“Are you not ashamed that, while you take care to acquire as much wealth as possible, with honor and glory as well, yet you take no care or thought for understanding or truth, or for the best possible state of your soul? And should any of you dispute that, and claim that he does take such care, I will not let him go straight away nor leave him, but I will question and examine and put him to the test; and if I do not think he has acquired goodness… I shall say, ‘Shame on you, for setting the lowest value upon the most precious things…'”
–Socrates, The Apology
Self-examination has been the core of philosophy, ever since Socrates was executed for teaching the youth of Athens this “corruptive” practice. In God and the Good Life, we think it is valuable to take time to think through your stances, to weigh them against leading philosophical arguments, and to try to apply them more fully in your daily life. We also recognize that you need guidance in how to read the most interesting philosophical texts, and we are here to help.
We will guide you through a series of curated readings ranging from Plato to Aquinas to Kant to Beauvoir, giving you questions to work through in each reading, checking your understanding and helping you apply the main ideas to issues you care about.
Digital tools help us get more from each of the texts. We’ve created a series of interactive digital texts to walk you through the core readings of the course. We’ve interviewed experts on the main philosophical issues covered in the texts. And we’ve prepared digital thought experiments to make the issues under consideration more vivid. We want you to leave this course loving to read and think philosophically.
Over the course of the semester, you’ll be preparing your Apology—your well-reasoned defense of your stand on the major questions guiding the course. Your classmates and the entire teaching team will be here to help you along the way, as you put your soul to the test.
Want to know more?
- Visit our Digital Texts Page
- Watch Contemporary Issue Interviews
- Take a Video Thought Experiment
- Learn about the Tradition of Writing Philosophical Apologies