Authors/Thomas Aquinas/Summa Theologiae/Part IIa/Q78

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Q77 Q79



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Iª-IIae q. 78 pr. Deinde considerandum est de causa peccati quae est ex parte voluntatis, quae dicitur malitia. Et circa hoc quaeruntur quatuor. Primo, utrum aliquis possit ex certa malitia, seu industria, peccare. Secundo, utrum quicumque peccat ex habitu, peccet ex certa malitia. Tertio, utrum quicumque peccat ex certa malitia, peccet ex habitu. Quarto, utrum ille qui peccat ex certa malitia, gravius peccet quam ille qui peccat ex passione. Question 78. That cause of sin which is malice Is it possible for anyone to sin through certain malice, i.e. purposely? Does everyone who sins through habit, sin through certain malice? Does everyone who sins through certain malice, sin through habit? Is it more grievous to sin through certain malice, than through passion?
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 1 arg. 1 Ad primum sic proceditur. Videtur quod nullus peccet ex industria, sive ex certa malitia. Ignorantia enim opponitur industriae, seu certae malitiae. Sed omnis malus est ignorans, secundum philosophum. Et Prov. XIV, dicitur, errant qui operantur malum. Ergo nullus peccat ex certa malitia. Objection 1. It would seem that no one sins purposely, or through certain malice. Because ignorance is opposed to purpose or certain malice. Now "every evil man is ignorant," according to the Philosopher (Ethic. iii, 1); and it is written (Proverbs 14:22): "They err that work evil." Therefore no one sins through certain malice.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 1 arg. 2 Praeterea, Dionysius dicit, IV cap. de Div. Nom., quod nullus intendens ad malum operatur. Sed hoc videtur esse peccare ex malitia, intendere malum in peccando, quod enim est praeter intentionem, est quasi per accidens, et non denominat actum. Ergo nullus ex malitia peccat. Objection 2. Further, Dionysius says (Div. Nom. iv) that "no one works intending evil." Now to sin through malice seems to denote the intention of doing evil [Alluding to the derivation of "malitia" (malice) from "malum" (evil)] in sinning, because an act is not denominated from that which is unintentional and accidental. Therefore no one sins through malice.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 1 arg. 3 Praeterea, malitia ipsa peccatum est. Si igitur malitia sit causa peccati, sequetur quod peccatum sit causa peccati in infinitum, quod est inconveniens. Nullus igitur ex malitia peccat. Objection 3. Further, malice itself is a sin. If therefore malice is a cause of sin, it follows that sin goes on causing sin indefinitely, which is absurd. Therefore no one sins through malice.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 1 s. c. Sed contra est quod dicitur Iob XXXIV, quasi de industria recesserunt a Deo, et vias eius intelligere noluerunt. Sed recedere a Deo est peccare. Ergo aliqui peccant ex industria, seu ex certa malitia. On the contrary, It is written (Job 34:27): "[Who] as it were on purpose have revolted from God [Vulgate: 'Him'], and would not understand all His ways." Now to revolt from God is to sin. Therefore some sin purposely or through certain malice.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 1 co. Respondeo dicendum quod homo, sicut et quaelibet alia res, naturaliter habet appetitum boni. Unde quod ad malum eius appetitus declinet, contingit ex aliqua corruptione seu inordinatione in aliquo principiorum hominis, sic enim in actionibus rerum naturalium peccatum invenitur. Principia autem humanorum actuum sunt intellectus et appetitus, tam rationalis, qui dicitur voluntas, quam sensitivus. Peccatum igitur in humanis actibus contingit quandoque, sicut ex defectu intellectus, puta cum aliquis per ignorantiam peccat; et ex defectu appetitus sensitivi, sicut cum aliquis ex passione peccat; ita etiam ex defectu voluntatis, qui est inordinatio ipsius. Est autem voluntas inordinata, quando minus bonum magis amat. Consequens autem est ut aliquis eligat pati detrimentum in bono minus amato, ad hoc quod potiatur bono magis amato, sicut cum homo vult pati abscissionem membri etiam scienter, ut conservet vitam, quam magis amat. Et per hunc modum, quando aliqua inordinata voluntas aliquod bonum temporale plus amat, puta divitias vel voluptatem, quam ordinem rationis vel legis divinae, vel caritatem Dei, vel aliquid huiusmodi; sequitur quod velit dispendium pati in aliquo spiritualium bonorum, ut potiatur aliquo temporali