About ESI

St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross (Edith Stein)

I have been engaged for some months in collecting material for a major work about Dionysius the Areopagite. Now I have begun to write something from that quarter which I could send you as a contribution: “Ways to Know God according to the Teaching of the Areopagite.” I believe you have made your parameters wide enough to include something like this. My superiors do leave me full liberty; but it is, of course, self-evident that I cannot write on anything that has nothing at all to do with our life.

Stein, Edith. Knowledge and Faith (The Collected Works of Edith Stein, vol. 8) . ICS Publications. Kindle Edition.

Christian intellectual activity is the highest form of human intellectual activity. Natural philosophy alone cannot pierce the Heavens; yet, philosophy is the “event horizon” of the mind as it seeks the heavens opened to us only by supernatural grace. Having the correct philosophical orientation is critical to receiving in full that for which God desires to give us. In other words, Christian intellectual activity, and here we use that phrase interchangeably with Christian Philosophy, is the only intellectual orientation that intentionally prepares us to receive the grace of God. As only Christian doctrine leads us to the Way, the Truth, and the Life, therefore only Christian philosophy intentionally prepares us for that journey. We seek intentionally through our intellect; therefore, we need Christian philosophy to follow intentionally the command of our Lord.

Seek ye therefore first the kingdom of God, and his justice, and all these things shall be added unto you.

Matthew 6:33:

Following the guidance of our model and mentor, Edith Stein, we believe it to be self-evident that we “cannot write on anything that has nothing at all to do with our life.” Here, this refers to Edith’s life as a religious in the Carmelite order. However, we must insist on the same with regard to our own state in life. I am Catholic; therefore, I cannot write on anything with regard to knowledge and wisdom that does not have to do with my Catholic life.

As Catholicism is the only true Christian faith and the Catholic Church is the only church founded by Jesus Christ, we further must insist on writing from a Catholic perspective. Catholicism is not simply one branch of Christianity, nor is it even the highest form. Catholicism is Christianity. Thus, as Christian intellectual activity is the highest form of human intellectual activity, we must write from the Catholic perspective in order to seek knowledge and wisdom.

The reader will find throughout the works herein the prominence of this Catholic Steinian influence. For a review of my other life project, and one that in substance is related directly to ESI, please visit RoyaumeFrance.com

Finally, a word on my use of Edith’s non-religious name rather than her religious name of St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross. This is in line with the field of philosophy where she is best known as Edith Stein, and, as this site deals with philosophy, we prefer to follow that custom. As Catholics, we revere her with the holy honor of dulia by the name St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross.

~ Walter Adams

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