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Epstola encclica Aeterni Patris Do Sumo Pontfice Leo XIII 4 de agosto de 1879

Sobre a restaurao da filosofia crist conforme a doutrina de Santo Toms de Aquino

SUMRIO DA ENCCLICA INTRODUO (ns. 1-5) 1. Natureza e funo do Magistrio da Igreja. 2. O Magistrio da Igreja atinge tambm a Filosofia e as Cincias. 3. Finalidade da Encclica: Natureza do estudo filosfico que respeite a F e as exigncias das Cincias Humanas. 4. A causa dos males modernos a difuso das ms idias. 5. A inteligncia bem formada a causa de numerosos benefcios. PARTE I: RELACIONAMENTO ENTRE A RAZO E A F (ns. 6-17) 1. Embora tenha o campo limitado, a Filosofia o mais poderoso subsdio para a F. 2. Para reconduzir a sociedade ordem, a tradio patrstica sempre recorreu ao uso da razo bem ordenada. 3. Subsdios da Filosofia para a F: Aplaina os caminhos da F Prova a existncia de Deus - Fornece os critrios de credibilidade Ordena a cincia teolgica - Aprofunda os conhecimentos da F Defende a F. 4. Subsdios da F para a Filosofia: Prevalece a F - A F no destri a Filosofia, mas respeita-lhe os princpios, o mtodo e os argumentos - O mal da Filosofia sem a F: O racionalismo - Os bens provenientes da harmonia entre F e Filosofia. PARTE II: A HARMONIA ENTRE RAZO E F VIST A ATRAVS DA HISTRIA DA FILOSOFIA (ns. 18-20) 1. Realizada pelos apologistas. 2. Realizada pelos Padres da Igreja, Escritores Eclesisticos e Doutores, mxime por S. Agostinho.

3. Realizada pelos Escolsticos, mxime por S. Boaventura e S. Toms. PARTE III: S. TOMS FOI QUEM COM MAIOR PERFEIO UNIU RAZO E F (ns. 21-27) 1. Excelncia e perfeio da doutrina de S. Toms. 2. Confirmao dessa excelncia: Pelo seu valor intrnseco - Pelas Ordens Religiosas - Pelas Academias e Escolas - Pelos Papas Pelos Conclios Ecumnicos - Pelos no catlicos. PARTE IV: EXIGNCIA DE RESTAURAAO DA FILOSOFIA NOS TEMPOS ATUAIS (ns. 28-32) 1. Conseqncias funestas do abandono da Escolstica. 2. Louvveis iniciativas para a restaurao da Filosofia Tomista. 3. O Papa deseja esta restaurao pelos motivos seguintes: Defesa da Igreja contra os ataques que lhe fazem as ms filosofias Restaurao da ordem social - Promoo das cincias. CONCLUSO (ns. 33-35) 1. Exortao solene no sentido da restaurao da doutrina tomista. 2. Bno Apostlica.

INTRODUO 1. O Filho Unignito do Pai Eterno, que apareceu no mundo para trazer ao gnero humano a salvao e a luz da sabedoria divina, concedeu certamente ao mundo um grande e admirvel benefcio, quando, antes de subir ao cu, mandou aos Apstolos que fossem e ensinassem todas as naes; e deixou a Igreja estabelecida por Ele como mestre comum e supremo dos povos (Mat. 28, 19). Pois que os homens, libertados pela verdade, na verdade se deviam conservar; nem seriam muitos duradouros os frutos das doutrinas celeste pelos quais o homem alcanara a salvao,

se Cristo Nosso Senhor no tivesse estabelecido um magistrio perptuo para instruir os entendimentos na f. A Igreja, porm, j confiando nas promessas do seu divino autor, j imitando-lhe a caridade, de tal sorte cumpriu essas ordens, que sempre teve em vista, sempre desejou ardentemente ensinar as coisas da religio e combater perpetuamente os erros. A este fim visam os trabalhos esmerados de cada um dos bispos; a este fim, as leis e decretos dos Conclios, e especialmente a solicitude cotidiana dos Pontfices Romanos, os quais, como sucessores no primado de So Pedro, Prncipe dos Apstolos, tm o direito e o dever de ensinar e confirmar seus irmos na f. 2. Acontecendo, porm, como diz o Apstolo, que, pela "filosofia e pelos discursos sedutores" (Col. 2,8) as almas dos fiis costumam ser enganadas, e a sinceridade da f ser corrompida nos homens, por isso os supremos pastores da Igreja julgaram sempre ser dever seu promover, quanto pudessem, a verdadeira cincia, e ao mesmo tempo providenciar com suma vigilncia, para que todas as disciplinas humanas, especialmente a filosofia, da qual em grande parte depende o bom uso das outras cincias, fossem ensinadas em toda a parte segundo a norma da f catlica. Isso mesmo, em outras coisas j vos lembramos de passagem, Venerveis Irmos, quando pela primeira vez vos falamos por Cartas Encclicas. 3. Agora, porm, em razo da gravidade do assunto e da condio dos tempos, somos obrigados a falar-vos de novo a fim de estabelecermos o mtodo dos estudos filosficos, que, correspondendo ao bem da f, seja acomodado mesma dignidade das cincias humanas. 4. Se algum atender malcia dos nossos tempos e pensar na razo das coisas que acontecem pblica ou particularmente, concluir certamente que a causa fecunda dos males, no s daqueles que nos oprimem, mas tambm daqueles que receamos, consiste nas ms opinies cerca das coisas divinas e humanas, que, partindo primeiro das escolas dos filsofos, tm invadido todas as ordens da sociedade, acolhidas pelos aplausos de muitos. Porquanto, sendo prprio da natureza humana seguir, na prtica, como guia a razo, se a inteligncia peca em qualquer coisa, a vontade tambm cai facilmente. Acontece, ento, que a malcia das opinies, que

tm sede na inteligncia, influi nas aes humanas e as pervete. Pelo contrrio, se for reto o pensar dos homens, e baseado em slidos e verdadeiros princpios, nesse caso h de produzir muitos benefcios para felicidade social e individual. 5. Certamente que no atribumos filosofia humana to grande fora e autoridade, que a julguemos capaz de expulsar e arrancar totalmente todos os erros: porque, assim como quando se estabeleceu a religio crist, pela admirvel da f difundida "no por palavras persuasivas da sabedoria humana, mas pela demonstrao de esprito e virtude" (Cor. 2,4), o mundo foi restitudo primitiva dignidade; assim agora se deve esperar, principalmente da onipotente virtude e auxlio de Deus que as almas dos homens, dissipadas as trevas dos erros, sigam melhor vida. No se devem desprezar nem desconsiderar, porm, os auxlios naturais, que por benefcio da sabedoria divina, que tudo dispe forte e suavemente, superabundam ao gnero humano: e entre esses auxlios certo que o principal o reto uso da filosofia. Pois que no foi em vo que Deus concedeu alma humana a luz da razo. A luz da f que depois lhe foi acrescida, longe de extinguir ou diminuir a fora da inteligncia, antes a aperfeioa e, aumentando-lhe as foras, a habilita para maiores coisas. Pede, pois, a economia da mesma Providncia Divina que, tratando-se de chamar os povos f e Salvao, se aproveite cooperao da cincia humana. Porque esse modo de proceder provado e sbio, fora seguido pelos preclarssimos Padres da Igreja, est confirmando pelos monumentos da antiguidade. Eles, em verdade, atriburam sempre razo muita e no pequena importncia, a qual resumiu suscintamente Santo Agostinho, atribuindo a esta cincia "aquilo por meio do que a f salubrrima... produzida, nutrida, defendida e robustecida (De Trin. lib. XIV,l).

PRIMEIRA PARTE RELACIONAMENTO ENTRE RAZO E F

6. Em primeiro lugar, a filosofia sendo bem compreendida, pode em certo modo aplainar e fortificar o caminho para a verdadeira f, e preparar convenientemente a inteligncia dos seus discpulos para receberem a Revelao, visto que com razo chamada pelos antigos umas vezes "instituio prvia para a religio crist" (Clem. Alex., Strom. lib. I, 16), outras vezes "preldio e auxilio do cristianismo" (Orig. ad Greg. Thaum.), e tambm chamada "pedagogo para o Evangelho" (Clem. Alex., Strom. I, 5). Realmente Deus benignssimo, no que diz respeito s coisas divinas, no s revelou com luz da f aquelas verdades que a inteligncia humana no pode atingir, mas tambm manifestou algumas que no so absolutamente inacessveis razo, para que, com a autoridade de Deus, logo fossem compreendidas por todos sem receio de errar. Donde resulta que os mesmos sbios pagos, s com a luz da razo, conheceram, demonstraram e defenderam com apropriados argumentos certas verdade, que nos so propostas pela f ou esto estritamente unidas com a doutrina da f. "Pois as coisas d'Ele, que so invisveis, se vem depois da criao do mundo, considerando-as pelas obras que foram feitas, ainda a Sua virtude sempiterna e a Sua divindade" (Rom. 1,20); e os gentios que no "tm lei. ..mostram, todavia, a obra da lei escrita em seus coraes" (Rom. 2,15). muito conveniente que essas verdades, conhecidas mesmo pelos sbios pagos, sejam convertidas em proveito e utilidade da doutrina revelada, a fim de se demonstrar que a sabedoria humana e os prprios testemunhos dos adversrios prestam a homenagem f crist. 7. coisa sabida que este modo de proceder no novo, mas antigo, e muito usado pelos Santos Padres da Igreja. Alm disso, essas venervis testemunhas e guardas das tradies religiosas reconhecem certa forma e, uma espcie de figura desse procedimento no fato dos hebreus, que, tendo de sair do Egito, receberam a ordem de levar consigo os vasos de prata e ouro, bem como os vestidos preciosos dos egpcios, para que essas coisas fossem dedicadas verdadeira divindade, apesar de terem antes servido a ritos vergonhosos e cheios de superstio. Gregrio de Neocessaria (Orat. paneg. ad Origen.) louva Orgenes, por isso que, tendo este extrado com engenhosa habilidade muitas verdades dos pagos, considerandoas como armas arrebatadas aos inimigos, serviu-se delas. Com singular

engenho para defesa da sabedoria crist e para refutao da superstio. Igualmente Gregrio Nazianzeno (Vit. Moys). E Gregrio Nisseno louva e aprovam o mesmo costume de disputar de Baslio Magno (Carm. I, Iamb. 3); porm So Jernimo encarecidamente o recomenda em Quadrato, discpulo dos Apstolos, em Aristides, em Justino, em Irineu, e em muitssimos outros. (Epist. ad Magn.). E Agostinho diz: "No vemos ns com quanto ouro e prata luxuosamente vestido, saiu do Egito Cipriano, doutor sua vssimo e felicssimo mrtir? E como saiu Lactncio? E Vitorino, Optato e Hilrio? E para no enumerar os vivos, como saram inumerveis gregos?" (De doctr. christ. I, II. 40). Ora, se a razo natural produziu essa abundante colheita de doutrina, antes de ser fecundada pela virtude de Cristo, com certeza mais abundante colheita produzir depois que a graa do Salvador restabeleceu e aumentou as faculdades naturais da alma humana. E quem no ver como por esse modo de filosofar se abre para a f um caminho plano e fcil?

