Respondeo dicendum quod, sicut saepius dictum est, angeli illum gradum tenent in substantiis spiritualibus, quem corpora caelestia in substantiis corporeis, nam et caelestes mentes a Dionysio dicuntur. Est autem haec differentia inter caelestia et terrena corpora, quod corpora terrena per mutationem et motum adipiscuntur suam ultimam perfectionem, corpora vero caelestia statim, ex ipsa sua natura, suam ultimam perfectionem habent. Sic igitur et inferiores intellectus, scilicet hominum, per quendam motum et discursum intellectualis operationis perfectionem in cognitione veritatis adipiscuntur; dum scilicet ex uno cognito in aliud cognitum procedunt. Si autem statim in ipsa cognitione principii noti, inspicerent quasi notas omnes conclusiones consequentes, in eis discursus locum non haberet. Et hoc est in angelis, quia statim in illis quae primo naturaliter cognoscunt, inspiciunt omnia quaecumque in eis cognosci possunt.
I answer that, As has often been stated (A. 1; Q. 55, A. 1), the angels hold that grade among spiritual substances which the heavenly bodies hold among corporeal substances: for Dionysius calls them heavenly minds (loc. cit.). Now, the difference between heavenly and earthly bodies is this, that earthly bodies obtain their last perfection by chance and movement: while the heavenly bodies have their last perfection at once from their very nature. So, likewise, the lower, namely, the human, intellects obtain their perfection in the knowledge of truth by a kind of movement and discursive intellectual operation; that is to say, as they advance from one known thing to another. But, if from the knowledge of a known principle they were straightway to perceive as known all its consequent conclusions, then there would be no discursive process at all. Such is the condition of the angels, because in the truths which they know naturally, they at once behold all things whatsoever that can be known in them.
Et ideo dicuntur intellectuales, quia etiam apud nos, ea quae statim naturaliter apprehenduntur, intelligi dicuntur; unde intellectus dicitur habitus primorum principiorum. Animae vero humanae, quae veritatis notitiam per quendam discursum acquirunt, rationales vocantur. Quod quidem contingit ex debilitate intellectualis luminis in eis. Si enim haberent plenitudinem intellectualis luminis, sicut angeli, statim in primo aspectu principiorum totam virtutem eorum comprehenderent, intuendo quidquid ex eis syllogizari posset.
Therefore they are called intellectual beings: because even with ourselves the things which are instantly grasped by the mind are said to be understood; hence intellect is defined as the habit of first principles. But human souls which acquire knowledge of truth by the discursive method are called rational; and this comes of the feebleness of their intellectual light. For if they possessed the fullness of intellectual light, like the angels, then in the first aspect of principles they would at once comprehend their whole range, by perceiving whatever could be reasoned out from them.
Ad primum ergo dicendum quod discursus quendam motum nominat. Omnis autem motus est de uno priori in aliud posterius. Unde discursiva cognitio attenditur secundum quod ex aliquo prius noto devenitur in cognitionem alterius posterius noti, quod prius erat ignotum. Si autem in uno inspecto simul aliud inspiciatur, sicut in speculo inspicitur simul imago rei et res, non est propter hoc cognitio discursiva. Et hoc modo cognoscunt angeli res in Verbo.
Reply Obj. 1: Discursion expresses movement of a kind. Now all movement is from something before to something after. Hence discursive knowledge comes about according as from something previously known one attains to the knowledge of what is afterwards known, and which was previously unknown. But if in the thing perceived something else be seen at the same time, as an object and its image are seen simultaneously in a mirror, it is not discursive knowledge. And in this way the angels know things in the Word.
Ad secundum dicendum quod angeli syllogizare possunt, tanquam syllogismum cognoscentes; et in causis effectus vident, et in effectibus causas, non tamen ita quod cognitionem veritatis ignotae acquirant syllogizando ex causis in causata, et ex causatis in causas.
Reply Obj. 2: The angels can syllogize, in the sense of knowing a syllogism; and they see effects in causes, and causes in effects: yet they do not acquire knowledge of an unknown truth in this way, by syllogizing from causes to effect, or from effect to cause.
Ad tertium dicendum quod experientia in angelis et daemonibus dicitur secundum quandam similitudinem, prout scilicet cognoscunt sensibilia praesentia; tamen absque omni discursu.
