Summa Th. II-II EN Qu.26 a.5
Objection: 1. It would seem that a man is not bound to love his neighbor more than his own body. For his neighbor includes his neighbor's body. If therefore a man ought to love his neighbor more than his own body, it follows that he ought to love his neighbor's body more than his own.
2. Further, a man ought to love his own soul more than his neighbor's, as stated above (Article ). Now a man's own body is nearer to his soul than his neighbor. Therefore we ought to love our body more than our neighbor.
3. Further, a man imperils that which he loves less for the sake of what he loves more. Now every man is not bound to imperil his own body for his neighbor's safety: this belongs to the perfect, according to Jn 15,13: "Greater love than this no man hath, that a man lay down his life for his friends." Therefore a man is not bound, out of charity, to love his neighbor more than his own body.
On the contrary Augustine says (De Doctr. Christ. i, 27) that "we ought to love our neighbor more than our own body."
I answer that Out of charity we ought to love more that which has more fully the reason for being loved out of charity, as stated above (Article ; Question , Article ). Now fellowship in the full participation of happiness which is the reason for loving one's neighbor, is a greater reason for loving, than the participation of happiness by way of overflow, which is the reason for loving one's own body. Therefore, as regards the welfare of the soul we ought to love our neighbor more than our own body.
Reply to Objection: 1. According to the Philosopher (Ethic. ix, 8) a thing seems to be that which is predominant in it: so that when we say that we ought to love our neighbor more than our own body, this refers to his soul, which is his predominant part.
2. Our body is nearer to our soul than our neighbor, as regards the constitution of our own nature: but as regards the participation of happiness, our neighbor's soul is more closely associated with our own soul, than even our own body is.
3. Every man is immediately concerned with the care of his own body, but not with his neighbor's welfare, except perhaps in cases of urgency: wherefore charity does not necessarily require a man to imperil his own body for his neighbor's welfare, except in a case where he is under obligation to do so and if a man of his own accord offer himself for that purpose, this belongs to the perfection of charity.
Objection: 1. It would seem that we ought not to love one neighbor more than another. For Augustine says (De Doctr. Christ. i, 28): "One ought to love all men equally. Since, however, one cannot do good to all, we ought to consider those chiefly who by reason of place, time or any other circumstance, by a kind of chance, are more closely united to us." Therefore one neighbor ought not to be loved more than another.
2. Further, where there is one and the same reason for loving several, there should be no inequality of love. Now there is one and the same reason for loving all one's neighbors, which reason is God, as Augustine states (De Doctr. Christ. i, 27). Therefore we ought to love all our neighbors equally.
3. Further, to love a man is to wish him good things, as the Philosopher states (Rhet. ii, 4). Now to all our neighbors we wish an equal good, viz. everlasting life. Therefore we ought to love all our neighbors equally.
On the contrary One's obligation to love a person is proportionate to the gravity of the sin one commits in acting against that love. Now it is a more grievous sin to act against the love of certain neighbors, than against the love of others. Hence the commandment (Lv 10,9), "He that curseth his father or mother, dying let him die," which does not apply to those who cursed others than the above. Therefore we ought to love some neighbors more than others.
I answer that There have been two opinions on this question: for some have said that we ought, out of charity, to love all our neighbors equally, as regards our affection, but not as regards the outward effect. They held that the order of love is to be understood as applying to outward favors, which we ought to confer on those who are connected with us in preference to those who are unconnected, and not to the inward affection, which ought to be given equally to all including our enemies.But this is unreasonable. For the affection of charity, which is the inclination of grace, is not less orderly than the natural appetite, which is the inclination of nature, for both inclinations flow from Divine wisdom. Now we observe in the physical order that the natural inclination in each thing is proportionate to the act or movement that is becoming to the nature of that thing: thus in earth the inclination of gravity is greater than in water, because it is becoming to earth to be beneath water. Consequently the inclination also of grace which is the effect of charity, must needs be proportionate to those actions which have to be performed outwardly, so that, to wit, the affection of our charity be more intense towards those to whom we ought to behave with greater kindness.We must, therefore, say that, even as regards the affection we ought to love one neighbor more than another. The reason is that, since the principle of love is God, and the person who loves, it must needs be that the affection of love increases in proportion to the nearness to one or the other of those principles. For as we stated above (Article ), wherever we find a principle, order depends on relation to that principle.
