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Aquinas Quoting a Muslim Authority

In my “History of the Philosophy of Religion” course, I’m currently reading one of the works of the Muslim philosopher Avicenna (Ibn Sina), “On the Soul”.

It’s amazing to see how steeped in Aristotelean philosophy the medieval Muslims were, and it’s interesting to see that St. Thomas respected Avicenna enough to appeal to him as an authority in the Summa Theologica!

In Article 4 of Question 78 of part I, St. Thomas asks:

Whether the Interior Senses Are Suitably Distinguished?

He then introduces a number of objections (i.e., false answers), but opposes them with the following:

On the contrary, Avicenna (De Anima iv, 1) assigns five interior sensitive powers; namely, “common sense, phantasy, imagination, and the estimative and memorative powers.”

As an authority, St. Thomas Aquinas quotes Avicenna–the Muslim philosopher.

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