Professor Ponders Peace, Love, Life in New Book

Posted: December 1, 2010 in Arts and Culture, Profiles

Lisa Kaminski

With his new book Living the Questions, philosophy professor Vince Kavaloski asks readers to contemplate the mysteries of peace, love, and life.

Kavaloski, who has been compiling the collection of brief memoirs, articles, poems, and parables for the past five years stresses that this isn’t a typical philosophy text.  “A lot of professors write for professors and their professions, but I prefer to write for students, the general public,” he said.  He prefers to use straightforward prose to communicate his vision.  “You can think philosophical thoughts without wading through philosophical prose,” he said.

With this in mind, Kavaloski reflects on a topic he’s studied for years: peace.  In Living the Questions, he discusses the teachings of the Dalai Lama and the ideas of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  A Gandhian of sorts, Kavaloski admires these men for their quest for peace through nonviolence.

Vince Kavaloski: “Learning to live the questions and find joy in the journey.”

Kavaloski also stresses the important role of the United Nations.  Acting as a sort of global parliament, the UN provides a neutral forum for countries to solve international problems.  Kavaloski also points out that one of the organization’s greatest accomplishments, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, a document that sets a standard for global human rights and dignities, and also a subject covered in many of Kavaloski’s classes.

However, through his multi-genre book, Kavaloski always returns to questions: how to find the meaning of life, how to achieve peace, and what it means to love.  He admits in Living the Questions that he first engaged in philosophy “with a hunger for definite, comprehensive answers.”  Yet as he studied, questions kept resurfacing, and after years is now “learning to live the questions themselves and find joy in the journey.”

Now on sale in the Edgewood bookstore, all proceeds from Living the Questions go towards the World Peace Travel Fund, which allows Edgewood students to visit the United Nations in New York City and the Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, Tennessee.



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