Upcoming Beierwaltes Seminars V and VI: invitation and call for papers

The organizers of two upcoming Beierwaltes seminars in Cambridge (July 6 and October 19, 2019) revolving around Origen and Christian Platonism invite for papers. Find a description of the topics below as well as contact information if you want to join, with or without a paper.

Beierwaltes Seminars - on Origen and Christian Platonism

The biannual Beierwaltes Seminars on Origen and Christian Platonism, hosted by the Cambridge Centre, revolve around key concepts of Platonism and their transformation in Christian philosophy from the Alexandrians Clement and Origen to the present day. After reading and discussing excerpts from the work of the eminent scholar Werner Beierwaltes (translated into English for the first time), both PhD students and postdocs give papers on their current research on Origen and Christian Platonism. 

For further information, please contact Prof. Douglas Hedley (rdh26@cam.ac.uk), Dr Adrian Mihai (am2614@cam.ac.uk) or Dr Christian Hengstermann (ch766@cam.ac.uk).

In 2019, two new seminars (V and VI) take place. Everyone interested in and working on Platonism and Origenism is cordially invited to give a paper or just attend the seminars. Please send an email to Dr. Christian Hengstermann: hengstec@uni-muenster.de.

V. Henology or Ontology? Models of the Absolute from Antiquity to Modern Idealism

- July 7, 2019

The One, the principle of all being and thought and as such, famously, “beyond” both “in rank and power”, cannot be the object of discursive thought and hence defies all attempt at conceptual definition. However, the soul can become one with it in rare insights described with great imaginative vigour in Plato and Plotinus as well as their many pagan and Christian heirs in antiquity, the Medieval period and the early modern and modern age. Starting with the account provided in Beierwaltes’ classic Denken des Einen of 1985, the fifth seminar will trace the history of Platonic mysticism from its beginning to the modern day.

Guest Speaker: JEAN-LOUIS VIEILLARD-BARON (Poitiers University)

The event takes place July 7, 09:30 - 18:00 at the University of Cambridge, Faculty of Divinity, Room 7

Please send titles and abstracts by June 15, 2019, to Dr. Christian Hengstermann: hengstec@uni-muenster.de.

VI. The True Self – Concepts of Divine and Human Subjectivity

- October 19, 2019

As is testified by the Delphic imperative in Plato’s own First Alcibiades, the required first reading in the late antique cursus Platonicus, Platonism is a philosophy of subjectivity. It charters both the soul’s procession from and return to God as it re-discovers its original intellectual nature in discursive reasoning and intuitive vision. The Platonic notion of the soul as an image of God exerted seminal influence upon early Christianity and medieval and early modern concepts of the finite mind. Likewise, German Idealism throughout bears the imprint of Plato’s rational psychology. It continues to be a source of insight in modern conceptions of conscious life and subjectivity. Based on Beierwaltes’ analyses of Plotinus’ notion of the self in Selbsterkenntnis und Erfahrung der Einheit of 1991 and Das wahre Selbst of 2001, the sixth seminar will explore concepts of human and divine selfhood in the Platonic tradition.

Guest Speaker: WILHELM SCHMIDT-BIGGEMANN (Berlin University) 

The event takes place October 19, 09:30 - 18:00 at the University of Cambridge, Faculty of Divinity, Room 7

Please send titles and abstracts by September 15, 2019, to Dr. Christian Hengstermann: hengstec@uni-muenster.de.

Download the folder here.