St. Thomas Aquinas

The Summa Theologica

(Benziger Bros. edition, 1947)
Translated by
Fathers of the English Dominican Province

 

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Question: 98  [<< | >>]

OF THE PRESERVATION OF THE SPECIES (TWO ARTICLES)

Deinde considerandum est de his quae pertinent ad conservationem speciei.
  • Et primo, de ipsa generatione;
  • secundo, de conditione prolis genitae.
   We next consider what belongs to the preservation of the species; and,
  • first, of generation;
  • secondly, of the state of the offspring.
Circa primum quaeruntur duo.   Under the first head there are two points of inquiry:
Primo, utrum in statu innocentiae fuisset generatio.     (1) Whether in the state of innocence there would have been generation?
Secundo, utrum fuisset generatio per coitum.     (2) Whether generation would have been through coition?

 

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Question: 98  [<< | >>]
Article: 1  [<< | >>]

Whether in the state of innocence generation existed?

Ad primum sic proceditur. Videtur quod in statu innocentiae non fuisset generatio. Generationi enim corruptio est contraria, ut dicitur in V Physic. Contraria autem sunt circa idem. In statu autem innocentiae non fuisset corruptio. Ergo neque generatio.   Objection 1: It would seem there would have been no generation in the state of innocence. For, as stated in Phys. v, 5, "corruption is contrary to generation." But contraries affect the same subject: also there would have been no corruption in the state of innocence. Therefore neither would there have been generation.
Praeterea, generatio ordinatur ad hoc quod conservetur in specie quod secundum individuum conservari non potest, unde et in illis individuis quae in perpetuum durant, generatio non invenitur. Sed in statu innocentiae homo in perpetuum absque morte vixisset. Ergo in statu innocentiae generatio, non fuisset.   Objection 2: Further, the object of generation is the preservation in the species of that which is corruptible in the individual. Wherefore there is no generation in those individual things which last for ever. But in the state of innocence man would have lived for ever. Therefore in the state of innocence there would have been no generation.
Praeterea, per generationem homines multiplicantur. Sed multiplicatis dominis, necesse est fieri possessionum divisionem, ad evitandam confusionem dominii. Ergo, cum homo sit institutus dominus animalium, facta multiplicatione humani generis per generationem, secuta fuisset divisio dominii. Quod videtur esse contrarium iuri naturali, secundum quod omnia sunt communia, ut Isidorus dicit. Non ergo fuisset generatio in statu innocentiae.   Objection 3: Further, by generation man is multiplied. But the multiplication of masters requires the division of property, to avoid confusion of mastership. Therefore, since man was made master of the animals, it would have been necessary to make a division of rights when the human race increased by generation. This is against the natural law, according to which all things are in common, as Isidore says (Etym. v, 4). Therefore there would have been no generation in the state of innocence.
Sed contra est quod dicitur Gen. I, crescite et multiplicamini, et replete terram. Huiusmodi autem multiplicatio absque nova generatione fieri non potuisset, cum duo tantum fuerint primitus instituti. Ergo in primo statu generatio fuisset.   On the contrary, It is written (Gn. 1:28): "Increase and multiply, and fill the earth." But this increase could not come about save by generation, since the original number of mankind was two only. Therefore there would have been generation in the state of innocence.
Respondeo dicendum quod in statu innocentiae fuisset generatio ad multiplicationem humani generis, alioquin peccatum hominis fuisset valde necessarium, ex quo tantum bonum consecutum est. Est ergo considerandum quod homo, secundum suam naturam, est constitutus quasi medium quoddam inter creaturas corruptibiles et incorruptibiles, nam anima eius est naturaliter incorruptibilis, corpus vero naturaliter corruptibile. Est autem considerandum quod alio modo intentio naturae fertur ad corruptibiles, et incorruptibiles creaturas. Id enim per se videtur esse de intentione naturae, quod est semper et perpetuum. Quod autem est solum secundum aliquod tempus, non videtur esse principaliter de intentione naturae, sed quasi ad aliud ordinatum, alioquin, eo corrupto, naturae intentio cassaretur.   