bono. Nihil autem est aliud malum quam privatio alicuius boni. Et secundum hoc aliquis scienter vult aliquod malum spirituale, quod est malum simpliciter, per quod bonum spirituale privatur, ut bono temporali potiatur. Unde dicitur ex certa malitia, vel ex industria peccare, quasi scienter malum eligens. I answer that, Man like any other being has naturally an appetite for the good; and so if his appetite incline away to evil, this is due to corruption or disorder in some one of the principles of man: for it is thus that sin occurs in the actions of natural things. Now the principles of human acts are the intellect, and the appetite, both rational (i.e. the will) and sensitive. Therefore even as sin occurs in human acts, sometimes through a defect of the intellect, as when anyone sins through ignorance, and sometimes through a defect in the sensitive appetite, as when anyone sins through passion, so too does it occur through a defect consisting in a disorder of the will. Now the will is out of order when it loves more the lesser good. Again, the consequence of loving a thing less is that one chooses to suffer some hurt in its regard, in order to obtain a good that one loves more: as when a man, even knowingly, suffers the loss of a limb, that he may save his life which he loves more. Accordingly when an inordinate will loves some temporal good, e.g. riches or pleasure, more than the order of reason or Divine law, or Divine charity, or some such thing, it follows that it is willing to suffer the loss of some spiritual good, so that it may obtain possession of some temporal good. Now evil is merely the privation of some good; and so a man wishes knowingly a spiritual evil, which is evil simply, whereby he is deprived of a spiritual good, in order to possess a temporal good: wherefore he is said to sin through certain malice or on purpose, because he chooses evil knowingly.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 1 ad 1 Ad primum ergo dicendum quod ignorantia quandoque quidem excludit scientiam qua aliquis simpliciter scit hoc esse malum quod agitur, et tunc dicitur ex ignorantia peccare. Quandoque autem excludit scientiam qua homo scit hoc nunc esse malum, sicut cum ex passione peccatur. Quandoque autem excludit scientiam qua aliquis scit hoc malum non sustinendum esse propter consecutionem illius boni, scit tamen simpliciter hoc esse malum, et sic dicitur ignorare qui ex certa malitia peccat. Reply to Objection 1. Ignorance sometimes excludes the simple knowledge that a particular action is evil, and then man is said to sin through ignorance: sometimes it excludes the knowledge that a particular action is evil at this particular moment, as when he sins through passion: and sometimes it excludes the knowledge that a particular evil is not to be suffered for the sake of possessing a particular good, but not the simple knowledge that it is an evil: it is thus that a man is ignorant, when he sins through certain malice.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 1 ad 2 Ad secundum dicendum quod malum non potest esse secundum se intentum ab aliquo, potest tamen esse intentum ad vitandum aliud malum, vel ad consequendum aliud bonum, ut dictum est. Et in tali casu aliquis eligeret consequi bonum per se intentum, absque hoc quod pateretur detrimentum alterius boni. Sicut aliquis lascivus vellet frui delectatione absque offensa Dei, sed duobus propositis, magis vult peccando incurrere offensam Dei, quam delectatione privetur. Reply to Objection 2. Evil cannot be intended by anyone for its own sake; but it can be intended for the sake of avoiding another evil, or obtaining another good, as stated above: and in this case anyone would choose to obtain a good intended for its own sake, without suffering loss of the other good; even as a lustful man would wish to enjoy a pleasure without offending God; but with the two set before him to choose from, he prefers sinning and thereby incurring God's anger, to being deprived of the pleasure.