This course, taught by Dawn M. Nothwehr at Catholic Theological Union, will examine the foundations of the Christian moral life. It begins with a brief historical overview of the Vatican II shift in moral theology which provides a contextual basis for understanding contemporary Catholic moral theology and ethical methods. This will be followed by an examination of methods used in moral theology and concepts that are fundamental to the discipline of moral theology including freedom and moral agency, moral norms, and moral reasoning as well as the place of Scripture, tradition, and authority in moral decision making. Special consideration will be given to contributions of the science-theology dialogue with neuroscience in understanding moral development, capability, and culpability. Consideration will be given to both the private and public dimensions of moral decision-making as well as the richness of the tradition as a source for moral wisdom.
Seminary: Catholic Theological Union
Keywords: neuroscience, ethics, morality, consciousness, cognition, brain development, intelligence