Agents, Actions and Ends

Agents, Actions and Ends

Kretzmann, Norman

Medieval Philosophy and Theology, Volume 9, Number 2, September 2000


Aquinas concludes his introductory chapter by announcing that his first task in Book III, a task to which he devotes sixty-two chapters, is to investigate “God himself in so far as he is the end of all things” (1.1867b). That compressed description of a very big topic is likely to arouse some misgivings. Why should we think that absolutely all things do have ends or goals? Even if we’re given good reasons to think that they do, why should we think that all those ends or goals converge in a single end for all things?

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