Students attend fascinating theology Masterclass at Corpus Christi College
Four Year 12 Philosophers were selected by the Department of Theology & Philosophy to attend virtual masterclasses at Corpus Christi College, University of Cambridge. The first Masterclass was theological and focused on Creation & Cosmology. Ellie Lovatt and Dillan Hollas attended and we are delighted to share a report on their experiences:
Currently within the two modules of metaphysics of God and Moral philosophy, we have so far learned about general moral philosophical thinking, delving into types of utilitarianism developed by Mill and Bentham. But in relation to the Corpus-Christi master class the metaphysics of God section of philosophy has been particularly interesting learning about the school of thought of theological enlightened philosophers who shaped our thinking both the reality of god and his construct as a whole. These philosophers include the likes of Rene Descartes, David Hume and William Paley which have really shaped our thinking of them being mentioned so much in the Christan-Judaic perception of theology.
By far the most interesting point in philosophy is learning about the development of philosophy: How we have come from the ancient philosophy of Socrates and Aristotle to the likes of Norman Malcolm and John Hick developing the modern philosophy we study. With the structure of the course in philosophy we jump back and forth in between different time periods and of course this affects the philosophy. This is intriguing when contrasted to other views of philosophers, such as Plato who had no perception of Christ but still had a personal faith.
The structure of the Corpus-Christi was:
- 1st lecture) Life elsewhere in the universe and particularly how philosophy can be used in cohesion with astrophysics
- 2nd lecture) Q and A with current students at Cambridge and a virtual tour
- 3rd lecture) how to write Applications to Cambridge
- 4th Lecture) St Augustine’s “Confessions”, a personal and non-personal perception of God
The final portion of the lecture was the most interesting overall as it ran slightly parallel to our studies in metaphysics of God in A-level philosophy and this development on our current learning was particularly engaging. We had already learned about Augustine with his theodicy with the problem of evil, so this additional contextual and academic delve into his book “confessions” was particularly engaging and interesting. Augustine was a truly interesting character who was exposed to an academic and full-on education from such a young age which likely influences his enlightenment. Arguably, he is an influential character in our perception of God today, not only as a society but individually.
The advice we would give to the aspiring philosophers of the future is to attend master classes like this as they are additional assets for your personal statements and separates you from an applicant who might not have such an extensive knowledge field as you. Any work experience or additional extracurricular activities will work in your favour in the future and is highly recommended and valuable with universities.