Reply to Objection: 1. Love can be unequal in two ways: first on the part of the good we wish our friend. In this respect we love all men equally out of charity: because we wish them all one same generic good, namely everlasting happiness. Secondly love is said to be greater through its action being more intense: and in this way we ought not to love all equally.Or we may reply that we have unequal love for certain persons in two ways: first, through our loving some and not loving others. As regards beneficence we are bound to observe this inequality, because we cannot do good to all: but as regards benevolence, love ought not to be thus unequal. The other inequality arises from our loving some more than others: and Augustine does not mean to exclude the latter inequality, but the former, as is evident from what he says of beneficence.
2. Our neighbors are not all equally related to God; some are nearer to Him, by reason of their greater goodness, and those we ought, out of charity, to love more than those who are not so near to Him.
3. This argument considers the quantity of love on the part of the good which we wish our friends.
Objection: 1. It would seem that we ought to love those who are better more than those who are more closely united to us. For that which is in no way hateful seems more lovable than that which is hateful for some reason: just as a thing is all the whiter for having less black mixed with it. Now those who are connected with us are hateful for some reason, according to Lc 14,26: "If any man come to Me, and hate not his father," etc. On the other hand good men are not hateful for any reason. Therefore it seems that we ought to love those who are better more than those who are more closely connected with us.
2. Further, by charity above all, man is likened to God. But God loves more the better man. Therefore man also, out of charity, ought to love the better man more than one who is more closely united to him.
3. Further, in every friendship that ought to be loved most which has most to do with the foundation of that friendship: for, by natural friendship we love most those who are connected with us by nature, our parents for instance, or our children. Now the friendship of charity is founded upon the fellowship of happiness, which has more to do with better men than with those who are more closely united to us. Therefore, out of charity, we ought to love better men more than those who are more closely connected with us.
On the contrary It is written (1Tm 5,8): "If any man have not care of his own and especially of those of his house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel." Now the inward affection of charity ought to correspond to the outward effect. Therefore charity regards those who are nearer to us before those who are better.
I answer that Every act should be proportionate both to its object and to the agent. But from its object it takes its species, while, from the power of the agent it takes the mode of its intensity: thus movement has its species from the term to which it tends, while the intensity of its speed arises from the disposition of the thing moved and the power of the mover. Accordingly love takes its species from its object, but its intensity is due to the lover.Now the object of charity's love is God, and man is the lover. Therefore the specific diversity of the love which is in accordance with charity, as regards the love of our neighbor, depends on his relation to God, so that, out of charity, we should wish a greater good to one who is nearer to God; for though the good which charity wishes to all, viz. everlasting happiness, is one in itself, yet it has various degrees according to various shares of happiness, and it belongs to charity to wish God's justice to be maintained, in accordance with which better men have a fuller share of happiness. And this regards the species of love; for there are different species of love according to the different goods that we wish for those whom we love.On the other hand, the intensity of love is measured with regard to the man who loves, and accordingly man loves those who are more closely united to him, with more intense affection as to the good he wishes for them, than he loves those who are better as to the greater good he wishes for them.Again a further difference must be observed here: for some neighbors are connected with us by their natural origin, a connection which cannot be severed, since that origin makes them to be what they are. But the goodness of virtue, wherein some are close to God, can come and go, increase and decrease, as was shown above (Question , Articles ,10,11). Hence it is possible for one, out of charity, to wish this man who is more closely united to one, to be better than another, and so reach a higher degree of happiness.Moreover there is yet another reason for which, out of charity, we love more those who are more nearly connected with us, since we love them in more ways. For, towards those who are not connected with us we have no other friendship than charity, whereas for those who are connected with us, we have certain other friendships, according to the way in which they are connected. Now since the good on which every other friendship of the virtuous is based, is directed, as to its end, to the good on which charity is based, it follows that charity commands each act of another friendship, even as the art which is about the end commands the art which is about the means. Consequently this very act of loving someone because he is akin or connected with us, or because he is a fellow-countryman or for any like reason that is referable to the end of charity, can be commanded by charity, so that, out of charity both eliciting and commanding, we love in more ways those who are more nearly connected with us.
Reply to Objection: 1. We are commanded to hate, in our kindred, not their kinship, but only the fact of their being an obstacle between us and God. In this respect they are not akin but hostile to us, according to Mi 7,6: "A men's enemies are they of his own household."
