PFI #3

3. Thomas Aquinas’s Twofold Understanding of the Self-Evident

If something is self-evident, the predicate is contained within the subject.  Man=rational animal –> Rational animal is an animal.  Therefore, it is self-evident.  However, you need to know the essence of something.  E.g. The essence of man is to be a rational animal.  If you do not know the essence of the predicate and the subject, it may be self-evident in itself, but not to you.  We cannot know the essence or nature of God in this life.