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Francisco Suarez
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• Jesuits
• Samuel von Pufendorf

 

Name:
Francisco Suarez

Dates:
Born: January 5, 1548 at Granada
Died: September 25, 1617 in Lisbon, Portugal

Specialization:
Political Philosophy
Theology
Thomism
Scholasticism

Biography:
Francisco Suarez was a theologian and political philosopher who, trained by Jesuits and educated at Salamanca, would become one of the last representatives of scholasticism and one of the staunchest defenders of the power and authority of the Catholic Church.

The latter issue was very important for Suarez because, during the 16th century, the Church was quickly losing power across society. Filling the vacuum for the most part was the state itself and, in part to justify their assertions of authority, many secular rulers began to buy into the doctrine known as the Divine Right of Kings. Suarez believed that this doctrine threatened both church and state, objecting to the idea that there was anything sacred whatsoever invested in secular rulers.

Suarez presaged other political philosophers like Grotius and Pufendorf, arguing that because spiritual power is more important than temporarl power, the church is more important than the state. That does not mean that the church does or should have unrestricted power in the world while the power of the state itself is restricted by the fact that such power is deirved wholly from God, meaning that all secular law is subbordinate to divine law (invariably defined and explained by the church).

Also Known As: none

Alternate Spellings: none

Common Misspellings: none

Related Resources:

What is the Philosophy of Science?
The Philosophy of Science is concerned with, obviously enough, science - specifically, how science operates, what the goals of science should be, what relationship science should have with the rest of society, the differences between science and other activities, etc. Everything that happens in science has some relationship with the Philosophy of Science and is predicated upon some philosophical position, even though that may be rarely evident.

What is Philosophy?
What is philosophy? Is there any point in studying philosophy, or is it a useless subject? What are the different branches of philosophy - what's the difference between aestheitcs and ethics? What's the difference between metaphysics and epistemology?

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