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An Interdisciplinary Approach and a Metaphysics with a living face: Major Themes at the Seventh World Conference on Metaphysics

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The need to reinforce interdisciplinary metaphysical thought and a “metaphysics with a living face” which will respond to the problems of the human person, without dogmatism or radicalism, appeared among the conclusions articulated by the president of the Seventh World Conference on Metaphysics, Rev. Jesús Fernández Hernández, at the closing session on October 27. The event brought together two hundred scholars and thinkers from thirty countries at the Pontifical University of Salamanca, Spain, October 24-27, 2018.

In the opening address, Professor Jesús Conill of the University of Valencia, Spain stressed that philosophy had once again focused on human nature and the need for an enriched, updated concept of personhood superseding the interpretations proceeding from both traditionalism and scientism. This topic resurfaced at the Round Table on “Metaphysics and the Person,” where University of Valencia Professor Agustín Domingo Moratalla brought out the significance of the notion of the person for an adequate theory of justice and as a basis for bioethics and applied ethics in general. Professor Juana Sánchez-Gey of the Autonomous University of Madrid set forth Fernando Rielo’s vision of the person as “someone with awareness of Someone” who defines personhood and endows it with a spirit capable of union and commitment to the highest values.

At the Round Table on “Metaphysics, Science, and Therapy,” César Nombela, Professor of Microbiology at the Complutense University of Madrid and Honorary Rector of the Menéndez Pelayo International University, considered the search for truth as an ethical imperative for scientists which necessarily opens them to mystery. Julio Martínez, Rector of the Comillas Pontifical University commented on the twofold trajectory of moving through and beyond disciplines by way of the horizontal relation sciences-society and the philosophical-theological heights and depths of sciences open to ultimate reality. Similarly, Mauro Mantovani, Rector of the Salesian Pontifical University in Rome, affirmed that a multidisciplinary approach is a “weak” form of collaboration among sciences and that a transdisciplinary focus is an educational task in order to grasp that metaphysics is not an alternative to anthropology (Fides et Ratio, 83).

Regarding the relation between metaphysics and culture, Ángel Galindo, former Rector of the Pontifical University of Salamanca, lamented the current separation between ethics and aesthetics and stated that art and ethics are not neutral, for they convey a sense of the meaning of existence. Ricardo Piñero of the University of Navarra, Spain set forth the metaphysical values of the Christ of Velázquez and of Don Quijote, in terms of his reading of Unamuno and Rielo. The two creations are more than works of art, but permit a true encounter with the very humanity of Christ, bringing us to feel his presence and powerful reality.

In the closing address, José María López Sevillano, President of the Idente School, advocated a metaphysics involving a living face and personal commitment, wherein the absolute model, proposed by Fernando Rielo, is the genetic conception of the principle of relation—i.e., the Most Holy Trinity revealed by Christ, in whom all Truth, Methodology, and Life is manifest. From this point of departure we can arrive at a well-formed vision of reality in dialogue with every culture, mentality, science, art, or religion. For Rielo, Christ is the metaphysician par excellence.

In addition, other main speakers from France, Germany, and Argentina dealt with varied facets of the relation between metaphysics and theology and between metaphysics and education. Many papers were also presented by the other participants in the Conference—nearly two hundred in all—on topics related to the seven major areas of thought and culture included in the program.

Conference President Jesús Fernández announced that the Eighth World Conference on Metaphysics will be held at the Pontifical University of Salamanca in 2021 under the auspices of the Fernando Rielo Chair, which had been created there.

Thirty Countries Will Be Represented at the 7th World Conference on Metaphysics at Salamanca, October 24-27

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Nearly two hundred professors and scholars proceeding from thirty countries in Europe, North and South America, Africa, and Asia have confirmed their attendance at the Seventh World Conference on Metaphysics, to be held at the Pontifical University of Salamanca, Spain, October 24-27, 2018. The event is organized by the Fernando Rielo Chair at the host university, the Fondazione Idente di Studi e di Ricerca, la Fundación Idente de Estudios e Investigación, and the Fernando Rielo Foundation.

