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Many of the people who study the work of Thomas Aquinas concentrate their focus on his Summa Theologica, but ignore or neglect his Summa Contra Gentiles. I believe, however, that the Summa Contra Gentiles is a great work which should not be ignored or neglected. Furthermore, I believe that the Summa Contra Gentiles is a better book for the world today than is the Summa Theologica. The Summa Theologica is for Roman Catholic monks and is impractical, and practically incomprehensible, for anyone who is not a Roman Catholic monk.

Alexandre Jollien

Here is something I wrote using medieval wisdom to understand the reality of handicapped people:

When I am Weak, then I am Strong is the first of three books by Alexandre Jollien that I translate into English. Jollien’s second book is Le Metier d’Homme with the English title The Job of Man, and his third book is La Construction de Soi with the English title The Art of Joy. From a merely literary point-of-view, it is interesting to see the maturation from one book to another. A 32-year-old philosopher writes differently than a 24-year-old student. If you, the reader, have never before read a philosophy book, then this trilogy might gradually introduce you to the genre. I apologize in advance if my translations do not do justice to the originals.

     J.R.R. Tolkien was born in 1892, so he obviously did not live in the Middle Ages. Is it, therefore, absurd to claim that he was Medieval? No, it is not absurd. I, and scholars greater than me (for example, Dr. Corey Olsen), claim unabashedly that Tolkien is medieval.  A professor at Rice University, Dr.

Christopher Columbus discovered America in 1492, thus ending the Middle Ages and beginning the Modern Age. America, therefore, was not part of the European Middle Ages, but America did have a type of Middle Age. First, this happened in the Latin American countries. Spain and Portugal conquered and colonized South and Central America, up to the Rio Grande and even beyond into New Mexico, California and Texas. This vast area went through all the ages of the Old World relatively rapidly; what had taken millenia in Europe required only centuries in Latin America.

In the Middle Ages, as also in Ancient times, society was vertical. In the Modern and Post-modern ages, society is horizontal. This difference is important.

There were three or four "classes" to which individuals belonged. If a person was born a peasant, then he very probably remained a peasant his whole life, and his children and grandchildren were peasants like him. If a person was born a nobleman, then he very probably remained a nobleman his whole life, and his children and grandchildren were noblemen like him. In every age there are some people who are wealthier than others, but during the Middle Ages the situation was different than it is today. Poor people today compare themselves to the rich. Some poor admire the rich and try to become like them by working hard.

I once claimed that people were happier in the Middle Ages than they are now. I no longer make that claim, but I do not make the inverse claim, rather I choose not to claim that I can judge the happiness of other people. Experience has shown me that different people manifest their happiness, or their unhappiness, differently. Some very emotional people cry often, yet they are not really unhappy. Others might smile continually, but it is a show to mask their real sorrow.

Medieval people thought and think much about Heaven and Hell. Though I was born long after the Middle Ages ended, I am medieval in the way I think, so here are my thoughts about Heaven:

Paper by Shawn T. Miller, MLA, MBA, Ph.D. student