SCL Journal Winter 2015—How Do We Know: Challenging the Modern Paradigm

SCL Journal January 26, 2015

Presented at:
SCL Journal Publications


One way among many which causes those of us involved in Christian Classical education to be seen as dinosaurs is our emphasis on the importance of virtue. Virtue is a lost concept in our modern age; it is certainly no longer part of the common vocabulary. C. S. Lewis says that when a word dies, disappears from use, the idea it represents disappears as well. He calls this “verbicide.” The old concept of virtue is based on the belief in absolute Goodness, a belief our age has jettisoned. We need but consider the changed understanding of the phrase “the good life” from ancient times to the present. For the ancient Greeks “the good life” was the well-lived life, the life of one who practiced virtue. Today “the good life” denotes the pleasurable life, the life which satisfies my cravings whatever they may be. How alien this is to the ancient understanding of virtue; Aristotle taught that virtuous acts are done for their own sakes, not for some other purpose. Virtue is not a means to an end; it is an end for which we were made.
SCL Journal
The Journal of the Society for Classical Learning is a quarterly publication which features articles by experienced educators committed to Christ-centered classical education. It offers an opportunity for members to exchange opinions, expertise and the experiences of their schools and classrooms. Every issue includes articles focused on different areas of classical education including administration, grammar school, middle and upper school, pedagogy & philosophy, law, and real world war stories.

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