Metaphysics: An Outline of the History of Being 0820414484 9780820414485

Metaphysics, in its classical version, deals with the basic understanding of reality i.e. things as concretely existing;

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Mieczyslaw Albert Krapiec, O.P.

Metaphysics An Outline of the History of Being Translated by Theresa Sandok

PETER LANG

New York' San Francisco' Bern Frankfurt am Main' Paris' London

Metaphysics

Catholic Thought from Lublin

Andrew N. Waznicki General Editor

Val. 2

PETER LANG New York· San Fmncisco • Bern Frankfurt am Main· Paris· London

Library of COnllJ'C55 Cataloginlt'in-PublicatioD Data Krapiec. Mieczyslaw Albcrt. IMetafizyka. Englishl Met"oIphYSlcs: .m outline of the hiw,ry of being I Mieczyslaw Albert Krapiec. p. cm. - (Catholic thought from Lublin; vol.2) Translation of: Melllfizyka. Includes bibliographical references. 1. Metaphysia. 2. Metaphysics-Hislory. I. Tide. 11. Series.

BD1l6.K713 1991 ISSN 0I51-693X ISBN 0-8204·1448-4

Translation of MeraJiZ)·I«J; Zorys

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Acknowledgments

F

or their special contribution to the production of this translation, I wish to thank the following:

• The author, Mieczyslaw A. Krapiec, OP, for his availability to me in Poland during the summers of 1985 and 1987, whenever I had questions about the text. During those sessions, Father Krapiec impressed me as a man of wit and charm, a natural teacher, with an unbounded enthusiasm for philosophy. Indeed, the pleasure of making his acquaintance has proven to be one of the chief rewards of this undertaking. • Andrew N. Woznicki, editor of Peter Lang Publishing's "Catholic Thought From Lublin" series, in which this volume appears, for his promotion of this project and his friendly advice and encouragement from beginning to end. • Maria Szymanska, for assisting in the preparation of the first draft of a large portion of the book, and Hugh McDonald, for allowing me to use his translation of the section on analogy as a first draft for my own translation. • Michael Allen, for technical assistance in preparing the text for publication. and Lee Bash, for the use of computer equipment in the Music Department at Bellarmine College. • Bellarmine College, for providing me with the financial resources to travel to Poland in 1984 to meet with the philosophers of the Catholic University of Lublin for the first time. The present translation, as well as many other fruits, both personal and professional, trace their origin to that meeting. • The Grey Ursuline Sisters in Lublin for welcoming me into their community as one of their own during my stays in Poland, and the Sisters of my own congregation, the Servants of Mary, Ladysmith, Wisconsin, who both collectively and individually have encouraged and supported me throughout this lengthy project. To these and to all who have in any way assisted in the preparation of this work, I express my heartfelt gratitude. Theresa H. Sandok, OSM Bellarmine College Louisville, Kentucky

About the Author

M

ieczyslaw Albert Krapiec (pronounced Krump- yets) was born on May 25, 1921, in Zbaraz-Podole, g region in eastern Poland that is now part of the Soviet Union. In 1939, at the age of eighteen, he entered the Dominican Order in Krak6w, taking the religious name Albert, and was ordained a priest in 1945. During World War n, Krapiec studied philosophy in Krnk6w at an underground school conducted by the Dominican College of Philosophy and Theology, affiliated with the Angelicum University in Rome. Upon completing his doctorate in philosophy in 1946, he began teaching philosophy at the College, while simultaneously pursuing a doctorate in theology, which he was awarded in 1948. In 1951, Krapiec accepted an invitation to teach at the Catholic University of Lublin. He served as Dean of the Faculty of Philosophy at the University from 1958 to 1961 and again from 1969 to 1970. In 1970, he was elected Rector of the University, a position he held for thirteen years (1970--1983). Krapiec is regarded as the chief founder of the philosophical approach known as the Lublin School of Philosophy. Together with Stefan Swiezawski, Jerzy Kalinowski, Stanislaw Kaminski, and Karol Wojtyla (pope John Paul 11), he collaborated in fonnulating the essential elements of this philosophical orientation, which took shape between 1951 and 1962 at the Catholic University of Lublin. As a philosopher, Krapiec sees himself as continuing in the tradition of Aristotle, Thomas Aquinas, John Capreolus, and Etienne Gilson. His concern is to provide a consistent explanation for the existing, real world, using the methods of classical philosophy and taking into consideration both historical and contemporary philosophical movements. Although his main philosophical interest is in the area of metaphysics, Krapiec has also written extensively on philosophical anthropology, philosophy of natural law, philosophy of culture, and philosophy of language. An essential element of his philosophy is the dignity of the human person and the sovereignty of nations, a theme he emphasized when invited 10 address Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev at a meeting between Gorbachev and Polish intellectuals on July 13, 1988. Krapiec is the author of fourteen books and over two hundred articles. The Catholic University of Lublin is currently preparing 11 Polish edition of his collected works, which will be published in eighteen volumes.

