so in the practical reason, certain things pre-exist, as naturally known principles, and such are the ends of the moral virtues, since the end is in practical matters what principles are in speculative matters, as stated above (Q. 23, A. 7, ad 2; I-II, Q. 13, A. 3); while certain things are in the practical reason by way of conclusions, and such are the means which we gather from the ends themselves. About these is prudence, which applies universal principles to the particular conclusions of practical matters. Consequently it does not belong to prudence to appoint the end to moral virtues, but only to regulate the means.
Ad primum ergo dicendum quod virtutibus moralibus praestituit finem ratio naturalis quae dicitur synderesis, ut in primo habitum est, non autem prudentia, ratione iam dicta.
Reply Obj. 1: Natural reason known by the name of synderesis appoints the end to moral virtues, as stated above (I, Q. 79, A. 12): but prudence does not do this for the reason given above.
Et per hoc etiam patet responsio ad secundum.
This suffices for the Reply to the Second Objection.
Ad tertium dicendum quod finis non pertinet ad virtutes morales tanquam ipsae praestituant finem, sed quia tendunt in finem a ratione naturali praestitutum. Ad quod iuvantur per prudentiam, quae eis viam parat, disponendo ea quae sunt ad finem. Unde relinquitur quod prudentia sit nobilior virtutibus moralibus, et moveat eas. Sed synderesis movet prudentiam, sicut intellectus principiorum scientiam.
Reply Obj. 3: The end concerns the moral virtues, not as though they appointed the end, but because they tend to the end which is appointed by natural reason. In this they are helped by prudence, which prepares the way for them, by disposing the means. Hence it follows that prudence is more excellent than the moral virtues, and moves them: yet synderesis moves prudence, just as the understanding of principles moves science.
Utrum ad prudentiam pertineat invenire medium in virtutibus moralibus
Whether it belongs to prudence to find the mean in moral virtues?
Ad septimum sic proceditur. Videtur quod ad prudentiam non pertineat invenire medium in virtutibus moralibus. Consequi enim medium est finis moralium virtutum. Sed prudentia non praestituit finem moralibus virtutibus, ut ostensum est. Ergo non invenit in eis medium.
Objection 1: It would seem that it does not belong to prudence to find the mean in moral virtues. For the achievement of the mean is the end of moral virtues. But prudence does not appoint the end to moral virtues, as shown above (A. 6). Therefore it does not find the mean in them.
Praeterea, illud quod est per se non videtur causam habere, sed ipsum esse est sui ipsius causa, quia unumquodque dicitur esse per causam suam. Sed existere in medio convenit virtuti morali per se, quasi positum in eius definitione, ut ex dictis patet. Non ergo prudentia causat medium in virtutibus moralibus.
Obj. 2: Further, that which of itself has being, would seem to have no cause, but its very being is its cause, since a thing is said to have being by reason of its cause. Now to follow the mean belongs to moral virtue by reason of itself, as part of its definition, as shown above (A. 5, Obj. 1). Therefore prudence does not cause the mean in moral virtues.
Praeterea, prudentia operatur secundum modum rationis. Sed virtus moralis tendit ad medium per modum naturae, quia ut Tullius dicit, in II Rhet., virtus est habitus per modum naturae rationi consentaneus. Ergo prudentia non praestituit medium virtutibus moralibus.
Obj. 3: Further, prudence works after the manner of reason. But moral virtue tends to the mean after the manner of nature, because, as Tully states (De Invent. Rhet. ii, 53), virtue is a habit like a second nature in accord with reason. Therefore prudence does not appoint the mean to moral virtues.
Sed contra est quod in supraposita definitione virtutis moralis dicitur quod est in medietate existens determinata ratione prout sapiens determinabit.
On the contrary, In the foregoing definition of moral virtue (A. 5, Obj. 1) it is stated that it follows a mean appointed by reason . . . even as a wise man decides.
Respondeo dicendum quod hoc ipsum quod est conformari rationi rectae est finis proprius cuiuslibet moralis virtutis, temperantia enim hoc intendit, ne propter concupiscentias homo divertat a ratione; et similiter fortitudo ne a recto iudicio rationis divertat propter timorem vel audaciam. Et hic finis praestitutus est homini secundum naturalem rationem, naturalis enim ratio dictat unicuique ut secundum rationem operetur.