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 1 ad 3 Ad tertium dicendum quod malitia ex qua aliquis dicitur peccare, potest intelligi malitia habitualis, secundum quod habitus malus a philosopho nominatur malitia, sicut habitus bonus nominatur virtus. Et secundum hoc aliquis dicitur ex malitia peccare, quia peccat ex inclinatione habitus. Potest etiam intelligi malitia actualis. Sive ipsa mali electio malitia nominetur, et sic dicitur aliquis ex malitia peccare, inquantum ex mali electione peccat. Sive etiam malitia dicatur aliqua praecedens culpa, ex qua oritur subsequens culpa, sicut cum aliquis impugnat fraternam gratiam ex invidia. Et tunc idem non est causa sui ipsius, sed actus interior est causa actus exterioris. Et unum peccatum est causa alterius, non tamen in infinitum, quia est devenire ad aliquod primum peccatum, quod non causatur ex aliquo priori peccato, ut ex supradictis patet. Reply to Objection 3. The malice through which anyone sins, may be taken to denote habitual malice, in the sense in which the Philosopher (Ethic. v, 1) calls an evil habit by the name of malice, just as a good habit is called virtue: and in this way anyone is said to sin through malice when he sins through the inclination of a habit. It may also denote actual malice, whether by malice we mean the choice itself of evil (and thus anyone is said to sin through malice, in so far as he sins through making a choice of evil), or whether by malice we mean some previous fault that gives rise to a subsequent fault, as when anyone impugns the grace of his brother through envy. Nor does this imply that a thing is its own cause: for the interior act is the cause of the exterior act, and one sin is the cause of another; not indefinitely, however, since we can trace it back to some previous sin, which is not caused by any previous sin, as was explained above (75, 4, ad 3).
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 2 arg. 1 Ad secundum sic proceditur. Videtur quod non omnis qui peccat ex habitu, peccet ex certa malitia. Peccatum enim quod est ex certa malitia, videtur esse gravissimum. Sed quandoque homo aliquod leve peccatum committit ex habitu, sicut cum dicit verbum otiosum. Non ergo omne peccatum quod est ex habitu, est ex certa malitia. Objection 1. It would seem that not every one who sins through habit, sins through certain malice. Because sin committed through certain malice, seems to be most grievous. Now it happens sometimes that a man commits a slight sin through habit, as when he utters an idle word. Therefore sin committed from habit is not always committed through certain malice.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 2 arg. 2 Praeterea, actus ex habitu procedentes sunt similes actibus ex quibus habitus generantur, ut dicitur in II Ethic. Sed actus praecedentes habitum vitiosum non sunt ex certa malitia. Ergo etiam peccata quae sunt ex habitu, non sunt ex certa malitia. Objection 2. Further, "Acts proceeding from habits are like the acts by which those habits were formed" (Ethic. ii, 1,2). But the acts which precede a vicious habit are not committed through certain malice. Therefore the sins that arise from habit are not committed through certain malice.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 2 arg. 3 Praeterea, in his quae aliquis ex certa malitia committit, gaudet postquam commisit, secundum illud Prov. II, qui laetantur cum male fecerint et exultant in rebus pessimis. Et hoc ideo, quia unicuique est delectabile cum consequitur id quod intendit, et qui operatur quod est ei quodammodo connaturale secundum habitum. Sed illi qui peccant ex habitu, post peccatum commissum dolent, poenitudine enim replentur pravi, idest habentes habitum vitiosum, ut dicitur in IX Ethic. Ergo peccata quae sunt ex habitu, non sunt ex certa malitia. Objection 3. Further, when a man commits a sin through certain malice, he is glad after having done it, according to Proverbs 2:14: "Who are glad when they have done evil, and rejoice in most wicked things": and this, because it is pleasant to obtain what we desire, and to do those actions which are connatural to us by reason of habit. But those who sin through habit, are sorrowful after committing a sin: because "bad men," i.e. those who have a vicious habit, "are full of remorse" (Ethic. ix, 4). Therefore sins that arise from habit are not committed through certain malice.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 2 s. c. Sed contra, peccatum ex certa malitia dicitur esse quod est ex electione mali. Sed unicuique est eligibile id ad quod inclinatur per proprium habitum; ut dicitur in VI Ethic. de habitu virtuoso. Ergo peccatum quod est ex habitu, est ex certa malitia. On the contrary, A sin committed through certain malice is one that is done through choice of evil. Now we make choice of those things to which we are inclined by habit, as stated in Ethic. vi, 2 with regard to virtuous habits. Therefore a sin that arises from habit is committed through certain malice.