Contents PREFA CE ....................................................... _................................................. xiii

GENERAL INTRODUCTION: ELEMENTS OF META-METAPHYSICS .. 1 The Name Metaphysics .................................................................................... 3 Philosophical Cognition '" ................................................................................ 4 Early Empiricism And Rationalism ................................................................. 5 Spontaneous And Reflective Cognition .......................................................... 7 Universalizing And Transcendentalizing Cognition ..................................... 10 The Tripartite Model Of Human Cognition ................................................. 19 The Tripartite Model Of The Theoretical Sciences ..................................... 26 Early Methods Of Scientific Cognition ........................................................ 30 The Distinctive Nature Of Metaphysical Cognition .................................... 32 The Method Of Metaphysical Cognition ...................................................... 37

PART ONE: BEING AS BEING .. 49 1 THE DETERMINATION OF mE OBJECT OF THE PHILOSO· pmCAL UNDERSTANDING OF REALITY ........................................ 53 The Object Of Philosophy As A Result Of A Generalization Of Naive Empiricism ....................................................................................... 54 The Object Of Philosophy As A Construct Of Intuitive Thought ........ 60 The Object Of Philosophy Apprehended Abstractly ............................... 68 The Subjectivization Of The Object Of Philosophy ............................... 77 The Real Object Of Metaphysical Explanation ....................................... 86

x

CONTENTS

2 THE CLARIFICATION OF TilE CONCEPT OF BEING AS BEING .......................................................................................................... 101 Two Methods Of Clarifying The Concept Of Being ............................ 10 1 The Formation Of Strictly Transcendental Metaphysical Concepts .............................................................................................. 102 The Formation Of Metaphysical Concepts By A Particularization Of The Concept Of Being ........................................................ 105 The TranscendentaIs ................................................................................. 109 Being And Thing ................................................................................ 109 Being And Unity ................................................................................ 119 Being And Separateness ..................................................................... 133 Being And Truth ................................................................................. 138 Being And The Good ......................................................................... 152 Being And Beauty .............................................................................. 179 Being And Value ................................................................................ 189

PART T\\lO: THE STRUCTURE OF BEING

+

191

3 THE KNOWABLENESS OF THE CONSTITUTIVE ELEMENTS OF BEING ................................................................................................... 195 The Elimination Of Positions Unsuitable For The Metaphysical Explanation Of Being .............................................................................. 195 The Physical Interpretation Of Ontic Composites ........................... 196 Scientism ............................................................................................. 198 Phenomenology ................................................................................... 199 Purely Conceptual AbstrJctionism .................................................... 205 The Metaphysical Cognition Of The Constitutive ElcmcnL" Of Being ......................................................................................................... 206 A Search For The Rcal Noncontrmlictahle Reasons Of Ontic Pluralisln ............................................................................................. 207 The Analogousness Of The Cognition Of Ontic Composites ......... 209 The Concept Of Difference And Ontic Composition ...................... 211

CONTENTS

xi

4 ONTIC COMPOSITION ........................................................................... 217 Act And Potency ...................................................................................... 217 Early Views ......................................................................................... 217 A Clarification Of Concepts .............................................................. 222 The Justification Of The Composition Of Being From Act And Potency ................................................................................................ 231 A Systematization Of The Meaning Of Act And Potency ............ 245 The Relation Of Potency To Act ..................................................... 251 Substance And Accidents ....................................................................... 273 The Concept Of Substance And The Theory Of Science ............. 273 The History Of The Concept Of Substance ................................... 276 A Justification Of The Existence Of Substance And Accidents ..... 290 Substance And Accidents As Categories Of Being ......................... 293 Nature And Person ............................................................................. 297 Relations .............................................................................................. 304 MaLLer And Form ..................................................................................... 313 The Concept Of Matter ..................................................................... 314 The Physical Theory Of MaLter ........................................................ 314 The Philosophical Interpretation Of Material Beings ...................... 325 Essence And Existence ............................................................................ 377 Historical And Epistemological Determinants ................................. .377 The Interdependence Of Essence And Existence In Concrete Being ................................................................................................... 382 The Justification Of The Real Difference Between Essence And Existence In Contingent Being ................................................. 389 The Causes Of Being .............................................................................. 407 The History Of The Conception Of Cause ..................................... .407 The Material Cause ............................................................................ 414 The Formal Cause .............................................................................. 416 The Efficient Cause ............................................................................ 425 The Final Ca.use ................................................................................. 438

XII

CONTENTS

PART THREE: METAPHYSICAL ANALOGY. 445 5 THE ANALOGY OF "BEING" AND "COGNITION" ....................... 447 The Analogy Of Being ............................................................................ 447 Cognition By Analogy ............................................................................. 454 Analogical Cognition Based On Necessary Real Relations ............ 455. Analogy And Metaphysical Cognition ............................................. .459 Analogical Cognition Based On Nonnecessary Categorial Relations .............................................................................................. 467 Metaphorical Analogy ........................................................................ 471 The Use Of Analogy ................................................................................ 472 Analogical Unity As The Basis Of The Use Of Analogy ............. .4 72 The Chief Application Of Metaphysical Analogy: Knowledge Of God's Existence ............................................................................ 474 Analogy In The Particular Sciences ................................................ .4 78 The Cognitive Role Of Metaphorical Analogy ............................... .483 6

ULTIMATE PERSPECTIVES OF UNDERSTANDING BEING AS BEING ................................................................................................... 487

GLOSSARY ....................................................................................................... 503 BIBLIOGRAPllY ............................................................................................. 505 INDEX ................................................................................................................ 521

Preface

P

hilosophy, the oldest realm of rational human knowledge, has always been regarded as the crowning fonn of such knowledge. For Parmenides, Heraclitus, Plato, and Aristotle in ancient Greece, for Thomas Aquinas in the Middle Ages, and for eminent theoretical physicists (e.g., Heisenberg and Schr