SUBSDIOS DA FILOSOFIA PARA A F 8. Porm, no nesses limites que se circunscreve a utilidade que provm desse modo de filosofar. Realmente, nas palavras da divina sabedoria se repreende asperamente a loucura desses homens que "por aquelas coisas que se viam serem bens, no puderam compreender Aquele que ; e que, no atendendo s obras, desconheceram quem era o artfice" (Sab. 13, 1). 9. Portanto o grande e excelente fruto que em primeiro lugar colhemos da razo humana, demonstrar que Deus existe: "porque pela grandeza da imagem e da criatura pode chegar-se sem dvida ao Criador delas" (Sab. 5, 5). Depois mostra-nos que em Deus se renem singularmente todas as perfeies, sobressaindo sua infinita sabedoria, qual nada pode, ocultarse, e sua suprema justia, que de nenhum mal afeto pode ser eivada, e que por isso Deus no s verdadeiro, mas a prpria verdade que no pode enganar-se, nem enganar-nos. Donde evidentemente se deduz, que a razo humana presta palavra de Deus plenssima f e autoridade.

10. Semelhantemente a razo declara que a doutrina evanglica, logo desde a sua origem resplandecera com admirveis milagres, como argumentos certos da verdade certa, e que por isso, todos aqueles que acreditam no Evangelho no acreditam temerariamente, como quem segue engenhosas fbulas (2 Ped. 1, 16); mas sujeitam sua inteligncia e juzo autoridade divina por uma submisso inteiramente racional. O que, porm, no de menso valor, que a razo prova claramente que a Igreja instituda por Cristo (como definiu o Conclio Vaticano) "por causa da sua admirvel propagao, exmia santidade e, inexaurvel fecundidade em toda a parte, por causa da unidade catlica e firmeza invencvel, um grande e perptuo motivo de credibilidade, e um testemunho irrefragvel da sua divina misso" (Const. Dog. de Fid Cath. 3) . 11. Lanados destarte, os firmssimos alicerces, ainda se requer um continuado e mltiplo uso da filosofia para que a sagrada teologia admita e receba a natureza, hbito e engenho da verdadeira cincia. Porque nessa nobilssima disciplina grandemente necessrio que muitas e diversas partes das doutrinas celestes se renam em um corpo, a fim de que, convenientemente dispostas, cada qual em seu lugar, e derivadas de princpios prprios, permaneam estritamente unidas entre si; e, enfim, que todas e cada uma delas sejam confirmadas com argumentos prprios e irrefutveis. 12. No devemos tambm passar em silncio, nem ter em pouco aquele conhecimento mais esmerado e mais fecundo das coisas que se crm, bem como a inteligncia, mais calara que ser possa, dos mesmos mistrios da f, to louvada e seguida por Agostinho e outros Padres, e que o mesmo Conclio Vaticano definiu que era frutuosssima. Este conhecimento e inteligncia , sem dvida, mais plena e facilmente adquirido por aqueles que, integridade da vida e ao estudo da f, acrescentam um engenho exercitado nas disciplinas filosficas, principalmente ensinando o mesmo Conclio Vaticano que a inteligncia dos sagrados dogmas convm ser deduzida "ora da analogia das coisas que se conhecem naturalmente, ora da conexo dos mesmos mistrios entre si e com o fim ltimo do homem" (Const. Dogm. de Fid. Cath. 20).

13. Finalmente, pertence tambm filosofia defender religiosamente as verdades divinamente reveladas e resistir aos que ousam opor-se-lhes. Para isto, de muito serve a filosofia, que considerada como o baluarte da f e firme defesa da religio. A doutrina do Salvador, diz Clemente de Alexandria, perfeita em si e no carece de ningum, porque virtude e sabedoria de Deus. A filosofia humana no faz mais poderosa a verdade; mas, enfraquecendo os argumentos dos sofistas contra ela e pulverizando os maliciosos estratagemas contra a verdade, com razo chamada sebe e estacada da vinha " (Strom. lib. 1, 20). Na verdade, assim como os inimigos do nome catlico, para combater a religio, se servem de armas quase, sempre extradas da razo filosfica, assim os defensores da divina cincia tiram do depsito da filosofia muitos argumentos para defenderem os dogmas da Revelao. Nem se pense que mesquinho triunfo da f crist, por isso que a razo humana rebate vigorosa e facilmente as armas dos adversrios, adquiridas com o auxlio da mesma razo, com o fim de fazer mal. So Jernimo, escrevendo a Magno, diz que essa espcie de combate religioso fora adotado pelo mesmo Apstolo das Gentes: "Paulo, guia do exrcito cristo, e, invencvel orador, combatendo por cristo, aproveita com muita arte, para argumento da f, uma inscrio casual; porque aprendera do verdadeiro Davi a arrancar as armas ao inimigo, e a decepar a cabea do soberbssimo Golias, com sua prpria espada (Epist. ad Magn.). Alm disso, a mesma Igreja exorta e manda que os doutores cristos se aproveitem desse auxlio da filosofia. O Conclio Lateranense V, tendo definido "que, toda a averso contrria f revelada absolutamente falsa, porque a verdade no pode estar em contradio com a verdade" (Bulla Apostolici Regiminis), manda os doutores da filosofia que tratem com empenho de refutar os argumentos falsos; pois que, como afirma Santo Agostinho "se a razo se ope autoridade das Escrituras Divinas, por muito especiosa que seja, engana-se com a semelhana da verdade, porque no pode ser verdadeira (Epist. 143, 7).

SUBSDIOS DA F PARA A FILOSOFIA 14. Para que a filosofia, porm, produza os preciosos frutos que temos lembrado, indispensvel que jamais se afaste da senda, seguida pelos

antigos Padres, e aprovada pelo Conclio Vaticano com solene autoridade. E assim, quando claramente conhecemos que, por motivos sobrenaturais, devemos receber quaisquer verdades, que so muito superiores capacidade de qualquer engenho, a razo humana, conhecendo sua fraqueza, no ouse passar avante, nem negar essas verdades, nem compreend-las, nem interpret-las livremente; mas aceitando-as com absoluta e humilde f, e considerando como grande honra ser lhe permitido seguir, maneira de serva e criada, as doutrinas celestes, e por benefcio de Deus atingi-las de algum modo. 15. Naquelas doutrinas, porm, que a inteligncia humana pode compreender naturalmente, sem dvida justo que, a filosofia empregue o seu mtodo, seus princpios e argumentos. No, porm, de modo que parea ter a audcia de subtrair-se autoridade divina. Pelo contrrio, como sabido que as coisas que a Revelao ensina se baseiam em verdades inconcussas, e que aquela que se ope f repugnam igualmente com a reta razo, saiba o filsofo catlico que violar os diretos da f, no menos que os da razo, se adotar concluses que conhece estarem em contradio com a doutrina revelada. 16. Bem sabemos que no faltam homens que, exaltando demasiadamente as faculdades da natureza humana, asseveram que a nossa inteligncia, logo que se sujeita autoridade divina, desce da dignidade natural, e como que curvada debaixo do jugo da escravido de tal sorte sopeada e impedida, que no pode atingir o pice da verdade e da perfeio. Essas palavras, porm, esto repletas de erro de dolo, e o fim a que visam que os homens, com suma loucura e no sem crime de ingratido, desprezem as verdades mais elevadas e respeitem espontaneamente o divino benefcio da f, da qual tm emanado ainda, sobre a sociedade civil, torrentes de todos os bens. Porque, estando o esprito humano encerrado dentro de certos e muito apertados limites, est sujeito a muitos erros e ignorncia de muitas coisas, pelo contrrio, baseada na autoridade de Deus, a f crist mestra segurssima da verdade. Quem a segue, nem envolvido pelo erro, nem agitado nas vagas de opinies incertas. 17. Por isso, os que harmonizam o estudo da filosofia com a obedincia f crist, raciocinam otimamente, at porque o esplendor das verdades

divinas, recebido na alma, ajuda a mesma inteligncia, e bem longe de a ofender em sua dignidade, lhe d muita nobreza, penetrao e firmeza. Quando, porm, aplicam a penetrao do esprito a refutar a sentenas que repugnam f e a provar as coisas que com a f se conformam, exercitam muito digna e utilmente a razo. Porque, nas primeiras, descobrem as causas do erro, e conhecem o defeito dos argumentos em que as mesmas se fundam. Nestas, porm, gozam da considerao das razes com que solidamente so demonstradas e podem ser persuadidas a qualquer homem prudente. Quem negar que com esse processo e exerccio se aumentam as riquezas do entendimento, e se desenvolvem as suas faculdades, h de necessariamente cair no absurdo de afirmar que a distino do verdadeiro e do falso no conduz de forma alguma ao adiantamento do engenho. Com razo, portanto o Conclio Vaticano lembra os grandes benefcios que a f presta razo nas seguintes palavras: A f livra e defende dos erros a razo, e a instrui com muitos ensinamentos" (Const. Dogm. de Fid. Cathol. 4). E por isso o homem, se fosse verdadeiramente sbio, no deveria culpar a f como inimiga da razo e das verdades naturais, mas antes deveria dar graas a Deus e alegrar-se grandemente, porque, entre tantas causas da ignorncia e no meio das vagas do erro, lhe apareceu rutilante, a santssima luz da f, a qual, como astro amigo, lhe mostra o porto da verdade, sem perigo algum de errar.