I answer that, In the state of innocence there would have been generation of offspring for the multiplication of the human race; otherwise man's sin would have been very necessary, for such a great blessing to be its result. We must, therefore, observe that man, by his nature, is established, as it were, midway between corruptible and incorruptible creatures, his soul being naturally incorruptible, while his body is naturally corruptible. We must also observe that nature's purpose appears to be different as regards corruptible and incorruptible things. For that seems to be the direct purpose of nature, which is invariable and perpetual; while what is only for a time is seemingly not the chief purpose of nature, but as it were, subordinate to something else; otherwise, when it ceased to exist, nature's purpose would become void.
Quia igitur in rebus corruptibilibus nihil est perpetuum et semper manens nisi species, bonum speciei est de principali intentione naturae, ad cuius conservationem naturalis generatio ordinatur. Substantiae vero incorruptibiles manent semper non solum secundum speciem, sed etiam secundum individua, et ideo etiam ipsa individua sunt de principali intentione naturae.    Therefore, since in things corruptible none is everlasting and permanent except the species, it follows that the chief purpose of nature is the good of the species; for the preservation of which natural generation is ordained. On the other hand, incorruptible substances survive, not only in the species, but also in the individual; wherefore even the individuals are included in the chief purpose of nature.
Sic igitur homini ex parte corporis, quod corruptibile est secundum naturam suam, competit generatio. Ex parte vero animae, quae incorruptibilis est, competit ei quod multitudo individuorum sit per se intenta a natura, vel potius a naturae auctore, qui solus est humanarum animarum creator. Et ideo, ad multiplicationem humani generis, generationem in humano genere statuit, etiam in statu innocentiae.    Hence it belongs to man to beget offspring, on the part of the naturally corruptible body. But on the part of the soul, which is incorruptible, it is fitting that the multitude of individuals should be the direct purpose of nature, or rather of the Author of nature, Who alone is the Creator of the human soul. Wherefore, to provide for the multiplication of the human race, He established the begetting of offspring even in the state of innocence.
Ad primum ergo dicendum quod corpus hominis in statu innocentiae, quantum erat de se, corruptibile erat, sed potuit praeservari a corruptione per animam. Et ideo non fuit homini subtrahenda generatio, quae debetur corruptibilibus rebus.   Reply to Objection 1: In the state of innocence the human body was in itself corruptible, but it could be preserved from corruption by the soul. Therefore, since generation belongs to things corruptible, man was not to be deprived thereof.
Ad secundum dicendum quod generatio in statu innocentiae, etsi non fuisset propter conservationem speciei, fuisset tamen propter multiplicationem individuorum.   Reply to Objection 2: Although generation in the state of innocence might not have been required for the preservation of the species, yet it would have been required for the multiplication of the individual.
Ad tertium dicendum quod in statu isto, multiplicatis dominis, necesse est fieri divisionem possessionum, quia communitas possessionis est occasio discordiae, ut philosophus dicit in II Politic. Sed in statu innocentiae fuissent voluntates hominum sic ordinatae, quod absque omni periculo discordiae communiter usi fuissent, secundum quod unicuique eorum competeret, rebus quae eorum dominio subdebantur, cum hoc etiam modo apud multos bonos viros observetur.   Reply to Objection 3: In our present state a division of possessions is necessary on account of the multiplicity of masters, inasmuch as community of possession is a source of strife, as the Philosopher says (Politic. ii, 5). In the state of innocence, however, the will of men would have been so ordered that without any danger of strife they would have used in common, according to each one's need, those things of which they were masters—a state of things to be observed even now among many good men.

