Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange

One quote at a time....

I am going to put this into the file of "many things are half-truths at best."  Many Catholics think that the following thought waited for centuries to come from the pen of Fr. Servais Pinckaers, O.P.  While Fr. Pinckaers certainly did accomplish some things, one would do well to note how much he may have learned when he was at the Angelicum and had Fr. Garrigou-Lagrange as a teacher.  I tire (TIRE) of the agenda that even well-meaning Catholics push by acting like nothing at all ever existed before Vatican II, except what happens to fit their little pet projects.  I am well aware (well) of the weaknesses of Roman Thomism; however, a weakness doesn't need to mean a "fault"; and, let us all be honest - those with eyes that are even mildly open can see the many weaknesses of these past decades, many, many.

This is taken from Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange, “La prudence: sa place dans l’organisme des vertus,” Revue thomiste 31 (1926): 411-426.

            By this, one sees the usefulness that there is in treating moral theology, not only form the point of view of casuistry, a kind of contestable intermediary between moral science and prudence, but from a metaphysical point of view that permits one to determine the nature of each virtue according to its formal object, to deduce their properties and their relations with the other superior and inferior virtues.  Thus does one see the place of each one in the spiritual edifice, and it is why St. Thomas divided the moral part of his Summa according to the division and the hierarchy of the virtues and not according to the division of the precepts, for these latter are often negative thus they look more directly upon vices to combat than upon virtues to practice.

            Thus has been shown in the most profound manner all that which is contained in the Aristotelian definition of prudence: recta ratio agibilium, chow this definition ought to be applied in the supernatural order to infused prudence, and why this, remaining discursive and sometimes hesitating, needs, above all in difficult circumstances, to be aided by the special inspirations of the gift of counsel.[1]

 

[1] See ST II-II q.52 a.2.