Philosophy, the "love of wisdom," is the study through the light of reason of the most fundamental causes and reasons of things. It considers such questions as: How should I live? What is the meaning of life? Why is there something rather than nothing? Is there an explanation for the world more basic than the laws of science? What are the most basic principles of thought? What is the origin of political society? What principles ought to govern the development and use of technology? What is true human development? What is true education?
Philosophy differs from other disciplines because it considers the whole. Biology looks at living things only. Physics considers only matter and energy in space and time. But philosophy aims to understand all of reality in relation to the basic principles it looks for. Also, philosophy reflects on everything, including itself. Biology studies living things, not the nature of biology itself; similarly physics. But philosophy reflects on the nature of biology, the nature of physics, and also the nature of philosophy itself.
At Ave Maria, we affirm the harmony of faith and reason: we believe that reason leads to faith, and that faith in turn fosters reason. This harmony is clearly displayed in the Catholic philosophical tradition. We consider Plato, Aristotle, St. Augustine, and St. Thomas to be our great examples and guides. We believe that, through faith, philosophy is not simply a never-ending search for wisdom --as is often held--but rather that it can be a path to finding and embracing true Wisdom.
- PHIL 205 Nature and Person
- PHIL 206 Ethics
- PHIL 400 Philosophical Perspectives: Metaphysics (Majors take PHIL 401 Metaphysics.)
Required Major Courses
- PHIL 203 Logic
- PHIL 205 and PHIL 206 are prerequisites for all required and elective courses. Courses should be taken in the prescribed order unless counseled otherwise by a departmental advisor.
- PHIL 302 Ancient Philosophy
- PHIL 305 Medieval Philosophy
- PHIL 308 Epistemology
- PHIL 401 Metaphysics
- PHIL 403 Political Philosophy
- PHIL 413 Modern and Contemporary Philosophy
- Research Thesis*
Elective Major Courses (two required)
- PHIL 301 Philosophy of Religion
- PHIL 310 Philosophy of Love
- PHIL 402 Aesthetics
- PHIL 405 Philosophy of Science
- PHIL 406 St. Augustine
- PHIL 407 St. Thomas Aquinas
- PHIL 408 Franciscan Philosophy
- PHIL 409 John Henry Newman
- PHIL 410 Plato
- PHIL 411 Aristotle
- PHIL 412 Recent Philosophy
- PHIL 415 Special Topics
- PHIL 490 Senior Seminar
The Minor in Philosophy
The minor in philosophy allows students majoring in other disciplines to develop a concentration in philosophy, and to have this concentration offi cially recognized. The student must complete seven philosophy courses--four courses in addition to the three core philosophy courses (PHIL 205, 206, 400). It is suggested that the student specify his courses to have a concentration complementing his chosen major.
For a complete 4 year place please see the academic catalogue.