SEGUNDA PARTE HARMONIA ENTRE RAZO E F CONSIDERADA NA HISTRIA DA FILOSOFIA 18. Se atenderdes, Venerveis Irmos, histria da filosofia, sabereis que na realidade se provam todas as coisas que at aqui temos dito. Na verdade, ainda os mais sbios dos antigos filsofos, que careceram do benefcio da f, erraram muitssimo e em muitas coisas. Porque, no ignorais que, entre algumas verdades, ensinaram muitas vezes coisas falsas e errneas, muitas coisas incertas e duvidosas acerca da verdadeira noo da divindade, da primitiva origem das coisas, do governo do mundo, do

conhecimento divino do futuro, da causa e princpio dos males, do ltimo fim do homem, da eterna bem-aventurana, das virtudes e vcios: de outras doutrinas, cujo conhecimento verdadeiro exato mais que tudo necessrio ao gnero humano. Porm os primeiros Padres e Doutores da Igreja, que muito bem sabiam, pelo conselho da vontade divina, que o reparador da prpria cincia humana era Cristo, que "virtude e sabedoria de Deus" (I Cor. 1, 24), e "no qual esto encerrados todos os tesouros da sabedora e da cicia" (Col. 2, 3) empreenderam investigar os livros dos sbios antigos e confrontar as suas opinies com as doutrinas reveladas; e por uma prudente escolha adotaram o que nelas parecia conforme com a verdade, emendando ou desprezando tudo o mais. Porque Deus providentssimo, assim como suscitou para a defesa da Igreja, e contra a crueldade dos tiranos, mrtires fortssimos e cheios de magnanimidade, assim tambm ops aos falsos filsofos e aos hereges homens extraordinrios em sabedoria, que se valeram do tesouro da verdade, bem como do auxlio da razo humana. Assim, desde os princpios da Igreja os ops contra ferrenhos adversrios, que zombando dos dogmas e costumes dos cristos, estabeleciam que havia muitos deuses, que a matria do mundo no tinha um princpio nem causa, que a ordem das coisas estava numa fora cega e numa necessidade fatal, e que no era dirigida pela divina providncia. Ora, logo a princpio pelejaram, contra tais mestres dessa louca doutrina, homens sbios, a quem damos o nome de Apologistas que, guiando-se primeiro que tudo pela f, tambm tomaram da sabedoria humana argumentos pelos quais assentaram que se devia prestar culto a um s Deus revestido de todas as perfeies; que todas as coisas foram produzidas do nada por um poder onipotente, que obram pela sua sabedoria, e que cada uma delas dirigida e movida para seus fins prprios. Merece, entre esses, o primeiro lugar, So Justino, mrtir, que depois de ter freqentado as celebrrimas Academias dos gregos, viu que s das doutrinas reveladas que pde extrair a verdade, como ele mesmo confessa, e abraando-as com todo o ardor da sua alma, as purificou das calnias, defendeu-as veementemente e, eloquentemente diante dos Imperadores Romanos, e com elas harmonizou grande nmero de

opinies dos filsofos gregos. Tambm Quadrato e Aristides, Hermias e Atengoras eminentemente brilharam por esse tempo. Tambm no menor glria adquiriu para si, na defesa da mesma causa, Irineu, mrtir invicto, Pontfice, da Igreja Lugdemense: o qual tendo valorosamente refutado as perversas opinies dos orientais, espalhadas pelos gnsticos pelos limites do imprio romano, "explicou as origens de cada uma das heresias (como afirma Jernimo), e de que fontes filosficas emanavam" (Epist. ad Magn.). Ningum, porm, ignora as disputas de Clemente Alexandrino, as quais o prprio Jernimo honrosamente celebra assim: "Que h nelas de ignorncia? E mesmo que h a que no provenha do seio mesmo da filosofia?" (Loc. cit.). O mesmo com uma variedade pasmosa escreveu muitas coisas utilssimas para estabelecer a histria da filosofia, para exercitar convenientemente a dialtica, para conciliar a harmonia da razo com a f. Segue-se-lhe Orgenes, insgne mestre da escola de Alexandria, muito instrudo nas doutrinas gregas e orientais, que publicou muitos e magnficos volumes, utilssimos para explanar as divinas Escrituras e esclarecer os dogmas sagrados. Ainda que esses livros, tais quais agora existem, no esto totalmetne isentos de erros, contm, todavia, grande cpia de setenas que multiplicam e robustecem as verdades naturais. Aos hereges ope Tertuliano a autoridade das Sagradas Escrituras; aos filsofos, mudando de armas, ope-lhes a filosofia. A estes refuta, com tanta sutileza e erudio, que no teme lanar-lhe em rosto este repto: "No me podeis igualar em cinca nem em doutrina como julgais" (Apologet. 46). Arnbio, em seus livros publicados contra os gentios, e Lactncio, principalmente em suas Instituies divinas, empregam igual eloquncia e valor para persuadir aos homens os dogmas e preceitos da sabedoria catlica; e longe de transtornar a filosofia, como costumam fazer os Acadmicos, servem-se, para os convencer: (Inst. VII, 7) ora das suas armas, ora as que se deduzem das questes intestinas dos filfofos (De Opif. Dei, 21). 19. Os escritos que, acerca da alma humana, dos atriutos divinos e de outras questes de gravssima considerao, deixaram o grande Atansio e Crisstomo, prncipe dos oradores, so to excelentes que, na opinio comum, parece que nada se pode acrescentar sua profundidade e abundncia. E para no alongar demais esta lista de grandes talentos,

ajuntaremos aos que temos mencionado Baslio Magno, bem como os dois Gregrios, os quais saram de Atenas, domiclio de toda a humanidade, abundantemente instrudos em todos os recursos da filosofia; e estes tesouros de cincia que cada um deles adquiria, ardentemente os empregaram em refutar os hereges e em ensinar os cristos. Parece, porm, que a primazia pertence, entre todos a Santo Agostinho, poderoso gnio, que penetrou profundamente em todas as cincias divinas e humanas, armado de uma f suma e igual doutrina, combatendo sem descanso todos os erros de seu tempo. Que ponto da filosofia no tocou e no aprofundou? Descrevendo aos fiis os mais altos mistrios da f, prevenindo-os sempre contra os agressivos ataques de seus adversrios; pulverizando as fices dos acadmicos e dos Maniqueus, assentou e consolidou os fundamentos da cincia humana. Com que riqueza e penetrao tratou dos anjos, da alma, da inteligncia humana, a vontade e livre arbtrio, da religio, da vida futura, do tempo, da eternidade e at da mesma natureza dos corpos sujeitos a mudanas! Mais tarde, no Oriente, Joo Damasceno, seguindo os passos de Gregrio Nazianzeno, e no Ocidente, Bocio e Anselmo, seguindo os de Agostinho, enriqueceram grandemente o patrimnio da filosofia. 20. Finalmente, os Doutores da Idade Mdia, conhecidos pelo nome de Escolsticos, empreendem a obra colossal de recolher com cuidado aqui e ali a abundante messe da doutrina disseminada nas inumerveis obras dos Santos Padres reduzindo-as a uma s obra, para uso e comodidade das geraes futuras. E agora, Venerveis Irmos, podemos repetir as palavras com que Sixto V, Nosso Predecessor, explica com extenso a origem, o carter e a excelncia da doutrina escolstica: "Pela divina munificncia d'Aquele que o nico a dar o esprito de cincia, de sabedoria e, de, inteligncia, e que no decurso dos sculos, e segundo as necessidades, no cessa de enriquecer a sua Igreja com novos benefcios, de prov-la de novas e seguras defesa, nossos antecessores, homens de profunda cincia, inventaram a teologia escolstica. Principalmente, porm, dois gloriosos doutores, o Anglico So Toms e o Serfico So Boaventura, ambos

professores ilustres nesta faculdade, so os que, com seu incomparvel talento, com seu assduo zelo, com seus trabalhos e viglias, cultivaram esta cincia, enriquecendo-a e transmitindo-a a seus descendentes, disposta em uma ordem perfeita e explicada de mutos modos. E certamente o conhecimento de uma cincia to saudvel que dimana do fecundssimo manancial das Escrituras, dos Sumos Pontfices, dos Santos: Padres e dos Conclios, tem sido em todos os tempos de grande, vantagem para a Igreja, j para a boa inteligncia e verdadeira interpretao das Escrituras, j para ler e explicar os Padres com mais segurana e utilidade, j para desmarcarar os variados erros e as heresias. Nesses ltimos tempos, porm, que nos tm trazido os dias profetizados pelo Apstolo, em que os homens blasfemos, orgulhosos, sedutores, fazem progresso no mal, errando eles e induzindo os outros ao erro, certamente que, para confirmar os dogmas da f catlica e refutar as heresias, mais que nunca nece,ssria a cincia de que tratamos" (Bulla Triumphantis, 1588) . Essas palavras, ainda que parece que atingem somente a teologia escolstica, estendem-se, todavia, prpria filosofia. Com efeito, as eminentes qualidades que tornam a teologia escolstica to temvel aos inimigos da verdade, a saber, continua o mesmo Pontfice: " Aquela coerncia to estreita e perfeita dos efeitos e das causas, aquela ordem e simetria semelhante s de um exrcito em campanha, aquelas luminosas definies e distines, aquela solidez de argumetnao e sutileza de controvrsia, coisas todas por meio das quais se separa a luz das trevas, se distingue o verdadeiro do falso e as mentiras da heresia, despojadas do prestgio e das fices que as rodeiam, aparecem a descoberto"; todas essas brilhantes qualidades, dizemos, se devem unicamente ao bom uso da filosofia que os doutores escolsticos adotaram, geralmente ainda nas controvrsias teolgicas. Alm disso, como o carter prprio e distintivo dos telogos escolsticos unir com o mais estreito lao a cincia divina e humana, a teologia em que se distinguiram no poderia certamente ter adquirido tanta honra e estima na opnio dos homens, se esses doutores tivessem pregado uma filosofia incompleta, truncada e superficial.

TERCEIRA PARTE SO TOMS DE AQUINO PERFEIO RAZO E F CONCILIOU COM MXIMA

21. Porm, entre todos os doutores escolsticos, brilha, como astro fulgurante, e como prncipe e mestre de todos, Toms de Aquino, o qual, como observa o Cardeal Caetano, "por ter venerado profundamente os santos doutores que o precederam, herdou, de certo modo, a inteligncia de todos" (S. T. II II, 148, 4) . Toms coligiu suas doutrinas, como membros dispersos de um mesmo corpo; reuniu-as, classificou-as com admirvel ordem, e de tal modo as enrique!ceu, que tem sido considerado, com muita razo, como o prprio defensor e a honra da Igreja. De esprito dcil e penetrante, de fcil e segura memria, de perfeita pureza de costumes, levado unicamente pelo amor da verdade, prenhe de cincia divina e humana, justamente comparado com o sol, aqueceu a terra com a irradiao de suas virtudes e encheu-a com o resplendor de sua doutrina. No h um ponto da filosofia que no tratasse com tanta penetrao como solidez. As leis do raciocnio, Deus e as substncias incorpreas, o homem e as outras criaturas sensveis, os atos humanos e seus princpios, so objeto das teses que defende, nas quais nada falta, nem a abundante colheita de investigaes, nem a harmoniosa coordenao das partes, nem o excelente mtodo de proceder, nem a solidez dos princpios, nem a fora dos argumentos, nem a lucidez de estilo, nem a propriedade da expresso, nem a profundidade e gentileza com que resolve pontos mais obscuros. 22. Ainda mais: o Doutor Anglico buscou as concluses filosficas nas razes e princpios das coisas, que tm grandssima extenso e encerram em seu seio o germe de quase infinitas verdades, para serem desenvolvidas em tempo oportuno e com abundantssimo fruto pelos mestres dos tempos posteriores.

