On March 27, 2014, Michael McCarthy, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy
at Vassar College, will give a lecture on "Seeking and Dwelling: A
Study of Four Spiritual Journeys" sponsored by the William J. Toth
Endowed Visiting Professorship. The event will start at 4 p.m. in the
Beck Rooms, Walsh Library.
The spiritual quest is a recurrent theme in both the Eastern and
Western traditions. Exemplary cases include the philosopher's ascent
from the cave in Plato's Republic; St. Paul's journey from devoted
Pharisee to Christian apostle recounted in The Acts of the Apostles and
thematized in the Epistle to the Romans; St. Augustine's dramatic
conversion from Manichean to Catholic loyalties in the Confessions; and
Pascal's spiritual passage from skeptical doubt and geometric ascent to
the heart's knowledge of God in the Pensees. Though these journeys have
striking affinities, they seem to differ in what they are seeking:
wisdom, righteousness, a deeper understanding of God and the human
condition. We shall explore the affinities and examine the depth of the
Michael McCarthy, a Notre Dame and Yale graduate, taught at Vassar
for nearly forty years. He is the author or co-author of four books, the
most recent is The Political Humanism of Hannah Arendt. A former
visiting fellow at the Woodstock Theological Center and Boston College’s
Lonergan Institute, Professor McCarthy has lectured widely on topics
philosophical and political both here and abroad.
The lecture is co-sponsored by the Center for Catholic Studies, the
Department of Catholic Studies, the Bernard J. Lonergan Institute, and
the Department of the Core.
About the Center for Catholic Studies
Founded at Seton Hall University in 1997, The Center for Catholic
Studies is dedicated to fostering a dialogue between the Catholic
intellectual tradition and all areas of study and contemporary culture,
through scholarly research and publications and ongoing programs for
faculty, students, and the general public. In 2001, the Center
conducted the annual faculty summer seminar, "The Core of the Core,"
which originated the present University Core Curriculum. The Center
also developed the undergraduate degree program in Catholic Studies with
its major, minor and certificate, which in 2012 became the Department
of Catholic Studies. The Center continues to support the Department with
scholarship aid and its ongoing program of co-curricular activities.
Focusing on the central role of the faculty, the Center is the
sponsor of regular Faculty Development programs, including lectures,
seminars and retreats. The Center also administers two national faculty
development programs: Collegium: A Colloquy on Faith and Intellectual
Life, and The Lilly Fellows Program.
The Center maintains a global focus in international scholarship and
is the home of the G.K. Chesterton Institute for Faith & Culture, as
well as the Bernard J. Lonergan Institute. The Institutes offer
opportunities for study and research, as well as ongoing programs
related to faith and culture. In addition, the Micah Institute for
Business and Economics concentrates on communicating Catholic Social
Teaching and ethics to business education at Seton Hall and the wider
business community. The Center also publishes the prestigious
Chesterton Review, The Lonergan Review, and Arcadia, a student journal.
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