Aquinas on Imitation of Nature highlights and explores the doctrine of the imitation of nature, a crucial aspect of Aquinas’ metaethics and fills the gap in research on Aquinas’ moral doctrine and theory of action. It conveys Aquinas’ doctrine of the imitation of nature as a natural feature of right practical reason regarding moral thinking and action, indeed as an indispensable feature of virtuous flourishing in individual and communal aspects of human life.
The book starts with an overview of some of recent interpretations of Aquinas’ moral doctrine and natural law, introducing the need to explore the role of the imitation of nature in human practical reasoning and action in this area of Aquinas’ teaching. The chapters that follow are based on a careful reading of selected texts of Aquinas, and gradually develop a thorough and comprehensive picture of his doctrine of the imitation of nature as a source of practical principles. The final chapter provides various examples of how Aquinas understands the imitation of nature in the realm of moral reasoning and action.
The originality of this volume comes from its account of Aquinas’ medieval doctrine of the imitation of nature, in light of which the principles of right practical reason and virtuous action are congruent with and epistemologically dependant upon the basic terms of the movements of natural, sensible, non-rational agents. Through its thorough reading of Aquinas on the imitation of nature, the book aims to open new ways of appropriation of the metaphysical and natural tenets of his moral doctrine in the areas of theory of action, practical reason, natural law, and contemporary virtue ethics.
"Argues that the principle 'art imitates nature' is an essential part of Aquinas’s natural law theory, and ultimately explains how practical reason imitates or follows the divine mind or art...significant in that it sheds light on some basic issues in our knowledge and understanding of the natural law."~Thomas M. Osborne, author of Human Action in Thomas Aquinas, John Duns Scotus and William of Ockham
"An excellently clear and comprehensive study of a much neglected element in Aquinas's moral theory. While illuminating Aquinas's work, this book is also attuned to, and allows one to respond to, challenges to a metaphysically grounded ethics. It should be of interest to Aquinas scholars and to anyone with an interest in the foundation of ethics."~Paul O'Grady, Trinity College Dublin
"Wojciech Golubiewski provides a nuanced and carefully argued account of Aquinas's understanding of nature, order, and the imitation of nature....Golubiewski perceptively draws the reader's attention to insights in St Thomas's account that robustly defend the relation between metaphysics and moral philosophy and resist some recent versions of natural law theory."~William Sweet, St. Francis Xavier University, Nova Scotia
" Aquinas on Imitation of Nature... attempts to reconfigure the synthetic view of man and cosmos lost in our post-Cartesian and post-Baconian world. In doing so, Golubiewski importantly returns our attention to an enchanted cosmos that teems with life and excitement in Aquinas’s mind. We encounter the sacramental imitation that preoccupies Thomas and should preoccupy us."~VoegelinView
" Aquinas on Imitation of Nature revives – in a very important way – the understanding that the ‘imitation of nature’ is the ‘imitation of the divine mind’. This is something worth noting, especially since, as Golubiewski points out, the unity of God and nature in Thomistic theology and natural law theory is often neglected… The most significant value of the work, we could say, is that it becomes a permanent reminder that natural theology is a form of sacramentality and not of naturalism."~Estudios Filosóficos
"Golubiewski notes in the beginning and end of the book that it is not his present task to grapple with questions concerning the suitability of the principles of Aquinas's physics and metaphysics to a contemporary reader. Instead he seeks to convince the reader that Aquinas's ethics stands or falls with these principles. His study sets a high bar for anyone who might want to argue otherwise."~Review of Metaphysics