“To be Good is to do the Truth”



In October I participated in a brilliant conference put on jointly by The Thomistic Institute and the Morningside Institute, titled, “Desire and the Good Life: Reflections on the Aristotelian Tradition.”  You can listen to my talk, which is on the concept of  practical truth titled, “To be Good is to do the Truth,” here.  I hope to put the essay up online soon, but if you have comments on the audio, feel free to leave them here for now. Also, via the same link, you can find the talks given by Candace Vogler and Dhananjay Jagannathan.


CFA: Habit

Hi everyone!  I expect to have a new episode of Sacred & Profane Love out later this week, but in the meantime, please make a note of the following upcoming project of two awesome colleagues of mine.  I will try to submit an abstract and attend (schedule permitting); if you do philosophical work on habit, you should too!

Conference on Habit: Call for Philosophical Abstracts


Scholars of virtue may find the following event of interest: Habit: Practical, Theoretical, and Historical Approaches, a conference in Chicago on September 27-28, 2019. This conference is generously funded by the Center for Ethics & Education and hosted by the University of Illinois at Chicago. The conference is open to all, so please join us for discussion even if you do not wish to submit for presentation.


Jennifer Hornsby (Birkbeck)
Stephen Engstrom (University of Pittsburgh)


We invite abstracts for papers on any aspect of the philosophical significance of habit. Possible topics include (but are not limited to):

  • the role of habit in the history of philosophy (e.g., Plato, Aristotle, Aquinas, Hume, Kant, Hegel, Wittgenstein, etc.)
  • habituation and the acquisition of habits, skills, and virtues
  • the nature, structure, and rationality (or lack thereof) of habitual action
  • the relationship between habits, intentions, and policies
  • habits of thought and reasoning
  • the ethical and/or epistemic significance of habit


Abstracts should be between 500 and 800 words, prepared for anonymous review, and submitted to philosophyandhabit@gmail.com by March 1, 2019. We will begin reviewing abstracts shortly after the deadline.


For questions, please contact conference organizers Will Small and Jennifer Rothschild at .

Will Small is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and Jennifer Rothschild is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at the University of Florida.


Sacred and Profane Love Episode 12: Meaning, Murder, and Divine Madness


Download Episode 12: Meaning, Murder, and Divine Madness

In Episode 12 of Sacred & Profane Love, “Meaning, Murder, and Divine Madness,” I speak with the eminent moral theologian, Fr Michael Sherwin, O.P., about Donna Tartt’s breakout bestseller, The Secret History.  We discuss how the novel is best situated within both the Southern Gothic and the Southern Catholic Gothic literary genres, and how Donna Tartt, like Flannery O’Connor, understands the task of the novelist as helping us come to see ourselves and our world as it truly is.

For good measure, we also discuss demonic possession, mystery cults, religious ecstasy, evil, Augustine, Nietzsche, Shakespeare, and Walker Percy.  I hope you enjoy our conversation.


Rev. Prof. Michael Sherwin OP, was one of our faculty for our 2016 Summer Session “Virtue & Happiness”, and is Professor of Fundamental Moral Theology at the University of Fribourg, Switzerland. Fr. Sherwin is director of the Saint Thomas Aquinas Institute for Theology and Culture and of the Pinckaers Archives.  Author of articles on the psychology of love, virtue ethics and moral development, his monograph, By Knowledge and By Love: Charity and Knowledge in the Moral Theology of St. Thomas Aquinas (CUA Press, 2005) has been reissued in paperback.


Jennifer A. Frey is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at the University of South Carolina. Prior to joining the philosophy faculty at USC, she was a Collegiate Assistant Professor of Humanities at the University of Chicago, where she was a member of the Society of Fellows in the Liberal Arts and an affiliated faculty in the philosophy department.  She earned her PhD in philosophy at the University of Pittsburgh, and her B.A. in Philosophy and Medieval Studies (with Classics minor) at Indiana University-Bloomington. Her research lies at the intersection of philosophy of action, ethics, and law, with a particular focus on the Aristotelian-Thomist tradition.


Preview on iTunes

This podcast is a project of Virtue, Happiness, & the Meaning of Life, and is made possible through a generous grant from the John Templeton Foundation.

Content copyright the University of South Carolina and the University of Chicago.

Music credits, “Help me Somebody,” by Brian Eno and David Byrne, licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.5.