Sigma: Journal of Political and International Studies


Neil Longo


Platonic Metaphysics, Thomistic Analogy, Christian Philosophy


In Raphael's School of Athens, Plato famously points upward, while Aristotle brings his hand forward, parallel to the ground. Western thought has positioned itself between these two poles. Its dual purpose was to explain what was and explore what could be. This distinction worked its way into Christianity, which quickly divided itself between the spiritual and the physical, the church militant and the church triumphant, the city of God and the city of man. The audacious goal of St. Thomas Aquinas was to synthesize these urges in such a way as to logically describe the Kingdom of God using the physical building blocks he found in the lowly fallen world, thereby maximizing both its vertical reach and its horizontal breadth, ultimately encompassing the whole of human existence.