Transubstantiation in modern science: How can substance change without accidents
#61
(12-15-2012, 04:32 PM)INPEFESS Wrote: This is a question of philosophy, which is why the words "substance" and "accidents" are most fitting. Substance is physical, but not necessarily measurable or tangible.

St. Thomas says that angels are "immaterial substances" http://www.newadvent.org/summa/1050.htm.  So I think that material substance is physical, rather than substance in general.  Christ's body is material and so physical; it was at the Last Supper, on the Cross, after the Resurrection (as He proved to His disciples), and in the Holy Eucharist (where we believe by faith - although even here there are sometimes tangible miracles).
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#62
Yes, Doce Me, you are correct. I became sloppy toward the end of my post. I meant to say "material sustance," not "substance" in general. There is material and immaterial substance, but I was speaking of purely material substance in this context.

Material substance is physical while immaterial substance is, for example, spriritual. That is the distinction to which the word "physical" speaks: it distinguishes itself from the spiritual by grounding itself in the material. I don't think the word "physical" speaks to any specific measurable qualities of that material substance. That is why we have such concepts as "measurable," "perceptible," "empirical," "tangible," "visible," "audible," etc.

This is why I believe it is entirely correct to say that Christ's Body and Blood are physically present on the altar. The way in which this physical reality manifests itself accidentally, however, deceives the perception of our senses.
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#63
Material substance denotes what is physical, while immaterial substance denotes what is, for example, spiritual. I don't believe that word "physical" necessarily denotes any further quality of material substance. We have words such as "perceptible," "measurable," "quantifiable," "empirical," "tangible," "visible," "audible," etc. to treat of such qualities.

Thus, I believe it is proper to say that Christ's Body and Blood are really, truly, substantially and physically present on the altar, but the manner in which that physical reality manifests itself accidentally to our 5 senses deceives our perception, which by nature are quite easily deceived.
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#64
Thank you INPEFESS. From now I will be clearer and more careful with the use of the word "physical."  When I mean "tangible," that's what I'll say.
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#65
(12-15-2012, 07:13 PM)newyorkcatholic Wrote: Thank you INPEFESS. From now I will be clearer and more careful with the use of the word "physical."  When I mean "tangible," that's what I'll say.

I hope you don't think that I was accusing you of inaccuracy or carelessness; far from it. All that I meant to argue was that the word "physical" does not necessarily pertain to accidental properties by which substantial matter manifests itself to our senses. Scientists may use the term this way, but the word itself does no merit that connotation. I believe that it the word only implies the distinction between that which is material and that which is immaterial. We have other ways of describing the accidental properties of material substance.

So, I think it is entirely appropriate to say that Christ is physically present on the altar; in fact, I think it would be dangerous to deny it. What we must proclaim is that only the measurable accidental properties remain, nothing more; what we must deny is that transubstantiation pertains simply to an immaterial, though substantial, transformation. That would be dangerously close to the various Protestant notions of the Real Presence, such as the notion that the Real Presence represents simply Christ's spiritual presence--that is, the immaterial substance of His spirit--in the Eucharist. This is condemned as a heresy by the Church. The physical nature itself has been transubstantiated leaving only the manifest accidental properties of the former substance intact. Mysterious, indeed, but not contracted by modern science or by the Church's perennial philosophy.
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#66
(12-15-2012, 08:02 PM)INPEFESS Wrote:
(12-15-2012, 07:13 PM)newyorkcatholic Wrote: Thank you INPEFESS. From now I will be clearer and more careful with the use of the word "physical."  When I mean "tangible," that's what I'll say.

I hope you don't think that I was accusing you of inaccuracy or carelessness; far from it. All that I meant to argue was that the word "physical" does not necessarily pertain to accidental properties by which substantial matter manifests itself to our senses. Scientists may use the term this way, but the word itself does no merit that connotation. I believe that it the word only implies the distinction between that which is material and that which is immaterial. We have other ways of describing the accidental properties of material substance.

So, I think it is entirely appropriate to say that Christ is physically present on the altar; in fact, I think it would be dangerous to deny it. What we must proclaim is that only the measurable accidental properties remain, nothing more; what we must deny is that transubstantiation pertains simply to an immaterial, though substantial, transformation. That would be dangerously close to the various Protestant notions of the Real Presence, such as the notion that the Real Presence represents simply Christ's spiritual presence--that is, the immaterial substance of His spirit--in the Eucharist. This is condemned as a heresy by the Church. The physical nature itself has been transubstantiated leaving only the manifest accidental properties of the former substance intact. Mysterious, indeed, but not contracted by modern science or by the Church's perennial philosophy.

I didn't think you were accusing me of inaccuracy. I do think I better see the distinction is between physical and spiritual, and so Christ not just can be said to be but should be said to be physically present on the altar.

On my phone so it's hard to write more, perhaps I will later
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