2. Charity conforms man to God proportionately, by making man comport himself towards what is his, as God does towards what is His. For we may, out of charity, will certain things as becoming to us which God does not will, because it becomes Him not to will them, as stated above (I-II 19,10), when we were treating of the goodness of the will.
3. Charity elicits the act of love not only as regards the object, but also as regards the lover, as stated above. The result is that the man who is more nearly united to us is more loved.
Objection: 1. It would seem that we ought not to love more those who are more closely united to us by ties of blood. For it is written (Pr 18,24): "A man amiable in society, shall be more friendly than a brother." Again, Valerius Maximus says (Fact. et Dict. Memor. iv 7): "The ties of friendship are most strong and in no way yield to the ties of blood." Moreover it is quite certain and undeniable, that as to the latter, the lot of birth is fortuitous, whereas we contract the former by an untrammelled will, and a solid pledge. Therefore we ought not to love more than others those who are united to us by ties of blood.
2. Further, Ambrose says (De Officiis i, 7): "I love not less you whom I have begotten in the Gospel, than if I had begotten you in wedlock, for nature is no more eager to love than grace." Surely we ought to love those whom we expect to be with us for ever more than those who will be with us only in this world. Therefore we should not love our kindred more than those who are otherwise connected with us.
3. Further, "Love is proved by deeds," as Gregory states (Hom. in Evang. xxx). Now we are bound to do acts of love to others than our kindred: thus in the army a man must obey his officer rather than his father. Therefore we are not bound to love our kindred most of all.
On the contrary The commandments of the decalogue contain a special precept about the honor due to our parents (Ex 20,12). Therefore we ought to love more specially those who are united to us by ties of blood.
I answer that As stated above (Article ), we ought out of charity to love those who are more closely united to us more, both because our love for them is more intense, and because there are more reasons for loving them. Now intensity of love arises from the union of lover and beloved: and therefore we should measure the love of different persons according to the different kinds of union, so that a man is more loved in matters touching that particular union in respect of which he is loved. And, again, in comparing love to love we should compare one union with another. Accordingly we must say that friendship among blood relations is based upon their connection by natural origin, the friendship of fellow-citizens on their civic fellowship, and the friendship of those who are fighting side by side on the comradeship of battle. Wherefore in matters pertaining to nature we should love our kindred most, in matters concerning relations between citizens, we should prefer our fellow-citizens, and on the battlefield our fellow-soldiers. Hence the Philosopher says (Ethic. ix, 2) that "it is our duty to render to each class of people such respect as is natural and appropriate. This is in fact the principle upon which we seem to act, for we invite our relations to a wedding . . . It would seem to be a special duty to afford our parents the means of living . . . and to honor them."The same applies to other kinds of friendship.If however we compare union with union, it is evident that the union arising from natural origin is prior to, and more stable than, all others, because it is something affecting the very substance, whereas other unions supervene and may cease altogether. Therefore the friendship of kindred is more stable, while other friendships may be stronger in respect of that which is proper to each of them.
Reply to Objection: 1. In as much as the friendship of comrades originates through their own choice, love of this kind takes precedence of the love of kindred in matters where we are free to do as we choose, for instance in matters of action. Yet the friendship of kindred is more stable, since it is more natural, and preponderates over others in matters touching nature: consequently we are more beholden to them in the providing of necessaries.
2. Ambrose is speaking of love with regard to favors respecting the fellowship of grace, namely, moral instruction. For in this matter, a man ought to provide for his spiritual children whom he has begotten spiritually, more than for the sons of his body, whom he is bound to support in bodily sustenance.
3. The fact that in the battle a man obeys his officer rather than his father proves, that he loves his father less, not simply relatively, i.e. as regards the love which is based on fellowship in battle.
Objection: 1. It seems that a man ought, out of charity, to love his children more than his father. For we ought to love those more to whom we are more bound to do good. Now we are more bound to do good to our children than to our parents, since the Apostle says (2Co 12,14): "Neither ought the children to lay up for the parents, but the parents for the children." Therefore a man ought to love his children more than his parents.
2. Further, grace perfects nature. But parents naturally love their children more than these love them, as the Philosopher states (Ethic. viii, 12). Therefore a man ought to love his children more than his parents.