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 2 co. Respondeo dicendum quod non est idem peccare habentem habitum, et peccare ex habitu. Uti enim habitu non est necessarium, sed subiacet voluntati habentis, unde et habitus definitur esse quo quis utitur cum voluerit. Et ideo sicut potest contingere quod aliquis habens habitum vitiosum, prorumpat in actum virtutis, eo quod ratio non totaliter corrumpitur per malum habitum, sed aliquid eius integrum manet, ex quo provenit quod peccator aliqua operatur de genere bonorum; ita etiam potest contingere quod aliquis habens habitum, interdum non ex habitu operetur, sed ex passione insurgente, vel etiam ex ignorantia. Sed quandocumque utitur habitu vitioso, necesse est quod ex certa malitia peccet. Quia unicuique habenti habitum, est per se diligibile id quod est ei conveniens secundum proprium habitum, quia fit ei quodammodo connaturale, secundum quod consuetudo et habitus vertitur in naturam. Hoc autem quod est alicui conveniens secundum habitum vitiosum, est id quod excludit bonum spirituale. Ex quo sequitur quod homo eligat malum spirituale, ut adipiscatur bonum quod est ei secundum habitum conveniens. Et hoc est ex certa malitia peccare. Unde manifestum est quod quicumque peccat ex habitu, peccet ex certa malitia. I answer that, There is a difference between a sin committed by one who has the habit, and a sin committed by habit: for it is not necessary to use a habit, since it is subject to the will of the person who has that habit. Hence habit is defined as being "something we use when we will," as stated above (Question 50, Article 1). And thus, even as it may happen that one who has a vicious habit may break forth into a virtuous act, because a bad habit does not corrupt reason altogether, something of which remains unimpaired, the result being that a sinner does some works which are generically good; so too it may happen sometimes that one who has a vicious habit, acts, not from that habit, but through the uprising of a passion, or again through ignorance. But whenever he uses the vicious habit he must needs sin through certain malice: because to anyone that has a habit, whatever is befitting to him in respect of that habit, has the aspect of something lovable, since it thereby becomes, in a way, connatural to him, according as custom and habit are a second nature. Now the very thing which befits a man in respect of a vicious habit, is something that excludes a spiritual good: the result being that a man chooses a spiritual evil, that he may obtain possession of what befits him in respect of that habit: and this is to sin through certain malice. Wherefore it is evident that whoever sins through habit, sins through certain malice.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 2 ad 1 Ad primum ergo dicendum quod peccata venialia non excludunt bonum spirituale, quod est gratia Dei vel caritas. Unde non dicuntur mala simpliciter, sed secundum quid. Et propter hoc nec habitus ipsorum possunt dici simpliciter mali, sed solum secundum quid. Reply to Objection 1. Venial sin does not exclude spiritual good, consisting in the grace of God or charity. Wherefore it is an evil, not simply, but in a relative sense: and for that reason the habit thereof is not a simple but a relative evil.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 2 ad 2 Ad secundum dicendum quod actus qui procedunt ex habitibus, sunt similes secundum speciem actibus ex quibus habitus generantur, differunt tamen ab eis sicut perfectum ab imperfecto. Et talis est differentia peccati quod committitur ex certa malitia, ad peccatum quod committitur ex aliqua passione. Reply to Objection 2. Acts proceeding from habits are of like species as the acts from which those habits were formed: but they differ from them as perfect from imperfect. Such is the difference between sin committed through certain malice and sin committed through passion.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 2 ad 3 Ad tertium dicendum quod ille qui peccat ex habitu, semper gaudet de hoc quod ex habitu operatur, quandiu habitu utitur. Sed quia potest habitu non uti, sed per rationem, quae non est totaliter corrupta, aliquid aliud meditari; potest contingere quod, non utens habitu, doleat de hoc quod per habitum commisit. Plerumque tamen tales poenitent de peccato, non quia eis peccatum secundum se displiceat; sed propter aliquod incommodum quod ex peccato incurrunt. Reply to Objection 3. He that sins through habit is always glad for what he does through habit, as long as he uses the habit. But since he is able not to use the habit, and to think of something else, by means of his reason, which is not altogether corrupted, it may happen that while not using the habit he is sorry for what he has done through the habit. And so it often happens that such a man is sorry for his sin not because sin in itself is displeasing to him, but on account of his reaping some disadvantage from the sin.