Past and Future
Edited By Michael Welker
Note on Formal Reasoning in Theology
In the tradition of Thomas Aquinas, the business of logic is the guidance of reasoning, as reasoning needs guidance to proceed without errors. Logic is therefore some sort of superscience or superart1.
The modern development of logic provides however a somewhat more modest picture: contemporary logic is useful for the analysis of argumentations and for the fine-tuning of reasoning, mathematics being the most prominent field of application. Nontrivial applications of logic to other sciences depend on the adaption of mathematics’ logical methods and aims at the peculiarities of the sciences in question. This note should be considered as modest step towards the identification of a logical framework for theology2.
From a modern viewpoint, the impact of scientific concepts is more important than their classification. The most important operational concept of medieval logic is without a doubt the syllogism together with the separation of assumption (invention) and judgement. Aristotle twice defines the syllogism as a discourse (oratio) in which – certain things being stated – something other than what is stated follows of necessity from their being so (Prior Analytics 24b 18–20, Topics 100a 25–26). The following syllogism and its analysis is intended to demonstrate the application of logic to theology. ← 193 | 194 →
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