3. Further, man's affections are conformed to God by charity. But God loves His children more than they love Him. Therefore we also ought to love our children more than our parents.
On the contrary Ambrose [*Origen, Hom. ii in Cant.] says: "We ought to love God first, then our parents, then our children, and lastly those of our household."
I answer that As stated above (Article , ad 1; Article ), the degrees of love may be measured from two standpoints. First, from that of the object. In this respect the better a thing is, and the more like to God, the more is it to be loved: and in this way a man ought to love his father more than his children, because, to wit, he loves his father as his principle, in which respect he is a more exalted good and more like God.Secondly, the degrees of love may be measured from the standpoint of the lover, and in this respect a man loves more that which is more closely connected with him, in which way a man's children are more lovable to him than his father, as the Philosopher states (Ethic. viii). First, because parents love their children as being part of themselves, whereas the father is not part of his son, so that the love of a father for his children, is more like a man's love for himself. Secondly, because parents know better that so and so is their child than vice versa. Thirdly, because children are nearer to their parents, as being part of them, than their parents are to them to whom they stand in the relation of a principle. Fourthly, because parents have loved longer, for the father begins to love his child at once, whereas the child begins to love his father after a lapse of time; and the longer love lasts, the stronger it is, according to Si 9,14: "Forsake not an old friend, for the new will not be like to him."
Objection: 1. The debt due to a principle is submission of respect and honor, whereas that due to the effect is one of influence and care. Hence the duty of children to their parents consists chiefly in honor: while that of parents to their children is especially one of care.
2. It is natural for a man as father to love his children more, if we consider them as closely connected with him: but if we consider which is the more exalted good, the son naturally loves his father more.
3. As Augustine says (De Doctr. Christ. i, 32), God loves us for our good and for His honor. Wherefore since our father is related to us as principle, even as God is, it belongs properly to the father to receive honor from his children, and to the children to be provided by their parents with what is good for them. Nevertheless in cases of necessity the child is bound out of the favors received to provide for his parents before all.
Objection: 1. It would seem that a man ought to love his mother more than his father. For, as the Philosopher says (De Gener. Animal. i, 20), "the female produces the body in generation." Now man receives his soul, not from his father, but from God by creation, as stated in the I 90,2 I 118,0. Therefore a man receives more from his mother than from his father: and consequently he ought to love her more than him.
2. Further, where greater love is given, greater love is due. Now a mother loves her child more than the father does: for the Philosopher says (Ethic. ix, 7) that "mothers have greater love for their children. For the mother labors more in child-bearing, and she knows more surely than the father who are her children."
3. Further, love should be more fond towards those who have labored for us more, according to Rm 16,6: "Salute Mary, who hath labored much among you." Now the mother labors more than the father in giving birth and education to her child; wherefore it is written (Si 7,29): "Forget not the groanings of thy mother." Therefore a man ought to love his mother more than his father.
On the contrary Jerome says on Ez 44,25 that "man ought to love God the Father of all, and then his own father," and mentions the mother afterwards.
I answer that In making such comparisons as this, we must take the answer in the strict sense, so that the present question is whether the father as father, ought to be loved more than the mother as mother. The reason is that virtue and vice may make such a difference in such like matters, that friendship may be diminished or destroyed, as the Philosopher remarks (Ethic. viii, 7). Hence Ambrose [*Origen, Hom. ii in Cant.] says: "Good servants should be preferred to wicked children."Strictly speaking, however, the father should be loved more than the mother. For father and mother are loved as principles of our natural origin. Now the father is principle in a more excellent way than the mother, because he is the active principle, while the mother is a passive and material principle. Consequently, strictly speaking, the father is to be loved more.
Reply to Objection: 1. In the begetting of man, the mother supplies the formless matter of the body; and the latter receives its form through the formative power that is in the semen of the father. And though this power cannot create the rational soul, yet it disposes the matter of the body to receive that form.
2. This applies to another kind of love. For the friendship between lover and lover differs specifically from the friendship between child and parent: while the friendship we are speaking of here, is that which a man owes his father and mother through being begotten of them.
3. The Reply to the Third Objection is evident.
Objection: 1. It would seem that a man ought to love his wife more than his father and mother. For no man leaves a thing for another unless he love the latter more. Now it is written (Gn 2,24) that "a man shell leave father and mother" on account of his wife. Therefore a man ought to love his wife more than his father and mother.
