Frederick D. Wilhelmsen's Being and Knowing, rooted in the philosophy of St. Thomas Aquinas, rests on two basic assertions: first, metaphysics is the science of being in its first and ultimate act, existence (the act by which all things manifest themselves); second, that existence is known not through observing objects, but in affirming through judgments that these objects are subjects of existence.
The chapters of this book explore these Thomistic doctrines. Some explain St. Thomas Aquinas's philosophy of being. Others probe his epistemology. The complexity and density of Aquinas's theory of judgment (that truth is realized in the judgment of man), emphasized throughout most of the book, point not only to a deeper understanding of the nature of metaphysics, but they open doors to the clarification of philosophical issues germane to contemporary thought.
This work addresses a number of metaphysical philosophical paradoxes. Wilhelmsen's exploration of them demonstrates why he was the preeminent American scholar of the Thomistic tradition. This volume is part of Transaction's series, the Library of Conservative Thought.
Introduction to the Transaction Edition,
by William Marshner
I Metaphysics as Creativity
II The Triplex Via and the Transcendence of Esse
III The Concept of Existence and the Structure of Judgment: A Thomistic Paradox
IV The Priority of Judgment over Question: Reflections on Transcendental Thomism
V Existence and Esse
VI Creation as a Relation in St. Thomas Aquinas
VII Reasoning and Computers
VIII The "I" and Aquinas
IX Modern Man's Myth of Self-Identity
X Subject Analysis in the Philosophy of Communications
XI A Meditation on the Dignity of the Human Person Prompted by Saint Thomas Aquinas
XII The Christian Understanding of Being: A Thomistic Reading