Studies what it is to say that human beings are persons and have freedom and subjectivity; the different powers of the human person, including the powers of understanding, willing, feeling, and loving; the difference between body and soul in human beings, and the unity of the two; and the question of the immortality of the soul. Some classic texts from the tradition of Western philosophy are read. This is a particularly fundamental course that underlies many of the other courses.
Begins by asking what metaphysical questions are. One then poses selected metaphysical questions, such as what becoming is, what time is, what goodness is, what it means for a thing to exist, what the transcendental properties of being are, and, as the supreme question of metaphysics, whether God exists. Some classic texts from the tradition of Western philosophy are read.
Inquires into the significance of moral good and evil in the life of the human person; into moral virtue and vice (or moral character); into moral obligation; right and wrong actions; moral laws and the problem of exceptions; and the place of conscience in the moral life. One also studies the con- temporary debate between consequentialist and deontological ethics, and the claims of ethical relativism. Some classic texts from the tradition of Western philosophy are read.
Inquires whether is it possible for the human mind to know anything as it really is, and studies the philosophers who have affirmed and those who have skeptically denied this possibility. One inquires into the place of knowledge in the existence of the human person, asking what it is about persons that enables them to know; one also inquires into the social and historical conditions of knowing. One proceeds to distinguish different kinds and degrees of knowledge, as well as different sources of error. Attention is given throughout to the role of the senses in knowing. Classic texts from the tradition of Western philosophy are read.