On this occasion, the Conference will focus on the role of metaphysics in grounding and integrating physical, biological, and social sciences in their human applications; reflect on medicine, law, economics, and the arts; consider the requisites for peaceful relations among peoples and religious traditions; and seek a model which can interpret human personhood, with its scientific, social, and juridical implications. To this end, the Conference has been structured into seven major areas: science, culture, person, theology, religions, education, and therapy.

The Opening Address will be delivered by Jesús Conill Sancho, Professor of Moral Philosophy at the University of Valencia, Spain, and the Closing Address, by José María López Sevillano, President of the Idente School. The Main Speakers will take part in five Round Tables, which will include talks by Spaniards César Nombela Cano, Professor of Microbiology and Honorary Rector of the Menéndez Pelayo International University; Julio Martínez, Rector of the Comillas Pontifical University; Graciano González, Professor of Ethics at the Complutense University, Madrid; Ricardo Piñero, Professor of Aesthetics at the University of Navarra, Spain; and Agustín Domingo Moratalla, Professor of Philosophy at the University of Valencia, among others. Marie Jeanne Coutagne of the Catholic University of Lyon, France; Mauro Mantovani, Rector of the Salesian Pontifical University, Rome; Peter Schallenberg of the Paderborn Theological Faculty, Germany; and Elena Lugo of the Fr. José Kentenich Bioethics Commission in Argentina will be among the Main Speakers from other countries.

The Conference will also include ten simultaneous sessions at which nearly two hundred papers by academicians from all over the world will be presented.

At 8 p.m. on Friday, October 26, a concert entitled Six Centuries of Sacred Music will take place—performed by the Koiné Ensemble, accompanied by Brais García Maceiras on the organ and directed by Maestro Ignacio Yepes—in the Royal Chapel of St. Jerome at the University of Salamanca, a historic building among the Escuelas Mayores, 19 Libreros Street. This cultural event, organized for the Conference, also ties in with the ceremonies commemorating the Eighth Centennial of the University of Salamanca.

For more information, consult the website: www.romemetaphysics.org

Study and prayer days in Barcelona

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During the past year in the delegation of Barcelona, monthly meetings of Study and Prayer Days have taken place. These Days began three years ago, under the desire of a group of university students, to deepen together in study and prayer.

Moved by the words of Pope Francis: “Your intellectual commitment, in teaching and in research, in study and in the broadest formation, will be all the more fruitful and effective, the more animated it is by love for Christ and for the Church, the more solid and harmonious is the relationship between study and prayer. This is not something old, this is the center “[1]. And moved by the own charism of the Idente Missionaries, that promote the study as a particular way of prayer, we started these Days that have allowed the participation of students in congresses, the writing of articles in the field of psychoetics and the organization of academic events.

Methodical, systemic, selfless and serene study in a state of prayer, with the assistance of God, becomes vision and authentic creativity. In this state we are able to penetrate the Truth and offer solutions to so many difficulties and problems of our society. With this foundation, last year we finished the first cycle of the this Days of Study and Prayer, under the framework theme “Wound, transfiguration and grace”. We investigated and deepened the consequences of our own effective wounds (distrust, shame and guilt) in the integral development, and analyzed the restorative potential of the spiritual life.
During one of the days we were visited by Eleanna Guglielmi, president of the Universal Youth Parliament, who explained at the Universitat Abat Oliba CEU the next meeting of the PUJ in Salamanca, during July 2019.

The Days were closed on July 1, with the visit of the Superior of Castilla Province, Lourdes Grosso, who encouraged us to continue with this project.

 
[1] Discourse of the Holy Father Francisco to the community of the Pontifical Gregorian University and to the members of the Pontifical Biblical Institute and Pontifical Oriental Institute, on April 10, 2014.