Empregando o mesmo procedimento na refutao dos erros, o santo Doutor chegou ao seguinte resultado: debelou todos os erros do tempo passado, e propiciou invencveis armas para os que haviam de aparecer nos tempos futuros. Alm disso, ao mesmo tempo que distingue perfeitamente, como convm f e razo, uni-as ambas pelos vnculos de mtua concrdia, conservando a cada uma seus direitos e salvando sua dignidade. Assim que a razo, levada por Toms at o pncaro humano, no pode elevar-se a maior altura. E a f quase no pode esperar que a razo lhe preste mais numerosos e mais valentes argumentos do que aqueles que lhe forneceu Toms de Aquino. 23. Por isso, nos sculos passados, homens doutssimos, de grande renome em teologia e filosofia, procurando com incrvel empenho as obras de Toms, se tm consagrado, no s a cultivar sua anglica sabedoria, mas tambm a imbuir-se inteiramente dela. sabido que quase todos os fundadores e legisladores das Ordens Religiosas tm imposto a seus companheiros o estudo da doutrina de So Toms e a cingirem-se a ela religiosamente, dispondo que a nenhum dele!s seja lcito separar-se impunimente, ainda em coisas pequenas, das pegadas deste grande homem. Para no falarmos da famlia de So Domingos, que se gloria do direito prprio de o ter por mestre, os Beneditinos, os Carmelitas, os Augustinianos, a Companhia de Jesus emuitas outras Ordens esto obrigadas a esta lei, como atestam os respectivos estatutos. 24. E aqui se levanta jubilosamente o esprito a essas celebrrimas Academias e Escolas, que outrora floresceram na Europa, - de Paris, de Salamanca, de Alcal, de Douai, de Toloa, e Louvaina, de Pdua de Bolonha, de Npoles, de Coimbra e outras muitas. Ningum ignora que as consultas que se lhes faziam, nos mais importantes negcios, gozavam de grande autoridade em toda a parte. tambm sabido que, naqueles grandes abrigos da sabedoria humana, Toms reinava como um prncipe em seu prprio imprio, que todas as inteligncias, as dos mestres e as dos discpulos, se curvavam com admirvel consonncia ao magistrio e autoridade do Doutor Anglico.

25. Mas, o que mais, os Pontfices Romanos, Nossos Prede!cessores, tm honrado a sabedoria de Toms de Aquino com singulares louvores e amplssimas provas. Clemente VI, Nicolau V, Bento XIII e outros, atestam que a Igreja Universal ilustrada pela sua admirvel doutrina. So Pio V reconhece que a mesma doutrina, dissipando as heresias, as confunde e refuta, e que todos os dias livra o mundo de erros malficos. Outros, como Clemente XII, afirmam que de seus escritos tm nascido abundantssimos bens para a Igreja universal, e que devem ser honrados com o mesmo culto que prestado aos maiores doutores da Igreja Gregrio, Ambrsio, Agostinho, Jernimo. Outros, finalmente, no tm duvidado propor So Toms s Academias e Escolas Superiores como modelo e mestre a quem podiam seguir com segurana. E a tal respeito merecem recordar-se aqui as palavras de So Urbano V Aca- demia de Tolosa: "Queremos, pelo teor das presentes man- damos, que se sigais as doutrinas de So Toms como ve- rdicas e catlicas e, que envideis todos os esforos para de- denvolv-las" (Cons. 5, 3.08.1368). Seguindo o exemplo de Urbano V, Inocncio XII impe as mesmas prescries Universidade de Lovaina, e Bento XIV, ao Colgio Dionisiano de Granada. A fim de pr termo a essas decises dos Sumos Pontfices acerca de S. Toms de Aquino, acrescentaremos o seguinte testemunho de Inocncio VI: "A doutrina de So Toms tem sobre as outras, excetuando a cannica, a propriedade dos termos, o modo de expresso, a verdade das proposies, de sorte que os que a seguem nunca se vem surpreendidos fora do caminho da verdade, e quem a combate tem sido sempre suspeito de erro" (Sermo de S. Toms). 26. Os prprios Concilios Ecumnicos, em que brilha a flor da sabedoria colhida em toda a terra, se tm ocupado sempre em prestar a Toms de Aquino especial homenagem. Nos Conclios de Lio, de Viena, de Florena, do Vaticano, acreditar-se-ia ver Toms tomar parte, presidir de certo modo s deliberaes e decretos dos Padres Conciliares, e combater com grande vigor e com mais feliz xito os erros dos gregos, dos hereges e dos racionalistas. A maior honra, porm, prestada a So Toms, s a ele reservada e que nenhum dos doutores catlicos pode partilhar, provm dos Padres do Concilio Tridentino, quando fizeram que, no meio da santa assemblia,

com o livros das Escrituras e com os decretos dos Papas, fosse colocada aberta sobre o mesmo altar a Suma Teolgica de Toms de Aquino para dela extrair conselhos, razes e decises. 27. Finalmente, outra palma parece ter sido reservada a este homem incomparvel: ter sabido granjear dos mesmos inimigos do dogma catlico o tributo de suas homenagens, de seus elogios e de sua admirao. Com efeito, sabido que entre os principais promotores de heresias houve alguns que declararam, em alta voz, que suprimida a doutrina de So Toms de Aquino se comprometiam a empreender uma luta vantajosa contra todos os doutores catlicos e aniquilar a Igreja. Infundada esperana, mas no infundado testemunho.

QUARTA PARTE RESTAURAO DA VERDADEIRA FILOSOFIA 28. Sendo assim, Venerveis Irmos, todas as vezes que olhamos para a bondade, fora e inegvel utilidade dessa disciplina filosfica, to amada de nossos pais, intendemos que tem sido uma temeridade o no haver continuado em todos os e lugares a honra que merece, principalmente tendo a filosofia escolstica em seu favor o largo uso, a opnio dos homens eminentes e, o que o principal, a aprovao da Igreja. Em lugar da doutrina antiga, uma espcie de novo mtodo de filosofia se tem introduzido aqui e ali sem dar os saudveis frutos que a Igreja e a sociedade civil desejam. Debaixo dos impulsos dos inovadores do sculo XVI, principiou-se a filosofar sem respeito algum pela f, com plena licena para deixar voar o pensamento segundo o capricho e critrio de cada um. Resultou naturalmente que os sistemas de filosofia se multiplicam de modo extraordinrio, e que apareceram opinies diversas e contraditrias at sobre os objetos mais importantes dos conhecimentos humano. Com a pluralidade de opinies, chega-se facilmente vacilao e duvida; da dvida, porm, ao erro faclimo ao conhecimento humano o chegar, como todos sabem.

Os homens deixaram-se facilmente arrastar pelo exemplo, e a paixo da novidade invadiu, segundo parece, em alguns pases, at o esprito dos filsofos catlicos, os quais, desprezando o patrimnio da antiga sabedoria, preferiram edificar de novo a aperfeioar e acrescentar o antigo edifcio, projeto esse pouco prudente e que causa grandes males cincia. Portanto, estes variados sistemas, fundados unicamente na sua autoridade e no arbtrio de cada mestre particular, carecem de base slida, e por conseguinte, em lugar dessa cincia segura, estvel e robusta como a antiga, s podem produzir uma filosofia vacilante e sem consistncia. E se tal filosofia carece de fora para resistir aos assaltos do inimigo, a si mesma deve imputar as causas da sua fraqueza. Ao dizer isso, no intendemos certamente censurar esses sbios avisados, que empregam na cultura filosfica o seu gnio, sua ambio e a riqueza de novas invenes, e compreendemos muito bem que todos esses elementos concorrem para o progresso da cincia. Devemos, porm, evitar com o maior cuidado desse engenho e dessa erudio os nicos ou principais da sua aplicao. O mesmo se deve pensar da teologia sagrada. bom que ela seja ajudada e ilustrada pela luz de uma variada erudio. , porm, abolutamente necessrio trat-la com a seriedade dos escolsticos, a fim de que, com as foras reunidas da Revelao e da razo, no deixe de ser "o inexpugnvel baluarte da f" (Sixto V, Bulla cit.). 29. , pois, feliz aspirao a dos numerosos interessados pela filosofia, que, desejosos de empreender, nestes ltimos anos eficazmente a sua restaurao, se tm consagrado e, consagram ainda a utilizar a admirvel doutrina de Toms de Aquino e a devolver-lhe o antigo esplendor. Animados com o mesmo esprito vrios membros de vossa ordem, Venerveis Irmos, tm entrado com ardor na mesma tarefa. com alegria que o reconhecemos. Louvando-os com efuso, os exortamos a perseverar em to grande empreendimento. Aos outros, advertimos que nada mais conforme com o nosso coraao e nada desejamos tanto seno v-los oferecer ampla e copiosamente juventude estudiosa as guas purssimas da sabedoria que dimanam em torrentes contnuas do Doutor Anglico.

30. Muitas razes provocam em Ns este ardente desejo. Primeiramente, como a f crist se v diariamente, em nossos tempos, combatida pelas maquinaes e sofismas de um falsa sabedoria, necessrio que todos os jovens, especialmente os que so educados para o servio da Igreja, sejam nutridos com alimento forte dessa doutrina, para, fortes e munidos dessas armas, maduramente se acostutem a tratar com sabedoria e coragem a causa da religio, prontos sempre, como diz o Apstolo, "a dar conta, a quem lha pedir, da esperana que existe em ns" (I Ped. , 5); assim como "a exortar em s doutrina e convencer os que a contradizem " (Tito 1, 9). Alm disso, grande nmero de homens que "afastando o esprito da f, desprezam instituies catlicas e professam que seu nico mestre guia a razo. Para os curar e trazer graa e ao mesmo tempo f catlica, alm do auxlo sobrenatural de Deus, nada mais vemos mais oportuno do que as slidas douttrinas dos Padres e dos Escolsticos, que pem vista inabalveis bases da f, sua origem divina, sua verdade certa, seus motivos de persuaso, os benefcios que tem feito ao gnero humano, sua perfeita harmonia com a razo, e isto com tanta fora e evidncia, quanta necessria afazer curvar os espritos mais rebeldes e mais obstinados. 31. Todos vemos em que tristssima situao est a famlia e a sociedade por causa da peste das opinies perversas. Por certo que ambas gozariam de paz mais perfeita e de maior segurana, se nas Academias e nas escolas se ensinassem doutrinas mais ss e mais conformes com o ensino da Igreja, ensino como se acha nas obras de Toms de Aquino. O que ele ensina acerca da verdadeira natureza da liberdade em todos os tempos e, que, em nossos, degenerou em licenciosidade, o que a respeito da origem divina de qualquer autoridade, das leis e da sua fora, do imprio paternal e justo dos grandes princpios, da obedincia aos poderes superiores, da mtua caridade entre todos, o que acerca dessas coisas e de outras do mesmo gnero tratado por S. Toms, tem a maior e mais invencvel fora para lanar por terra esses princpios de um novo direito que todos conhecem ser perigoso paz, ordem e ao bem estar social. 32. Finalmente, todos os conhecimenots humanos devem esperar grande incremento e grande defesa vindos dessa restaurao dos estudos filosficos que ns temos proposto.

