Philosophy

O Wisdom, who came from the mouth of the Most High, reaching from end to end and ordering all things mightily and sweetly, Come, and teach us the way of prudence.

O-Antiphon, December 17

When wisdom draws man to herself without fully unveiling the name of Christ, the result can be called philosophy. And one implication of the Word becoming flesh is that faith in Christ will address us in the language of wisdom. In this place of meeting between the human engagement with wisdom and God’s self-disclosure lies the Christian interest in philosophy.

Seminarians, especially, are called to the art of expounding the gospel so that it reverberates with the thoughts and desires of humanity. It is in this way that God opens us to himself. Seminarians are apprentices in the task of perceiving and clarifying these unsuspected traces of God’s work. Insofar as philosophy articulates and crystallizes this human-divine encounter, the history of philosophy is a privileged place of reflection for seminarians, as it is for us all.

Our programme in philosophy comprises three main elements. First, there are courses expounding the major themes of Western thought from a basically Thomistic perspective: the philosophy of nature, philosophical anthropology, metaphysics, natural theology, epistemology and ethics. Second, these themes and others are re-examined in four courses in the history of philosophy (ancient, medieval, early modern and nineteenth century) and a course in the philosophy of science. Third, a group of courses keep before the student’s mind the theological horizon of his philosophical studies: a doctrinal synthesis entitled The Mystery of Christ (in two parts, broadly aligned with the Catechism of the Catholic Church), Christian ethics, and Origin and Destiny of Man. In addition, seminars are offered in each of the four semesters, in which particular philosophical themes can be explored in greater depth, or re-contexualized as shaping literary or other cultural production.

Details of the philosophy courses we offer can be found in our seminary catalogue. You can get more information by calling the Dean Fr Paul Pearson at 416-532-2879, or by sending an e-mail to the Seminary. Download the Application Form here.

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