I answer that, The proper end of each moral virtue consists precisely in conformity with right reason. For temperance intends that man should not stray from reason for the sake of his concupiscences; fortitude, that he should not stray from the right judgment of reason through fear or daring. Moreover this end is appointed to man according to natural reason, since natural reason dictates to each one that he should act according to reason.
Sed qualiter et per quae homo in operando attingat medium rationis pertinet ad dispositionem prudentiae. Licet enim attingere medium sit finis virtutis moralis, tamen per rectam dispositionem eorum quae sunt ad finem medium invenitur.
But it belongs to the ruling of prudence to decide in what manner and by what means man shall obtain the mean of reason in his deeds. For though the attainment of the mean is the end of a moral virtue, yet this mean is found by the right disposition of these things that are directed to the end.
Et per hoc patet responsio ad primum.
This suffices for the Reply to the First Objection.
Ad secundum dicendum quod sicut agens naturale facit ut forma sit in materia, non tamen facit ut formae conveniant ea quae per se ei insunt; ita etiam prudentia medium constituit in passionibus et operationibus, non tamen facit quod medium quaerere conveniat virtuti.
Reply Obj. 2: Just as a natural agent makes form to be in matter, yet does not make that which is essential to the form to belong to it, so too, prudence appoints the mean in passions and operations, and yet does not make the searching of the mean to belong to virtue.
Ad tertium dicendum quod virtus moralis per modum naturae intendit pervenire ad medium. Sed quia medium non eodem modo invenitur in omnibus, ideo inclinatio naturae, quae semper eodem modo operatur, ad hoc non sufficit, sed requiritur ratio prudentiae.
Reply Obj. 3: Moral virtue after the manner of nature intends to attain the mean. Since, however, the mean as such is not found in all matters after the same manner, it follows that the inclination of nature which ever works in the same manner, does not suffice for this purpose, and so the ruling of prudence is required.
Utrum praecipere sit principalis actus prudentiae
Whether command is the chief act of prudence?
Ad octavum sic proceditur. Videtur quod praecipere non sit principalis actus prudentiae. Praecipere enim pertinet ad bona quae sunt fienda. Sed Augustinus, XIV de Trin., ponit actum prudentiae praecavere insidias. Ergo praecipere non est principalis actus prudentiae.
Objection 1: It would seem that command is not the chief act of prudence. For command regards the good to be ensued. Now Augustine (De Trin. xiv, 9) states that it is an act of prudence to avoid ambushes. Therefore command is not the chief act of prudence.
Praeterea, Philosophus dicit, in VI Ethic., quod prudentis videtur esse bene consiliari. Sed alius actus videtur esse consiliari et praecipere, ut ex supradictis patet. Ergo prudentiae principalis actus non est praecipere.
Obj. 2: Further, the Philosopher says (Ethic. vi, 5) that the prudent man takes good counsel. Now to take counsel and to command seem to be different acts, as appears from what has been said above (I-II, Q. 57, A. 6). Therefore command is not the chief act of prudence.
Praeterea, praecipere, vel imperare, videtur pertinere ad voluntatem, cuius obiectum est finis et quae movet alias potentias animae. Sed prudentia non est in voluntate, sed in ratione. Ergo prudentiae actus non est praecipere.
Obj. 3: Further, it seems to belong to the will to command and to rule, since the will has the end for its object, and moves the other powers of the soul. Now prudence is not in the will, but in the reason. Therefore command is not an act of prudence.
Sed contra est quod Philosophus dicit, in VI Ethic., quod prudentia praeceptiva est.
On the contrary, The Philosopher says (Ethic. vi, 10) that prudence commands.
