CONTRADICTION AS THE WAY TO VISION IN ANSELM’S PROSLOGION
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In the Proslogion’s quest for God, reaching vision of God is not a matter of bridging subject and object, but of coming to see what is already present at the journey’s beginning. The quest, as a single continuous explication of God as “that than which nothing greater can be thought”, follows a pattern whereby the seeker finds God, loses vision, and finds God again under a new form. The treatise depends upon distinctions between three forms of apprehension: faith, reason, and intellect. Anselm establishes the necessity and limitations of reason, which is essential to seeking. Intellect’s government of reason means that the contradictions, incomprehensibility, and loss of vision into which reason leads are not signs of the quest’s failure, but essential moments constitutive of the journey into vision of God. The quest begins and ends in God who is indivisible unity and supreme good, inclusive of otherness and infinity.