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section: approaches to culture, religion, science and philosophy

21. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7
Arslan Kaynardağ

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En Turquie la philosophie des Lumieres est congue comme un courant de pensee qui rayonne et eclaircit le processus de la creation de la Turquie moderne. Cette philosophie a contribue par ailleurs au developpement de la Turquie dans la voie de modernisation. Tous ceux qui ont lutte pour F independance du pays, notamment Mustafa Kemal Atatürk etaient profondement influences de la philosophie des Lumieres, Le fondateur de la Republique Turque et ses amis avaient tres bien saisie la grande importance d'adopter les principes de cette philosophie pour mener ä bien les reformes republicaines. En Turquie, la plupart des specialistes de la philosophie ont fait des recherches approfondies en la matiere et ils ont mis F accent sur les rapports qui existent entre les problemes sociaux et la philosophie des Lumieres. Par consequent, il n'est point errone de parier de l'existence d'une tradition des Lumieres en Turquie.

section: comparative philosophy

22. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7
Jen McWeeny

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The idea of a philosophical Other as comparativists have often historically used it to signify radical alterity, although sometimes a remedy and correction for the erroneous generalizations which originate from a presupposition of human sameness, merely shifts the center of philosophy's unchallenged assumptions in at least two ways. First, the notion of a philosophical Other avoids an explicit characterization of how one recognizes that one is philosophizing in the sphere of this Other and of what "otherness" is philosophically interesting. Second, the notion of a philosophical Other is unable to capture and describe the dynamic, ever-changing relations that serve to demarcate philosophical traditions or spatio-temporal webs of thinkers in the first place. For the sake of the comparative project of exposing the comparativist's own culturally-embedded assumptions, comparative methodology should allow for the possibility of analyzing more than one place where similarities and differences can present themselves at the same time. In short, comparativists would serve their own interests better if they began to approach their projects in recognition of a complex, limitless, and dynamic array of sameness and difference, instead of with premature assumptions of radical alterity.
23. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7
Scott Morrison

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Has comparative political philosophy progressed beyond crude generalizations and scattershot explorations of traditions perceived as exotic and other? In commenting on the current condition of comparative political philosophy, I will treat two of the main methodological questions which arise in the encounter with texts from traditions unfamiliar to philosophers in the West. First, I survey the difficulties of translation, between both languages and cultures. Second, I examine the problem of comparison, the associated dangers of distortion and the effects of power asymmetries.
24. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7
Marietta Stepaniants

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The golden mean metaphor is suggested as a key to understanding the universal and the particular in moral philosophy since finding metaphorical links provides a way of seeing different traditions in a manner that does not erect absolute boundaries. The choice of the golden mean is made keeping in mind that all cultures recognize the worth of moderation. The prime reason for that lies in human nature which sets human beings apart from all the other living creatures by a goal-oriented activity. As a rational being endowed with will, a human person cannot move toward a goal without adopting a certain strategy of actions. An instinct for self-preservation and astute prudence, personal experience and that of one's own ancestors are all prompting a human being to moderate and commensurate in dispositions and actions for an optimal attainment of the goals. Yet, the same principle is concretized in a particular cultural context (Ancient Greek, Indian, Chinese, Muslim and Russian cases are considered). Along with cultural distinctions, situational, temporal factors are of importance: much depends on whether it is the human person guided by own free will or a certain driving force, public, government, etc., outside and above defines the content of the golden mean.
25. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7
Bo Mou

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In this paper, I give a metaphilosophical examination of three major orientations in comparative studies (i.e., historical one, interpretation-concerned one, and philosophical-issue-concerned one) and four 'sins' that are oft-cited in critically evaluating a comparative study, namely over-simplification, over-use of external resources, exaggerated distinction, and blurring assimilation. I argue that the appropriateness of these 'sins' depends on orientations, purposes and methodological approaches in comparative studies and that, in those comparative studies with the interpretation-concerned and philosophicalissue- concerned orientations, due simplification, use of external resources and assimilation are not merely legitimate but also adequate or even necessary. In so doing, I explain how constructive engagement between Chinese and Western philosophy, or, more generally speaking, between different philosophical traditions, is related to contemporary development and resources of philosophy.
26. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7
Franklin Perkins

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If the problem of evil is one of justifying how a perfect God could create evil, then there is no problem of evil in early Chinese thought, but my claim in this paper is that the problem of evil is one manifestation of a deeper problem, which is the conflict between the world and human values and desires. This deeper problem appears in early Chinese thought in ways analogous to the problem of evil in theistic traditions. Daoists respond to this problem with a call to harmonize with heaven by overcoming conventional values and desires. Mencius, a Confucian, offers a more complex response, in which it is natural to cultivate virtue and certain desires even though nature itself is indifferent to them. My paper focuses on this Confucian response.
27. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7
Marina Čarnogurská

