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Oct. 12, 2012, at 12:57pm
October 12 is a big day for personalists of our stripe. It is the birthday of both Edith Stein (1891) and Dietrich von Hildebrand (1889).
To mark the happy occasion, a characterically personalist passage from each:
In order to understand the nature of the heart, we must realize that in many respects the heart is more the real self of the person than his intellect or will.
In the moral sphere it is the will which has the character of a last, valid word. Here the voice of our free spiritual center counts above all.
We find the true self primarily in the will. In many other domains, however, it is the heart which is the most intimate part of the person, the core, the real self, rather …
Aug. 10, 2012, at 3:11pm
Yesterday, August 9, was the feast day of Edith Stein, Sr. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, one of the patron saints and philosophical forebears of the Personal Project. The Vatican has a good short biography here. Born to a Jewish family in Breslau, Germany, she was part of the circle of brilliant students who, in the early years of the 20th century, gathered in Göttingen around Edmund Husserl, Adolf Reinach and Max Scheler to study phenomenology. Later (partly through Scheler's influence) she converted to Catholicism, became a Carmelite nun, and ultimately died a martyr for her faith in Auschwitz.
Jules and I were in Rome on the great day of her Canonization in 1998.
Apart from the …continue reading
Oct. 12, 2010, at 5:50pm
Like von Hildebrand, whose birthday she shares, Edith Stein studied philosophy in Göttingen under Edmund Husserl and Adolf Reinach. There, too, she met Max Scheler, whose genius influenced her profoundly.
From a short biography by Laura Garcia:
Stein’s philosophical studies encouraged her openness to the possibility of transcendent realities, and her atheism began to crumble under the influence of her friends who had converted to Christianity.
During the summer of 1921, at the age of twenty-nine, Stein was vacationing with friends but found herself alone for the evening. She picked up, seemingly by chance, the autobiography of St. Teresa of Avila, founder of the Carmelite Order. She …
Oct. 12, 2009, at 8:26pm
October 12th is a sort of feast day for the Personalist Project, since it is the birthday of Dietrich von Hildebrand (1889) and Edith Stein (1891). They studied philosophy (a few years apart) under phenomenologists Adolf Reinach and Edmund Husserl; both were profoundly influenced by Max Scheler. They were converts to Catholicism (DvH from nominal Protestantism; ES from Judaism). Both dedicated themselves to resisting the evil of Naziism, intellectually, morally, and religiously.
Lacking time to do their contributions anything like justice, let me at least offer, in honor of the day, a glimpse of why the Personalist Project looks to them as two of our leading lights.
These …continue reading
Oct. 1, 2009, at 11:41am
Last night we attended a talk by George Weigel at Immaculata University comparing John Paul II and Edith Stein. My reaction was somewhat mixed. Weigel has a marvelous command of the timeline of their lives and some of the major points of convergence between these two giants of 20th century Catholicism and 20th century philosophy: their shared faith and intellectual vocation, their common critique of the atheism and materialism of the modern world, their profound interest in re-establishing the right relation between faith and reason, their work to bring Thomism and phenomenology into fruitful contact with each other, their contributions toward a Christian femininism, and so on.
But for …