This Week [2/7-2/13]

Weekly Schedule

2/9 Tuesday – Philosophical Happy Hour (5:30-7:00pm ET). A late announcement, but we had a good time… you should have been there! Good reason to sign up, I suppose.

2/12 Friday – Open Chat (9:30-10:15am ET). Our regular Friday-morning open chat, allowing conversation between those in the West and those in the East–part of the truly international nature of the Lyceum Institute.  A good way to bring the thinking of one week to a close and launch into the next.

2/13 Saturday – Latin Class(10-11am ET).  Week four marches in!  We continue progressing through Lingua Latina Per Se Illustrata: Familia Romana and forming our habits.

2/14 Saturday – Seminar Discussion Sessions.  The 2021 Winter Seminars continue apace.  At 1:15-2:15pm ET, Metaphysics: The Discovery of Ens inquantum Ens dives into a consideration of the principles of the science and how they help us to define its boundaries. Following, at 3:00-4:00pm ET, Ethics: The Good Life takes a look at how we form habits of happiness in this life through participation in the common good.

2/15 Sunday – Open Chat Asia (4:00-5:30am ET/5:00-6:30pm GMT+8). Technically this is next week–but one of our members hosts an open chat for those on the other side of the world. A great opportunity for those living in far-removed parts of the world to meet some members and chat. Open to the public. Use the “Send Us a Message” form here (write “Open Chat Asia” in the message box) and we’ll see you on Teams!


New merch at the Lyceum Institute Shop! Semiotically-inspired:


Updates

Partnership with Reality – Reality: a Journal for Philosophical Discourse has officially become a publication of the Lyceum Institute.  This will mean many opportunities for members to publish, including our first such, a bi-monthly essay contest. 

Trivium – Module 3 of our Trivium program will be added this month, opening some fundamental considerations of the grammatical structure of language and its connection to logic.

Latin Reading Practice – In addition to our regular classes, we’re adding some sporadic reading practice sessions throughout the week to increase our confidence and familiarity with the language as a daily habit of the mind.

This Week [1/31-2/6]


February already? How the days fly.

2/2 Tuesday – Philosophical Happy Hour (5:30-7:00pm ET). Grab a drink and have a chat about things that really matter! Always open to suggested topics: any questions you may have, feel free to bring them. Open to the public. Use the “Send Us a Message” form here (write “happy hour” in the message box) and we’ll see you on Teams!

2/5 Friday – Open Chat (9:30-10:15am ET). Our regular Friday-morning open chat, allowing conversation between those in the West and those in the East–part of the truly international nature of the Lyceum Institute. A good way to bring the thinking of one week to a close and launch into the next.

2/6 Saturday – Latin Class (10-11am ET). Week three already! We continue progressing through Lingua Latina Per Se Illustrata: Familia Romana and learn to think in Latin. We’ll be having full conversations before long.

2/6 Saturday – Seminar Discussion Sessions. Already reaching the halfway point of our 2021 Winter Seminars–how fast it flies! At 1:15-2:15pm ET, Metaphysics: The Discovery of Ens inquantum Ens will take a deep look at the modes of procession in science, and specifically the “mode of intellect” as pertaining to metaphysics. Afterwards, at 3:00-4:00pm ET, Ethics: The Good Life seeks to understand the role of intellectual vision as it redounds to all the aspects of our lives in constituting our happiness.

2/7 Sunday – Open Chat Asia (4:00-5:30am ET/5:00-6:30pm GMT+8). Technically this is next week–but one of our members hosts an open chat for those on the other side of the world. A great opportunity for those living in far-removed parts of the world to meet some members and chat. Open to the public. Use the “Send Us a Message” form here (write “Open Chat Asia” in the message box) and we’ll see you on Teams!

Sign up now before rates increase!


New merch at the Lyceum Institute Shop! Put some Thomism on your chest (new designs coming soon):

Little Errors - Men's T-Shirt

This Week [1/24-1/30]


Things are continuing to come together–and there will never be a better time to sign-up than now.

