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Suárez's distinction between creation and legislation

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Chapter Summary

This chapter argues that Francisco Suárez drastically deviates from Aquinas's teachings in the way described by Germain Grisez. The Spanish theorists sought inspiration in Aquinas's writing in order to come to terms with two pressing problems. The first is the Reformation. The second issue concerns the legitimacy of the Spanish Crown, in particular in its dealings with the subjects of the newly acquired colonies in the New World. The chapter focuses mainly on the relationship between Suárez and Aquinas. Attention is paid to Suárez concept of law as well as to his view of eternal law of creation and of natural law, after which Suarez's proposal for the foundation of natural law is explored. The dichotomy between rationality and nature, absent in Aquinas's writings, but pervading Suárez's entire theory, excludes the possibility that man might find his starting-point for practical reasoning in desires.

Keywords: Aquinas's writings; eternal law; Francisco Suárez; Germain Grisez



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