Category: David Fleischacker

Neural Demand Functions and Montessori Concentration

David Fleischacker, Ph.D. I take the term “neural demand functions” from Bernard Lonergan’s book on insight (Insight: A Study of Human Understanding). Lonergan was reworking Freud’s psychic censor into a more explanatory framework within intentionality analysis. Neural demands are those neural activities that break into motor-sensory-affective consciousness.  Both higher animals and...

The Cosmological Foundations of Male and Female

Talk given at the Lonergan Institute, December 17, 2017 Dr. David Fleischacker Good evening. Next year is the 50th anniversary of Humanae Vitae.  It has ties to an earlier encyclical facing similar challenges in 1930, Casti Cannubi.  It is not unrelated to our current Pope’s more recent encyclical Amoris...

Lonergan and the Surd of Contraception

David Fleischacker, PhD, December 2008 (written 10 years ago) In 1943, Lonergan had written an essay on marriage, love, and finality.[1] In this essay he makes use of metaphysics to develop the intelligibility of marriage and family in such a manner as to provide a systematic understanding of the...

Relating Description and Explanation: The Case of Gregor Mendel

by David Fleischacker Description and Explanation: Mendel’s Pea Plants One good illustration of the dynamic relationship between description and explanation is found in Mendel’s breakthrough into genetics.  Description to recall is articulating how a thing relates to us.  Explanation is relation things to things.  At least that is a...

Questions about the Relationship of Description and Explanation.

by David Fleischacker One of the areas that I have found to need further articulation in Lonergan’s writings is that of the scope and the relationship of explanation and description.  Description is rooted in an account of things in relationship to the human motor-sensory operations.  How much of the...

Light and Transcendence

If you glance through the liturgy of the hours and the divine office, you will notice the frequency that the word light is used.  Of course, it is in the context of prayer, and it is an attribute of Jesus Christ and of all the persons of the Holy...

Conscience, Saint Thomas More, and Dr. Peter Kreeft

Sorry this is late. I try to get these out as near to 3 pm on Fridays as possible, however yesterday, I was busy with a guest we had the last few days at the University of Mary — Dr. Peter Kreeft.  What a joy he was for all...