Out of 200 papers presented at the recently held Recoletos Research Congress in Cebu last month, the study authored by the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences bested all the other entries from all over the country and abroad.


Entitled, “Modern Man’s Loneliness: Karol Wojtyla’s Critique of Utilitarianism” by Peter Macabinguil was the only paper awarded in the category, Ethics and Accountability at the said international research conference. Karol Wojtyla, being referred to in the study is Pope John Paul II, who was recently proclaimed saint by the Roman Catholic Church.


Macabinguil’s paper is composed of three parts. The first part elaborates Wojtyla’s working definitions of key terms: “person,” “human action,” and the verbs “to use” and “to love.” Meanwhile, the second part examines the critique itself, pointing focus on the specifics and on how it is done; At the last, the shortest section delves into the theological reflection on the commandment to love as “a complement to his philosophical foundations.


The paper pinpoints Wojtyla’s philosophy of interpersonal action in Love and Responsibility thus delving deeper into the important optimistic view on human sexuality along with a specific critique on utilitarian ethics.


Macabinguil clearly stated in his abstract about utilitarianism, “The crucial question is whether the utilitarian system of values provides a guide for human action worthy of the human person.”


Wojtyla, for Macabinguil, has constructed “a unique challenge to what he perceives as the prevailing moral attitude in the 21st century and offers a compelling and personalistic alternative” with the use of varied philosophical traditions such as: Aristotelianism, Thomism, German phenomenology, and Kantian idealism.


Furthermore, through the paper, Wojtyla’s sexual ethics has been exposed as a forerunner of his biblical reflections on Genesis which he wrote during his papacy.


Macabinguil holds an undergraduate degree in Philosophy from the University of San Carlos (Cebu) and currently a candidate for the masters program in Philosophy at Silliman University.

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