A Preface to Metaphysics / Jacques Maritain

Cover of A Preface to Metaphysics

I had only a vague idea of what metaphysics was prior to reading this book. Had I known, I probably wouldn’t have snagged this book from whatever pile of used books it came from. But really, I should have had a clue. Wikipedia notes that metaphysics is the study of what transcends physics. Duh. Strike one on me. To tell the truth, such questions as Does the world exist outside the mind? don’t really interest me. I tend generally toward a view of philosophy as espoused by the pragmatists.

Nevertheless, I don’t think I would have gained much of an understanding of Jacques Maritain’s view of Thomist metaphysics from reading the book. His writing is convoluted. The sentence diagrams for a typical passage would look like the worst spaghetti code I ever wrote. He uses terms and Latin phrases that no one outside of a philosophy major would ever bother to learn.

My general feeling is: don’t bother with this. Luckily, I doubt anyone reading this ever will.

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