DEFINITION, ABSTRACTION AND DISTINCTION CONCEPTUAL IN THOMAS AQUINAS
The purpose of this paper is to establish a relation between Thomas Aquinas’ theory of abstraction and the process of clarifying a concept described in Summa Theologiae, Iª Pars, Q. 85, A. 3. The first process allows the production of a confused concept, while the second process deals with distinguishing this concept from others. In this sense, I analyze the relation between the definitional structure of a concept and the hylomorphic composition of an individual, as described by Aquinas in De Ente et Essentia, as well as its relation to the referred article of the Summa Theologiae. Finally, I consider both processes, abstraction, and the transition from a confused to a distinct concept, to comprehend Aquinas’ process of forming definitions.