In Honorem Summi Romani Pontificis Benedicti XVI
Edited By Elzbieta Szczurko, Tadeusz Guz and Horst Seidl
I. LOGOS IN GENERE
To Educate a Sense of Beauty Rev. Georges Card. Cottier OP Anthropology The soul, the form of the body is the principle of unity of the human subject that is a person; this truth lies in the centre of the anthropology of Aquinas. I would like to develop several consequences flowing from this that are relevant for our perception of beauty. I begin with a few reminders. The composition of the soul and the body has a significance that extends beyond human existence. It distinguishes living beings from others beings of the physical universe. Living beings are set in a hierarchy of three orders that can be recognized in their proper activities. Thus the vegetative, the sensitive that is the animal and the rational orders are distinguished. This hier archy is not to be interpreted as if in the highest living being, in man, the “rational animal” there are three layers of spheres of vital activity. In fact, the one and unique subject of activities, the rational soul assumes and integrates the vegetative and animal activities. This means that the faculties, being immediate principles of their specific activities all proceed from a unique subject. In this they follow a cer tain order that may be viewed in a dual perspective: genetically or according to the perfection of their object1. This implies their interdependence and the fact that de pending on the case they offer a contribution to their specific activities. In this sense, the unity of the subject imprints its...
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