The Lonergan Review

Volume 7, Issue 1, 2016

Applying Lonergan

Patrick H. Byrne
Pages 10-48

Moral Conversion
The Stripping Away of Self-Delusion

While Lonergan wrote a great deal about intellectual and religious conversion, he wrote comparatively little about moral conversion. Hence, Lonergan’s writings on moral conversionraise a number of important questions, but do not explicitly answer them. This essay offers an interpretation that endeavors to answer some of these questions. In doing so, it illustrates key elements in both Lonergan’s explicit statements about, and my own understanding of moral conversion by considering three case studies: Katherine Anne Power, St. Augustine, and Rodion Romanovich Raskolnikov, the protagonist of by Fyodor Dostoevsky’s novel, Crime and Punishment. In particular, it focuses on the process of stripping away of self-delusions that is an intricate part of moral conversion.