 

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Question: 98  [<< | >>]
Article: 2  [<< | >>]

Whether in the state of innocence there would have been generation by coition?

Ad secundum sic proceditur. Videtur quod in statu innocentiae non fuisset generatio per coitum. Quia, ut Damascenus dicit, primus homo erat in Paradiso terrestri sicut Angelus quidam. Sed in futuro resurrectionis statu, quando erunt homines Angelis similes, neque nubent neque nubentur, ut dicitur Matth. XXII. Ergo neque in Paradiso fuisset generatio per coitum.   Objection 1: It would seem that generation by coition would not have existed in the state of innocence. For, as Damascene says (De Fide Orth. ii, 11; iv, 25), the first man in the terrestrial Paradise was "like an angel." But in the future state of the resurrection, when men will be like the angels, "they shall neither marry nor be married," as is written Mt. 22:30. Therefore neither in paradise would there have been generation by coition.
Praeterea, primi homines in perfecta aetate conditi fuerunt. Si igitur in eis ante peccatum generatio fuisset per coitum, fuissent etiam in Paradiso carnaliter coniuncti. Quod patet esse falsum, secundum Scripturam.   Objection 2: Further, our first parents were created at the age of perfect development. Therefore, if generation by coition had existed before sin, they would have had intercourse while still in paradise: which was not the case according to Scripture (Gn. 4:1).
Praeterea, in coniunctione carnali maxime efficitur homo similis bestiis, propter vehementiam delectationis, unde etiam continentia laudatur, per quam homines ab huiusmodi delectationibus abstinent. Sed bestiis homo comparatur propter peccatum, secundum illud Psalmi XLVIII, homo cum in honore esset, non intellexit, comparatus est iumentis insipientibus, et similis factus est illis. Ergo ante peccatum non fuisset maris et feminae carnalis coniunctio.   Objection 3: Further, in carnal intercourse, more than at any other time, man becomes like the beasts, on account of the vehement delight which he takes therein; whence continency is praiseworthy, whereby man refrains from such pleasures. But man is compared to beasts by reason of sin, according to Ps. 48:13: "Man, when he was in honor, did not understand; he is compared to senseless beasts, and is become like to them." Therefore, before sin, there would have been no such intercourse of man and woman.
Praeterea, in statu innocentiae nulla fuisset corruptio. Sed per coitum corrumpitur integritas virginalis. Ergo coitus in statu innocentiae non fuisset.   Objection 4: Further, in the state of innocence there would have been no corruption. But virginal integrity is corrupted by intercourse. Therefore there would have been no such thing in the state of innocence.
Sed contra est quod Deus ante peccatum masculum et feminam fecit, ut dicitur Gen. I et II. Nihil autem est frustra in operibus Dei. Ergo etiam si homo non peccasset, fuisset coitus, ad quem distinctio sexuum ordinatur.   On the contrary, God made man and woman before sin (Gn. 1,2). But nothing is void in God's works. Therefore, even if man had not sinned, there would have been such intercourse, to which the distinction of sex is ordained.
Praeterea, Gen. II, dicitur mulier esse facta in adiutorium viri. Sed non ad aliud nisi ad generationem quae fit per coitum, quia ad quodlibet aliud opus, convenientius adiuvari posset vir per virum quam per feminam. Ergo etiam in statu innocentiae fuisset generatio per coitum.   Moreover, we are told that woman was made to be a help to man (Gn. 2:18,20). But she is not fitted to help man except in generation, because another man would have proved a more effective help in anything else. Therefore there would have been such generation also in the state of innocence.
Respondeo dicendum quod quidam antiquorum doctorum, considerantes concupiscentiae foeditatem quae invenitur in coitu in isto statu, posuerunt quod in statu innocentiae non fuisset generatio per coitum. Unde Gregorius Nyssenus dicit in libro quem fecit de homine, quod in Paradiso aliter fuisset multiplicatum genus humanum, sicut multiplicati sunt Angeli, absque concubitu, per operationem divinae virtutis. Et dicit quod Deus ante peccatum fecit masculum et feminam, respiciens ad modum generationis qui futurus erat post peccatum, cuius Deus praescius erat. Sed hoc non dicitur rationabiliter. Ea enim quae sunt naturalia homini, neque subtrahuntur neque dantur homini per peccatum. Manifestum est autem quod homini, secundum animalem vitam, quam etiam ante peccatum habebat, ut supra dictum est, naturale est generare per coitum, sicut et ceteris animalibus perfectis. Et hoc declarant naturalia membra ad hunc usum deputata. Et ideo non est dicendum quod usus horum membrorum naturalium non fuisset ante peccatum, sicut et ceterorum membrorum.   I answer that, Some of the earlier doctors, considering the nature of concupiscence as regards generation in our present state, concluded that in the state of innocence generation would not have been effected in the same way. Thus Gregory of Nyssa says (De Hom. Opif. xvii) that in paradise the human race would have been multiplied by some other means, as the angels were multiplied without coition by the operation of the Divine Power. He adds that God made man male and female before sin, because He foreknew the mode of generation which would take place after sin, which He foresaw. But this is unreasonable. For what is natural to man was neither acquired nor forfeited by sin. Now it is clear that generation by coition is natural to man by reason of his animal life, which he possessed even before sin, as above explained (Question [97], Article [3]), just as it is natural to other perfect animals, as the corporeal members make it clear. So we cannot allow that these members would not have had a natural use, as other members had, before sin.
