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81. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 36
Eugene S. Poliakov Religion and Science in the Parable of the Unjust Steward
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The Parable of the Unjust Steward should be interpreted allegorically, its literal interpretation shown to be impossible. Certain facts make this parable unique: a lord as the Lord; divine possessions; the symbolism of the house interpreted as a human being; the material principles of the world understood as the governor of a human being; the Lord’s debtors as spiritual teachers of various kinds; theological doctrines with their own theogonic and cosmogonic views, all claiming to know the truth in its wholeness. Their debts consist of their misunderstandings and errors which have caused the difference between them and truth. Examples of the part of the material principles of the world in correcting theological doctrines are adduced. Two different kinds of debt are considered. I conclude that ‘make to yourselves friends of the riches of unrighteousness’ means that the material reasons of the world, the wisdom of this age, must be used for the good of spiritual teachings.
82. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 36
Josefa Rojo La Virtud en los Paganos Segun San Agustin
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This paper attempts to demonstrate that the reason why Augustine rejected the idea that pagans have virtues is not because he conceived of true virtue only in a supernatural way—that is to say, that pagans do not have the grace of God-but because they lack the right intentions in their acting. In fact, it is not that they are not capable of virtues because they do not have faith, but rather it is because they are not loyal to the natural law of God; they do not follow the right order of nature. It follows theoretically that pagans who have right intentions are capable of true virtues, as everyone else; and also, that every person who misses right intentions, although having faith, is not capable of true virtues.
83. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 36
William Lad Sessions “Author! Author! Some Reflections on Design in and beyond Hume’s Dialogues”
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Hume's Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion (1779) may be read in the way Cleanthes (and Philo as well) reads Nature, as analogous to human artifice and contrivance. The Dialogues and Nature then are both texts, with an intelligent author or Author, and analogies may be started from these five facts of Hume's text: the independence of Hume's characters; the non-straightforwardness of the characters' discourse; the way the characters interact and live; the entanglements of Pamphilus as an internal author; and the ways in which a reader is also involved in making a dialogue. These and other analogies should reflect upon the Author of Nature as they do upon Hume's authorship: They do not prove the existence of their respective authors, but may well shed some light on the nature of these disparate beings.
84. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 36
Henry Simoni-Wastila Inclusive Infinity and Radical Particularity: Hartshorne, Hegel and Nishida
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God, or in Nishida’s case Buddha-nature, is frequently conceptualized as relating to the world by including it within the Infinite. Particular elements within the world are not seen as existing in absolute differentiation or total negation from Spirit, God, or Absolute Non-Being. The Many are not excluded but are, on the contrary, included within the One. The logic by which the One includes the Many is a logic of manifold unity, or, as Hegel quite confidently puts it, true infinity as opposed to spurious infinity. I will argue that such a logic of inclusive infinity is operative in Hartshorne, Hegel and Nishida. Each uses different terminology and writes with different systemic emphases, but as applied to God or the Ultimate, the function and consequences of the logic of inclusivity are strikingly similar for all three philosophers. Although infinite inclusivity provides a way of unifying the chaotic diversity of existence into a rational totality, there are central questions that have remained unanswered in the three metaphysicians. Primary among them is the question that sums up within itself many of the others: the problem of radical particularity. The particular elements of the world which are claimed to be included within the parameters of the Ultimate are just that: particular fragments of reality. I argue that their particular nature makes it impossible for the Infinite to incorporate them within its purview without raising serious difficulties.
85. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 36
Aharon Shear-Yashuv Jewish Philosophers on Reason and Revelation
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Are reason and revelation different sources of truth? Do they contradict or complement each other? The present article tries to give an answer to these ancient questions from a Jewish pluralistic point of view. I describe the essential views of the most important representatives of the two main schools of Jewish thought: the rationalists Maimonides, Moses Mendelssohn, and Hermann Cohen, and the antirationalists Judah Halevi and Solomon Levi Steinheim. I show that even the antirationalists use the tools of rationalism, by which Talmudic-rabbinic thought is characterized, in an attempt to show that they are not irrationalists. The comparison of this attitude with the general philosophic tradition shows that Aristotle’s notion of potential knowledge is closer to Jewish thought than Plato’s view of recollection.
86. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 36
Frederick Sontag Hearing the Word
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That is the crucial question: Did God intend direct and final communication with us? There is little evidence that Jesus' appearance cleared anything up or gave us God directly. Wittgenstein, who wanted language to be clear, knew well enough that neither the Hebrew nor the Christian God's words could fall within his constructed linguistic net.
87. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 36
Daryl J. Wennemann The Role of Love in the Thought of Kant and Kierkegaard
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Following Ronald Green's suggestion concerning Kierkegaard's dependence upon Kant, I show how Kierkegaard drew upon Kant's The Metaphysics of Morals in order to develop his own doctrine of divine love. Where Kant saw only a peripheral role for love in the moral life, we will see how Kierkegaard places love at the center of human life in Works of Love. The leap of faith requires that every aspect of life be informed by love in response to God's love for us.
88. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 36
William F. Vallicella Classical Theism and Global Supervenience Physicalism
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Could a classical theist be a physicalist? Although a negative answer to this question may seem obvious, it turns out that a case can be made for the consistency of a variant of classical theism and global supervenience physicalism. Although intriguing, the case ultimately fails due to the weakness of global supervenience as an account of the dependence of mental on physical properties.
89. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 36
Walter Van Herck The Role of Tacit Knowledge in Religion
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Clarity concerning what kind of knowledge a religious person possesses is of the utmost importance. For one thing, J. Whittaker remarks that believers must have some knowledge that enables them to make the distinction between literal and non-literal descriptions of God. (1) In the believer's perception 'God is a rock', but not really a rock. God however really is love. Whittaker suggests that making this distinction requires knowledge that cannot be metaphysical or experiential, but a more basic form which he terms 'practical' knowledge. Without going into his discussion of the metaphysical and experiential view, I would like to elaborate on this notion of knowledge in three steps. Firstly, I want to consider a short passage in Kant's Critique of Pure Reason (A 132-3 / B 171-2) on judgment. This passage points out that we necessarily know more than we can say or state. Secondly, Michael Polanyi's account of tacit knowledge will be introduced to see what 'religious tacit knowledge' could mean to be. Thirdly, analysis of a text from Meister Eckhart's Reden der Unterweisung will aim to show the relevance of this notion of practical (or tacit) knowledge in religious contexts.
90. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 36
David E. White The Elimination of Natural Theology
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The dispute between fideists and rationalists seems intractable since those who argue for faith alone claim that they are offended by the use of reason in religion. The advocates of reason claim that they are equally offended by the appeal to faith. This dispute may be resolved by showing that those who rely on faith may be seen as engaging in an experiment of living, so they can become part of a rational experiment without having to alter their practice; in contrast, those who use reason to justify religion can be seen as addressing a spiritual need. From an evangelical point of view, it would be wrong to disparage the mathematician’s use of the mathematical proof of God’s existence (such as Gödel’s). Wittgensteinian objections to natural theology can be met by showing that the use of reason in religion is distinct from the general kind of philosophical speculation to which Wittgenstein rightly objected. Those who claim that one must already have faith in order to seek understanding successfully can be answered by showing that their claim can be tested empirically only when there is a robust practice of natural theology among those who do and do not have a prior faith. There is reason for thinking religion should be subjected to a more rigorous scrutiny than used in secular matters.
91. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 36
Andrew Woznicki Philosophical Theantropy as the Principle of Religious Ecumenism
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One universal constituent element of human consciousness is belief in the existence of a divine reality that is experienced by persons as the most intimate and essential part of human life. Belief in transcendent reality, which is an immanent part of human nature, constitutes an awe-inspiring mystery (mysterium fascinans et tremens) — that is, a theantropy. Strictly speaking, ‘theantropy’ is a theological term which is used to express the "union of the divine and human natures in Christ" (as defined by Webster’s New Collegiate Dictionary). The novum of my understanding of theantropy consists in the application of the concept to the phenomenological experience of the religious consciousness of humanity. Henceforth, I designate theantropy to mean an ontic union and an inherent disposition of the ‘human’ and ‘divine’ constituents in/of every human being. I will examine and reflect on theantropy as the philosophical principle of religious ecumenism as well as compare various solutions of theantropy not only with regard to a particular system of beliefs, but as it is experienced in each and every human being by following Augustine’s principle: "In interiorem hominem redi: ibi habitat Deus" (or in "intimor intimo meo").
92. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 37
José E. Burgos The Relational Nature of Species Concepts
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Édouard Le Roy as early as 1901 observed the existence of an intellectual movement seeking to break from traditional positivism and set for himself the task of drawing up the program of this new positivism. Noting that this program precedes the Vienna Circle, I endeavor to determine its nature and to evaluate its impact on logical positivism. Viewed in this light, the discussions between Le Roy, Poincaré and Duhem appear more prolonged and substantial than is usually thought. What we have here is perhaps not a homogeneous doctrine but a vigorous intellectual movement, from which logical positivists were able to borrow specific theses in their attempts to mitigate Mach's strict positivism; more important still, they had before them an example of neopositivism. History is not the only concern: among the issues debated, one encounters the claim that facts are theory-laden. This claim still stirs controversy today. An inquiry into the origins of the claim is one way of clarifying the arguments involved.
93. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 37
Armando Cíntora Critical Comments on Laudan’s Theory of Scientific Aims
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I criticize Laudan's constraints on cognitive aims as presented in Science and Values. These constraints are axiological consistency and non-utopianism. I argue that (i) Laudan's prescription for non utopian aims is too restrictive because it excludes ideals and characterizes as irrational or non-rational numerous human contingencies. (ii) We aim to ideals because there is no cogent way to specify in advance what degree of deviation from an ideal is acceptable. Thus, one cannot dispense with ideals. (iii) Laudan does not distinguish difficult from impossible goals, making his injunction against utopianism imprecise. It is "semantically utopian" and, furthermore, a prescription for conservatism and mediocrity. (iv) Goals often contradict each other or are at least partially incompatible. Since Laudan does not say how to prioritize incompatible aims, axiological consistency is an utopian desideratum. Thus, his constraints on cognitive aims contradict one another. Finally, (v), Laudan's axiological constraints are too weak and in order to strengthen them, he must invoke without justification some implicit pre-philosophical cognitive aims. This opens the logical possibility of axiological relativism, which Laudan attempted from the beginning to avoid.
94. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 37
Manuel Comesaña ¿Tiene Derecho a Existir la Filosofía de la Ciencia?
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En este trabajo se suscribe la tesis de que la filosofía de la ciencia-al igual que las demás ramas de la filosofía-consiste en discusiones interminables sobre problemas que no se pueden resolver, pero se sostiene también que, a pesar (o a causa) de eso, tiene derecho a existir debido a que cumple funciones importantes, entre ellas precisamente la de dar lugar a discusiones interminables sobre problemas que no se pueden resolver, actividad que a las personas con genuina vocación filosófica les produce una satisfacción intelectual difícil de entender para quienes no comparten esa vocación.
95. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 37
David Boersema Inductivism, Naturalism, and Metascientific Theories
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In this paper I will argue that, while inductivism as a view concerning scientific theories has been discredited, the (often implicit) criteria for evaluating metascientific theories is in fact primarily inductivist. The very philosophical community that has condemned and eschewed inductivism for scientific theories in fact applies inductivism for its own metascientific theories. While somewhat troubling, matters are compounded for those advocating a naturalist stance toward metascientific theories, since those advocates suggest that there is not (or should not be) a sharp division between scientific theories and metascientific theories.
96. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 37
Elba del Carmen Riera La Complejidad: Consideraciones Epistemológicas y Filosóficas
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La ciencia no puede escapar al condicionamiento cultural. Desde hace unos treinta años ha surgido un interés particular por una nueva línea de investigación que privilegia un objeto de estudio interdisciplinar: los sistemas complejos. Se trata de una respuesta al cambio cultural frente a conceptos como los de desorden y caos que estaban desplazados del ámbito de la ciencia clásica, por ser considerarlos informes y vacíos de significación. Hoy hay toda una revalorización de los mismos. Los sistemas complejos se ubican entre la categoría de orden entendida como sinónimo de determinismo y previsibilidad total de la naturaleza y el caos, concebido como azar y desorden total, donde nada puede ser previsto. La complejidad, en cambio, supone irreversibilidad, temporalidad, no-linealidad, aleatoriedad, fluctuaciones, bifurcaciones, autoorganización, probabilidad y extrae de esta nueva información, una enorme riqueza de posibilidades para hacer crecer la ciencia. Intentamos resumir los caracteres fundamentales de este nuevo paradigma que, por medio de un nuevo lenguaje epistemológico postula la creación de categorías y conceptos diferentes para la ciencia actual, lo que se está traduciendo en una ampliación de la racionalidad científica
97. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 37
Assen I. Dimitrov Do Attractors Exist in Physical Space: The Truth Is Out There
98. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 37
Gregg Alan Davia Thoughts on a Possible Rational Reconstruction of the Method of “Rational Reconstruction”
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Rational reconstructions standardly operate so as to transform a given problematic philosophical scientific account-particularly of a terminological, methodological or theoretical entity-into a similar, but more precise, consistent interpretation. This method occupies a central position in the practice of analytic philosophy. Nevertheless, we encounter-even if only in a very few specific publications-a vague image of it. This is due on the one hand to the problem of the intentions of application, i.e., of the normativity of rational reconstruction (descriptive/prescriptive-ambivalence). It is also due on the other hand to the problem of the significance of the method in the field of history of philosophy (systematic/historical-dichotomy). The varied usage within analytic philosophy, as well as the increasingly inflationary and interfering usage outside, contribute to make rational reconstruction somehow appear a Proteus in contemporary philosophical methodology. This paper attempts to administer first aid and to close a bit of the theoretical gap and thus to reach a more exact image for the interests of analytic philosophy. Self-application of the method appears to be the right remedy. A graduating rational reconstruction of a standard concept of rational reconstruction will be suggested, differentiating the concept of rational reconstruction according to normativity, and explicating the method of rational reconstruction into two such variants.
99. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 37
Gustaaf C. Cornelis Is Popularization of Science Possible?
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If the philosophy of science wants to pass along its views adequately to the public, it is important that the latter have a basic general understanding of science. Only in this way can "popularization of science" be meaningful from a philosophical and educational point of view. Is "good" popularization a possibility or merely a utopian phantasm. I conclude that popularization of science is possible if certain conditions are met. Scientists have to take responsibility and be honest in their efforts, both toward science as well as the public.
100. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 37
Gyorgy Darvas Ontological Levels and Symmetry Breaking
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I discuss the role of symmetry breaking in a philosophical context, and formulate laws of symmetry breaking. I deal with their conceptual and ontological background, limits of validity, their relation to the theories of evolution and reductionism and to level theories. Level theories are used to make a sequential arrangement of the forms of appearance of moving matter. Aspects of symmetry or symmetry breaking have never been involved in the treatment of these theories. Here, I first attempt to bring knowledges of different origins together. There are two types of level theories: a general one (in philosophy) and particular ones (in the inanimate, the organic nature and in the human society). Particular level theories differ from each other in the three fundamental ontological spheres, and in their description and contents . At the same time they may have common features, e.g., all are particular theories concerning their width of validity, and all are based on an arrangement by a common concept, namely the forms of interaction. The clarification of these conceptual problems was necessary to understand the laws of symmetry breaking. The law of correspondence between the ontological levels and their potential symmetry properties is formulated in four constituent statements and two concluding laws are also presented. The new features of this treatment will link level theories with (dis)symmetry principles, and formulate the laws of symmetry breaking.