The Catholic Intellectual Tradition

The Unexamined Life Is Not Worth Living.

Socrates exhorts us in the Apology to spend our days striving to make sense of our lives, to live a life of self-examination. What might that mean for us today within the context of the Catholic philosophical tradition? 

"Such an account [of what it is to be a human being] will have to integrate what we can learn about the nature and constitution of human beings from physicists, chemists, and biologists, historians, economists, and sociologists, with the kind of understanding of human beings that only theology can afford. What form would such an account take? It would present human beings–and not just philosophers–as themselves engaged in trying to give just such an account of themselves, as trying to understand what it is that they are doing in trying to achieve understanding, a kind of understanding that will enable us to distinguish what it is worth caring about a very great deal from what it is worth caring about a good deal less, and both from what it is not worth caring about at all. So there is a crucial relationship between metaphysics and ethics. For it is only insofar as we understand the universe, including ourselves, as dependent on God for our existence that we are also able to understand ourselves as directed toward God and what our directedness toward God requires of us by way of caring. The philosophical resources we have for constructing such an account are the resources provided by the history of the Catholic philosophical tradition, which is to say that such an account would have to emerge from the dialogues internal to that tradition, from those debates and disagreements within that tradition that, as we have learned from Fides et Ratio, are constitutive of it."(Alasdair MacIntyre, God, Philosophy, Universities: A Selective History of the Catholic Philosophical Tradition, Rowman & Littlefield, 2009, pp. 177-78)

In Pursuit of Wisdom, Truth and Virtue

The University of Dallas is dedicated to the pursuit of wisdom, of truth, and of virtue as the proper and primary ends of education. The university as a whole is shaped by the long tradition of Catholic learning and acknowledges its commitment to the Catholic Church and its teaching. The university is dedicated to the recovery of the Christian intellectual tradition, and to the renewal of Catholic theology in fidelity to the Church and in constructive dialogue with the modern world.

Veritatem, Justitiam, Diligite: Love Ye Truth and Justice.

This motto surrounds the university seal, emblematic of the ideals to which the university is dedicated.

"Love Ye Truth and Justice" (Veritatem, Justitiam Diligite) is a conflation of Zachariah 8.8 and 8.19, and expresses the biblical message that truth and justice are the necessary conditions for peace, prosperity, and happiness. This wise instruction has also been discovered by reason and confirmed by history. It was the founding conviction of the University of Dallas and it continues to inform all that the university aspires to do.

News

Professors Awarded NEH Grant to Support Writing Programs

Chair and Associate Professor of English Debra Romanick Baldwin, Ph.D., and Professor of Physics and recent Interim Dean of Constantin College Sally Hicks, Ph.D., have secured a $299,078 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to support writing instruction at UD for the fall 2020 semester.

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You Can Do What with a (Spanish) Degree?

His first step was to enroll in physician’s assistant school at Baylor’s College of Medicine, a career trajectory to which he had aspired since his early childhood. Nowadays, Jonathan Cunningham, BA ’17, is dedicated to the vocational pursuit of comfort and healing at MD Anderson in Houston, among the largest cancer treatment centers in the U.S., where he was once a chemotherapy patient himself.

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History Alumnus Heads National Catholic Bioethics Center

During his Rome semester in 1991, Joseph Meaney, BA '93, with his friends (now Father) Kevin Cook, BA '94, and (now Texas State Representative and UD Trustee) Tan Parker, BA '93, attended a private Mass with Pope St. John Paul II. Several weeks earlier, they had hand-delivered a letter to the Swiss Guards outside St. Peter's requesting the Mass and including their contact information; at last, they'd received the phone call instructing them to be at the Bronze Gates at 5 a.m.

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