Porque da filosofia, como sabedoria moderadora que , costumam as belas artes tomar a s razo e o reto mtodo, e beber dela o seu esprito como de fonte comum da vida. De fato, e por uma constante experincia se comprova que as artes liberais tm florescido principalmente quando tm permanecido inclumes a sonra e o juzo da filosofia. Contrariamente, tm sido relegadas ao esquecimento e ao desprezo, quando a filosofia tem decado e se tem envolvido em erros e vs sutilezas. As mesmas cincias fsicas que agora so de tanto valor, e que causam singular admirao em toda aparte com tantas maravilhosas invenes, no s nenhum dano ho de sofrer causado pelo restabelecimento da filosofia antiga, mas antes recebero muito auxlio. Pois que para o frutuoso exerccio e incremento delas no basta s a considerao dos fatos e a contemplao da natureza, seno que, verificados os fatos, deve subir-se mais alto e procurar com todo o cuidado reconhecer a natureza das coisas corpreas, investigar as leis que a obedecem e os princpios donde provm a ordem das mesmas, sua unidade no meio da verdade, e sua afinidade no meio da diversidade. Para cujas investigaes admirvel a fora, luz e auxlio que presta a filosofia escolstica, se for ensinada com lcida inteligncia. A este respeito, apraz-nos consignar que s com grave injria se pode atribuir mesma filosofia o defeito de opor-se ao adiantamento e progresso das cincias naturais. Os escolsticos, com efeito, seguindo o parecer dos Santos Padres, tendo ensinado a cada povo, na antrologia, que a inte:ligncia s por meio das coisas sensveis pode elevar-se ao conhecimento de seres incorpreos e imateriais, tm compreendido por si mesmos que nada mais til para o filsofo do que investigar atentamente os segredos da natureza, e aplicar-se por largo tempo ao estudo das coisas fsicas. Isso mesmo fizeram eles. So Toms, o Bem Aventurado Santo Alberto Magno e outros promotores da Escolstica, no se entregaram contemplao da filosofia sem que tambm no dessem grande ateno ao conhecimento das coisas naturais. Antes, nessa ordem de conhecimentos, muitas das suas afirmaes e dos seus princpios so aprovados pelos mestres modernos que reconhecem a sua exatido. Alm disso, mesmo neste nosso tempo, muitos e insgnes doutores das cincias fsicas tm dado pblico testemunho de que entre as afirmaes certas e verdadeiras

da fsica moderna e os princpios filosficos da Escola, no existe contradio.

CONCLUSO 33. Ns, pois, proclamando que preciso receber de boa vontade e com reconhecimento tudo o que for sabidamente dito, ou utilmente descoberto seja por quem for, vos exortamos, Venerveis Irmos, com muito empenho, a que, para defesa e, exaltao da f catlica, para o bem social e para a promoo de todas as cincias, ponhais em vigor e deis a maior extenso possvel, preciosa doutrina de So Toms. Dizemos doutrina de So Toms, porque se se encontrar nos Escolsticos, alguma questo de:masiado sutil, alguma afirmao inconsiderada, ou alguma coisa que no esteja em harmonia com as doutrinas experimentadas nos sculos porteriores, ou que seja finalmente destituida de probabilidade, no intentamos de modo algum prop-la para ser repetida em nossa poca. Quanto ao mais, diligenciem os mestres, cuidadosamente escolhidos por vs, fazer penetrar no esprito dos discpulos a doutrina de So Toms; faam, sobretudo, notar claramente quanto esta superior s outras em solidez e elevao. Que as Academias que tendes institudo ou houverdes de instituir para o futuro, expliquem esta doutrina a defendam e utilizem para refutao dos erros dominantes. Para evitar, porm, que se aceite como verdadeiro o que apenas hipottico, e que se beba como gua pura o que no , providencial para que a "sabedoria e Toms se colha em seus prprios mananciais ou ao menos nos arroios que, saindo do prprio manancial, correm todavia claros e lmpidos conforme o testemunho dos doutores. Dos arroios que se dizem derivar do manancial, mas que esto na realidade cheios de guas estagnadas e insalubres, afastai, com muito cuidado, o esprito dos jovens. 34. Sabemos, porm, que todos os nossos esforos sero inteis, Venerveis Irmos, se a nossa empresa no for secundada por Aquele que nas Escrituras chamado "Deus das cincias" (I Re!g. 2, 3). Elas nos advertem tambm "que todo o bem excelente, todo o dom perfeito vem

de cima, descendo do Pai das luzes" (Pacob 1, 17). E mais: "Se algum carece de sabedoria, pea-a a Deus, que a todos d liberalmente, e no o lana em rosto, e ser-Ihe- dada" (I. c. 5, 5). Nisto sigamos tambm os conselhos do Doutor Anglico que nunca se entregava ao estudo e ao trabalho sem que antes tivesse recorrido a Deus por meio da orao, e que ingenuamente confessava que, quanto sabia, o devia, no tanto a seu estudo e trabalho, como ao auxlio divino. Roguemos, pois, a Deus todos juntos com esprito humilde e corao unnime que derrame sobre os filhos da Igreja o esprito de cincia e inteligncia, lhes abre o sentir para entenderem a sabedoria. Para obter, com maior abundncia ainda, os frutos da bondade divina, interpondo para com Deus o onipotente auxlio da Bem Aventurada Virgem Maria, sede da sabedoria, recorrei ao mesmo tempo, intercesso de So Jos, purssimo esposo da Virgem, assim como os grandes Apstolos So Pedro e So Paulo, que renovaro, com a verdade a terra infestada pelo contgio do erro, enchendo-a com o esplendor da luz celeste. 35. Enfim, sustentado pela segurana do auxlio divino, confiando em vosso pastoral zelo, a todos damos, Venerveis Irmos, do ntimo do corao, assim como ao vosso clero e ao povo confiado a vosso cuidado, a Bno Apostlica, como prova dos bens celestes e testemunho do Nosso particular afeto.

Dado em Roma, junto de So Pedro, aos 4 de agosto de 1879, segundo ano do Nosso Pontificado. LEO XIII, PAPA

Fonte: http://www.aquinate.net/portal/Tomismo/Tomistas/papa-leao-XIII-aeterni%20patris.php

AETERNI PATRIS
ENCYCLICAL OF POPE LEO XIII ON THE RESTORATION OF CHRISTIAN PHILOSOPHY To the Patriarchs, Primates, Archbishops, and Bishops of the Catholic World in Grace and Communion with the Apostolic See.

The only-begotten Son of the Eternal Father, who came on earth to bring salvation and the light of divine wisdom to men, conferred a great and wonderful blessing on the world when, about to ascend again into heaven, He commanded the Apostles to go and teach all nations,(1) and left the Church which He had founded to be the common and supreme teacher of the peoples. For men whom the truth had set free were to be preserved by the truth; nor would the fruits of heavenly doctrines by which salvation comes to men have long remained had not the Lord Christ appointed an unfailing teaching authority to train the minds to faith. And the Church built upon the promises of its own divine Author, whose charity it imitated, so faithfully followed out His commands that its constant aim and chief wish was this: to teach religion and contend forever against errors. To this end assuredly have tended the incessant labors of individual bishops; to this end also the published laws and decrees of councils, and especially the constant watchfulness of the Roman Pontiffs, to whom, as successors of the blessed Peter in the primacy of the Apostles, belongs the right and office of teaching and confirming their brethren in the faith. Since, then, according to the warning of the apostle, the minds of Christ's faithful are apt to be deceived and the integrity of the faith to be corrupted among men by philosophy and vain deceit,(2) the supreme pastors of the Church have always thought it their duty to advance, by every means in their power, science truly so called, and at the same time to provide with special care that all studies should accord with the Catholic faith, especially philosophy, on which a right interpretation of the other sciences in great part depends. Indeed, venerable brethren, on this very subject among others, We briefly admonished you in Our first encyclical letter; but now,

both by reason of the gravity of the subject and the condition of the time, we are again compelled to speak to you on the mode of taking up the study of philosophy which shall respond most fitly to the excellence of faith, and at the same time be consonant with the dignity of human science. 2. Whoso turns his attention to the bitter strifes of these days and seeks a reason for the troubles that vex public and private life must come to the conclusion that a fruitful cause of the evils which now afflict, as well as those which threaten, us lies in this: that false conclusions concerning divine and human things, which originated in the schools of philosophy, have now crept into all the orders of the State, and have been accepted by the common consent of the masses. For, since it is in the very nature of man to follow the guide of reason in his actions, if his intellect sins at all his will soon follows; and thus it happens that false opinions, whose seat is in the understanding, influence human actions and pervert them. Whereas, on the other hand, if men be of sound mind and take their stand on true and solid principles, there will result a vast amount of benefits for the public and private good. We do not, indeed, attribute such force and authority to philosophy as to esteem it equal to the task of combating and rooting out all errors; for, when the Christian religion was first constituted, it came upon earth to restore it to its primeval dignity by the admirable light of faith, diffused "not by persuasive words of human wisdom, but in the manifestation of spirit and of power",(3) so also at the present time we look above all things to the powerful help of Almighty God to bring back to a right understanding the minds of man and dispel the darkness of error.(4) But the natural helps with which the grace of the divine wisdom, strongly and sweetly disposing all things, has supplied the human race are neither to be despised nor neglected, chief among which is evidently the right use of philosophy. For, not in vain did God set the light of reason in the human mind; and so far is the super-added light of faith from extinguishing or lessening the power of the intelligence that it completes it rather, and by adding to its strength renders it capable of greater things. 3. Therefore, Divine Providence itself requires that, in calling back the people to the paths of faith and salvation, advantage should be taken of

human science also-an approved and wise practice which history testifies was observed by the most illustrious Fathers of the Church. They, indeed, were wont neither to belittle nor undervalue the part that reason had to play, as is summed up by the great Augustine when he attributes to this science "that by which the most wholesome faith is begotten . . . is nourished, defended, and made strong."(5) 4. In the first place, philosophy, if rightly made use of by the wise, in a certain way tends to smooth and fortify the road to true faith, and to prepare the souls of its disciples for the fit reception of revelation; for which reason it is well called by ancient writers sometimes a steppingstone to the Christian faith,(6) sometimes the prelude and help of Christianity,(7) sometimes the Gospel teacher.(8) And, assuredly, the God of all goodness, in all that pertains to divine things, has not only manifested by the light of faith those truths which human intelligence could not attain of itself, but others, also, not altogether unattainable by reason, that by the help of divine authority they may be made known to all at once and without any admixture of error. Hence it is that certain truths which were either divinely proposed for belief, or were bound by the closest chains to the doctrine of faith, were discovered by pagan sages with nothing but their natural reason to guide them, were demonstrated and proved by becoming arguments. For, as the Apostle says, the invisible things of Him, from the creation of the world, are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made: His eternal power also and divinity;(9) and the Gentiles who have not the Law show, nevertheless, the work of the Law written in their hearts.(10) But it is most fitting to turn these truths, which have been discovered by the pagan sages even, to the use and purposes of revealed doctrine, in order to show that both human wisdom and the very testimony of our adversaries serve to support the Christian faith-a method which is not of recent introduction, but of established use, and has often been adopted by the holy Fathers of the Church. What is more, those venerable men, the witnesses and guardians of religious traditions, recognize a certain form and figure of this in the action of the Hebrews, who, when about to depart out of Egypt, were commanded to take with them the gold and silver vessels and precious robes of the Egyptians, that by a change of use the things might be