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 3 arg. 1 Ad tertium sic proceditur. Videtur quod quicumque peccat ex certa malitia, peccet ex habitu. Dicit enim philosophus, in V Ethic., quod non est cuiuslibet iniusta facere qualiter iniustus facit, scilicet ex electione, sed solum habentis habitum. Sed peccare ex certa malitia est peccare ex electione mali, ut dictum est. Ergo peccare ex certa malitia non est nisi habentis habitum. Objection 1. It would seem that whoever sins through certain malice, sins through habit. For the Philosopher says (Ethic. v, 9) that "an unjust action is not done as an unjust man does it," i.e. through choice, "unless it be done through habit." Now to sin through certain malice is to sin through making a choice of evil, as stated above (Article 1). Therefore no one sins through certain malice, unless he has the habit of sin.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 3 arg. 2 Praeterea, Origenes dicit, in I peri archon, quod non ad subitum quis evacuatur aut deficit, sed paulatim per partes defluere necesse est. Sed maximus defluxus esse videtur ut aliquis ex certa malitia peccet. Ergo non statim a principio, sed per multam consuetudinem, ex qua habitus generari potest, aliquis ad hoc devenit ut ex certa malitia peccet. Objection 2. Further, Origen says (Peri Archon iii) that "a man is not suddenly ruined and lost, but must needs fall away little by little." But the greatest fall seems to be that of the man who sins through certain malice. Therefore a man comes to sin through certain malice, not from the outset, but from inveterate custom, which may engender a habit.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 3 arg. 3 Praeterea, quandocumque aliquis ex certa malitia peccat, oportet quod ipsa voluntas de se inclinetur ad malum quod eligit. Sed ex natura potentiae non inclinatur homo ad malum, sed magis ad bonum. Ergo oportet, si eligit malum, quod hoc sit ex aliquo supervenienti, quod est passio vel habitus. Sed quando aliquis peccat ex passione, non peccat ex certa malitia, sed ex infirmitate, ut dictum est. Ergo quandocumque aliquis peccat ex certa malitia, oportet quod peccet ex habitu. Objection 3. Further, whenever a man sins through certain malice, his will must needs be inclined of itself to the evil he chooses. But by the nature of that power man is inclined, not to evil but to good. Therefore if he chooses evil, this must be due to something supervening, which is passion or habit. Now when a man sins through passion, he sins not through certain malice, but through weakness, as stated (77, 3). Therefore whenever anyone sins through certain malice, he sins through habit.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 3 s. c. Sed contra, sicut se habet habitus bonus ad electionem boni, ita habitus malus ad electionem mali. Sed quandoque aliquis non habens habitum virtutis, eligit id quod est bonum secundum virtutem. Ergo etiam quandoque aliquis non habens habitum vitiosum, potest eligere malum, quod est ex certa malitia peccare. On the contrary, The good habit stands in the same relation to the choice of something good, as the bad habit to the choice of something evil. But it happens sometimes that a man, without having the habit of a virtue, chooses that which is good according to that virtue. Therefore sometimes also a man, without having the habit of a vice, may choose evil, which is to sin through certain malice.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 3 co. Respondeo dicendum quod voluntas aliter se habet ad bonum, et aliter ad malum. Ex natura enim suae potentiae inclinatur ad bonum rationis, sicut ad proprium obiectum, unde et omne peccatum dicitur esse contra naturam. Quod ergo in aliquod malum voluntas eligendo inclinetur, oportet quod aliunde contingat. Et quandoque quidem contingit ex defectu rationis, sicut cum aliquis ex ignorantia peccat, quandoque autem ex impulsu appetitus sensitivi, sicut cum peccat ex passione. Sed neutrum horum est ex certa malitia peccare; sed tunc solum ex certa malitia aliquis peccat, quando ipsa voluntas ex seipsa movetur ad malum. Quod potest contingere dupliciter. Uno quidem modo, per hoc quod homo habet aliquam dispositionem corruptam