Reply Obj. 3: Experience is affirmed of angels and demons simply by way of similitude, forasmuch as they know sensible things which are present, yet without any discursion withal.
Utrum angeli intelligant componendo et dividendo
Whether the angels understand by composing and dividing?
Ad quartum sic proceditur. Videtur quod angeli intelligant componendo et dividendo. Ubi enim est multitudo intellectuum, ibi est compositio intellectuum, ut dicitur in III de Anima. Sed in intellectu angeli est multitudo intellectuum, cum per diversas species diversa intelligat, et non omnia simul. Ergo in intellectu angeli est compositio et divisio.
Objection 1: It would seem that the angels understand by composing and dividing. For, where there is multiplicity of things understood, there is composition of the same, as is said in De Anima iii, text. 21. But there is a multitude of things understood in the angelic mind; because angels apprehend different things by various species, and not all at one time. Therefore there is composition and division in the angel’s mind.
Praeterea, plus distat negatio ab affirmatione, quam quaecumque duae naturae oppositae, quia prima distinctio est per affirmationem et negationem. Sed aliquas naturas distantes angelus non cognoscit per unum, sed per diversas species, ut ex dictis patet. Ergo oportet quod affirmationem et negationem cognoscat per diversa. Et ita videtur quod angelus intelligat componendo et dividendo.
Obj. 2: Further, negation is far more remote from affirmation than any two opposite natures are; because the first of distinctions is that of affirmation and negation. But the angel knows certain distant natures not by one, but by diverse species, as is evident from what was said (A. 2). Therefore he must know affirmation and negation by diverse species. And so it seems that he understands by composing and dividing.
Praeterea, locutio est signum intellectus. Sed angeli hominibus loquentes, proferunt affirmativas et negativas enuntiationes, quae sunt signa compositionis et divisionis in intellectu; ut ex multis locis sacrae Scripturae apparet. Ergo videtur quod angelus intelligat componendo et dividendo.
Obj. 3: Further, speech is a sign of the intellect. But in speaking to men, angels use affirmative and negative expressions, which are signs of composition and of division in the intellect; as is manifest from many passages of Sacred Scripture. Therefore it seems that the angel understands by composing and dividing.
Sed contra est quod Dionysius dicit, VII cap. de Div. Nom., quod virtus intellectualis angelorum resplendet conspicaci divinorum intellectuum simplicitate. Sed simplex intelligentia est sine compositione et divisione, ut dicitur in III de Anima. Ergo angelus intelligit sine compositione et divisione.
On the contrary, Dionysius says (Div. Nom. vii) that the intellectual power of the angel shines forth with the clear simplicity of divine concepts. But a simple intelligence is without composition and division. Therefore the angel understands without composition or division.
Respondeo dicendum quod, sicut in intellectu ratiocinante comparatur conclusio ad principium, ita in intellectu componente et dividente comparatur praedicatum ad subiectum. Si enim intellectus statim in ipso principio videret conclusionis veritatem, nunquam intelligeret discurrendo vel ratiocinando. Similiter si intellectus statim in apprehensione quidditatis subiecti, haberet notitiam de omnibus quae possunt attribui subiecto vel removeri ab eo, nunquam intelligeret componendo et dividendo, sed solum intelligendo quod quid est. Sic igitur patet quod ex eodem provenit quod intellectus noster intelligit discurrendo, et componendo et dividendo, ex hoc scilicet, quod non statim in prima apprehensione alicuius primi apprehensi, potest inspicere quidquid in eo virtute continetur. Quod contingit ex debilitate luminis intellectualis in nobis, sicut dictum est.
I answer that, As in the intellect, when reasoning, the conclusion is compared with the principle, so in the intellect composing and dividing, the predicate is compared with the subject. For if our intellect were to see at once the truth of the conclusion in the principle, it would never understand by discursion and reasoning. In like manner, if the intellect in apprehending the quiddity of the subject were at once to have knowledge of all that can be attributed to, or removed from, the subject, it would never understand by composing and dividing, but only by understanding the essence. Thus it is evident that for the self-same reason our intellect understands by discursion, and by composing and dividing, namely, that in the first apprehension of anything newly apprehended it does not at once grasp all that is virtually contained in it. And this comes from the weakness of the intellectual light within us, as has been said (A. 3).
