Muhlenburg University


PRESIDENT: Members of the <State name & Greek designation> Chapter of <Institution>. We are meeting to receive into the fellowship of our Society several persons who, because of their interest in, and aptitude for, philosophical inquiry, have been elected members by formal vote of the Chapter. Will the Secretary please read the names.

SECRETARY: I have the honor to report that <State & Greek Designation> Chapter of Phi Sigma Tau has elected to membership in the Society the following persons:


They have accepted the invitation extended to them to become members of the Society, and they are here to be initiated as prescribed by the Constitution of Phi Sigma Tau and the by-laws of our Chapter.

PRESIDENT: Will the candidates for initiation please come forward and stand in a semicircle before the table.
<to the Secretary> Have these persons been found deserving of membership in the Society?

SECRETARY: They have. They meet not only the formal requirements of membership as indicated by their scholastic records, but also have revealed a concern and devotion to philosophy in the highest sense.

PRESIDENT: In accepting the honor which is being conferred upon you, you are being admitted to membership in a Society national in scope, interests, and aims. Active members may hold office and vote on national issues. Alumni members qualify for membership in the Society's National Alumni Chapter. If you desire to be instructed in the purposes of the Society, please so indicate.


PRESIDENT: The Vice-President will now instruct you in these purposes and aims. Once you have heard these, if you accept membership, you will affirm the same and sign the Chapter Roll.

VICE-PRESIDENT: The purpose of Phi Sigma Tau is defined clearly in Article II of the Constitution.

<Article II of the

PST Constitution should be read at this point, unless the initiation follows the Chapter Installation (which includes the reading of Article II).> The objects of the society are: (1) to serve as a means of awarding distinction to students having high scholarship and personal interest in philosophy; (2) to promote student interest in research and advanced study in this field; (3) to provide opportunities for the publication of student research papers of merit; (4) to encourage a professional spirit and friendship among those who have displayed marked ability in this field; (5) and to popularize interest in philosophy among the general collegiate public.

These aims are expressed in the Greek motto, Philoúnton Sophían Timé, which means "the honor of those who love wisdom." This expresses well the character of Phi Sigma Tau. It honors academic excellence and philosophical concern. It reminds us that the quest for truth is not the province of a single culture or time or person, but that there is a unity among all those who seek knowledge. The Key of Phi Sigma Tau represents this by a pentagon, each of the five angles containing a symbol which represents one of the five great streams of world thought: Chinese, Indian, Islamic, Hebrew, and Greek.

On the certificate to be granted to you as new members, you will find a seal imprinted with the words, "Phi Sigma Tau," and the reverse side of the Athenian Silver Tetradrachma, which bears the owl, olive spray, and small crescent. This seal was chosen because of its time, 480-400 B.C., the period when Socrates was engaged in his own search for genuine knowledge.

You have heard our aims and purposes. Do you accept these as your own?


VICE-PRESIDENT: These individuals have been recommended because of their interest and excellence in the field of philosophy as deserving of membership in Phi Sigma Tau.

PRESIDENT: In token of your willingness to accept this honor, with which go all the responsibilities of membership, you will please sign the Chapter Roll as the Secretary reads your name. Your signature will be evidence of your pledge.

<New members come forward and sign the Chapter Roll>

PRESIDENT: You are now in full membership in Phi Sigma Tau. It is our hope that you will recognize in these credentials not so much the mark of achievements completed, but rather the promise of ambitions earnestly initiated. We welcome you.