inclinantem ad malum, ita quod secundum illam dispositionem fit homini quasi conveniens et simile aliquod malum, et in hoc, ratione convenientiae, tendit voluntas quasi in bonum, quia unumquodque secundum se tendit in id quod sibi est conveniens. Talis autem dispositio corrupta vel est aliquis habitus acquisitus ex consuetudine, quae vertitur in naturam, vel est aliqua aegritudinalis habitudo ex parte corporis, sicut aliquis habens quasdam naturales inclinationes ad aliqua peccata, propter corruptionem naturae in ipso. Alio modo contingit quod voluntas per se tendit in aliquod malum, per remotionem alicuius prohibentis. Puta si aliquis prohibeatur peccare non quia peccatum ei secundum se displiceat, sed propter spem vitae aeternae vel propter timorem Gehennae; remota spe per desperationem, vel timore per praesumptionem, sequitur quod ex certa malitia, quasi absque freno, peccet. Sic igitur patet quod peccatum quod est ex certa malitia, semper praesupponit in homine aliquam inordinationem, quae tamen non semper est habitus. Unde non est necessarium quod quicumque peccat ex certa malitia, peccet ex habitu. I answer that, The will is related differently to good and to evil. Because from the very nature of the power, it is inclined to the rational good, as its proper object; wherefore every sin is said to be contrary to nature. Hence, if a will be inclined, by its choice, to some evil, this must be occasioned by something else. Sometimes, in fact, this is occasioned through some defect in the reason, as when anyone sins through ignorance; and sometimes this arises through the impulse of the sensitive appetite, as when anyone sins through passion. Yet neither of these amounts to a sin through certain malice; for then alone does anyone sin through certain malice, when his will is moved to evil of its own accord. This may happen in two ways. First, through his having a corrupt disposition inclining him to evil, so that, in respect of that disposition, some evil is, as it were, suitable and similar to him; and to this thing, by reason of its suitableness, the will tends, as to something good, because everything tends, of its own accord, to that which is suitable to it. Moreover this corrupt disposition is either a habit acquired by custom, or a sickly condition on the part of the body, as in the case of a man who is naturally inclined to certain sins, by reason of some natural corruption in himself. Secondly, the will, of its own accord, may tend to an evil, through the removal of some obstacle: for instance, if a man be prevented from sinning, not through sin being in itself displeasing to him, but through hope of eternal life, or fear of hell, if hope give place to despair, or fear to presumption, he will end in sinning through certain malice, being freed from the bridle, as it were. It is evident, therefore, that sin committed through certain malice, always presupposes some inordinateness in man, which, however, is not always a habit: so that it does not follow of necessity, if a man sins through certain malice, that he sins through habit.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 3 ad 1 Ad primum ergo dicendum quod operari qualiter iniustus operatur, non solum est operari iniusta ex certa malitia, sed etiam delectabiliter, et sine gravi renisu rationis. Quod non est nisi eius qui habet habitum. Reply to Objection 1. To do an action as an unjust man does, may be not only to do unjust things through certain malice, but also to do them with pleasure, and without any notable resistance on the part of reason, and this occurs only in one who has a habit.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 3 ad 2 Ad secundum dicendum quod non statim ad hoc aliquis labitur quod ex certa malitia peccet, sed praesupponitur aliquid, quod tamen non semper est habitus, ut dictum est. Reply to Objection 2. It is true that a man does not fall suddenly into sin from certain malice, and that something is presupposed; but this something is not always a habit, as stated above.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 3 ad 3 Ad tertium dicendum quod illud propter quod voluntas inclinatur ad malum, non semper habitus est vel passio, sed quaedam alia, ut dictum est. Reply to Objection 3. That which inclines the will to evil, is not always a habit or a passion, but at times is something else. Moreover, there is no comparison between choosing good and choosing evil: because evil is never without some good of nature, whereas good can be perfect without the evil of fault.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 3 ad 4 Ad quartum dicendum quod non est similis ratio de electione boni, et de electione mali. Quia malum nunquam est sine bono naturae, sed bonum potest esse sine malo culpae perfecte. Missing
