The Catholic Intellectual Tradition

The Unexamined Life Is Not Worth Living.

Socrates exhorts us in the Apology to spend our days striving to make sense of our lives, to live a life of self-examination. What might that mean for us today within the context of the Catholic philosophical tradition? 

"Such an account [of what it is to be a human being] will have to integrate what we can learn about the nature and constitution of human beings from physicists, chemists, and biologists, historians, economists, and sociologists, with the kind of understanding of human beings that only theology can afford. What form would such an account take? It would present human beings–and not just philosophers–as themselves engaged in trying to give just such an account of themselves, as trying to understand what it is that they are doing in trying to achieve understanding, a kind of understanding that will enable us to distinguish what it is worth caring about a very great deal from what it is worth caring about a good deal less, and both from what it is not worth caring about at all. So there is a crucial relationship between metaphysics and ethics. For it is only insofar as we understand the universe, including ourselves, as dependent on God for our existence that we are also able to understand ourselves as directed toward God and what our directedness toward God requires of us by way of caring. The philosophical resources we have for constructing such an account are the resources provided by the history of the Catholic philosophical tradition, which is to say that such an account would have to emerge from the dialogues internal to that tradition, from those debates and disagreements within that tradition that, as we have learned from Fides et Ratio, are constitutive of it."(Alasdair MacIntyre, God, Philosophy, Universities: A Selective History of the Catholic Philosophical Tradition, Rowman & Littlefield, 2009, pp. 177-78)

In Pursuit of Wisdom, Truth and Virtue

The University of Dallas is dedicated to the pursuit of wisdom, of truth, and of virtue as the proper and primary ends of education. The university as a whole is shaped by the long tradition of Catholic learning and acknowledges its commitment to the Catholic Church and its teaching. The university is dedicated to the recovery of the Christian intellectual tradition, and to the renewal of Catholic theology in fidelity to the Church and in constructive dialogue with the modern world.

Veritatem, Justitiam, Diligite: Love Ye Truth and Justice.

This motto surrounds the university seal, emblematic of the ideals to which the university is dedicated.

"Love Ye Truth and Justice" (Veritatem, Justitiam Diligite) is a conflation of Zachariah 8.8 and 8.19, and expresses the biblical message that truth and justice are the necessary conditions for peace, prosperity, and happiness. This wise instruction has also been discovered by reason and confirmed by history. It was the founding conviction of the University of Dallas and it continues to inform all that the university aspires to do.

News

The Idea of Our University

To found the famous Core curriculum of the University of Dallas, as an education "best for the individual," Donald and Louise Cowan looked to John Henry Newman's The Idea of a University. He unapologetically promotes the Western classics -- precisely because so few know our own culture well enough to appreciate the depth of any other.

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To Russia with UD: Faculty to Lead UD's First Tour of Russia

This summer, the University of Dallas invites students, alumni, faculty and staff to join its first-ever tour abroad of Russia, led by Professor of Physics Richard Olenick and Affiliate Instructor of Spanish, French and Italian Irina Rodriguez. From June 8 to June 16, 2020, Olenick and Rodriguez will guide participants through the cities of Moscow and St. Petersburg, taking them on a cultural and literary tour of the "Russian soul."

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Cowan-Blakley Memorial Library Showcases Rare Books Room

No longer relegated to the damp lower level, the Cowan-Blakley Memorial Library's Rare Books Room has for the past two years occupied a prime spot on the second floor, where there used to be study carrels. The room, made of glass walls, is normally locked and only opened by appointment, but on Sept. 26, the library hosted an open house for faculty and staff to come and examine these treasures.

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