Michael Healy

Joined: Oct. 16, 2011


Michael J. Healy is Professor of Philosophy at Franciscan University of Steubenville, where he served first as chief academic officer (1986-2000), during which time the philosophy department grew from 2 to 7 professors and from 2 majors to 200, making it the largest undergrad philosophy department in the country. In addition, an MA philosophy program was initiated and is going strong. He received his BA in Philosophy and Psychology from Loyola University of Los Angeles, studying under Dr. Ronda Chervin, and his MA and PhD from the University of Dallas, studying under Dr. Josef Seifert and Dr. John Crosby. He is especially interested in personalist and existential thought. His primary philosophical inspirations have been Dietrich von Hildebrand, Soren Kierkegaard, John Henry Cardinal Newman, and Karol Wojtyla (JPII). He is married to his Austrian wife Maria (from Innsbruck) and they have five children.

Most recent posts by Michael Healy:     (See all of them)

Prayer Bloopers!  Better Make the Kids Write ‘Em Out!

Dec. 12 at 8:11pm | Comments: 0

I basically learned the faith from Sr. David Mary, a member of the Sisters of Loretto.  I had her as my teacher in elementary school for nearly three years—I had to move away in the middle of my third year—and she drilled us in the Baltimore Catechism #2.  She also taught us our prayers and we went through them daily at school.  We opened the schoolday as a class with the Morning Offering, paused...

Neil Diamond and The Metaphysics of the Person

Dec. 11 at 3:51pm | Comments: 6 | Most recent comment: Dec. 12 at 3:35pm

Pop music in general often deals with superficial things, e.g., Jan and Dean’s hit song “Honolulu Lulu” about the courage of a curvy surfer girl to go out and face the big waves.  (In its defense, it does have the one great line revealing the level of religious awareness in the surfing culture: “When the beach is quiet and you know you’re out of luck, we pray for surf while makin...

Guardini on Forgiveness

Dec. 6 at 10:09pm | Comments: 30 | Most recent comment:

Earlier this month my wife Maria pointed out to me a very beautiful paragraph on forgiveness by Romano Guardini included in one of the daily readings (Meditation for Nov. 12) in the November issue of Magnificat.  Remembering that I had the book (The Lord) in the basement, I searched it out to read further—from Chapter XIII.  After reviewing the relevant line of the text of the Our Father and some commentary on it in Matt. 6:14-15 (But...

Endings and Beginnings: The Liturgical Year and the Fullness of Joy

Dec. 1 at 3:49pm | Comments: 1 | Most recent comment: Dec. 2 at 7:39am

Over my nearly 62 years on this earth, I’ve been able to read through the Bible several times, and the New Testament a couple of times more.  Alleluia!  What a gift!  One of the things which has always struck me is the overwhelming, superabundant joy that flows through those who knew and walked with Christ—the Apostles and Evangelists, Peter, Paul, James, John, etc.  I have been especially impressed with the joy and longing...

JPII on Different Kinds of Human Needs:  Illustrations from Popular Music

Nov. 28 at 10:47pm | Comments: 0

In Love and Responsibility, John Paul II makes some interesting distinctions about human needs and the different levels on which they operate.  He especially makes a point to distinguish between mere desire (based in need alone, i.e. in me) and love as desire (based in a value-responding affirmation of the other, in light of which I recognize my desire or need as centered in this specific person because of their irreplaceable beauty and value).  He says the...

Latest comments by Michael Healy:     (See all of them)

Re: Neil Diamond and The Metaphysics of the Person

Dec. 12 at 3:35pm | see this comment in context

I am not so knowledgeable about Mr. Cohen and his music, but have some acquaintance.  I have noticed that many of his songs deal with serious topics and are the type to raise deep questions.  His background is Jewish, with Zen Buddhist overtones, and he has battled with depression.  So, from his experience individually and culturally he can address many central and transcendent topics--presenting the problems, but also sometimes even pointing toward answers.

Re: Neil Diamond and The Metaphysics of the Person

Dec. 12 at 11:13am | see this comment in context

I find that hearing such anguished songs, as well as the more superficial rock'n'roll type "excitement" songs, plus the more "bluesy" types of laments, all remind me of what we have been saved from.  Earthly despair, earthly excitement, the "blues"--none of these is the truth!  Alleluia!

Re: Guardini on Forgiveness

Dec. 11 at 8:08pm | see this comment in context

"Sheesh!" really sums it up very well.  My sentiments exactly.  At least we end in agreement!

Re: Guardini on Forgiveness

Dec. 11 at 1:31pm | see this comment in context

And I think both of us are sick of arguing about forgiveness.  Nothing more will be accomplished without action, without reaching out and doing, testing the truth of oneself and one’s thoughts and the truth of one’s companions.  Then perhaps the truth will come out, things will get sifted, humanity will re-emerge, illusions will be dispelled, divisions exposed, and finally bonds re-established.  So, follow your own very wise and impressive advice and reach out and touch someone.

Re: Guardini on Forgiveness

Dec. 11 at 1:30pm | see this comment in context

No, I don’t think you’ve accepted Guardini with your whole heart—and it’s quite legitimate to point that out when you’ve made the claim.  This is not impugning your moral character but pointing out a contradiction—and let’s not get hung up on the colloquial use of the word “fib.”  I was not calling you a liar, but pointing out that in my opinion you missed something in Guardini—indeed, the most important thing—and still don’t seem to realize it.

Yet, you have the answer in your own words.  Your excellent conclusion at the end of your post—which I thought was a great post--on Good and Evil in the Human Heart is apropos here:

It's not enough to have ideas and talk about them. One must do. And in doing, the truth outs—the truth of oneself and one's thoughts is tested and proved. Also the truth of one's companions is revealed. Humanity emerges. Illusions are dispelled. Divisions are exposed. Bonds are established. Things get sifted.

I'm hoping that by getting to know each other in actual service…, we'll find our way to truth together. In any case, I mean to try. I'm sick of just having thoughts.

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