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 4 arg. 1 Ad quartum sic proceditur. Videtur quod ille qui peccat ex certa malitia, non peccet gravius quam ille qui peccat ex passione. Ignorantia enim excusat peccatum vel in toto vel in parte. Sed maior est ignorantia in eo qui peccat ex certa malitia, quam in eo qui peccat ex passione, nam ille qui peccat ex certa malitia, patitur ignorantiam principii, quae est maxima, ut philosophus dicit, in VII Ethic.; habet enim malam existimationem de fine, qui est principium in operativis. Ergo magis excusatur a peccato qui peccat ex certa malitia, quam ille qui peccat ex passione. Objection 1. It would seem that it is not more grievous to sin through certain malice than through passion. Because ignorance excuses from sin either altogether or in part. Now ignorance is greater in one who sins through certain malice, than in one who sins through passion; since he that sins through certain malice suffers from the worst form of ignorance, which according to the Philosopher (Ethic. vii, 8) is ignorance of principle, for he has a false estimation of the end, which is the principle in matters of action. Therefore there is more excuse for one who sins through certain malice, than for one who sins through passion.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 4 arg. 2 Praeterea, quanto aliquis habet maius impellens ad peccandum, tanto minus peccat, sicut patet de eo qui maiori impetu passionis deiicitur in peccatum. Sed ille qui peccat ex certa malitia, impellitur ab habitu, cuius est fortior impulsio quam passionis. Ergo ille qui peccat ex habitu, minus peccat quam ille qui peccat ex passione. Objection 2. Further, the more a man is impelled to sin, the less grievous his sin, as is clear with regard to a man who is thrown headlong into sin by a more impetuous passion. Now he that sins through certain malice, is impelled by habit, the impulse of which is stronger than that of passion. Therefore to sin through habit is less grievous than to sin through passion.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 4 arg. 3 Praeterea, peccare ex certa malitia est peccare ex electione mali. Sed ille qui peccat ex passione, etiam eligit malum. Ergo non minus peccat quam ille qui peccat ex certa malitia. Objection 3. Further, to sin through certain malice is to sin through choosing evil. Now he that sins through passion, also chooses evil. Therefore he does not sin less than the man who sins through certain malice.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 4 s. c. Sed contra est quod peccatum quod ex industria committitur, ex hoc ipso graviorem poenam meretur, secundum illud Iob XXXIV, quasi impios percussit eos in loco videntium, qui quasi de industria recesserunt ab eo. Sed poena non augetur nisi propter gravitatem culpae. Ergo peccatum ex hoc aggravatur, quod est ex industria, seu certa malitia. On the contrary, A sin that is committed on purpose, for this very reason deserves heavier punishment, according to Job 34:26: "He hath struck them as being wicked, in open sight, who, as it were, on purpose, have revolted from Him." Now punishment is not increased except for a graver fault. Therefore a sin is aggravated through being done on purpose, i.e. through certain malice.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 4 co. Respondeo dicendum quod peccatum quod est ex certa malitia, est gravius peccato quod est ex passione, triplici ratione. Primo quidem quia, cum peccatum principaliter in voluntate consistat, quanto motus peccati est magis proprius voluntati, tanto peccatum est gravius, ceteris paribus. Cum autem ex certa malitia peccatur, motus peccati est magis proprius voluntati, quae ex seipsa in malum movetur, quam quando ex passione peccatur, quasi ex quodam extrinseco impulsu ad peccandum. Unde peccatum ex hoc ipso quod est ex malitia, aggravatur, et tanto magis, quanto fuerit vehementior malitia. Ex eo vero quod est ex passione, diminuitur, et tanto magis, quanto passio fuerit magis vehemens. Secundo, quia passio quae inclinat voluntatem ad peccandum, cito transit, et sic homo cito redit ad bonum propositum, poenitens de peccato. Sed habitus, quo homo ex malitia peccat, est qualitas permanens, et ideo qui ex malitia peccat, diuturnius peccat. Unde philosophus, in VII Ethic., comparat