Unde cum in angelo sit lumen intellectuale perfectum, cum sit speculum purum et clarissimum, ut dicit Dionysius, IV cap. de Div. Nom.; relinquitur quod angelus, sicut non intelligit ratiocinando, ita non intelligit componendo et dividendo. Nihilominus tamen compositionem et divisionem enuntiationum intelligit, sicut et ratiocinationem syllogismorum, intelligit enim composita simpliciter, et mobilia immobiliter, et materialia immaterialiter.
Hence, since the intellectual light is perfect in the angel, for he is a pure and most clear mirror, as Dionysius says (Div. Nom. iv), it follows that as the angel does not understand by reasoning, so neither does he by composing and dividing. Nevertheless, he understands the composition and the division of enunciations, just as he apprehends the reasoning of syllogisms: for he understands simply, such things as are composite, things movable immovably, and material things immaterially.
Ad primum ergo dicendum quod non qualiscumque multitudo intellectuum compositionem causat, sed multitudo illorum intellectuum quorum unum attribuitur alteri, vel removetur ab altero. Angelus autem, intelligendo quidditatem alicuius rei, simul intelligit quidquid ei attribui potest vel removeri ab ea. Unde intelligendo quod quid est, intelligit quidquid nos intelligere possumus et componendo et dividendo, per unum suum simplicem intellectum.
Reply Obj. 1: Not every multitude of things understood causes composition, but a multitude of such things understood that one of them is attributed to, or denied of, another. When an angel apprehends the nature of anything, he at the same time understands whatever can be either attributed to it, or denied of it. Hence, in apprehending a nature, he by one simple perception grasps all that we can learn by composing and dividing.
Ad secundum dicendum quod diversae quidditates rerum minus differunt, quantum ad rationem existendi, quam affirmatio et negatio. Tamen quantum ad rationem cognoscendi, affirmatio et negatio magis conveniunt, quia statim per hoc quod cognoscitur veritas affirmationis, cognoscitur falsitas negationis oppositae.
Reply Obj. 2: The various natures of things differ less as to their mode of existing than do affirmation and negation. Yet, as to the way in which they are known, affirmation and negation have something more in common; because directly the truth of an affirmation is known, the falsehood of the opposite negation is known also.
Ad tertium dicendum quod hoc quod angeli loquuntur enuntiationes affirmativas et negativas, manifestat quod angeli cognoscunt compositionem et divisionem, non autem quod cognoscant componendo et dividendo, sed simpliciter cognoscendo quod quid est.
Reply Obj. 3: The fact that angels use affirmative and negative forms of speech, shows that they know both composition and division: yet not that they know by composing and dividing, but by knowing simply the nature of a thing.
Utrum in intellectu angeli possit esse falsitas
Whether there can be falsehood in the intellect of an angel?
Ad quintum sic proceditur. Videtur quod in intellectu angeli possit esse falsitas. Protervitas enim ad falsitatem pertinet. Sed in daemonibus est phantasia proterva, ut dicit Dionysius, IV cap. de Div. Nom. Ergo videtur quod in angelorum intellectu possit esse falsitas.
Objection 1: It would seem that there can be falsehood in the angel’s intellect. For perversity appertains to falsehood. But, as Dionysius says (Div. Nom. iv), there is a perverted fancy in the demons. Therefore it seems that there can be falsehood in the intellect of the angels.
Praeterea, nescientia est causa falsae aestimationis. Sed in angelis potest esse nescientia, ut Dionysius dicit, VI cap. Eccles. Hier. Ergo videtur quod in eis possit esse falsitas.
Obj. 2: Further, nescience is the cause of estimating falsely. But, as Dionysius says (Eccl. Hier. vi), there can be nescience in the angels. Therefore it seems there can be falsehood in them.
Praeterea, omne quod cadit a veritate sapientiae, et habet rationem depravatam, habet falsitatem vel errorem in suo intellectu. Sed hoc Dionysius dicit de daemonibus, VII cap. de Div. Nom. Ergo videtur quod in intellectu angelorum possit esse falsitas.
Obj. 3: Further, everything which falls short of the truth of wisdom, and which has a depraved reason, has falsehood or error in its intellect. But Dionysius (Div. Nom. vii) affirms this of the demons. Therefore it seems that there can be error in the minds of the angels.
