Friday began with the study of the College’s patron, St. Thomas Aquinas. The students delved into one of St. Thomas’ five proofs for the existence of God, commonly known as “The Five Ways.” These five arguments are not made from Scripture, but from the natural philosophy of Aristotle, which is one of the reasons so much time is devoted to Aristotle’s work here at the College. In this text, St. Thomas does not make an argument from faith, rather from reason. He shows how faith and reason are not competitors, but actually complement one another.
That afternoon, the students returned to the question of God’s existence with Blaise Pascal’s famous “Wager.” Pascal, unlike Thomas, does not here explicitly argue for God’s existence, but rather shows that every man bets his life, in a sense, upon God’s existence or nonexistence and lives accordingly. He further explores what the consequences of this choice are — if God does actually exist or if he does not.
Following a recreation time of Frisbee, volleyball, and even a short hike to the Painter’s Shack, the students gathered in the library for a dramatic reading of Shakespeare’s Macbeth. Students assumed the roles of the various characters in the play and really got into their parts, adopting Scottish accents and cackling like witches, while also fake sword fighting for the battle scenes. After every act, the prefects summed up what had been read with a quick skit, offering a lighthearted but dramatic rendition of the act. It was rewarding to see the students put their dramatic talents to use, and those students who made up the audience enjoyed seeing their classmates bring one of the “Great Books” to life.
The students finished the night at the third pond with a campfire, ice-cream sandwiches, music, and singing. They put their musical talents to use, incorporating guitars and bongo drums to the vocalizations of favorites such as “Take Me Home, Country Roads.”