intemperatum, qui peccat ex malitia, infirmo qui continue laborat; incontinentem autem, qui peccat ex passione, ei qui laborat interpolate. Tertio, quia ille qui peccat ex certa malitia, est male dispositus quantum ad ipsum finem, qui est principium in operabilibus. Et sic eius defectus est periculosior quam eius qui ex passione peccat, cuius propositum tendit in bonum finem, licet hoc propositum interrumpatur ad horam propter passionem. Semper autem defectus principii est pessimus. Unde manifestum est quod gravius est peccatum quod est ex malitia, quam quod est ex passione. I answer that, A sin committed through malice is more grievous than a sin committed through passion, for three reasons. First, because, as sin consists chiefly in an act of the will, it follows that, other things being equal, a sin is all the more grievous, according as the movement of the sin belongs more to the will. Now when a sin is committed through malice, the movement of sin belongs more to the will, which is then moved to evil of its own accord, than when a sin is committed through passion, when the will is impelled to sin by something extrinsic, as it were. Wherefore a sin is aggravated by the very fact that it is committed through certain malice, and so much the more, as the malice is greater; whereas it is diminished by being committed through passion, and so much the more, as the passion is stronger. Secondly, because the passion which incites the will to sin, soon passes away, so that man repents of his sin, and soon returns to his good intentions; whereas the habit, through which a man sins, is a permanent quality, so that he who sins through malice, abides longer in his sin. For this reason the Philosopher (Ethic. vii, 8) compares the intemperate man, who sins through malice, to a sick man who suffers from a chronic disease, while he compares the incontinent man, who sins through passion, to one who suffers intermittently. Thirdly, because he who sins through certain malice is ill-disposed in respect of the end itself, which is the principle in matters of action; and so the defect is more dangerous than in the case of the man who sins through passion, whose purpose tends to a good end, although this purpose is interrupted on account of the passion, for the time being. Now the worst of all defects is defect of principle. Therefore it is evident that a sin committed through malice is more grievous than one committed through passion.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 4 ad 1 Ad primum ergo dicendum quod ignorantia electionis, de qua obiectio procedit, neque excusat neque diminuit peccatum, ut supra dictum est. Unde neque maior ignorantia talis facit esse minus peccatum. Reply to Objection 1. Ignorance of choice, to which the objection refers, neither excuses nor diminishes a sin, as stated above (Question 76, Article 4). Therefore neither does a greater ignorance of the kind make a sin to be less grave.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 4 ad 2 Ad secundum dicendum quod impulsio quae est ex passione, est quasi ex exteriori respectu voluntatis, sed per habitum inclinatur voluntas quasi ab interiori. Unde non est similis ratio. Reply to Objection 2. The impulse due to passion, is, as it were, due to a defect which is outside the will: whereas, by a habit, the will is inclined from within. Hence the comparison fails.
Iª-IIae q. 78 a. 4 ad 3 Ad tertium dicendum quod aliud est peccare eligentem, et aliud peccare ex electione. Ille enim qui peccat ex passione, peccat quidem eligens, non tamen ex electione, quia electio non est in eo primum peccati principium, sed inducitur ex passione ad eligendum id quod extra passionem existens non eligeret. Sed ille qui peccat ex certa malitia, secundum se eligit malum, eo modo quo dictum est. Et ideo electio in ipso est principium peccati; et propter hoc dicitur ex electione peccare. Reply to Objection 3. It is one thing to sin while choosing, and another to sin through choosing. For he that sins through passion, sins while choosing, but not through choosing, because his choosing is not for him the first principle of his sin; for he is induced through the passion, to choose what he would not choose, were it not for the passion. On the other hand, he that sins through certain malice, chooses evil of his own accord, in the way already explained (2,3), so that his choosing, of which he has full control, is the principle of his sin: and for this reason he is said to sin "through" choosing.

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