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DIVYADAAN STUDIES PHILOSOPHICAL APPROACHES TO THE CHRISTIAN VISION


By Cl. Romero D` Souza SDB
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Mumbai, Sep. 24. ''The Christian Vision: Philosophical Perspectives'' was the theme of the seminar convened by Divyadaan, Salesian Institute of Philosophy, on 18 and 19 September 2013. The seminar was held for two consecutive days with four sessions on the first day and two on the following day.
Fr. Robert Pen, the Principal of Divyadaan, welcomed the participants and speakers. Fr. Matthew Coutinho sdb, set the ball rolling with his introductory remarks on the Christian vision and how philosophy helps uncover it aiming for greater clarity in order to achieve better coherence.

The first speaker on Day One was Fr Savio D'Souza sdb, who presented ''Emmanuel Mounier: Personalism.'' The second paper prepared by Fr Brian Bandya OFM Cap shed light on ''Pandita Ramabai: Liberating Mission of Christ.''

In the afternoon session Fr Felix Fernandes sdb offered a paper entitled ''Gabriel Marcel: Appreciating Mystery.'' The last session of the day was on the ''Theological Contributions of Brahmabandhav Upadhyay'' and was prepared by Fr Robert Pen sdb.

The second day commenced with Fr. Kenneth Pereira sdb, presenting to the participants ''The Place of Christ in an Evolving Universe: The Christic Vision of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin.'' In the last session Fr Ashley Miranda sdb focused on ''Benedict XVI: Call to Live a Joyful Life.'' The discussions that followed each paper were enriching and insightful helping the participants delve deeply into the issues at hand. Many misunderstandings were cleared and misinterpretations laid to rest.

Concluding the proceedings of the two days Fr Matthew Coutinho highlighted the confluence of thought in the six presentations and highlighted some salient insights. The papers had the common thread of the Christian Vision running through them with all unearthing more of the rich Chrisitan tradition.

The seminar ended with the felicitation of the presenters, all of whom are members of the academic faculty of Divyadaan. This seminar was a learning and growing experience for all, enabling better understanding of the faith and life. It has also helped inculcate the need for greater reflection and dialogue in our study of philosophy and our faith. It was a journey towards becoming 'good Christians and honest citizens,' as Don Bosco our father and founder termed it.

One noteworthy feature was that all the papers were authored and presented by teachers in Divyadaan making it an occasion for joint reflection and mutual enrichment within the faculty.
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