Sed contra, Philosophus dicit, III de Anima, quod intellectus semper verus est. Augustinus etiam dicit, in libro Octoginta trium Quaest., quod nihil intelligitur nisi verum. Sed angeli non cognoscunt aliquid nisi intelligendo. Ergo in angeli cognitione non potest esse deceptio et falsitas.
On the contrary, The Philosopher says (De Anima iii, text. 41) that the intelligence is always true. Augustine likewise says (83 Questions, Q. 32) that nothing but what is true can be the object of intelligence Therefore there can be neither deception nor falsehood in the angel’s knowledge.
Respondeo dicendum quod huius quaestionis veritas aliquatenus ex praemissa dependet. Dictum est enim quod angelus non intelligit componendo et dividendo, sed intelligendo quod quid est. Intellectus autem circa quod quid est semper verus est, sicut et sensus circa proprium obiectum, ut dicitur in III de Anima. Sed per accidens in nobis accidit deceptio et falsitas intelligendo quod quid est, scilicet secundum rationem alicuius compositionis, vel cum definitionem unius rei accipimus ut definitionem alterius; vel cum partes definitionis sibi non cohaerent, sicut si accipiatur pro definitione alicuius rei, animal quadrupes volatile (nullum enim animal tale est); et hoc quidem accidit in compositis, quorum definitio ex diversis sumitur, quorum unum est materiale ad aliud. Sed intelligendo quidditates simplices, ut dicitur in IX Metaphys., non est falsitas, quia vel totaliter non attinguntur, et nihil intelligimus de eis; vel cognoscuntur ut sunt.
I answer that, The truth of this question depends partly upon what has gone before. For it has been said (A. 4) that an angel understands not by composing and dividing, but by understanding what a thing is. Now the intellect is always true as regards what a thing is, just as the sense regarding its proper object, as is said in De Anima iii, text. 26. But by accident, deception and falsehood creep in, when we understand the essence of a thing by some kind of composition, and this happens either when we take the definition of one thing for another, or when the parts of a definition do not hang together, as if we were to accept as the definition of some creature, a four-footed flying beast, for there is no such animal. And this comes about in things composite, the definition of which is drawn from diverse elements, one of which is as matter to the other. But there is no room for error in understanding simple quiddities, as is stated in Metaph. ix, text. 22; for either they are not grasped at all, and so we know nothing respecting them; or else they are known precisely as they exist.
Sic igitur per se non potest esse falsitas aut error aut deceptio in intellectu alicuius angeli; sed per accidens contingit. Alio tamen modo quam in nobis. Nam nos componendo et dividendo quandoque ad intellectum quidditatis pervenimus, sicut cum dividendo vel demonstrando definitionem investigamus. Quod quidem in angelis non contingit; sed per quod quid est rei cognoscunt omnes enuntiationes ad illam rem pertinentes. Manifestum est autem quod quidditas rei potest esse principium cognoscendi respectu eorum quae naturaliter conveniunt rei vel ab ea removentur, non autem eorum quae a supernaturali Dei ordinatione dependent.
So therefore, no falsehood, error, or deception can exist of itself in the mind of any angel; yet it does so happen accidentally; but very differently from the way it befalls us. For we sometimes get at the quiddity of a thing by a composing and dividing process, as when, by division and demonstration, we seek out the truth of a definition. Such is not the method of the angels; but through the (knowledge of the) essence of a thing they know everything that can be said regarding it. Now it is quite evident that the quiddity of a thing can be a source of knowledge with regard to everything belonging to such thing, or excluded from it; but not of what may be dependent on God’s supernatural ordinance.
Angeli igitur boni, habentes rectam voluntatem, per cognitionem quidditatis rei non iudicant de his quae naturaliter ad rem pertinent, nisi salva ordinatione divina. Unde in eis non potest esse falsitas aut error. Daemones vero, per voluntatem perversam subducentes intellectum a divina sapientia, absolute interdum de rebus iudicant secundum naturalem conditionem. Et in his quae naturaliter ad rem pertinent, non decipiuntur. Sed decipi possunt quantum ad ea quae supernaturalia sunt, sicut si considerans hominem mortuum, iudicet eum non resurrecturum; et si videns hominem Christum, iudicet eum non esse Deum.
