Vulnerability and Virtues in the Spritual Exercises
Kim, Woo-jung. “Vulnerability and Virtues in the Spritual Exercises”, Boston College, 2023. http://hdl.handle.net/2345/bc-ir:109786.
This thesis investigates the morality stemming from the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola through the lens of virtue ethics. It argues that if the Exercises are conducted according to Ignatius’ intention, they can lead exercitants to develop moral character in their relationship with God. This thesis is structured around four main chapters: bridging spirituality and morality, vulnerability as a key to understanding the dynamic between exercitants and God in the Exercises, freedom of conscience for being vulnerable to God and others, and the development of virtues rooted in vulnerability, especially humility, prudence, charity, and mercy, through the Exercises. This thesis emphasizes that vulnerability serves as the basis for morality in the Exercises, and virtues provide practical guidance for moral action and reasoning. Through the Exercises, exercitants can recognize their own vulnerability by encountering God’s vulnerability and cultivate virtues in their vulnerability. The Exercises lead them from individual conscience to a realm of interconnectedness with others. The bridge between the Spiritual Exercises and virtue ethics holds significant implications for the formation of Christian character because it fosters the cultivation of virtues consistent with the biblical narrative.