St. Thomas Aquinas (1225 – 1274) was a wealthy Italian who, after attending the University of Naples for five years, became a Dominican friar at age nineteen. Later on, Aquinas became an extremely influential scholastic philosopher and theologian, who attempted to merge the teachings of Aristotle with the Catholic Church’s doctrine.
His best known work is the Summa Theologica, which discusses the five divine attributes of God. Aquinas’ other philosophical book is the Summa contra Gentiles, which is largely about the quinque viae or the five ways of God. (To see these two works click here: Summa Theologica and Summa contra Gentiles.)
St. Thomas also believed that there were three ways to gain knowledge. These were,
- through reason
- through revelation
- through reason and revelation
St. Thomas Aquinas died in 1274 after falling seriously ill and suffering an accident involving a tree branch!
“The good of the grace of one soul is greater than the good of the nature of the whole universe” — Thomas Aquinas