The Personalist Project

One of the most basic and most difficult-to-conceive realities of human life is that we are embodied persons. We are spiritual beings who live our lives in the flesh.

We don't just have bodies, but, as Wojtyla said, "in a certain sense, we are our bodies." He doesn't mean we are reducible to our bodies. He wouldn't deny that at death we are separated from our bodies. Rather, he means to draw our attention to the ineffable depth and pervasiveness of the union between body and soul that is the human person, so that what touches my body, touches me. What my body does is something  I do.

John Paul II's Theology of the Body is essentially an extended reflection on this great mystery. Karol Wojtyla's major philosophical works: The Acting Person and Love and Responsibility work out its ethical implications. 

We are free and responsible beings (that is to say, not determined, but self-determining) who live out our moral and spiritual lives in and through our bodies.

Not everyone who goes by the name of personalist holds this. Some versions of personalism downplay embodiment, treating the body as something separate from our selves—something we have and can use, but not something deeply bound up with our identity as individuals.

It is marvelous to contemplate the centrality of the Incarnation in our Faith. God Himself, a Divine Person, took on human flesh. 

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