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Teaching BodiesMoral Formation in the Summa of Thomas Aquinas$
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Mark D. Jordan

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780823273782

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823273782.001.0001

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Vocations and Viae

Vocations and Viae

(p.152) Chapter 10 Vocations and Viae
Teaching Bodies

Mark D. Jordan

Fordham University Press

The last section of the moral part of Thomas Aquinas’s Summa theologiae concerns special graces and states of life. It might seem a supplement or appendix to the main treatment of virtues. In fact, it is the culminating exhortation of the moral part and a bookend to the exhortation that begins Summa 2-1. The treatment of prophecy as one of the special gifts contrasts its transitory quality with sustainable moral formation. Thomas’s vindication of communal life under vows is meant to show the surest way (via) to cultivate the moral re-formation that leads to human happiness with God. His defense of the contemplative life that also expresses itself in teaching is not a self-interest plea for the mendicant orders. It is the persuasive proposal of a pedagogy.

Keywords:   contemplative life, mendicant orders, prophecy, Summa theologiae, Thomas Aquinas

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