1/26 Tuesday – Philosophical Happy Hour (5:30-7:00pm ET). Grab a drink and have a chat about things that really matter! Always open to suggested topics: any questions you may have, feel free to bring them. Open to the public. Use the “Send Us a Message” form here (write “happy hour” in the message box) and we’ll see you on Teams!

1/27 Wednesday – Latin Class (8:00-9:00pm ET). Magister Sterling Contreras will be continuing with the second installment of our weekly Latin class with two sessions per week (allowing more students the opportunity to attend), guiding students through Lingua Latina Per Se Illustrata: Familia Romana and helping us all to attain fluency. Last week–especially the Saturday session–was a rousing success, so here’s hoping we’ll see an improved turnout on Wednesday!

1/29 Friday – Open Chat (9:30-10:15am ET). Our regular Friday-morning open chat, allowing conversation between those in the West and those in the East–part of the truly international nature of the Lyceum Institute. A good way to bring the thinking of one week to a close and launch into the next.

1/30 Saturday – Latin Class (10-11am ET). Our second option for studying Latin! Magister Sterling Contreras continues guiding students through Lingua Latina Per Se Illustrata: Familia Romana and helping us all to attain fluency. Last week saw many participants across a range of proficiency manage to start their progress

1/30 Saturday – Seminar Discussion Sessions. Moving into the third week of our 2021 Winter Seminars–how fast it flies! At 1:15-2:15pm ET, Metaphysics: The Discovery of Ens inquantum Ens investigates the means of discovering the principles of metaphysics within the context of a discussion of scientific operations of the intellect in general. Afterwards, at 3:00-4:00pm ET, Ethics: The Good Life undertakes to think through our imperfect bearing toward happiness in this life, and how we might rectify that.

1/31 Sunday – Open Chat Asia (4:00-5:30am ET/5:00-6:30pm GMT+8). Okay, so technically this is next week–but one of our members hosts an open chat for those on the other side of the world. A great opportunity for those living in far-removed parts of the world to meet some members and chat. Open to the public. Use the “Send Us a Message” form here (write “Open Chat Asia” in the message box) and we’ll see you on Teams!

We’re continuing to grow in members and participation–8 new members already signed up in January alone. Rates for membership will be increasing this year–so sign up now!


Be sure also to check out the Lyceum Institute Shop! Promote a life of virtue and look good at the same time:

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This Week [1/17-1/23]


An exciting week at the Lyceum! Lots of things new, lots of progress. A good time to consider signing up.

1/19 Tuesday – Philosophical Happy Hour (5:30-7:00pm ET). Grab a drink and have a chat about the eternal things! Always open to suggested topics: any questions you may have, feel free to bring them. One topic on deck will be the ways in which we can use the digital for our moral good. Open to the public. Use the “Send Us a Message” form here (write “happy hour” in the message box) and we’ll see you on Teams!

1/20 Wednesday – Latin Class (8:00-9:00pm ET). We are ready to kick Latin into gear–Wednesday as the first of two options! Magister Sterling Contreras will be beginning our weekly Latin class with two sessions per week (allowing more students the opportunity to attend), guiding students through Lingua Latina Per Se Illustrata: Familia Romana and helping us all to attain fluency.

1/22 Friday – Open Chat (9:30-10:15am ET). Our regular Friday-morning open chat, allowing conversation between those in the West and those in the East–part of the truly international nature of the Lyceum Institute. A good way to transition into the weekend.

1/23 Saturday – Latin Class (10-11am ET). Our second option for studying Latin! Magister Sterling Contreras will be beginning our weekly Latin class with two sessions per week (allowing more students the opportunity to attend), guiding students through Lingua Latina Per Se Illustrata: Familia Romana and helping us all to attain fluency.

