The critics of Aquinas - Duns Scotus and the later Nominalists - show some tendency towards rational scepticism.
According to John Scotus Erigena, the nothing out of which the world is created is the divine essence.
More importance attaches to Duns Scotus, who brings prominently forward the idea of a progressive development in nature by means of a process of determination.
This serves Duns Scotus as the most universal basis of existence, all angels having material bodies.
One might almost say that Duns Scotus recognizes the principle of a gradual physical evolution, only that he chooses to represent the mechanism by which the process is brought about by means of quaint scholastic fictions.
Thomas' great rival, Duns Scotus, does this to a large extent, at times affirming " two truths."
JOHN DUNS SCOTUS (1265 or 1275-1308), one of the foremost of the schoolmen.
When his master, William Varron, removed to Paris in 1301, Duns Scotus was appointed to succeed him as professor of philosophy, and his lectures attracted an immense number of students.
Further, while the genius of Aquinas was constructive, that of Duns Scotus was destructive; Aquinas was a philosopher, Duns a critic. The latter has been said to stand to the former in the relation of Kant to Leibnitz.
Theologically, the Thomistic system approximates to pantheism, while that of Scotus inclines distinctly to Pelagianism.
The doctrine of the Immaculate Conception was the great subject in dispute between the two parties; it was strenuously opposed by Aquinas, and supported by Duns Scotus, although not without reserve.
In opposition to Aquinas, who maintained that reason and revelation were two independent sources of knowledge, Duns Scotus held that there was no true knowledge of anything knowable apart from theology as based upon revelation.
Another chief point of difference with Aquinas was in regard to the freedom of the will, which Duns Scotus maintained absolutely.
Aquinas.) Duns Scotus strongly upheld the authority of the church, making it the ultimate authority on which that of Scripture depends.
Muller, Biographisches fiber Duns Scotus (progr., Cologne, 1881); W.
On his theology: C. Frassen, Scotus Academicus (1744, new edition, 1900); Hieronymus de Montefortino (Jerome de Fortius), Scoti summa theologica (1728-1738, new edition, 1900); L.
Seeberg, Die Theologie des Duns Scotus (1900), and in Herzog-Hauck, Realencyklopddie fiir protestantische Theologie (1898), with bibliog.
Schneid, Die Korperlehre des Duns Scotus - its relation to Thomism and Atomism (1879); P. Minges, "Ist Duns Scotus Indeterminist?"
Kahl, Die Lehre vom Primat des Willens bei Augustinus, Duns Scotus, and Descartes (1886).
On the question of universals he endeavoured to steer a middle course between the pantheistically inclined realism of Duns Scotus and the extreme nominalism of William of Occam.
Berengar's belief was not shaken by their arguments and exhortations, and hearing that Lanfranc, the most celebrated theologian of that age, strongly approved the doctrine of Paschasius and condemned that of " Scotus " (really Ratramnus), he wrote to him a letter expressing his surprise and urging him to reconsider the question.
The basis of his work was a chronicle compiled by Marianus Scotus, an Irish recluse, who lived first at Fulda, afterwards at Mainz.
In this book he tries to prove that Bernard (Sapiens), Alcuin, Boniface and Joannes Scotus Erigena were all Scots, and even Boadicea becomes a Scottish author.
This opinion, defended by Bonaventura, Alexander of Hales, Scotus and others, soon became and is now generally accepted.
In this second period the names of Albertus Magnus, Thomas Aquinas and Duns Scotus represent (in the 13th century and the first years of the 14th century) the culmination of Scholastic thought and its consolidation into system.
In Scotus Erigena, at the beginning of the Scholastic era, there is no such subordination contemplated, because philosophy and theology in his work are in implicit unity.
Indeed, no sooner was the harmony apparently established by Aquinas than Duns Scotus began this negative criticism, which is carried much farther by William of Occam.
Prantl has professed to find the headstream of Nominalism also in Scotus Erigena; but beyond the fact that he discusses at considerable length the categories of thought and their mutual relations, occasionally using the term voces to express his meaning, Prantl appears to adduce no reasons for an assertion which directly contradicts Erigena's most fundamental doctrines.
1207; see Amalric and MYsTicism), though based by him upon a revival of Scotus Erigena, was doubtless connected in its origin with the Neoplatonic treatises which now become current.
Still later Duns Scotus and Occam were both Franciscans.
It is the question of the particularity or " this-ness " (haecceitas, as Duns Scotus afterwards named it) that embarrasses the Scholastics.
This difficulty was presently raised by Duns Scotus and the realistically-inclined opponents of the Thomist doctrine.
C. 1300), who anticipated many of the objections urged soon after him by Duns Scotus (q.v.).
Scotus extends the number of theological doctrines which are not, according to him, susceptible of philosophical proof, including in this class the creation of the world out of nothing, the immortality of the human soul, and even the existence of an almighty divine cause of the universe (though he admits the possibility of proving an ultimate cause superior to all else).
His destructive criticism thus tended to reintroduce the dualism between faith and reason which Scholasticism had laboured through centuries to overcome, though Scotus himself, of course, had no such sceptical intention.
To this Scotus opposed an indeterminism of the extremest type, describing the will as the possibility of determining itself motivelessly in either of two opposite senses.
Scotus, on the other hand, following out his doctrine of the will, declared the good to be so only by arbitrary imposition.
Aquinas is on the side of rationalism, Scotus on the side of scepticism.
While agreeing with Albert and Thomas in maintaining the threefold existence of the universals, Duns Scotus attacked the Thomist doctrine of individuation.
Notwithstanding the above doctrine, however, Scotus holds that all created things possess both matter and form - the soul, for example, possessing a matter of its own before its The principle of individuation.
Among the disciples of Duns Scotus are mentioned John of Bassolis, Francis of Mayrone, Antonius Andreae (d.
A pupil of The Scotus, he carried his master's criticism farther, and Twofold denied that any theological doctrines were rationally Truth.
Occam denied the title of a science to theology, emphasizing, like Scotus, its practical character.
Seton-Watson (" Scotus Viator "), Racial Problems in Hungary (London, 1908), a strong indictment of the racial policy of the Magyars, supported by exact references and many ' The methods pursued to this end are exposed in pitiless detail by Mr Seton-Watson in his chapter on the Education Laws of Hungary, in Racial Problems, 205.
Seton-Watson (Scotus Viator), Racial Problems in Hungary (London, 1908), a strong criticism of the Magyar attitude towards the Slav subject races, especially the Slovaks, with documents and a full bibliography.
MARIANUS SCOTUS (1028-1082 or 1083), chronicler (who must be distinguished from his namesake Marianus Scotus, d.
His works had considerable influence in shaping the system of John Scotus Erigena.
After 868); and the last theologian who came into France from abroad, Johannes Scotus Erigena (d.
Since the time of Duns Scotus (d.
47), there occurs the sentence: " Nihil autem supra Neperianam rationem esse puto: etsi quidem Scotus quidam literis ad Tychonem 1594 scriptis jam spem fecit Canonis illius Mirifici."