Ancient Medieval Literature

New PDF release: Anselm of Canterbury: The Major Works

By St. Anselm, Brian Davies, G. R. Evans

ISBN-10: 0192825259

ISBN-13: 9780192825254

Even though totally confident of the reality of Christianity, Anselm of Canterbury struggled to make feel of his faith. He thought of the doctrines of religion a call for participation to query, to imagine, and to profit; and he dedicated his lifestyles to confronting and realizing the main elusive points of Christianity. His writings on concerns reminiscent of unfastened will, the character of fact, and the lifestyles of God make Anselm one of many maximum theologians and philosophers in heritage, and this translation offers readers with their first chance to learn his most vital works inside a unmarried quantity.

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Sample text

Therefore there is necessarily some one thing through which all existing things exist. Therefore, since all things exist through this one thing, beyond a shadow of a doubt this one thing exists through itself. Therefore all the other things exist through something other than themselves, while this alone exists through itself. But what exists through something other than itself, is less than that through which all other things exist, and which alone exists through itself. Therefore, that which exists through itself, exists most of all.

In the first case I am expressing something by means of perceptible signs. I am deploying, perceptibly, signs which the bodily senses can perceive. In the second case I am using the same outwardly perceptible signs, but I am thinking them, within myself, imperceptibly. In the third case I am not using these signs, either perceptibly or imperceptibly. I am expressing the thing itself inwardly within my 3 4 Both ‘reason’ and ‘reasoning’ are used here to translate Anselm’s ratio. ‘Thing’ and ‘object’ are used here to translate Anselm’s res.

Nor was it the material from which it was made—and neither was anything else. Nor did it, or anything else, contribute in any way to its becoming what, before, it was not. What then? Something that has come into existence without the existence of something that fashioned it, or some material for it to have been made out of, or some outside help, would seem to be nothing—or if not nothing, then to exist through and out of nothing. Now, this cannot not apply to the supreme nature. And, although the grounds for thinking this derive from what I have already, in the light of reason, pointed out, I am not going to leave out the step-by-step proof.

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Anselm of Canterbury: The Major Works by St. Anselm, Brian Davies, G. R. Evans


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