top of page

The Fifth Way

Thank you for subscribing to Annotated Thomist...check back each day for a new section of St. Thomas' corpus, annotated and summarized. (FREE TRIAL FOR NEW SUBSCRIBERS!!!)

AT is also available to donors of $10 or more on Patreon or SubscribeStar along with all of the other benefits (daily bonus videos, bonus articles, PDFs, etc.)

If you need more personalized help reading the Summa, I am available for 1-on-1 sessions, here.

Sadly, we have reached the end, hope you have enjoyed! Sorry for any technical difficulties that inevitably arise in such endeavors.

Relation to Other Ways

The fifth way is grouped with the fourth way in demonstrating the perfection of God. This specifically covers more intimately the perfection of the operation of the first cause in that He orders all things intelligently.


The terms of this proof are much less than previous ones. We have already built a foundation in concepts such as limited regress, so this inevitably is going to assume some prior knowledge.

The only concepts that are that of "natural thing" and "finality."

Natural thing: Anything lacking intelligence.

Finality can be of two types. This is central in understanding the argument. Some have haphazardly stated this argument as teaching that God exists because of universal or intrinsic order. Rather, this argument takes its foundational premise from the fact of the finality of INDIVIDUAL AGENTS in their INDIVIDUAL ACTS.

Thus, we have a distinction between two types of finality. First, there is external finality. This would be asking "what is the purpose behind the existence of cancer" in relation to the whole of creation. This is a much more robust claim that would require many layers of argumentation. This is not the claim of St. Thomas here.

Want to read more?

Subscribe to to keep reading this exclusive post.

26 views0 comments


Não foi possível carregar comentários
Parece que houve um problema técnico. Tente reconectar ou atualizar a página.
bottom of page