Who is Francisco Suarez?June 25, 2021
Francisco Suare, Spanish theologian and legal philosopher. He is the last great representative of scholastic philosophy.
He was born on 5 January 1548 in Granada and died on 25 September 1617 in Lisbon. He was the son of a wealthy lawyer. He joined the Jesuit order in 1564. He studied theology at the University of Salamanca. He began teaching at the Jesuit college in Segovia in 1571, and was soon ordained pastor. Suarez, who taught theology at the University of Valladolid between 1576-1580, in Jesuit colleges in Rome between 1580-1585 and in Alcala between 1585-1593, King of Spain II. He was appointed by Felipe to the chair of theology at the University of Coimbra in Portugal. He published all his important books while teaching at this university. He retired in 1616.
He was born on January 5, 1548 in Granada, Spain. He joined the Jesuits on 16 June 1564 and studied philosophy and theology between 1565 and 1570 in the city of Salamanca. He began teaching in 1572, and went to Avila and Segovia (1571), Valladolid (1576), Rome (Gregorianum) (1580-1585), Alcala (1582-1592), Salamanca (1592-1597) and Coimbra (1597-1616). He taught philosophy and theology in . Francisco Suarez, who could not devote as much time as he wanted to teaching because of his writings, died on September 25, 1617 in Lisbon, the capital of Portugal. Suarez’s works are works that have deeply influenced many philosophers after him. For example, Schopenhauer called one of Suarez’s works, and perhaps the most important, “Disputationes Metaphysicae” (A true introduction to Scholasticism). Besides, Leibniz says that this book is easily readable, as most people read novels. It is thought to have been written in 1597. It was later published by the Portuguese Jesuits. His works titled De Deo Incarnato (About the Reincarnation of Jesus) written in 1590 and De Defensio Fidei (About the Defense of Faith) in 1617 are also worth mentioning.
According to Francisco Suarez, if the metaphysician is concerned with both material and immaterial objects, then there must be a formal understanding of being. It has to be such an understanding that it should be common to all that is real. This understanding, this concept of being, which is one in both reality and meaning, is the simplest of the concepts and at the same time the easiest to grasp by the mind. At this point, Francisco Suarez tries to understand the term existence by dividing it into two. Ens is sometimes used as an adjective form of the verb to be (sum). In this kind of usage, being exhibits the act of being (actus essendi). This situation also means the act of existence (existens actu). In other words, being is considered in the sense of what really exists. Apart from that, the term refers to the essence that comes into being or can come into being. That is, it describes what is with a true essence. Therefore, being is not only those that actually exist; but it also includes in itself real entities, whether they exist or not. The being to be understood from this expression is the possible being.
Francisco Suarez understands the actual (current) existence of things by the term being. Unless what we call essence really does not exist, we cannot turn to it as if it existed. The existence of anything must either be understood as a possibility or considered for the state of what already exists. Thus, we have reached possible and actual entity definitions for Francisco Suarez. From this point of view, we can consider at what points he reveals the distinction between essence and existence.
The path that Suarez follows in the problem of the relationship between essence and existence shows a difference. Despite this difference, what was accepted indiscriminately throughout the Middle Ages, and therefore in scholastic philosophy, is the idea that essence and existence are one and separate in God. For Francisco Suarez, as for everyone, the essence of God is His existence. However, the reason for the existence of His creations is not directly their essence. The reason for the existence of all created beings in the world is that God created them. Since their existence does not originate from their own essence, created ones are also called contingent beings. Opposite to this, God, as we have just said, must be understood as a Necessary Being.
It is God’s will that dominates all human will and controls all of them and the universe. This will also determines the will of all creatures in the universe; for, in Suarez’s understanding, the law is the result of God’s will. According to Francisco Suarez, who named this type of law as the eternal law, the commands of the natural law are also shaped according to this law. Commandments such as “You shall not murder, you shall not steal” are related to natural law. All laws, except divine law, derive from and share in it.