Yesterday, the Vatican released the “Decree on the Reform of Ecclesiastical Studies of Philosophy” which updated norms issued in 1979. It calls for an additional year of philosophy study before a student can earn a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from a church-recognized institution.
The document indicates that the Catholic Church must respond to the increasingly widespread notion that there is no such thing as permanent, objective truth. We all have been exposed and influenced by this modern error which says truth is relative to the individual’s situation and experience.
There has been a culural shift in the concept of truth, and a mistrust in so many of the capacity of human intelligence to arrive at objective and universal truth which gives direction to our lives.
Being a graduate with a philosophy degree (a field of study I love, I might add) I welcome this effort on the part of the Church’s teaching mission. People can and must know that there is such a thing as real love, real truth. To deny that is ultimately to deny the existence of God. Reason alone can bring us to the realization that Truth and God and objectivity exists in the realm of epistemology – that branch of philosophy dealing with how we know what we know.