Dili, Timor-Leste, 31 January 2023 -- On 24 January, the Philosophical Institute of St Francis of Sales celebrated its 11th year of existence. It was established in 2012. In its commencement for 2023 academic year it has celebrated its “dies natalis.”
The celebration started with the Eucharistic Celebration with Fr. Manuel Pinto, SDB as the main celebrant (the president, dean of the institute), concelebrated by Fr. Anacleto Pires, SDB with some others priests. The Mass was held in the Chapel of the TVET Center Comoro, Dili and was attended by the professors, staff, and the students.
Then on the next day, the ceremony proceeded with sessions of talks. The President or Dean gave his introductory remarks by welcoming the students and wishing them all the best for this new academic year. Then Fr. Plácido Teófilo Freiats, SDB gave the “oratio sapiential” to the students on the Environmental Ethics from a philosophical perspective.
In his presentation he said, “the intrinsic value of something is a key concept in the development of environmental ethics. From this concept, there two branches mainly: Ethics of the right to the environment and the Ethics of respect for life. According to environmental ethics, nature has a legal and moral right to be protected. While Ethics of respect for life teaches that human beings have a duty to respect the living organism that is auto-organized.
But the construct of Environmental Ethics based on the concept of intrinsic value does not convince everyone. Hence, some philosophers attempt to reflect on the Environmental Ethics based on the instrumental value concept. This instrumental value is referred to the value of things or nature has because we human being attributed to them. Normally, we assigned value to something based on function of (1) the necessity of human like survival; (2) human ideas like virtue and culture.
Aside from this, Environmental ethics also discusses virtue in reference to the so-called Environmental Ethics of virtues. According to this Ethics, how we treat nature (animals and other creatures) reflects our own virtue.”
Fr. Plácido concluded his address by giving suggestion to the students regarding two virtues of philosophical studies mainly: admiration and being studious.
The celebration concluded with group picture taking and an agape lunch at the multi-function hall at the Post-Novitiate Community Dili, Timor-Leste.