dedicated to the service of the true God which had formerly been the instruments of ignoble and superstitious rites. Gregory of NeoCaesarea(11) praises Origen expressly because, with singular dexterity, as one snatches weapons from the enemy, he turned to the defense of Christian wisdom and to the destruction of superstition many arguments drawn from the writings of the pagans. And both Gregory of Nazianzen(12) and Gregory of Nyssa(13)praise and commend a like mode of disputation in Basil the Great; while Jerome(14) especially commends it in Quadratus, a disciple of the Apostles, in Aristides, Justin, Irenaeus, and very many others. Augustine says: "Do we not see Cyprian, that mildest of doctors and most blessed of martyrs, going out of Egypt laden with gold and silver and vestments? And Lactantius, also and Victorinus, Optatus and Hilary? And, not to speak of the living, how many Greeks have done likewise?"(15) But if natural reason first sowed this rich field of doctrine before it was rendered fruitful by the power of Christ, it must assuredly become more prolific after the grace of the Saviour has renewed and added to the native faculties of the human mind. And who does not see that a plain and easy road is opened up to faith by such a method of philosophic study? 5. But the advantage to be derived from such a school of philosophy is not to be confined within these limits. The foolishness of those men who "by these good things that are seen could not understand Him, that is, neither by attending to the works could have acknowledged who was the workman,"(16) is gravely reproved in the words of Divine Wisdom. In the first place, then, this great and noble fruit is gathered from human reason, that it demonstrates that God is; for the greatness of the beauty and of the creature the Creator of them may be seen so as to be known thereby.(17) Again, it shows God to excel in the height of all perfections, especially in infinite wisdom before which nothing lies hidden, and in absolute justice which no depraved affection could possibly shake; and that God, therefore, is not only true but truth itself, which can neither deceive nor be deceived. Whence it clearly follows that human reason finds the fullest faith and authority united in the word of God. In like manner, reason declares that the doctrine of the Gospel has even from its very beginning been made manifest by certain wonderful signs, the

established proofs, as it were, of unshaken truth; and that all, therefore, who set faith in the Gospel do not believe rashly as though following cunningly devised fables,(18) but, by a most reasonable consent, subject their intelligence and judgment to an authority which is divine. And of no less importance is it that reason most clearly sets forth that the Church instituted by Christ (as laid down in the Vatican Council), on account of its wonderful spread, its marvellous sanctity, and its inexhaustible fecundity in all places, as well as of its Catholic unity and unshaken stability, is in itself a great and perpetual motive of belief and an irrefragable testimony of its own divine mission.(19) 6. Its solid foundations having been thus laid, a perpetual and varied service is further required of philosophy, in order that sacred theology may receive and assume the nature, form, and genius of a true science. For in this, the most noble of studies, it is of the greatest necessity to bind together, as it were, in one body the many and various parts of the heavenly doctrines, that, each being allotted to its own proper place and derived from its own proper principles, the whole may join together in a complete union; in order, in fine, that all and each part may be strengthened by its own and the others' invincible arguments. Nor is that more accurate or fuller knowledge of the things that are believed, and somewhat more lucid understanding, as far as it can go, of the very mysteries of faith which Augustine and the other fathers commended and strove to reach, and which the Vatican Council itself(20) declared to be most fruitful, to be passed over in silence or belittled. Those will certainly more fully and more easily attain that knowledge and understanding who to integrity of life and love of faith join a mind rounded and finished by philosophic studies, as the same Vatican Council teaches that the knowledge of such sacred dogmas ought to be sought as well from analogy of the things that are naturally known as from the connection of those mysteries one with another and with the final end of man.(21) 7. Lastly, the duty of religiously defending the truths divinely delivered, and of resisting those who dare oppose them, pertains to philosophic pursuits. Wherefore, it is the glory of philosophy to be esteemed as the bulwark of faith and the strong defense of religion. As Clement of Alexandria testifies, the doctrine of the Saviour is indeed perfect in itself

and wanteth naught, since it is the power and wisdom of God. And the assistance of the Greek philosophy maketh not the truth more powerful; but, inasmuch as it weakens the contrary arguments of the sophists and repels the veiled attacks against the truth, it has been fitly called the hedge and fence of the vine.(22) For, as the enemies of the Catholic name, when about to attack religion, are in the habit of borrowing their weapons from the arguments of philosophers, so the defenders of sacred science draw many arguments from the store of philosophy which may serve to uphold revealed dogmas. Nor is the triumph of the Christian faith a small one in using human reason to repel powerfully and speedily the attacks of its adversaries by the hostile arms which human reason itself supplied. This species of religious strife St. Jerome, writing to Magnus, notices as having been adopted by the Apostle of the Gentiles himself; Paul, the leader of the Christian army and the invincible orator, battling for the cause of Christ, skillfully turns even a chance inscription into an argument for the faith; for he had learned from the true David to wrest the sword from the hands of the enemy and to cut off the head of the boastful Goliath with his own weapon.(23) Moreover, the Church herself not only urges, but even commands, Christian teachers to seek help from philosophy. For, the fifth Lateran Council, after it had decided that "every assertion contrary to the truth of revealed faith is altogether false, for the reason that it contradicts, however slightly, the truth,"(24) advises teachers of philosophy to pay close attention to the exposition of fallacious arguments; since, as Augustine testifies, "if reason is turned against the authority of sacred Scripture, no matter how specious it may seem, it errs in the likeness of truth; for true it cannot be."(25) 8. But in order that philosophy may be bound equal to the gathering of those precious fruits which we have indicated, it behooves it above all things never to turn aside from that path which the Fathers have entered upon from a venerable antiquity, and which the Vatican Council solemnly and authoritatively approved. As it is evident that very many truths of the supernatural order which are far beyond the reach of the keenest intellect must be accepted, human reason, conscious of its own infirmity, dare not affect to itself too great powers, nor deny those truths, nor measure them by its own standard, nor interpret them at will; but

receive them, rather, with a full and humble faith, and esteem it the highest honor to be allowed to wait upon heavenly doctrines like a handmaid and attendant, and by God's goodness attain to them in any way whatsoever. But in the case of such doctrines as the human intelligence may perceive, it is equally just that philosophy should make use of its own method, principles, and arguments-not, indeed, in such fashion as to seem rashly to withdraw from the divine authority. But, since it is established that those things which become known by revelation have the force of certain truth, and that those things which war against faith war equally against right reason, the Catholic philosopher will know that he violates at once faith and the laws of reason if he accepts any conclusion which he understands to be opposed to revealed doctrine. 9. We know that there are some who, in their overestimate of the human faculties, maintain that as soon as man's intellect becomes subject to divine authority it falls from its native dignity, and hampered by the yoke of this species of slavery, is much retarded and hindered in its progress toward the supreme truth and excellence. Such an idea is most false and deceptive, and its sole tendency is to induce foolish and ungrateful men wilfully to repudiate the most sublime truths, and reject the divine gift of faith, from which the fountains of all good things flow out upon civil society. For the human mind, being confined within certain limits, and those narrow enough, is exposed to many errors and is ignorant of many things; whereas the Christian faith, reposing on the authority of God, is the unfailing mistress of truth, whom whoso followeth he will be neither enmeshed in the snares of error nor tossed hither and thither on the waves of fluctuating opinion. Those, therefore, who to the study of philosophy unite obedience to the Christian faith, are philosophizing in the best possible way; for the splendor of the divine truths, received into the mind, helps the understanding, and not only detracts in nowise from its dignity, but adds greatly to its nobility, keenness, and stability. For surely that is a worthy and most useful exercise of reason when men give their minds to disproving those things which are repugnant to faith and proving the things which conform to faith. In the first case they cut the ground from under the feet of error and expose the viciousness of the

arguments on which error rests; while in the second case they make themselves masters of weighty reasons for the sound demonstration of truth and the satisfactory instruction of any reasonable person. Whoever denies that such study and practice tend to add to the resources and expand the faculties of the mind must necessarily and absurdly hold that the mind gains nothing from discriminating between the true and the false. Justly, therefore, does the Vatican Council commemorate in these words the great benefits which faith has conferred upon reason: Faith frees and saves reason from error, and endows it with manifold knowledge.(26) A wise man, therefore, would not accuse faith and look upon it as opposed to reason and natural truths, but would rather offer heartfelt thanks to God, and sincerely rejoice that, in the density of ignorance and in the flood-tide of error, holy faith, like a friendly star, shines down upon his path and points out to him the fair gate of truth beyond all danger of wandering. 10. If, venerable brethren, you open the history of philosophy, you will find all We have just said proved by experience. The philosophers of old who lacked the gift of faith, yet were esteemed so wise, fell into many appalling errors. You know how often among some truths they taught false and incongruous things; what vague and doubtful opinions they held concerning the nature of the Divinity, the first origin of things, the government of the world, the divine knowledge of the future, the cause and principle of evil, the ultimate end of man, the eternal beatitude, concerning virtue and vice, and other matters, a true and certain knowledge of which is most necessary to the human race; while, on the other hand, the early Fathers and Doctors of the Church, who well understood that, according to the divine plan, the restorer of human science is Christ, who is the power and the wisdom of God,(27) and in whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge,(28) took up and investigated the books of the ancient philosophers, and compared their teachings with the doctrines of revelation, and, carefully sifting them, they cherished what was true and wise in them and amended or rejected all else. For, as the all-seeing God against the cruelty of tyrants raised up mighty martyrs to the defense of the Church, men prodigal of their great lives, in like manner to false philosophers and heretics He

opposed men of great wisdom, to defend, even by the aid of human reason, the treasure of revealed truths. Thus, from the very first ages of the Church, the Catholic doctrine has encountered a multitude of most bitter adversaries, who, deriding the Christian dogmas and institutions, maintained that there were many gods, that the material world never had a beginning or cause, and that the course of events was one of blind and fatal necessity, not regulated by the will of Divine Providence. 11. But the learned men whom We call apologists speedily encountered these teachers of foolish doctrine and, under the guidance of faith, found arguments in human wisdom also to prove that one God, who stands preeminent in every kind of perfection, is to be worshiped; that all things were created from nothing by His omnipotent power; that by His wisdom they flourish and serve each their own special purposes. Among these St. Justin Martyr claims the chief place. After having tried the most celebrated academies of the Greeks, he saw clearly, as he himself confesses, that he could only draw truths in their fullness from the doctrine of revelation. These he embraced with all the ardor of his soul, purged of calumny, courageously and fully defended before the Roman emperors, and reconciled with them not a few of the sayings of the Greek philosophers. 12. Quadratus, also, and Aristides, Hermias, and Athenagoras stood nobly forth in that time. Nor did Irenaeus, the invincible martyr and Bishop of Lyons, win less glory in the same cause when, forcibly refuting the perverse opinions of the Orientals, the work of the Gnostics, scattered broadcast over the territories of the Roman Empire, he explained (according to Jerome) the origin of each heresy and in what philosophic source it took its rise.(29) But who knows not the disputations of Clement of Alexandria, which the same Jerome thus honorably commemorates: "What is there in them that is not learned, and what that is not of the very heart of philosophy?"(30) He himself, indeed, with marvellous versatility treated of many things of the greatest utility for preparing a history of philosophy, for the exercise of the dialectic art, and for showing the agreement between reason and faith. After him came Origen, who graced the chair of the school of