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The purpose of this paper is to discover an important contribution of classical Chinese ontological conceptions for the future world philosophy and the modern human Weltanschauung in the process of its globalization. Through a brief mosaic of a development of mutual Euro-Chinese encounters, from the Middle Ages to the present, the paper presents the view that both Chinese and European philosophical complexes were quite indispensable parts of the history of world philosophy; and in the future, perhaps, they will be the leading factors that decide (in their serious confrontation) the basic determination of the roots of the global world metaphilosophy. At the same time the author, long having carried out scholarly research and published translations of Laozi 's Dao De Jing, Confucius' Lunyu, the Books of Xunii, Huang Lao, Huang di si jing, etc., wants to demonstrate, on the basis of specific examples of original Chinese dialectical metaphysics, their unique philosophical value for the future world philosophy and the modern human Weltanschauung.
28. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7
Joseph Lieh Liu

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29. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7
Jens Schlieter

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In Anbetracht der jüngsten biotechnologischen Forschung, die das Klonen des Menschen konkret in Aussicht stellt, wird im Folgenden die Haltung der buddhistischen/ Traditionen, soweit sich diese bisher dazu geäußert haben, zu Fragen des "therapeutischen" und "reproduktiven" Klonens vorgestellt und diskutiert. Bestimmte Aspekte der buddhistischen Ethik und Anthropologie führen dazu, dass aus Sicht buddhistischer Ethiker das Klonen des Menschen eine insgesamt weniger dramatische Herausforderung darstellt. Aus ihrer Sicht wird durch die Idee und mögliche Praxis des reproduktiven Klonens kein normatives "anthropologisches" Prinzip wie jenes der menschlichen Natur, des Geschöpfseins oder der menschlichen Identität bedroht. Dennoch stehen auch buddhistische Ethiker dem Klonen skeptisch gegenüber, wenn z.B. durch den Vorgang Lebewesen in großer Zahl verletzt und getötet werden. Dass hingegen die traditionellen europäischen Wertvorstellungen der .Natur der Person' auch in den philosophischen Diskurs mit einfliessen, zeigt ein komparativer Blick auf die bioethischen Argumente von Jürgen Habermas (2001). Der Vergleich beider Positionen zeigt, dass es lohnt, in Bezug auf Techniken, die derzeit sowohl in Asien, wie Europa und den USA entwickelt werden, kulturübergreifende Perspektiven einzubringen, durch die mögliche Grunddifferenzen wie auch ethische Grundübereinstimmungen besser sichtbar werden.
30. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7
Eva Kit Wah Man

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One of the common targets that contemporary feminists are critical of concerning the problem of the body is Rene Descartes' mind and body relation. Feminist scholars can identify at least three lines of investigation of the body in contemporary thought that may be regarded as legacies of the Cartesian view, which treat the body as primarily an object for: 1) the natural sciences, particularly for the life sciences, biology, and medicine; 2) as an instrument or a machine at the disposal of consciousness or allocating an animating, willful subjectivity; and 3) as a vehicle of expression of private thoughts and feelings; that is, as fundamentally passive and transparent. Recently, feminist scholars are seriously thinking of a new conceptual model that can displace Cartesian dualism and that can emancipate notions of the body from Cartesian dominant mechanistic models and metaphors. In this light, this paper turns to a Confucian theory of the body for revelation and the case of Mencius is introduced, in which the mind is regarded as the major component of the body and a coherent model is adopted. Can we then conclude to ask in what ways the reclaiming of the body in the Contemporary Western discussion may learn from the Confucian ideas of the body...?
31. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7
John Vattanky

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One of the classical systems of Indian Philosophy is specially concerned with the problems of logic c This system is called Nyaya which has a long history of about two thousand years. In the extent of the literature it has produced and in the depth of the philosophical problems it discusses, it is of considerable interest and importance. However, the spirit of pure rationality in which Nyaya discusses these problems and the techniques it makes use of in handling them are quite different from other systems of Indian thought and at once renders it a unique achievement of the Indian mind. The term Nyaya means the method of coming to a conclusion with certainty and the system of Indian philosophy in which philosophical problems are discussed according to this method came to be called Nyayadarsana or just Nyaya. Nyaya has been sedulously cultivated in restricted circles of traditional learning. Nyaya and in particular, Navyanyaya studies with unparalleled rigour and exactitude the nature, the dimensions and conditions of human knowledge. And by common consent the philosophical problem par excellence is the problem of knowledge. With rare insight, both the old and modern Nyaya analyse the problems connected with human knowledge and sets forth in detail the exact conditions in which valid knowledge is possible. This essay highlights the nature and scope of Nyaya logic comparing and contrasting it with other systems of logic especially the Buddhist and Aristotelian.
32. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7
Makoto Ozaki

