"Morality," writes Fr. Garrigou-Lagrange, "is the science of imitating God." In this exploration of St. Thomas's account of the moral life, he begins from the angelic doctor's teaching on the human person as the image of God, and proceeds from there to describe how, by growth in virtue, one is conformed more and more to God's likeness. One becomes an imitator of God -- and in this, one finds one's "happiness" (beatitudo). Happiness, for the Christian tradition as expounded by St. Thomas, can be found here on earth by imitating God and so living now the life of heaven -- even amidst great pain and suffering. This is no easy happiness; but it is a happiness for which the human person was created, a happiness ultimately to be consummated in the beatific vision of the Lord, for which one shall have been prepared by imitating God in earthly life.
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