Alexandria, and was most learned in the teachings of the Greeks and Orientals. He published many volumes, involving great labor, which were wonderfully adapted to explain the divine writings and illustrate the sacred dogmas; which, though, as they now stand, not altogether free from error, contain nevertheless a wealth of knowledge tending to the growth and advance of natural truths. Tertullian opposes heretics with the authority of the sacred writings; with the philosophers he changes his fence and disputes philosophically; but so learnedly and accurately did he confute them that he made bold to say: "Neither in science nor in schooling are we equals, as you imagine."(31) Arnobius, also, in his works against the pagans, and Lactantius in the divine Institutions especially, with equal eloquence and strength strenuously strive to move men to accept the dogmas and precepts of Catholic wisdom, not by philosophic juggling, after the fashion of the Academicians, but vanquishing them partly by their own arms, and partly by arguments drawn from the mutual contentions of the philosophers.(32) But the writings on thehuman soul, the divine attributes, and other questions of mighty moment which the great Athanasius and Chrysostom, the prince of orators, have left behind them are, by common consent, so supremely excellent that it seems scarcely anything could be added to their subtlety and fulness. And, not to cover too wide a range, we add to the number of the great men of whom mention has been made the names of Basil the Great and of the two Gregories, who, on going forth from Athens, that home of all learning, thoroughly equipped with all the harness of philosophy, turned the wealth of knowledge which each had gathered up in a course of zealous study to the work of refuting heretics and preparing Christians. 13. But Augustine would seem to have wrested the palm from all. Of a most powerful genius and thoroughly saturated with sacred and profane learning, with the loftiest faith and with equal knowledge, he combated most vigorously all the errors of his age. What topic of philosophy did he not investigate? What region of it did he not diligently explore, either in expounding the loftiest mysteries of the faith to the faithful, or defending them against the full onslaught of adversaries, or again when, in demolishing the fables of the Academicians or the Manichaeans, he laid the safe foundations and sure structure of human science, or followed up

the reason, origin, and causes of the evils that afflict man? How subtly he reasoned on the angels, the soul, the human mind, the will and free choice, on religion and the life of the blessed, on time and eternity, and even on the very nature of changeable bodies. Afterwards, in the East, John Damascene, treading in the footsteps of Basil and of Gregory of Nazianzen, and in the West, Boethius and Anselm following the doctrines of Augustine, added largely to the patrimony of philosophy. 14. Later on, the doctors of the middle ages, who are called Scholastics, addressed themselves to a great work-that of diligently collecting, and sifting, and storing up, as it were, in one place, for the use and convenience of posterity the rich and fertile harvests of Christian learning scattered abroad in the voluminous works of the holy Fathers. And with regard, venerable brethren, to the origin, drift, and excellence of this scholastic learning, it may be well here to speak more fully in the words of one of the wisest of Our predecessors, Sixtus V: "By the divine favor of Him who alone gives the spirit of science wisdom, and understanding, and who thou ages, as there may be need, enriches His Church with new blessings and strengthens it with safeguards, there was founded by Our fathers, men of eminent wisdom, the scholastic theology, which two glorious doctors in particular angelic St. Thomas and the seraphic St. Bonaventure, illustrious teachers of this faculty, . . .with surpassing genius, by unwearied diligence, and at the cost of long labors and vigils, set in order and beautified, and when skilfuly arranged and clearly explained in a variety of ways, handed down to posterity. 15. "And, indeed, the knowledge and use of so salutary a science, which flows from the fertilizing founts of the sacred writings, the sovereign Pontiffs, the holy Fathers and the councils, must always be of the greatest assistance to the Church, whether with the view of really and soundly understanding and interpreting the Scriptures, or more safely and to better purpose reading and explaining the Fathers, or for exposing and refuting the various errors and heresies; and in these late days, when those dangerous times described by the Apostle are already upon us, when the blasphemers, the proud, and the seducers go from bad to worse, erring themselves and causing others to err, there is surely a very great need of confirming the dogmas of Catholic faith and confuting heresies."

16. Although these words seem to bear reference solely to Scholastic theology, nevertheless they may plainly be accepted as equally true of philosophy and its praises. For, the noble endowments which make the Scholastic theology so formidable to the enemies of truth-to wit, as the same Pontiff adds, "that ready and close coherence of cause and effect, that order and array as of a disciplined army in battle, those clear definitions and distinctions, that strength of argument and those keen discussions, by which light is distinguished from darkness, the true from the false, expose and strip naked, as it were, the falsehoods of heretics wrapped around by a cloud of subterfuges and fallacies"(33) - those noble and admirable endowments, We say, are only to be found in a right use of that philosophy which the Scholastic teachers have been accustomed carefully and prudently to make use of even in theological disputations. Moreover, since it is the proper and special office of the Scholastic theologians to bind together by the fastest chain human and divine science, surely the theology in which they excelled would not have gained such honor and commendation among men if they had made use of a lame and imperfect or vain philosophy. 17. Among the Scholastic Doctors, the chief and master of all towers Thomas Aquinas, who, as Cajetan observes, because "he most venerated the ancient doctors of the Church, in a certain way seems to have inherited the intellect of all."(34) The doctrines of those illustrious men, like the scattered members of a body, Thomas collected together and cemented, distributed in wonderful order, and so increased with important additions that he is rightly and deservedly esteemed the special bulwark and glory of the Catholic faith. With his spirit at once humble and swift, his memory ready and tenacious, his life spotless throughout, a lover of truth for its own sake, richly endowed with human and divine science, like the sun he heated the world with the warmth of his virtues and filled it with the splendor of his teaching. Philosophy has no part which he did not touch finely at once and thoroughly; on the laws of reasoning, on God and incorporeal substances, on man and other sensible things, on human actions and their principles, he reasoned in such a manner that in him there is wanting neither a full array of questions, nor an apt disposal of the various parts, nor the best method of proceeding,

nor soundness of principles or strength of argument, nor clearness and elegance of style, nor a facility for explaining what is abstruse. 18. Moreover, the Angelic Doctor pushed his philosophic inquiry into the reasons and principles of things, which because they are most comprehensive and contain in their bosom, so to say, the seeds of almost infinite truths, were to be unfolded in good time by later masters and with a goodly yield. And as he also used this philosophic method in the refutation of error, he won this title to distinction for himself: that, single-handed, he victoriously combated the errors of former times, and supplied invincible arms to put those to rout which might in after-times spring up. Again, clearly distinguishing, as is fitting, reason from faith, while happily associating the one with the other, he both preserved the rights and had regard for the dignity of each; so much so, indeed, that reason, borne on the wings of Thomas to its human height, can scarcely rise higher, while faith could scarcely expect more or stronger aids from reason than those which she has already obtained through Thomas. 19. For these reasons most learned men, in former ages especially, of the highest repute in theology and philosophy, after mastering with infinite pains the immortal works of Thomas, gave themselves up not so much to be instructed in his angelic wisdom as to be nourished upon it. It is known that nearly all the founders and lawgivers of the religious orders commanded their members to study and religiously adhere to the teachings of St. Thomas, fearful least any of them should swerve even in the slightest degree from the footsteps of so great a man. To say nothing of the family of St. Dominic, which rightly claims this great teacher for its own glory, the statutes of the Benedictines, the Carmelites, the Augustinians, the Society of Jesus, and many others all testify that they are bound by this law. 20. And, here, how pleasantly one's thoughts fly back to those celebrated schools and universities which flourished of old in Europe - to Paris, Salamanca, Alcal, to Douay, Toulouse, and Louvain, to Padua and Bologna, to Naples and Coimbra, and to many another! All know how the fame of these seats of learning grew with their years, and that their judgment, often asked in matters of grave moment, held great weight

everywhere. And we know how in those great homes of human wisdom, as in his own kingdom, Thomas reigned supreme; and that the minds of all, of teachers as well as of taught, rested in wonderful harmony under the shield and authority of the Angelic Doctor. Z 1. But, furthermore, Our predecessors in the Roman pontificate have celebrated the wisdom of Thomas Aquinas by exceptional tributes of praise and the most ample testimonials. Clement VI in the bull In Ordine; Nicholas V in his brief to the friars of the Order of Preachers, 1451; Benedict XIII in the bull Pretiosus, and others bear witness that the universal Church borrows lustre from his admirable teaching; while St. Pius V declares in the bull Mirabilis that heresies, confounded and convicted by the same teaching, were dissipated, and the whole world daily freed from fatal errors; others, such as Clement XII in the bull Verbo Dei, affirm that most fruitful blessings have spread abroad from his writings over the whole Church, and that he is worthy of the honor which is bestowed on the greatest Doctors of the Church, on Gregory and Ambrose, Augustine and Jerome; while others have not hesitated to propose St. Thomas for the exemplar and master of the universities and great centers of learning whom they may follow with unfaltering feet. On which point the words of Blessed Urban V to the University of Toulouse are worthy of recall: "It is our will, which We hereby enjoin upon you, that ye follow the teaching of Blessed Thomas as the true and Catholic doctrine and that ye labor with all your force to profit by the same."(35) Innocent XII, followed the example of Urban in the case of the University of Louvain, in the letter in the form of a brief addressed to that university on February 6, 1694, and Benedict XIV in the letter in the form of a brief addressed on August 26, 1752, to the Dionysian College in Granada; while to these judgments of great Pontiffs on Thomas Aquinas comes the crowning testimony of Innocent VI: "His teaching above that of others, the canonical writings alone excepted, enjoys such a precision of language, an order of matters, a truth of conclusions, that those who hold to it are never found swerving from the path of truth, and he who dare assail it will always be suspected of error."(36) 22. The ecumenical councils, also, where blossoms the flower of all earthly wisdom, have always been careful to hold Thomas Aquinas in

singular honor. In the Councils of Lyons, Vienna, Florence, and the Vatican one might almost say that Thomas took part and presided over the deliberations and decrees of the Fathers, contending against the errors of the Greeks, of heretics and rationalists, with invincible force and with the happiest results. But the chief and special glory of Thomas, one which he has shared with none of the Catholic Doctors, is that the Fathers of Trent made it part of the order of conclave to lay upon the altar, together with sacred Scripture and the decrees of the supreme Pontiffs, the Summa of Thomas Aquinas, whence to seek counsel, reason, and inspiration. 23. A last triumph was reserved for this incomparable man-namely, to compel the homage, praise, and admiration of even the very enemies of the Catholic name. For it has come to light that there were not lacking among the leaders of heretical sects some who openly declared that, if the teaching of Thomas Aquinas were only taken away, they could easily battle with all Catholic teachers, gain the victory, and abolish the Church.(37) A vain hope, indeed, but no vain testimony. 24. Therefore, venerable brethren, as often as We contemplate the good, the force, and the singular advantages to be derived from his philosophic discipline which Our Fathers so dearly loved. We think it hazardous that its special honor should not always and everywhere remain, especially when it is established that daily experience, and the judgment of the greatest men, and, to crown all, the voice of the Church, have favored the Scholastic philosophy. Moreover, to the old teaching a novel system of philosophy has succeeded here and there, in which We fail to perceive those desirable and wholesome fruits which the Church and civil society itself would prefer. For it pleased the struggling innovators of the sixteenth century to philosophize without any respect for faith, the power of inventing in accordance with his own pleasure and bent being asked and given in turn by each one. Hence, it was natural that systems of philosophy multiplied beyond measure, and conclusions differing and clashing one with another arose about those matters even which are the most important in human knowledge. From a mass of conclusions men often come to wavering and doubt; and who knows not how easily the mind slips from doubt to error? But, as men are apt to follow the lead