Consequently, owing to their upright will, from their knowing the nature of every creature, the good angels form no judgments as to the nature of the qualities therein, save under the Divine ordinance; hence there can be no error or falsehood in them. But since the minds of demons are utterly perverted from the Divine wisdom, they at times form their opinions of things simply according to the natural conditions of the same. Nor are they ever deceived as to the natural properties of anything; but they can be misled with regard to supernatural matters; for example, on seeing a dead man, they may suppose that he will not rise again, or, on beholding Christ, they may judge Him not to be God.
Et per hoc patet responsio ad ea quae utrinque obiiciuntur. Nam protervitas daemonum est secundum quod non subduntur divinae sapientiae. Nescientia autem est in angelis, non respectu naturalium cognoscibilium, sed supernaturalium. Patet etiam quod intellectus eius quod quid est semper est verus, nisi per accidens, secundum quod indebite ordinatur ad aliquam compositionem vel divisionem.
From all this the answers to the objections of both sides of the question are evident. For the perversity of the demons comes of their not being subject to the Divine wisdom; while nescience is in the angels as regards things knowable, not naturally but supernaturally. It is, furthermore, evident that their understanding of what a thing is, is always true, save accidentally, according as it is, in an undue manner, referred to some composition or division.
Utrum in angelis sit vespertina neque matutina cognitio
Whether there is a morning and an evening knowledge in the angels?
Ad sextum sic proceditur. Videtur quod in angelis non sit vespertina neque matutina cognitio. Vespere enim et mane admixtionem tenebrarum habent. Sed in cognitione angeli non est aliqua tenebrositas; cum non sit ibi error vel falsitas. Ergo cognitio angeli non debet dici matutina vel vespertina.
Objection 1: It would seem that there is neither an evening nor a morning knowledge in the angels; because evening and morning have an admixture of darkness. But there is no darkness in the knowledge of an angel; since there is no error nor falsehood. Therefore the angelic knowledge ought not to be termed morning and evening knowledge.
Praeterea, inter vespere et mane cadit nox; et inter mane et vespere cadit meridies. Si igitur in angelis cadit cognitio matutina et vespertina, pari ratione videtur quod in eis debeat esse meridiana et nocturna cognitio.
Obj. 2: Further, between evening and morning the night intervenes; while noonday falls between morning and evening. Consequently, if there be a morning and an evening knowledge in the angels, for the same reason it appears that there ought to be a noonday and a night knowledge.
Praeterea, cognitio distinguitur secundum differentiam cognitorum, unde in III de Anima dicit Philosophus quod scientiae secantur quemadmodum et res. Triplex autem est esse rerum, scilicet in Verbo, in propria natura, et in intelligentia angelica, ut Augustinus dicit, II super Gen. ad Litt. Ergo, si ponatur cognitio matutina in angelis et vespertina, propter esse rerum in Verbo et in propria natura; debet etiam in eis poni tertia cognitio, propter esse rerum in intelligentia angelica.
Obj. 3: Further, knowledge is diversified according to the difference of the objects known: hence the Philosopher says (De Anima iii, text. 38), The sciences are divided just as things are. But there is a threefold existence of things: to wit, in the Word; in their own natures; and in the angelic knowledge, as Augustine observes (Gen ad lit. ii, 8). If, therefore, a morning and an evening knowledge be admitted in the angels, because of the existence of things in the Word, and in their own nature, then there ought to be admitted a third class of knowledge, on account of the existence of things in the angelic mind.
Sed contra est quod Augustinus, IV super Gen. ad Litt., et XI de Civ. Dei, distinguit cognitionem angelorum per matutinam et vespertinam.
On the contrary, Augustine (Gen ad lit. iv, 22, 31; De Civ. Dei xi, 7, 20) divides the knowledge of the angels into morning and evening knowledge.