1/23 Saturday – Seminar Discussion Sessions. After a very well-attended first week, our 2021 Winter Seminars look to continue into our second week. At 1:15-2:15pm ET, Metaphysics: The Discovery of Ens inquantum Ens, will undertake an inquiry into the nature of metaphysics as a science of wisdom and think of the meaning of “principles” thereby entailed. Afterwards, at 3:00-4:00pm ET, Ethics: The Good Life, guided by Seneca’s On the Tranquility of Mind, we will be thinking about how to navigate the meaning-evacuated public world and continue to strive for the good–to grow in moral and intellectual fortitude through love.

We’re continuing to grow in members and participation. Rates for membership will be increasing this year–so sign up now!


Be sure also to check out the Lyceum Institute Shop! Promote a life of virtue and look good at the same time:

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This Week [1/10-1/16]


1/12 Tuesday – Philosophical Happy Hour (5:30-7:00pm ET). Grab a drink and have a chat about the eternal things! Always open to suggested topics: any questions you may have, feel free to bring them. Open to the public this week. Use the “Send Us a Message” form here (write “happy hour” in the message box) and we’ll see you on Teams!

1/15 Friday – Open Chat (9:30-10:15am ET). Our regular Friday-morning open chat, allowing conversation between those in the West and those in the East–part of the truly international nature of the Lyceum Institute. A good way to transition into the weekend.

1/16 Saturday – Seminar Discussion Sessions. The opening discussion sessions for our 2021 Winter Seminars. First, at 1:15-2:15pm ET is Metaphysics: The Discovery of Ens inquantum Ens, where we will begin by probing the meaning of the word “being” as used in the history of philosophy. Second, at 3:00-4:00pm ET, we will have Ethics: The Good Life, where we will talk about the underlying nihilism and the “therapy culture” which undermines our search for meaning. Registration for these seminars is still open. Visit the links above for more information. The Ethics seminar is offered for as little as $20 per person, for the entire 8 weeks.

We’re continuing to grow in members–but enrollment rates won’t stay this low forever, so consider taking a tour or signing up today!


Be sure also to check out the Lyceum Institute Shop! Promote a life of virtue and look good at the same time:

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2021 Seminar Catalogue

Announcing the 2021 Lyceum Institute Seminar Catalogue: ten seminars taught by the Director and the Faculty Fellows, spanning the whole year. Each seminar lasts for 8 weeks and includes college-level exposure to philosophical education. Enroll today for discounts and more.

Winter

Metaphysics: The Discovery of Ens inquantum Ens

Brian Kemple

What is “being”, and how do we discover it?  The term presents ambiguities; as Aristotle says, it is said in many ways.  And as Aquinas, following Avicenna says many times over, it is the first conceived by the intellect, and that into which all other conceptions are resolved.  This, too, may be taken ambiguously; and, moreover, it may be conflated and confused with ens inquantum ens as the subject matter of metaphysics.  Indeed, resolution is said to be the mode of inquiry which belongs to the science of metaphysics most of all!  Yet what this means, and in what manner one resolves, requires clarification.  Thus, in this seminar, we will examine some seminal texts of Aristotle and of Thomas Aquinas himself, as well as important contributions and questions which have arisen in the Thomistic tradition, as the first of four seminars in a series on metaphysics.

Ethics: The Good Life

Brian Kemple

Can we be happy?  At times, looking around in our twenty-first century world, it would seem that “happiness” is a contingent, fleeting and difficult-to-grasp matter more of luck than of choice and action.  Such a view stems from an implicitly nihilistic worldview, one unconsciously imbibed by many today, in which meaning is imposed upon the realities which extrinsically act upon us.  The result of this worldview—this effort to burden the human being with creating the meaning for all the universe—is a deep, gnawing grief at the inevitable failure and ever-more-extreme attempts at improving anesthetics to dull this pain.  To the contrary of this sadly inverted worldview, this seminar will look at the philosophical treatments of the ancients and medievals in construing happiness as an inward bearing whereby the human person acts for the sake of attaining real goods meaningful in themselves.

