Thomas Aquinas

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Logic and the scientific method

By |2018-05-31T11:49:22+00:00September 6th, 2017|Science|

An eclipse of the moon. You can see the curved shadow of the Earth. Once people have seen that something happens through observation, sooner or later it will occur to them to ask why it happens. And is there any way to prove that it will happen the same way every time? Sumerians developed advanced math to [...]

Science and the gods – History of Science

By |2017-09-06T12:54:33+00:00September 6th, 2017|History|

The Egyptian god Bes Gods are part of people's desire to know how the world works. It's one of the ways that people explain how the world works. People say that God or the gods make this happen. Or you could say that the gods are a way of talking about complicated things that happen. Maybe they're [...]

Roman philosophy – ancient Rome

By |2018-04-24T11:41:37+00:00September 4th, 2017|Philosophy, Romans|

A Roman man making a speech (Florence, about 50 BC) Thanks to VROMA for the image Romans meet Greek philosophy Roman men didn't begin studying philosophy until about 200 BC. At that time, the Romans were conquering Greece. So a lot of Roman soldiers and generals spent a lot of time in Greece, and got a chance to talk [...]

What is a theologian? History of religion

By |2018-04-08T01:10:59+00:00August 25th, 2017|Religion, West Asia|

Pope Gregory the Great writing, from the 900s AD. Ivory, probably from Kenya. (Now in Vienna Kunsthistorisches Museum) A theologian (thee-oh-LOW-gin) is a person who studies religion. The word comes from the Greek word for god "theos" and the Greek word for writing "logos". So a theologian is someone who writes about God. Usually when people say [...]

Christian saints – History of Christianity

By |2017-08-23T10:21:12+00:00August 23rd, 2017|Religion, Romans|

St. Francis of Assisi, painted by Giotto in the early 1300s AD From early on, Christians believed that some holy people, when they died, not only went to heaven but had the special attention of Jesus. These people had special powers themselves. So they could cure sicknesses and answer prayers of all kinds. Christians called these [...]

Ancient philosophy: ethics, fate, and science

By |2018-04-24T11:55:01+00:00August 16th, 2017|Philosophy|

Weighing the souls of the dead Philosophy means the love of wisdom. But what does that mean? It's hard to separate philosophy from religion. And it's also hard to draw a line between philosophy and science and mathematics. All of these are parts of people's search to make order out of nature. They're a way of [...]

Martin Luther King, Jr. – American history

By |2017-08-14T12:11:27+00:00August 14th, 2017|History, North America|

Martin Luther King Jr. leading a protest march One of Martin Luther King's most famous pieces of writing was his Letter from a Birmingham Jail. In 1963, Dr. King was in jail in Birmingham, Alabama for participating in a protest march. From the jail, he sent a letter to other Christian ministers - [...]

Roger Bacon – Medieval science

By |2018-04-24T08:21:21+00:00August 4th, 2017|Medieval, Science|

Roger Bacon's diagram of a human eye Roger Bacon was born in England maybe about 1210 AD. It was late in the reign of King John. (That's the one in Robin Hood.) England was just beginning to get richer from raising and selling high quality wool cloth on the Silk Road. In addition, a warmer climate - the Medieval Warm period - was making [...]

Thomas Aquinas – Medieval philosophy

By |2018-04-21T13:19:58+00:00August 4th, 2017|Medieval, Philosophy|

A book in Thomas Aquinas' handwriting For many years before Thomas Aquinas was born, men like Ibn Sina and Ibn Rushdin the Abbasid Empire had been reading the Quran, and reading Aristotle, and trying to find ways to get these two important books to agree with each other. They were trying to explain how the universe worked in a way that honored [...]

Thomas Aquinas – Dominican monk

By |2018-04-24T09:23:15+00:00August 4th, 2017|Medieval, Philosophy|

Naples, with Mount Vesuvius in the background Like Ibn Rushd and Maimonides, Thomas Aquinas was a great thinke who tried to figure out the relationship between science and religion. But unlike Ibn Rushd and Maimonides, Aquinas was a Christian. Thomas Aquinas was born in southern Italy, at his father's castle, in 1224 or 1225 AD. It was just after the death of Francis [...]