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The Center for Catholic Studies and William J. Toth Endowed Visiting Professorship Sponsor Lecture on "Seeking and Dwelling: A Study of Four Spiritual Journeys"
Seton Hall > News & Events 

Plato's CaveOn 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 differences.

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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For more information please contact:
Brittany Venturella
(973) 275-2175


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