Spring

Politics: Postmodern Culture and Principles

Francisco Plaza

This seminar will explore contemporary political and cultural issues from by incorporating classically realist foundations as the basis for a genuinely “postmodern” answer in response to the modern crisis and which looks beyond modernity for its resolution. This response retrieves from pre-modern political philosophy what modernity wrongfully left behind while engaging directly with modern thought–rather than a retreat to the past–in order to propose a way forward. In the first half of this seminar, we will briefly explore the classical foundation of a realist political philosophy, followed by an overview of the modern turn against classical and medieval thought. The second half of this seminar will be a survey of Jacques Maritain’s philosophy on these matters, as his work provides the basis for our claims in response to modernity. Here, we will consider Maritain’s critiques of modern culture, secular liberalism, and totalitarianism, and his philosophy of “integral humanism,” and the “concrete historical ideal.”

Semiotics: The Tractatus de Signis of John Poinsot

Brian Kemple

What is a sign, and how does it function?  It is a question which grew in importance throughout the Latin age of philosophy, and reached its culmination in arguably the last great thinker of that tradition: João Poinsot, better known as John of St. Thomas—a name adopted to signify his fidelity to the great Dominican Doctor around whose thought John based his own.  In a work painstakingly retrieved, edited, and translated by John Deely, John Poinsot presents a systematic treatise on signs, the Tractatus de Signis, which answers many questions modernity had not anticipated, and which would not be revisited by a capable thinker for another 200 years (C.S. Peirce).  In this seminar, we will closely and rigorously examine the entirety of this text of Poinsot.  It is strongly recommended that all interested parties have familiarized themselves with Thomistic Psychology and/or prior semiotics seminars before registering, as this seminar will prove quite challenging without these antecedents.

Summer

Science: On Being, Language and Reason, and Cause in Aristotle’s Organon

Daniel Wagner and John Boyer

[This seminar is to be taught in collaboration]. The subject is being (οὐσία), language and reason (λόγος), and cause (αἰτία) in Aristotle’s Organon.  In part I of the Seminar, Dr. Wagner will treat the logical terms of Aristotle’s sense-realism in Topics and Categories, and his method of induction (ἐπαγωγή) and division for obtaining definitions as the first principles of science (ἐπιστήμη) in Posterior Analytics and De Partibus Animalium. In part II,  Dr. Boyer will treat Aristotle’s theory of science through apprehension of the cause (αἰτία) by demonstrative syllogism (συλλογισμός). Both parts of the course will showcase the application of Aristotle’s realist logic in his own work (Physics, De Anima, Ethics, and Metaphysics), and in contemporary science.

Semiotics: An Introduction

Brian Kemple

In this seminar, we will focus on Charles Sanders Peirce and his unique contributions to the foundations of the discipline of semiotics proper and show how we must instantiate an understanding of signs in our day-to-day practices, both practically and theoretically.  Among the specific goals for the seminar are to understand the general theory of semiotics—as the study of the action of signs—which was founded in Charles Peirce and has since been developed; to understand the categorical basis of Peirce’s thought, or his “phaneroscopy”; and to understand especially how signs play a role in human thinking.  Readings will primarily be from the two volume Essential Peirce.

Thomistic Psychology: Environing World and the Passions

Brian Kemple

In the fourth Thomistic Psychology seminar, we enter into the discussion of the environing world—a concept formulated by a theoretical biologist, Jakob von Uexküll—as a dynamically-constitutive element of the human psyche, with a specific focus on how this affects and is itself effected by the passions.  Topics covered include moral and cognitive habituation, technology and technological media, the “moral imagination”, and the conscientious pursuit of the good in our environing worlds.  This requires a firm understanding of the faculties and cognitive operations of the human being.  Readings will be drawn from a wide array of sources but focus principally on the Secunda pars of Thomas Aquinas’ Summa theologiae.

