SJU to Hold 2017 Donald I. MacLean Lecture

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Is life all about rational quotient (IQ), physical quotient (PQ) and emotional quotient (EQ)? According to Robin S. Seelan, S.J., there is one missing: spiritual quotient (SQ). In order to truly understand the other quotients, there needs to be a deep understanding of SQ in relation to the body and self.

Fr. Seelan, the 2017 MacLean Chair, will deliver a lecture entitled, “Igniting Our SQ: Explorations, Encounters, Engagements,” on Thursday, Nov. 30 at 11 a.m. in the Campion Student Center’s Presidents’ Lounge. The talk will center around spiritual SQ, also known as spiritual intelligence, and how it is used to discover the essentials of life.

“The importance of spiritual quotient lies in rediscovering the self and the world,” says Fr. Seelan. “This lecture seeks to project simple ways of increasing our spiritual quotient, especially to the student community, and enhancing our lives and the lives of our communities.”

This lecture will feature Ignatian and Eastern Spiritual traditions to explore spiritual quotient. Participants will seek to encounter and engage SQ in life and to go beyond materialism and capitalism. When SQ is rediscovered, the disconnect with life will disappear, and meaning, value and fundamental purposes will reappear.

A native of Tamilnadu, India, Fr. Seelan came to SJU after serving as an assistant professor in the Department of Philosophy at Loyola College in Chennai, India, for five years. He previously taught at Arrupe College in Harare, Zimbabwe and at Jnana Deepa Vidyapeeth, the national philosophate in Pune, India. At present, he teaches the course “Religious Diversity” at SJU.

“Being a Jesuit rooted in Ignation tradition, I can feel the relevance of his insights for the modern world. Ignatius was both a mystic and an activist who used his ‘insight’ from his spiritual experiences to form young men and women,” says Fr. Seelan. “And as an Indian Christian, I was introduced to a few Eastern spiritual traditions, such as Buddihism, Siddhars, Yoga, etc. With this background, I am able to see a common agenda in these traditions — to awaken the inner self.”

In January, the Dean’s Office of the College of Arts and Sciences named Fr. Seelan as the Donald I. Maclean, S.J., Chair for the 2017 calendar year. The Donald I. MacLean, S.J., Chair is held by members of the Society of Jesus who are accomplished teachers and scholars in the arts and sciences. Established in 1987 through the generosity of lead donors Michael J. Morris ’56, Joseph McKinney ’52 (dec.) and the Jesuit Community at Saint Joseph’s, it is intended to emphasize that the University’s Jesuit identity is inseparable from the finest teaching, scholarship and collegiate discourse. The chair is named in honor of the University’s 24th president.

For more information, please contact or call 610-660-1146. The event is free and open to the public. 

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