Sunt igitur in coitu duo consideranda, secundum praesentem statum. Unum quod naturae est, scilicet coniunctio maris et feminae ad generandum. In omni enim generatione requiritur virtus activa et passiva. Unde, cum in omnibus in quibus est distinctio sexuum, virtus activa sit in mare, virtus vero passiva in femina; naturae ordo exigit ut ad generandum conveniant per coitum mas et femina. Aliud autem quod considerari potest, est quaedam deformitas immoderatae concupiscentiae. Quae in statu innocentiae non fuisset quando inferiores vires omnino rationi subdebantur. Unde Augustinus dicit, in XIV de Civ. Dei, absit ut suspicemur non potuisse prolem seri sine libidinis morbo. Sed eo voluntatis nutu moverentur illa membra quo cetera, et sine ardore et illecebroso stimulo, cum tranquillitate animi et corporis.    Thus, as regards generation by coition, there are, in the present state of life, two things to be considered. One, which comes from nature, is the union of man and woman; for in every act of generation there is an active and a passive principle. Wherefore, since wherever there is distinction of sex, the active principle is male and the passive is female; the order of nature demands that for the purpose of generation there should be concurrence of male and female. The second thing to be observed is a certain deformity of excessive concupiscence, which in the state of innocence would not have existed, when the lower powers were entirely subject to reason. Wherefore Augustine says (De Civ. Dei xiv, 26): "We must be far from supposing that offspring could not be begotten without concupiscence. All the bodily members would have been equally moved by the will, without ardent or wanton incentive, with calmness of soul and body."
Ad primum ergo dicendum quod homo in Paradiso fuisset sicut Angelus per spiritualem mentem, cum tamen haberet, vitam animalem quantum ad corpus. Sed post resurrectionem erit homo similis Angelo, spiritualis effectus et secundum animam et secundum corpus. Unde non est similis ratio,   Reply to Objection 1: In paradise man would have been like an angel in his spirituality of mind, yet with an animal life in his body. After the resurrection man will be like an angel, spiritualized in soul and body. Wherefore there is no parallel.
Ad secundum dicendum quod, sicut Augustinus dicit IX super Gen. ad Litt., ideo primi parentes in Paradiso non coierunt, quia, formata muliere, post modicum propter peccatum de Paradiso eiecti sunt, vel quia expectabatur divina auctoritas ad determinatum tempus commixtionis, a qua acceperunt universale mandatum.   Reply to Objection 2: As Augustine says (Gen. ad lit. ix, 4), our first parents did not come together in paradise, because on account of sin they were ejected from paradise shortly after the creation of the woman; or because, having received the general Divine command relative to generation, they awaited the special command relative to time.
Ad tertium dicendum quod bestiae carent ratione. Unde secundum hoc homo in coitu bestialis efficitur, quod delectationem coitus et fervorem concupiscentiae ratione moderari non potest. Sed in statu innocentiae nihil huiusmodi fuisset quod ratione non moderaretur, non quia esset minor delectatio secundum sensum, ut quidam dicunt (fuisset enim tanto maior delectatio sensibilis, quanto esset purior natura, et corpus magis sensibile); sed quia vis concupiscibilis non ita inordinate se effudisset super huiusmodi delectatione, regulata per rationem, ad quam non pertinet ut sit minor delectatio in sensu, sed ut vis concupiscibilis non immoderate delectationi inhaereat; et dico immoderate, praeter mensuram rationis. Sicut sobrius in cibo moderate assumpto non minorem habet delectationem quam gulosus; sed minus eius concupiscibilis super huiusmodi delectatione requiescit. Et hoc sonant verba Augustini, quae a statu innocentiae non excludunt magnitudinem delectationis, sed ardorem libidinis et inquietudinem animi. Et ideo continentia in statu innocentiae non fuisset laudabilis, quae in tempore isto laudatur non propter defectum fecunditatis, sed propter remotionem inordinatae libidinis. Tunc autem fuisset fecunditas absque libidine.   Reply to Objection 3: Beasts are without reason. In this way man becomes, as it were, like them in coition, because he cannot moderate concupiscence. In the state of innocence nothing of this kind would have happened that was not regulated by reason, not because delight of sense was less, as some say (rather indeed would sensible delight have been the greater in proportion to the greater purity of nature and the greater sensibility of the body), but because the force of concupiscence would not have so inordinately thrown itself into such pleasure, being curbed by reason, whose place it is not to lessen sensual pleasure, but to prevent the force of concupiscence from cleaving to it immoderately. By "immoderately" I mean going beyond the bounds of reason, as a sober person does not take less pleasure in food taken in moderation than the glutton, but his concupiscence lingers less in such pleasures. This is what Augustine means by the words quoted, which do not exclude intensity of pleasure from the state of innocence, but ardor of desire and restlessness of the mind. Therefore continence would not have been praiseworthy in the state of innocence, whereas it is praiseworthy in our present state, not because it removes fecundity, but because it excludes inordinate desire. In that state fecundity would have been without lust.
Ad quartum dicendum quod, sicut Augustinus dicit XIV de Civ. Dei, in illo statu nulla corruptione integritatis infunderetur gremio maritus uxoris. Ita enim potuit utero coniugis, salva integritate feminei genitalis, virile semen immitti, sicut nunc potest, eadem integritate salva, ex utero virginis fluxus menstrui cruoris emitti. Ut enim ad pariendum non doloris gemitus, sed maturitatis impulsus feminea viscera relaxaret; sic ad concipiendum non libidinis appetitus, sed voluntarius usus naturam utramque coniungeret   Reply to Objection 4: As Augustine says (De Civ. Dei xiv, 26): In that state "intercourse would have been without prejudice to virginal integrity; this would have remained intact, as it does in the menses. And just as in giving birth the mother was then relieved, not by groans of pain, but by the instigations of maturity; so in conceiving, the union was one, not of lustful desire, but of deliberate action."

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