Fall

Thomism, Artisanship, and Art

Matthew Minerd

What is the being of a work of art?  What is the nature of “poetic” knowledge, the experience of the artisan and the artist?  How should a Thomist speak about these matters?  This lecture series is devoted to these questions, taking as their principal guide, Jacques Maritain, who probed these questions in his works Art and Scholasticism, Creative Intuition in Art and Poetry, and Art and Poetry.  Other thinkers will be consulted along the way, presenting a synthesis which, however, uses Maritain’s texts as the primary guiding thread of the lecture discussion.

Thomistic Psychology: The Meaning of Evil

Kirk Kanzelberger

Every human being has some notion of evil, vague though it may be, as that which is opposed to a good:  the good that one desires, the good that one honors – or, perhaps, the good that one wishes one honored or desired more than one does.  Even those who lack an inclination to deeper questioning concerning the matter and the meaning of evil can nevertheless find themselves possessed with anger at states of affairs, ideas, and other persons they clearly judge to be evil.  Might there be some relation of dependence between the lack of deeper questioning and the frenzy of the anger, as well as the lack of humility it evinces?  For if we are honest, we must admit that, despite every good intention, we ourselves have some share in, and make some concrete contribution to, the mysterious reality of evil in the world.  This seminar aims to deepen our questioning concerning the meaning, that is, the intelligible reality signified by the term evil.

Metaphysics: God

Brian Kemple

In the second Metaphysics seminar, we will engage in a deep Thomistic discussion of the intelligible discovery of the existence of God and the justifiable inferences which may be made concerning the Divine Nature.  This stands in corresponding opposition to the via resolutionis secundum rationem discussed in the first Metaphysics seminar, concerning the discovery of ens inquantum ens, as the via resolutionis secundum rem—according to the thing, according to the existential cause.  This will unfold further into a consideration of the attributes of the Divine which may be justly inferred from the resolution to a First Cause.  Thus, the primary reading for the course will be from the Prima pars of the Summa theologiae.

This Week [12/6-12/13]

Events this week at the Lyceum:


12/8 Tuesday – Philosophical Happy Hour (5:30-7:00pm ET). Grab a drink and have a chat about the eternal things! Always open to suggested topics: any questions you may have, feel free to bring them. Open to the public this week. Use the “Send Us a Message” form here (write “happy hour” in the message box) and we’ll see you on Teams!

12/11 Friday – Open Chat (9:30-10:15am ET). Our regular Friday-morning open chat, allowing conversation between those in the West and those in the East–part of the truly international nature of the Lyceum Institute. A good way to transition into the weekend.

12/12 Saturday – Seminar Discussion Sessions. The final sessions for our 2020 Fall seminars, and for the year. In “Thomistic Psychology: Cognitive Life”, we will undertake to grasp the nature and importance of cognitive habits. In “Semiotics: Thought and Contributions of John Deely”, we will take into consideration the universality of semiosis, from inorganic nature to the specifically-personal dimension of human semiosis.

We’ve also started Trivium Module 2 — on the rhetorical practice of inventio, the discovery of arguments — and will be having a Quaestiones Disputatae Inquirere session on 12/19! We had a great Colloquium Q&A this past Friday, and are poised for a great 2021.


Be sure also to check out the Lyceum Institute Shop! Keep your head warm with wisdom:

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This Week [11/29-12/5]

Events this week at the Lyceum:


12/1 – Philosophical Happy Hour (5:30-7:00pm ET). Grab a drink and have a chat about the eternal things! Always open to suggested topics: any questions you may have, feel free to bring them. I’ll be updating people on 2021 seminars and talking about the future of the Lyceum Institute, so if you’re interested in our growth, this would be a great chat to attend. Use the “Send Us a Message” form here (write “happy hour” in the message box) and we’ll see you on Teams!

12/4 Friday – Open Chat (9:30-10:15am ET). Our regular Friday-morning open chat, allowing conversation between those in the West and those in the East–part of the truly international nature of the Lyceum Institute. Great way to get a diverse set of well-informed philosophical perspectives.

