Initiatives & Events

Our project investigates self-transcendence as the missing link in our current understanding of virtue, happiness, and meaning, by bringing the human quest for the transcendent to the center of our work, using Aquinas's expansion of the basic Aristotelian framework familiar from philosophy and psychology. 

Our project is empowered by these collaborative initiatives:


  • Kick-off presentation as part of University of Chicago Humanities Day, 2015. Free and open to the public, and live-streamed on our home page. 
  • Four public lectures, in connection with working group meetings, at least one of which is focused on educational ramifications of our project.
  • Two public lectures by visiting scholars in 2016 and 2017, at least one of which is focused on self-transcendence in virtue education.



  • Two week-long seminars in June 2016 and June 2017, at the University of Notre Dame geared to early career faculty and graduate students; hosted by the Moreau Seminary. Learn more about our June 2016 Summer Seminar (Topic: "Virtue and Happiness") here.
  • Two new mixed graduate-undergraduate courses at the University of Chicago taught by visiting scholars—syllabus and curricular development associated with each new course. Interdisciplinary faculty-doctoral student reading group associated with each Visiting Scholar visit.

Working Group Meetings

Our project centers on convening intimate working groups of philosophers, psychologists, and religious thinkers. Working group members will shape their research to address our questions. Two annual meetings (in Columbia and Chicago) will be immersive experiences aimed at generating systematic and integrated knowledge, including a new construct for empirical research on self-transcendence, new instruments of assessment, and new data. To learn more about this initive, click here.

Please see our calendar link at left for upcoming events.