Mystic and Peace course at the UIMP Valencia (Spain) from September 19 to 21

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From September 19 to 21, 2018 the Mystic and Peace course, sponsored by the Fernando Rielo Foundation and the Idente Foundation for Studies and Research, will take place at the Menéndez Pelayo International University, headquarters of Valencia (Spain).

Among the speakers are professors Agustín Domingo Moratalla, Director of the UIMP in Valencia; Juana Sánchez-Gey, from the Faculty of Philosophy of the Autonomous University of Madrid and director of the course; José Luis Guinot Rodríguez, Clinical Head of Radiotherapeutic Oncology of the Valencian Oncology Institute Foundation; Vicente Botella Cubells, Dean President of the Faculty of Theology San Vicente Ferrer of Valencia and José María López Sevillano, President of the Idente School. From the artistic world we will count with the painter Antonio Camaró.

Mysticism is not an abstraction, but must be embodied in the life of the human person and in all the dimensions in which it develops as such. From its very constitution; its transcendent dimension; its relational dimension; its vital commitment, which encompasses an integral health, a need for training, a social commitment, an ecological commitment and creative and scientific development, etc. In all these dimensions of the human person there are many areas to develop that require having very clear the foundations on which we are based and a serious approach to the great questions that the human being asked himself.

All this together with the conviction of Fernando Rielo about the value of a transcendent culture to achieve the fruit of peace: “I have the conviction that only the path of culture can lead, nourished by a renewed moral elevation, to a creative peace; fruit of this, a clearer revelation about our wonderful destiny. Human beings are temporarily in space, but we are not citizens of space: our origin is celestial. “(Speech by Fernando Rielo during the presentation of the V World Prize for Mystical Poetry in 1985 at the UNESCO headquarters in Paris)

The meeting is aimed at professors, doctoral students, master students, university students of the various disciplines that are addressed and people in general interested in the areas of humanities, philosophy, spirituality, pedagogy, psychiatry, science and arts.

The UIMP courses in Valencia are validated by free choice credits at various universities in the Valencian Community. You can consult with the University of origin the number of credits granted.

All the information can be found on the website of the Fernando Rielo Foundation (www.rielo.com) or by contacting the secretary of the course directly: Dra. Ascensión Escamilla, 669174868. In the following link is found the complete program of the course.

Mística y paz. UIMP Valencia 2018

Seventh World Conference on Metaphysics at Salamanca, October 24-27

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The Seventh World Conference on Metaphysics will be held at the Pontifical University of Salamanca, Spain, October 24-27, 2018.

This event which has taken place every three years since 2000, provides a forum for contemporary reflection on grounding the major spheres of thought and action and is open to varied disciplines.

Clearly, philosophers play a key role in assessing and critically analyzing this endeavor, but all fields of study are asked to make their contributions, especially—but not exclusively—regarding a foundational grasp of their objects and methods, which quite certainly presuppose an underlying connection with a broader vision.

In keeping with the wide-ranging approach which has guided previous editions of the Conference—in a spirit of pursuing unity in diversity—we shall consider the impact of conceptions of ultimate reality on culture/worldviews, aesthetics/the arts, knowledge/epistemology, empirical sciences, health/therapy, understanding of personhood, education, and religions/theology in an effort to formulate the interplay between the formal and transcendental dimensions of human experience and work towards a valid, inclusive model.

In addition to those professionally engaged in teaching and research, students are also welcome and will receive a substantial discount on the registration fee.

Send abstracts (limit: 200 words) by August 15, 2018 through the www.romemetaphysics.org

We shall respond promptly to proposals for topics so that you may proceed to register. All queries may be sent to info@romemetaphysics.org

As always, we are expecting thinkers from around the globe and look forward to a stimulating event where people from different backgrounds can fruitfully share their insights, as in preceding years, and also enjoy a visit to Salamanca, Spain, a beautiful landmark in world culture.