Respondeo dicendum quod hoc quod dicitur de cognitione matutina et vespertina in angelis, introductum est ab Augustino, qui sex dies in quibus Deus legitur fecisse cuncta, Gen. I, intelligi vult non hos usitatos dies qui solis circuitu peraguntur, cum sol quarto die factus legatur; sed unum diem, scilicet cognitionem angelicam sex rerum generibus praesentatam. Sicut autem in die consueto mane est principium diei, vespere autem terminus, ita cognitio ipsius primordialis esse rerum, dicitur cognitio matutina, et haec est secundum quod res sunt in Verbo. Cognitio autem ipsius esse rei creatae secundum quod in propria natura consistit, dicitur cognitio vespertina, nam esse rerum fluit a Verbo sicut a quodam primordiali principio, et hic effluxus terminatur ad esse rerum quod in propria natura habent.
I answer that, The expression morning and evening knowledge was devised by Augustine; who interprets the six days wherein God made all things, not as ordinary days measured by the solar circuit, since the sun was only made on the fourth day, but as one day, namely, the day of angelic knowledge as directed to six classes of things. As in the ordinary day, morning is the beginning, and evening the close of day, so, their knowledge of the primordial being of things is called morning knowledge; and this is according as things exist in the Word. But their knowledge of the very being of the thing created, as it stands in its own nature, is termed evening knowledge; because the being of things flows from the Word, as from a kind of primordial principle; and this flow is terminated in the being which they have in themselves.
Ad primum ergo dicendum quod vespere et mane non accipiuntur in cognitione angelica secundum similitudinem ad admixtionem tenebrarum; sed secundum similitudinem principii et termini.
Reply Obj. 1: Evening and morning knowledge in the angelic knowledge are not taken as compared to an admixture of darkness, but as compared to beginning and end.
Vel dicendum quod nihil prohibet, ut dicit Augustinus IV super Gen. ad Litt., aliquid in comparatione ad unum dici lux, et in comparatione ad aliud dici tenebra. Sicut vita fidelium et iustorum, in comparatione ad impios, dicitur lux, secundum illud Ephes. V, fuistis aliquando tenebrae, nunc autem lux in domino; quae tamen vita fidelium, in comparatione ad vitam gloriae, tenebrosa dicitur, secundum illud II Petri I, habetis propheticum sermonem, cui bene facitis attendentes quasi lucernae lucenti in caliginoso loco. Sic igitur cognitio angeli qua cognoscit res in propria natura, dies est per comparationem ad ignorantiam vel errorem, sed obscura est per comparationem ad visionem Verbi.
Or else it can be said, as Augustine puts it (Gen ad lit. iv, 23), that there is nothing to prevent us from calling something light in comparison with one thing, and darkness with respect to another. In the same way the life of the faithful and the just is called light in comparison with the wicked, according to Eph. 5:8: You were heretofore darkness; but now, light in the Lord: yet this very life of the faithful, when set in contrast to the life of glory, is termed darkness, according to 2 Pet. 1:19: You have the firm prophetic word, whereunto you do well to attend, as to a light that shineth in a dark place. So the angel’s knowledge by which he knows things in their own nature, is day in comparison with ignorance or error; yet it is dark in comparison with the vision of the Word.
Ad secundum dicendum quod matutina et vespertina cognitio ad diem pertinet, idest ad angelos illuminatos, qui sunt distincti a tenebris, idest a malis angelis. Angeli autem boni, cognoscentes creaturam, non in ea figuntur, quod esset tenebrescere et noctem fieri; sed hoc ipsum referunt ad laudem Dei, in quo sicut in principio omnia cognoscunt. Et ideo post vesperam non ponitur nox, sed mane, ita quod mane sit finis praecedentis diei et principium sequentis, inquantum angeli cognitionem praecedentis operis ad laudem Dei referunt. Meridies autem sub nomine diei comprehenditur, quasi medium inter duo extrema. Vel potest meridies referri ad cognitionem ipsius Dei, qui non habet principium nec finem.
Reply Obj. 2: The morning and evening knowledge belong to the day, that is, to the enlightened angels, who are quite apart from the darkness, that is, from the evil spirits. The good angels, while knowing the creature, do not adhere to it, for that would be to turn to darkness and to night; but they refer this back to the praise of God, in Whom, as in their principle, they know all things. Consequently after evening there is no night, but morning; so that morning is the end of the preceding day, and the beginning of the following, in so far as the angels refer to God’s praise their knowledge of the preceding work. Noonday is comprised under the name of day, as the middle between the two extremes. Or else the noon can be referred to their knowledge of God Himself, Who has neither beginning nor end.