2. Further, the Apostle says (Ep 5,33) that a husband should "love his wife as himself." Now a man ought to love himself more than his parents. Therefore he ought to love his wife also more than his parents.
3. Further, love should be greater where there are more reasons for loving. Now there are more reasons for love in the friendship of a man towards his wife. For the Philosopher says (Ethic. viii, 12) that "in this friendship there are the motives of utility, pleasure, and also of virtue, if husband and wife are virtuous." Therefore a man's love for his wife ought to be greater than his love for his parents.
On the contrary According to Ep 5,28, "men ought to love their wives as their own bodies." Now a man ought to love his body less than his neighbor, as stated above (Article ): and among his neighbors he should love his parents most. Therefore he ought to love his parents more than his wife.
I answer that As stated above (Article ), the degrees of love may be taken from the good (which is loved), or from the union between those who love. On the part of the good which is the object loved, a man should love his parents more than his wife, because he loves them as his principles and considered as a more exalted good.But on the part of the union, the wife ought to be loved more, because she is united with her husband, as one flesh, according to Mt 19,6: "Therefore now they are not two, but one flesh." Consequently a man loves his wife more intensely, but his parents with greater reverence.
Reply to Objection: 1. A man does not in all respects leave his father and mother for the sake of his wife: for in certain cases a man ought to succor his parents rather than his wife. He does however leave all his kinsfolk, and cleaves to his wife as regards the union of carnal connection and co-habitation.
2. The words of the Apostle do not mean that a man ought to love his wife equally with himself, but that a man's love for himself is the reason for his love of his wife, since she is one with him.
3. There are also several reasons for a man's love for his father; and these, in a certain respect, namely, as regards good, are more weighty than those for which a man loves his wife; although the latter outweigh the former as regards the closeness of the union.As to the argument in the contrary sense, it must be observed that in the words quoted, the particle "as" denotes not equality of love but the motive of love. For the principal reason why a man loves his wife is her being united to him in the flesh.
Objection: 1. It would seem that a man ought to love his benefactor more than one he has benefited. For Augustine says (De Catech. Rud. iv): "Nothing will incite another more to love you than that you love him first: for he must have a hard heart indeed, who not only refuses to love, but declines to return love already given." Now a man's benefactor forestalls him in the kindly deeds of charity. Therefore we ought to love our benefactors above all.
2. Further, the more grievously we sin by ceasing to love a man or by working against him, the more ought we to love him. Now it is a more grievous sin to cease loving a benefactor or to work against him, than to cease loving one to whom one has hitherto done kindly actions. Therefore we ought to love our benefactors more than those to whom we are kind.
3. Further, of all things lovable, God is to be loved most, and then one's father, as Jerome says [*Comment. in Ezechiel xliv, 25]. Now these are our greatest benefactors. Therefore a benefactor should be loved above all others.
On the contrary The Philosopher says (Ethic. ix, 7), that "benefactors seem to love recipients of their benefactions, rather than vice versa."
I answer that As stated above (Articles ,11), a thing is loved more in two ways: first because it has the character of a more excellent good, secondly by reason of a closer connection. In the first way we ought to love our benefactor most, because, since he is a principle of good to the man he has benefited, he has the character of a more excellent good, as stated above with regard to one's father (Article ).In the second way, however, we love those more who have received benefactions from us, as the Philosopher proves (Ethic. ix, 7) by four arguments. First because the recipient of benefactions is the handiwork of the benefactor, so that we are wont to say of a man: "He was made by so and so." Now it is natural to a man to love his own work (thus it is to be observed that poets love their own poems): and the reason is that we love "to be" and "to live," and these are made manifest in our "action." Secondly, because we all naturally love that in which we see our own good. Now it is true that the benefactor has some good of his in the recipient of his benefaction, and the recipient some good in the benefactor; but the benefactor sees his virtuous good in the recipient, while the recipient sees his useful good in the benefactor. Now it gives more pleasure to see one's virtuous good than one's useful good, both because it is more enduring for usefulness quickly flits by, and the pleasure of calling a thing to mind is not like the pleasure of having it present and because it is more pleasant to recall virtuous goods than the profit we have derived from others. Thirdly, because is it the lover's part to act, since he wills and works the good of the beloved, while the beloved takes a passive part in receiving good, so that to love surpasses being loved, for which reason the greater love is on the part of the benefactor. Fourthly because it is more difficult to give than to receive favors: and we are most fond of things which have cost us most trouble, while we almost despise what comes easy to us.