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Hajime Tanabe (1885-1962), the Kyoto- School philosopher of modern Japan, attempts to interpret Aristotle's ontology as being involved in the logic of self-identical being without self-negative conversion in action from his own dialectical perspective. For Tanabe, the eternal essence or Form is to be mediated by the dynamic character of matter, i.e., the temporality pertinent to the changing movement. For Aristotle, however, the essence or pure activity as the principle of being is devoid of such a dynamic mediation, but is rather regarded as the past being, i.e., what it should be originally and eternally. In other words, for Aristotle, evil and matter are the lacks of goodness and the eternal Form that are identical with the essence of the individual substance. Evil is to be self-negatively mediated to goodness in free action through conversion in Tanabe's perspective. Movement pertaining to matter is not simply an incompletion of pure activity, but is rather self-negatively converted into the activity as the transcendent principle of the dialectical unification of time and eternity, matter and Form, evil and Goodness. The individual existence has freedom to unify the self-contradistinctive opposed moments, i.e., subjective action and objective being in a way of mutually negating conversion. The difference between Tanabe and Aristotle lies in that for Tanabe practice is relevant to the future, whereas for Aristotle contemplation is concerned with eternity as invariable and imperishable being since the past. While Aristotle's logic is confined to the self-identity of being in contemplation, Tanabe's logic is structured by the triadic elements of individuality, species as the relative universal, and genus as the absolute universal in terms of the negative conversion in action.
33. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7
Mohammed Maruf

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Muhammad Iqbal propounds a much wider view of knowledge and the universe than does Immanuel Kant. According to him, the fundamental pattern of knowledge remains the same whether we are dealing with the perceptual type of knowledge of everyday life or with a special type of knowledge called mystic or religious knowledge. This insight was not within the purview of Kant, who was working his way through specific limitations imposed by his Western legacy. Iqbal, no doubt, drew inspiration from his Muslim legacy as bequeathed by thinkers like al-Farabi, according to whom higher thought (or 'intellect' as he called it) "rises to the level of communion, ecstasy, and inspiration". It was under the inspiration of Muslim Sufis and thinkers that he could enlarge his vision regarding the knowledge of man. In fairness to Kant, however, it may be said that Iqbal accepted his epistemic model in toto and extended its application beyond the pale of sensible and empirical knowledge into the non-sensible realm of entities with which religion deals - a venture which, if accepted, will extend human knowledge beyond its present limits into various directions and dimensions.
34. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7
Kamuran Gödelek

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Sufism, as a mystic sect of Islam, can be defined as a philosophy of inner experience. The process of inner thought and experience plays an important role in sufism. Existentialism is also a philosophy of being. In existentialism being cannot be rationalized; it can be experienced in a personal venture which philosophy is the way to achieve. The aim of this paper is to compare sufi philosophers with theist existentialist philosophers mainly on the concept of person. How religious elements play a role in forming the concept of person in each philosophical system is investigated by means of several basic parameters such as being, existence, transcendent self, despair, death, knowledge and freedom. Both in sufism and theological existentialism a religious significance is given to the concept of existence. In both philosophical systems, the finitude a person experiences in this world drives one to an alienation from one's essential being to the more profound dread of guilt and anxiety, and salvation can be reached by the unification of oneself with God.
35. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7
Kai Kresse

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Philosophy should not be understood as a Eurocentric project of Greco-Judaic origin, but as a critical and fundamentally reflective intellectual practice which occurs worldwide, in many different forms. If this is so, anthropology has a crucial role to play in the project of reshaping philosophy's self-conception, to include the multiplicity of regional intellectual histories that have been neglected, and thus acknowledge and take seriously philosophical reflections from around the world. Through empirical observation, documentation, and comparative analysis, an anthropology of philosophy can help philosophy reach a better self-understanding, particularly in times of rising awareness of globally operating interdependencies and suspicions that philosophy is a smoke-screen for Eurocentric power interests. Anthropological investigation, if performed carefully and in combination with philosophical expertise, can provide concrete details, accounts and assessments of philosophical practice around the world, different from those that a sociology of philosophies (Collins 1998) or a history of philosophy can offer. It can integrate understanding of local languages and sensitivity for relevant social contexts, and need not be philosophically naive. Philosophy is linked to knowledge, the quest for knowledge, the critique of knowledge, and to the various perspectives from which forms of knowledge can be described and conceptualised. An anthropology of philosophy can be developed in relation to an anthropology of knowledge (Lambek 1993), where various locally relevant forms of knowledge are identified, observed, described and discussed, in relation to social practice. Making the case for an anthropology of philosophy, my paper refers to arguments of African philosophers, and the debate on African philosophy, while also drawing from my own fieldwork experience on philosophical discourse in a Swahili context.


36. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7

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37. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 7

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