given them, this new pursuit seems to have caught the souls of certain Catholic philosophers, who, throwing aside the patrimony of ancient wisdom, chose rather to build up a new edifice than to strengthen and complete the old by aid of the new-ill-advisedly, in sooth, and not without detriment to the sciences. For, a multiform system of this kind, which depends on the authority and choice of any professor, has a foundation open to change, and consequently gives us a philosophy not firm, and stable, and robust like that of old, but tottering and feeble. And if, perchance, it sometimes finds itself scarcely equal to sustain the shock of its foes, it should recognize that the cause and the blame lie in itself. In saying this We have no intention of discountenancing the learned and able men who bring their industry and erudition, and, what is more, the wealth of new discoveries, to the service of philosophy; for, of course, We understand that this tends to the development of learning. But one should be very careful lest all or his chief labor be exhausted in these pursuits and in mere erudition. And the same thing is true of sacred theology, which, indeed, may be assisted and illustrated by all kinds of erudition, though it is absolutely necessary to approach it in the grave manner of the Scholastics, in order that, the forces of revelation and reason being united in it, it may continue to be "the invincible bulwark of the faith."(38) 25. With wise forethought, therefore, not a few of the advocates of philosophic studies, when turning their minds recently to the practical reform of philosophy, aimed and aim at restoring the renowned teaching of Thomas Aquinas and winning it back to its ancient beauty. 26. We have learned with great joy that many members of your order, venerable brethren, have taken this plan to heart; and while We earnestly commend their efforts, We exhort them to hold fast to their purpose, and remind each and all of you that Our first and most cherished idea is that you should all furnish to studious youth a generous and copious supply of those purest streams of wisdom flowing inexhaustibly from the precious fountainhead of the Angelic Doctor. 27. Many are the reasons why We are so desirous of this. In the first place, then, since in the tempest that is on us the Christian faith is being

constantly assailed by the machinations and craft of a certain false wisdom, all youths, but especially those who are the growing hope of the Church, should be nourished on the strong and robust food of doctrine, that so, mighty in strength and armed at all points, they may become habituated to advance the cause of religion with force and judgment, "being ready always, according to the apostolic counsel, to satisfy every one that asketh you a reason of that hope which is in you,"(39) and that they may be able to exhort in sound doctrine and to convince the gainsayers."(40) Many of those who, with minds alienated from the faith, hate Catholic institutions, claim reason as their sole mistress and guide. Now, We think that, apart from the supernatural help of God, nothing is better calculated to heal those minds and to bring them into favor with the Catholic faith than the solid doctrine of the Fathers and the Scholastics, who so clearly and forcibly demonstrate the firm foundations of the faith, its divine origin, its certain truth, the arguments that sustain it, the benefits it has conferred on the human race, and its perfect accord with reason, in a manner to satisfy completely minds open to persuasion, however unwilling and repugnant. 28. Domestic and civil society even, which, as all see, is exposed to great danger from this plague of perverse opinions, would certainly enjoy a far more peaceful and secure existence if a more wholesome doctrine were taught in the universities and high schools-one more in conformity with the teaching of the Church, such as is contained in the works of Thomas Aquinas. 29. For, the teachings of Thomas on the true meaning of liberty, which at this time is running into license, on the divine origin of all authority, on laws and their force, on the paternal and just rule of princes, on obedience to the higher powers, on mutual charity one toward another-on all of these and kindred subjects-have very great and invincible force to overturn those principles of the new order which are well known to be dangerous to the peaceful order of things and to public safety. In short, all studies ought to find hope of advancement and promise of assistance in this restoration of philosophic discipline which We have proposed. The arts were wont to draw from philosophy, as from a wise mistress, sound judgment and right method, and from it, also, their spirit, as from the

common fount of life. When philosophy stood stainless in honor and wise in judgment, then, as facts and constant experience showed, the liberal arts flourished as never before or since; but, neglected and almost blotted out, they lay prone, since philosophy began to lean to error and join hands with folly. Nor will the physical sciences themselves, which are now in such great repute, and by the renown of so many inventions draw such universal admiration to themselves, suffer detriment, but find very great assistance in the restoration of the ancient philosophy. For, the investigation of facts and the contemplation of nature is not alone sufficient for their profitable exercise and advance; but, when facts have been established, it is necessary to rise and apply ourselves to the study of the nature of corporeal things, to inquire into the laws which govern them and the principles whence their order and varied unity and mutual attraction in diversity arise. To such investigations it is wonderful what force and light and aid the Scholastic philosophy, if judiciously taught, would bring. 30. And here it is well to note that our philosophy can only by the grossest injustice be accused of being opposed to the advance and development of natural science. For, when the Scholastics, following the opinion of the holy Fathers, always held in anthropology that the human intelligence is only led to the knowledge of things without body and matter by things sensible, they well understood that nothing was of greater use to the philosopher than diligently to search into the mysteries of nature and to be earnest and constant in the study of physical things. And this they confirmed by their own example; for St. Thomas, Blessed Albertus Magnus, and other leaders of the Scholastics were never so wholly rapt in the study of philosophy as not to give large attention to the knowledge of natural things; and, indeed, the number of their sayings and writings on these subjects, which recent professors approve of and admit to harmonize with truth, is by no means small. Moreover, in this very age many illustrious professors of the physical sciences openly testify that between certain and accepted conclusions of modern physics and the philosophic principles of the schools there is no conflict worthy of the name.

31. While, therefore, We hold that every word of wisdom, every useful thing by whomsoever discovered or planned, ought to be received with a willing and grateful mind, We exhort you, venerable brethren, in all earnestness to restore the golden wisdom of St. Thomas, and to spread it far and wide for the defense and beauty of the Catholic faith, for the good of society, and for the advantage of all the sciences. The wisdom of St. Thomas, We say; for if anything is taken up with too great subtlety by the Scholastic doctors, or too carelessly stated-if there be anything that ill agrees with the discoveries of a later age, or, in a word, improbable in whatever way-it does not enter Our mind to propose that for imitation to Our age. Let carefully selected teachers endeavor to implant the doctrine of Thomas Aquinas in the minds of students, and set forth clearly his solidity and excellence over others. Let the universities already founded or to be founded by you illustrate and defend this doctrine, and use it for the refutation of prevailing errors. But, lest the false for the true or the corrupt for the pure be drunk in, be ye watchful that the doctrine of Thomas be drawn from his own fountains, or at least from those rivulets which, derived from the very fount, have thus far flowed, according to the established agreement of learned men, pure and clear; be careful to guard the minds of youth from those which are said to flow thence, but in reality are gathered from strange and unwholesome streams. 32. But well do We know that vain will be Our efforts unless, venerable brethren, He helps Our common cause who, in the words of divine Scripture, is called the God of all knowledge;(41) by which we are also admonished that "every best gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights",(42) and again: "If any of you want wisdom, let him ask of God, who giveth to all men abundantly, and upbraideth not: and it shall be given him."(43) 33. Therefore in this also let us follow the example of the Angelic Doctor, who never gave himself to reading or writing without first begging the blessing of God, who modestly confessed that whatever he knew he had acquired not so much by his own study and labor as by the divine gift; and therefore let us all, in humble and united prayer, beseech God to send forth the spirit of knowledge and of understanding to the children of the Church and open their senses for the understanding of

wisdom. And that we may receive fuller fruits of the divine goodness, offer up to God the most efficacious patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary, who is called the seat of wisdom; having at the same time as advocates St. Joseph, the most chaste spouse of the Virgin, and Peter and Paul, the chiefs of the Apostles, whose truth renewed the earth which had fallen under the impure blight of error, filling it with the light of heavenly wisdom. 34. In fine, relying on the divine assistance and confiding in your pastoral zeal, most lovingly We bestow on all of you, venerable brethren, on all the clergy and the flocks committed to your charge, the apostolic benediction as a pledge of heavenly gifts and a token of Our special esteem. Given at St. Peter's, in Rome, the fourth day of August, 1879, the second year of our pontificate. LEO XIII

REFERENCES: 1. Matt.28:19. 2. Col. 2:8. 3. 1 Cor. 2:4. 4. See Inscrutabili Dei consilio, 78:113. 5. De Trinitate, 14, 1, 3 (PL 42, 1037); quoted by Thomas Aquinas, Summa theologiae, 1, 1, 2. 6. Clement of Alexandria, Stromata, 1, 16 (PG 8, 795); 7, 3 (PG 9, 426). 7. Origen, Epistola ad Gregorium (PG 11, 87-91). 8. Clement of Alexandria, Stromata, 1,5 (PG 8, 718-719). 9. Rom. 1:20.

10. Rom.2:14-15. 11. Gregory of Neo-Caesarea (also called Gregory Thaumaturgus that is "the miracle worker"),In Origenem oratio panegyrica, 6 (PG 10, 1093A). 12. Carm., 1, Iamb. 3 (PG 37, 1045A-1047A). 13. Vita Moysis (PG 44, 359). 14. Epistola ad Magnum, 4 (PL 22, 667). Quadratus, Justin Irenaeus, are counted among the early Christian apologists, who devoted their works to the defence of Christian truth against the pagans. 15. De doctrina christiana, l, 2, 40 (PL 34, 63). 16. Wisd. 13:1. 17. Wisd. 13:5. 18. 2 Peter 1:16. 19. Const. Dogm, de Fid. Cath., c.3. 20. Const. cit., c.4. 21. Loc. cit. 22. Stromata, l, 20 (PG 8, 818). 23. Epistola ad Magnum, 2 (PL 22, 666). 24. Bulla Apostolici regiminis. 25. Epistola 147, ad Marcellinum, 7 (PL 33, 589). 26. Const. Dogm. de Fid. Cath., c.4. 27. 1 Cor. 1:24. 28. Col. 2:3. 29. Epistola ad Magnum, 4 (PL 22, 667).

30. Loc. cit. 31. Tertullian, Apologet., 46 (PL 1, 573). 32. Lactantius, Div. Inst., 7, 7 (PL 6, 759). 33. Bulla Triumphantis, an. 1588. 34. Cajetan's commentary on Sum. theol., IIa-IIae 148, 9. Art. 4; Leonine edit., Vol. 10, p. 174, n.6. 35. Constitutio 5a, data die 3 Aug. 1368, ad Cancell. Univ. Tolos. 36. Sermo de S. Thoma. 37. Bucer. 38. Sixtus V, Bulla Triumphantis. 39. 1 Peter 3:15. 40. Titus 1:9. 41. 1 Kings 2:3. 42. James 1:17. 43. James 1:5.

Fonte: http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/leo_xiii/encyclicals/index.htm