Reply to Objection: 1. It is some thing in the benefactor that incites the recipient to love him: whereas the benefactor loves the recipient, not through being incited by him, but through being moved thereto of his own accord: and what we do of our own accord surpasses what we do through another.
2. The love of the beneficiary for the benefactor is more of a duty, wherefore the contrary is the greater sin. On the other hand, the love of the benefactor for the beneficiary is more spontaneous, wherefore it is quicker to act.
3. God also loves us more than we love Him, and parents love their children more than these love them. Yet it does not follow that we love all who have received good from us, more than any of our benefactors. For we prefer such benefactors as God and our parents, from whom we have received the greatest favors, to those on whom we have bestowed lesser benefits.
Objection: 1. It would seem that the order of charity does not endure in heaven. For Augustine says (De Vera Relig. xlviii): "Perfect charity consists in loving greater goods more, and lesser goods less." Now charity will be perfect in heaven. Therefore a man will love those who are better more than either himself or those who are connected with him.
2. Further, we love more him to whom we wish a greater good. Now each one in heaven wishes a greater good for those who have more good, else his will would not be conformed in all things to God's will: and there to be better is to have more good. Therefore in heaven each one loves more those who are better, and consequently he loves others more than himself, and one who is not connected with him, more than one who is.
3. Further, in heaven love will be entirely for God's sake, for then will be fulfilled the words of 1Co 15,28: "That God may be all in all." Therefore he who is nearer God will be loved more, so that a man will love a better man more than himself, and one who is not connected with him, more than one who is.
On the contrary Nature is not done away, but perfected, by glory. Now the order of charity given above (Articles ,3,4) is derived from nature: since all things naturally love themselves more than others. Therefore this order of charity will endure in heaven.
I answer that The order of charity must needs remain in heaven, as regards the love of God above all things. For this will be realized simply when man shall enjoy God perfectly. But, as regards the order between man himself and other men, a distinction would seem to be necessary, because, as we stated above (Articles ,9), the degrees of love may be distinguished either in respect of the good which a man desires for another, or according to the intensity of love itself. In the first way a man will love better men more than himself, and those who are less good, less than himself: because, by reason of the perfect conformity of the human to the Divine will, each of the blessed will desire everyone to have what is due to him according to Divine justice. Nor will that be a time for advancing by means of merit to a yet greater reward, as happens now while it is possible for a man to desire both the virtue and the reward of a better man, whereas then the will of each one will rest within the limits determined by God. But in the second way a man will love himself more than even his better neighbors, because the intensity of the act of love arises on the part of the person who loves, as stated above (Articles ,9). Moreover it is for this that the gift of charity is bestowed by God on each one, namely, that he may first of all direct his mind to God, and this pertains to a man's love for himself, and that, in the second place, he may wish other things to be directed to God, and even work for that end according to his capacity.As to the order to be observed among our neighbors, a man will simply love those who are better, according to the love of charity. Because the entire life of the blessed consists in directing their minds to God, wherefore the entire ordering of their love will be ruled with respect to God, so that each one will love more and reckon to be nearer to himself those who are nearer to God. For then one man will no longer succor another, as he needs to in the present life, wherein each man has to succor those who are closely connected with him rather than those who are not, no matter what be the nature of their distress: hence it is that in this life, a man, by the inclination of charity, loves more those who are more closely united to him, for he is under a greater obligation to bestow on them the effect of charity. It will however be possible in heaven for a man to love in several ways one who is connected with him, since the causes of virtuous love will not be banished from the mind of the blessed. Yet all these reasons are incomparably surpassed by that which is taken from nighness to God.
Reply to Objection: 1. This argument should be granted as to those who are connected together; but as regards man himself, he ought to love himself so much the more than others, as his charity is more perfect, since perfect entire reason of his love, for God is man's charity directs man to God perfectly, and this belongs to love of oneself, as stated above.
2. This argument considers the order of charity in respect of the degree of good one wills the person one loves.
3. God will be to each one the entire reason of his love, for God is man's entire good. For if we make the impossible supposition that God were not man's good, He would not be man's reason for loving. Hence it is that in the order of love man should love himself more than all else after God.
Summa Th. II-II EN Qu.26 a.5