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Aquinas and Mead on War

             Thomas Aquinas were both great writers but had opposing views on war. Aquinas spent most of his life teaching and writing several massive theological works. In his most famous theology, Summa Theologica, he claims that war is inevitable. Margaret Mead best known as "Mother of the World" disagrees with Aquinas. She says that we can avoid war. Mead considers warfare as an invention and not a human biological necessity. .
             Aquinas considers advancement of good and avoidance of evil sufficient rationale for the waging of war. On the contrary, he considers revenge, aggrandizement and cruelty insufficient. Thomas Aquinas uses biblical references as his first four moral objections to war to explain why it is sinful. He says but war is contrary to a Divine precept, for it is written(Aquinas 261). He then goes on to quote Matthew 5:39 and then Roman 12:19. Objection one states that it's always sinful to wage a war. Objection two notes that whatever is contrary to Divine precept is a sin. Objection three states that only sin is contrary to the act of virtue. Objection four notes that exercise of a thing that is lawful is itself lawful, it's evident in scientific exercises. He replies to these objections by providing situations when man should wage war. Aquinas further pushes his perspective on war by providing his own responses to his objections.
             Margaret Mead rejects the idea that war is a part of human nature. She says that warfare of this sort is an invention like any other of the inventions in terms of which we order our lives(Mead 275). Mead uses the Eskimos and the Lepchas as examples of societies that have no war in their culture. She says The Eskimos are not a mild and meek people; many of them are turbulent and troublesome (Mead 276). Yet the Eskimos have no war. Their similarities are more important because they support her theory of war being an invention. Mead considers warfare as activity(Roscoe 584).

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