Respondeo dicendum quod prudentia est recta ratio agibilium, ut supra dictum est. Unde oportet quod ille sit praecipuus actus prudentiae qui est praecipuus actus rationis agibilium. Cuius quidem sunt tres actus. Quorum primus est consiliari, quod pertinet ad inventionem, nam consiliari est quaerere, ut supra habitum est. Secundus actus est iudicare de inventis, et hic sistit speculativa ratio. Sed practica ratio, quae ordinatur ad opus, procedit ulterius et est tertius actus eius praecipere, qui quidem actus consistit in applicatione consiliatorum et iudicatorum ad operandum. Et quia iste actus est propinquior fini rationis practicae, inde est quod iste est principalis actus rationis practicae, et per consequens prudentiae.
I answer that, Prudence is right reason applied to action, as stated above (A. 2). Hence that which is the chief act of reason in regard to action must needs be the chief act of prudence. Now there are three such acts. The first is to take counsel, which belongs to discovery, for counsel is an act of inquiry, as stated above (I-II, Q. 14, A. 1). The second act is to judge of what one has discovered, and this is an act of the speculative reason. But the practical reason, which is directed to action, goes further, and its third act is to command, which act consists in applying to action the things counselled and judged. And since this act approaches nearer to the end of the practical reason, it follows that it is the chief act of the practical reason, and consequently of prudence.
Et huius signum est quod perfectio artis consistit in iudicando, non autem in praecipiendo. Ideo reputatur melior artifex qui volens peccat in arte, quasi habens rectum iudicium, quam qui peccat nolens, quod videtur esse ex defectu iudicii. Sed in prudentia est e converso, ut dicitur in VI Ethic., imprudentior enim est qui volens peccat, quasi deficiens in principali actu prudentiae, qui est praecipere, quam qui peccat nolens.
In confirmation of this we find that the perfection of art consists in judging and not in commanding: wherefore he who sins voluntarily against his craft is reputed a better craftsman than he who does so involuntarily, because the former seems to do so from right judgment, and the latter from a defective judgment. On the other hand it is the reverse in prudence, as stated in Ethic. vi, 5, for it is more imprudent to sin voluntarily, since this is to be lacking in the chief act of prudence, viz. command, than to sin involuntarily.
Ad primum ergo dicendum quod actus praecipiendi se extendit et ad bona prosequenda et ad mala cavenda. Et tamen praecavere insidias non attribuit Augustinus prudentiae quasi principalem actum ipsius, sed quia iste actus prudentiae non manet in patria.
Reply Obj. 1: The act of command extends both to the ensuing of good and to the avoidance of evil. Nevertheless Augustine ascribes the avoidance of ambushes to prudence, not as its chief act, but as an act of prudence that does not continue in heaven.
Ad secundum dicendum quod bonitas consilii requiritur ut ea quae sunt bene inventa applicentur ad opus. Et ideo praecipere pertinet ad prudentiam, quae est bene consiliativa.
Reply Obj. 2: Good counsel is required in order that the good things discovered may be applied to action: wherefore command belongs to prudence which takes good counsel.
Ad tertium dicendum quod movere absolute pertinet ad voluntatem. Sed praecipere importat motionem cum quadam ordinatione. Et ideo est actus rationis, ut supra dictum est.
Reply Obj. 3: Simply to move belongs to the will: but command denotes motion together with a kind of ordering, wherefore it is an act of the reason, as stated above (I-II, Q. 17, A. 1).
Utrum sollicitudo pertineat ad prudentiam
Whether solicitude belongs to prudence?
Ad nonum sic proceditur. Videtur quod sollicitudo non pertineat ad prudentiam. Sollicitudo enim inquietudinem quandam importat, dicit enim Isidorus, in libro Etymol., quod sollicitus dicitur qui est inquietus. Sed motio maxime pertinet ad vim appetitivam. Ergo et sollicitudo. Sed prudentia non est in vi appetitiva, sed in ratione, ut supra habitum est. Ergo sollicitudo non pertinet ad prudentiam.
Objection 1: It would seem that solicitude does not belong to prudence. For solicitude implies disquiet, wherefore Isidore says (Etym. x) that a solicitous man is a restless man. Now motion belongs chiefly to the appetitive power: wherefore solicitude does also. But prudence is not in the appetitive power, but in the reason, as stated above (A. 1). Therefore solicitude does not belong to prudence.