12/4 Friday – Colloquium: Mending the Cartesian Rift – Walker Percy on Being Human (6:15-7:00pm ET). Dr. Kirk Kanzelberger, lecturer in philosophy at the Franciscan University of Steubenville and Faculty Fellow of the Lyceum Institute, will be answering our questions in a live Q&A session on his excellent lecture, already available through the Lyceum Institute platform. You can find more details here.

12/5 Saturday – Seminar Discussion Sessions. The penultimate discussion sessions for our 2020 Fall seminars. In “Thomistic Psychology: Cognitive Life”, we will look closely at the nature of the act of understanding in human beings, as a complementary action of intellect and perceptual faculties. In “Semiotics: Thought and Contributions of John Deely”, we tackle one of the most important but challenging contributions that Deely gave us: the notion of physiosemiosis, that is, that virtual sign action permeates all dyadic relations and thereby grounds the possibility of growth and development in the universe.

We’ll also have a new Trivium module up soon!


Be sure also to check out the Lyceum Institute Shop! Stylish merch where the proceeds support the mission of the Lyceum! Look good, make your coffee more smarter, and help us change education for the better.

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This Week [11/15-21]

Events this week at the Lyceum:


11/17 Tuesday – Philosophical Happy Hour (5:30-7:00pm ET). Grab a drink and have a chat about the eternal things! Always open to suggested topics: any questions you may have, feel free to bring them. I personally am of a mind to discuss the impossibility of dealing adequately with temporal things if one does not only know but have a habituated bearing towards things unchanging. Open to the public this week. Use the “Send Us a Message” form here (write “happy hour” in the message box) and we’ll see you on Teams!

11/20 Friday – Open Chat (9:30-10:15am ET). Our regular Friday-morning open chat, allowing conversation between those in the West and those in the East–part of the truly international nature of the Lyceum Institute. We’ll talk about almost anything.

11/21 Saturday – Seminar Discussion Sessions. Moving into the sixth week (how it flies!) of our 2020 Fall seminars, “Thomistic Psychology: Cognitive Life”, where we will continue considering the operations of intellectual discovery–and here with a particular focus on the formation of the intellectual word, the verbum mentis and how this unfolds in the judgments which are true or false–and “Semiotics: Thought and Contributions of John Deely”, which sees us recapitulating the lessons learned from Intentionality and Semiotics as pertaining to the continual spiral of semiosis in human understanding.

Additionally, I have a free trial for any seriously interested candidate in joining the Lyceum Institute from now until the end of November. This is full access for two weeks. If you are interested, use the Request a Tour form and Dr. Kemple will contact you ASAP.


Be sure also to check out the Lyceum Institute Shop! Stylish merch where the proceeds support the mission of the Lyceum! Look good, make your coffee more smarter, and help us change education for the better.

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This Week [11/8-14]

Events this week at the Lyceum:


11/10 Tuesday – Philosophical Happy Hour (5:30-7:00pm ET). Grab a drink and have a chat about the eternal things! Always open to suggested topics: any questions you may have, feel free to bring them. Not always open to the public, but it is this week. Use the “Send Us a Message” form here (write “happy hour” in the message box) and we’ll see you on Teams!

11/11 Wednesday – Inquirere Session (5:30-7:00pm ET). Part of our Quaestiones Disputatae program, the Inquirere sessions allow participants to talk through their ideas and receive feedback from all members (including Dr. Kemple), such as suggestions on what to read, how to go about structuring their thoughts, possible objections, and next steps in proceeding forward.

11/13 Friday – Inquirere Session (9:30-11:00am ET). A second Inquirere session of the week.

11/14 Saturday – Seminar Discussion Sessions. Moving into week five of our 2020 Fall seminars, “Thomistic Psychology: Cognitive Life”, where we will continue considering the operations of intellectual discovery–specifically this week in their discursivity–and “Semiotics: Thought and Contributions of John Deely”, which sees us tackling the difficult notion of relation’s ontological reality and its consequences for the intentional orientation of the human mind.


Be sure also to check out the Lyceum Institute Shop! Stylish merch where the proceeds support the mission of the Lyceum! New products added this week, so take a look.

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