progressus in infinitum: progress or advance to infinity; the alternative to the postulation of an uncaused first cause in the proofs of God’s existence; a logical impossibility on the assumption of the mutually contingent existence of all finite causes. Also termed progressio causarum in infinitum, a progress or advance of causes to infinity.
anima naturaliter Christiana: the soul by nature Christian; a phrase of Tertullian (d. ca. 220 A.D.) that indicates the natural inclination of the rational soul toward the truth of God as known to Christianity. Not a phrase characteristic of the Protestant orthodox, who held the total inability of fallen man to turn toward God or to know the fullness of divine truth apart from saving revelation. The phrase does, however, find approval among the Arminians who, following Simon Episcopius and Limborch, held the identity of the natural law (lex naturalis, q.v.) with the law of Christ (lex Christi, q.v.) and who argued the ability of the human reason in its purely natural condition (status purorum naturalium, q.v.) to know divine truth and the ability of the human will to do what is in it (facere quod in se est, q.v.) and thereby approach God’s offer of grace.