New from CLF
In my last piece, I introduced a philosophy of human nature called personalism. I said personalism referred to any anthropology or morality that looks to personhood as the outstanding attribute of human beings, the attribute which invests them with special value. In this piece I look at personhood itself. What does it mean when we say human beings are persons, and why does it matter? Read
Pope Francis and President Trump walk into a bar. There’s a duck sitting on a stool watching the nightly news. The President and the Pope pull up stools on either side of the duck. “What are they saying about him?” the President asks the duck as he nods to the Pope. “They are praising him for upending Catholic orthodoxy,” says the duck. “And what are they saying about him?” the Pope asks the duck, pointing to the President. “They are condemning him for challenging liberal orthodoxy.” “And what do you think?” the two leaders ask the duck. “I think… Read
The way we understand humans shapes the way we think about many things, especially our morality. If we look at the various moralities on loan from the history of philosophy, we see that they all aim to elucidate a common problem, the problem of human happiness. For Plato, happiness came from wisdom; for Aristotle, from virtue; for classical Hindus, it is freedom from desire; and for many in Jacksonville Beach, where I live, it comes from a burnished and bronzed body that has no more than 13% body fat. How do we best understand ourselves so that the happiness we seek can be rightly found?