Modernity, Postmodernity, and Beyond, Part 2 with Dr. Thaddeus Kozinski

June 20, 2017

We live in a postmodern culture. It’s something we did not choose and cannot avoid. And, as Wyoming Catholic College Academic Dean Dr. Thaddeus Kozinski argued last week, it’s not an entirely bad state of affairs since modernity was rife with problems—problems highlighted by two world wars and the tyranny of ideologies falsely branded as scientific.

This week Dr. Kozinski looks deeper into postmodernity and some of the conflicts within our current culture. We'll discover that understanding postmodernity is thus necessary to understand the world in which we live, ourselves, our children, and the prospects for the future.

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Modernism, Postmodernism, and Beyond, Part 1 with Dr. Thaddeus Kozinski

June 13, 2017

The term “postmodern” is used regularly today. Barak Obama was dubbed the first postmodern president. ISIS has been called a postmodern terrorist group. Postmodernism, we’re told, has taken over higher education and is a threat to Western civilization and to Christianity. At the same time, there are churches that cheerfully brand themselves as postmodern.

So what is Postmodernism? Is it a philosophy? A means of analysis? An aesthetic? An attitude? Is it a reaction against the rationalism, scientism, and authority of modernity? Is it an attempt to unmoor and destroy Western civilization? 

To answer at least some of those questions this podcast and the one next week feature Dr. Thaddeus Kozinski who, among other things, teaches Martin Heidegger, Jacques Derrida, Michel Foucault, and other postmoderns to seniors here at Wyoming Catholic College.

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The Book of Wisdom and the Path of Life with Dr. Kent Lasnoski

May 23, 2017

In St. Luke’s brief description of Jesus as a child, he emphasized that Jesus grew in wisdom. That is, Jesus not only learned the Scriptures, but went beyond learning information to learning how to live well under the good laws and just reign of God. In learning the Scriptures, Jesus would have read, studied, and memorized the sayings in the Old Testament wisdom books including the Book of Wisdom sometimes known as the Wisdom of Solomon.

Dr. Kent Lasnoski, Assistant Professor of Theology here at Wyoming Catholic College explains wisdom literature generally and the Book of Wisdom in particular.

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“The Heavens Declare the Glory of God”: Education in the Great Outdoors with Dr. Stanley Grove

May 8, 2017

You may already be aware that Wyoming Catholic College freshmen begin their four-year journey into the Liberal Arts with a twenty-one day journey into the Wyoming Wilderness. What you may not know is that the freshman expedition is an integral part of their liberal arts education. It prepares them intellectually and spiritually for their studies.

Immersed in the natural world, they gaze at the stars, they marvel at speckled trout, they grasp stony crags at the summit of mountains topping 12,000 feet, they look into the faces of wildflowers, and they shudder at the voice of the thunder. Through it all, the feeling of awe, of wonder grows and with it the desire to know.

To talk about why encountering nature is so vital in a Liberal Arts education, we are joined by Dr. Stanley Grove, Assistant Professor of Philosophy. Dr. Grove in addition to being a great outdoorsman himself spends hours in the woods and meadows around Lander teaching field science.

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Take Up and Read: St. Augustine’s On Christian Doctrine with Dr. Kent Lasnoski

May 2, 2017

In On Christian Doctrine, St. Augustine of Hippo (AD 354-430) offers a guide for interpreting and expounding Scripture. “There are certain precepts for treating the Scriptures,” he wrote, “which I think may not inconveniently be transmitted to students, so that they may profit not only from reading the work of expositors, but also in their own explanations of the sacred writings to others.”

That is, he produced a practical guide with rules for interpreting the Bible and for explaining the Bible to other people.

Freshmen at Wyoming Catholic College have been reading On Christian Doctrine and their professor, Dr. Kent Lasnoski who is our guest on this podcast.

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Sacred Signs: On the Physical Side of Being Spiritual with Dr Kent Lasnoski

March 28, 2017

“The liturgy,” wrote Fr. Romano Guardini, “is not a matter of ideas, but of actual things, and of actual things as they now are, not as they were in the past.” In order to understand the liturgy, he went on, we need to “discern in the living liturgy what underlies the visible sign, to discover the soul from the body, the hidden and spiritual from the external and material.”

Guardini was one of the towering Catholic intellectuals of the twentieth century and a major influence on the thinking of Pope Benedict XVI, Pope Francis, and philosopher Josef Pieper. Yet in 1911, Guardini, for all his erudition, wrote a little book entitled Sacred Signs in which he gently and simply explained this connection between the material stuff of the Mass and the inner world of the spirit.

Dr. Kent Lasnoski, Assistant Professor of Theology at Wyoming Catholic College, received his Ph.D. from Marquette University, where he studied the theology of marriage and sexual ethics, that is, things both spiritual and physical. He has been teaching Guardini’s Sacred Signs to our freshmen and shares both his own and his students insights on the physical side of spirituality.

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The Pope, Authority, and “Religious Assent” with Dr. Jeremy Holmes

March 21, 2017

It’s a terribly misinformed, but common anti-Catholic trope: “Catholics,” it is said, “have to believe everything the pope says.”

Catholics do not have to believe “everything the pope says.” But, on the other hand, the Church teaches in Lumen Gentium, Vatican II’s Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, “In matters of faith and morals, the bishops speak in the name of Christ and the faithful are to accept their teaching and adhere to it with a religious assent.” So while we don’t have to believe “everything the pope says,” when he teaches us as pope, Catholics are conscience bound, to accept his teaching and adhere to it with “a religious assent.”

What does that mean on a practical level as we hear or read papal sermons, encyclicals, exhortations, and other writings? What if we sincerely disagree with him? How do we sort it out?

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