Giordano Bruno (1548-1600) was a philosopher in his own right. However, he was famous through the centuries due to his execution as a heretic. His pronouncements against teachings of the Catholic Church, his defence of the cosmology of Nicholas Copernicus, and his provocative personality, all this made him a paradigmatic figure of modernity. Bruno’s way of philosophizing is not looking for outright solutions but rather for the depth of the problems; he knows his predecessors and their strategies as well as (...) their weaknesses, which he exposes satirically. This introduction helps to identify the original thought of Bruno who proudly said about himself: “Philosophy is my profession!” His major achievements concern the creativity of the human mind studied through the theory of memory, the infinity of the world, and the discovery of atomism for modernity. He never held a permanent office within or without the academic world. Therefore, the way of thinking of this “Knight Errant of Philosophy” will be presented along the stations of his journey through Western Europe. (shrink)
The relationship between body and mind was traditionally discussed in terms of immortality of the intellect, because immateriality was one necessary condition for the mind to be immortal. This appeared to be an issue of metaphysics and religion. But to the medieval and Renaissance thinkers, the essence of mind is thinking activity and hence an epistemological feature. Starting with John Searle’s worries about the existence of consciousness, I try to show some parallels with the Aristotelian Pietro Pomponazzi (1462–1525), and eventually (...) show the Neoplatonic approach in Marsilio Ficino (1433–1499). The guiding question is: how can one philosophically address the problem of cognition in terms of corporeality and incorporeality? Searle maintains there is mind, although essentially related to a biological basis, and he is comparable to the Renaissance thinkers for his taking the interaction of the mental and the corporeal seriously. (shrink)
"Die eigentliche Optik Paul Richard Blums sollte man akkurat als holistisch bezeichnen. Es handelt sich um ein verborgenes Streben nach Ganzheitlichkeit, das diesem Buch eine methodologische Einheit gibt. ... Ein Mensch zu sein nach dem Zeitalter der Renaissance und Moderne ... bedeutet die Aufgabe, sich in einer strukturellen und inhaltlichen Offenheit zu situieren, die die verschiedenen Antworten auf die Frage: Was heißt es, ein Mensch zu sein? in der paradoxen Einheit eines neuen Humanismus zusammenbringt. ... Genau wie die Philosophie des (...) 20. Jahrhunderts ... das Fragen selbst ins Zentrum des Denkens stellte, so versucht Blum, Peter Wust folgend, das Prinzip insecuritas als Herzstück seiner Philosophie zu definieren." Balázs Mezei (Budapest). (shrink)
On the 27th of October, 1949, the Department of Philosophy at the University of Manchester organized a symposium "Mind and Machine", as Michael Polanyi noted in his Personal Knowledge (1974, p. 261). This event is known, especially among scholars of Alan Turing, but it is scarcely documented. Wolfe Mays (2000) reported about the debate, which he personally had attended, and paraphrased a mimeographed document that is preserved at the Manchester University archive. He forwarded a copy to Andrew Hodges and B. (...) Jack Copeland, who in then published it on their respective websites. The basis of this interpretation here is the copy preserved in the Regenstein Library of the University of Chicago, Special Collections, Polanyi Collection (abbreviated RPC, box 22, folder 19). The same collection holds the mimeographed statement that Polanyi prepared for this symposium: "Can the mind be represented by a machine?" This text has not been studied by Polanyi scholars. (shrink)
Scientific and political developments of the early twentieth century led Michael Polanyi to study the role of the scientist in research and the interaction between the individual scholar and the surrounding conditions in community and society. In his concept of “personal knowledge” he gave the theory and history of science an anthropological turn. In many instances of the history of sciences, research is driven by a commitment to beliefs and values. Society plays the role of authority and communicative backdrop that (...) presupposes individual liberty. As a system of beliefs science is rooted in community and also in history. However, as soon as fellow humans become the objects of research, their appeal transcends the researcher. Consequently, the history of human endeavor reveals a “firmament” of standards and obligations which represent an ontological reality, for which Polanyi invokes Teilhard de Chardin’s notion of noosphere. (shrink)
Contents: Preface; From faith to reason for fideism: Raymond Lull, Raimundus Sabundus and Michel de Montaigne; Nicholas of Cusa and Pythagorean theology; Giordano Bruno's philosophy of religion; Coluccio Salutati: hermeneutics of humanity; Humanism applied to language, logic and religion: Lorenzo Valla; Georgios Gemistos Plethon: from paganism to Christianity and back; Marsilio Ficino's philosophical theology; Giovanni Pico against popular Platonism; Tommaso Campanella: God makes sense in the world; Francisco Suárez – scholastic and Platonic ideas of God; Epilogue: conflicting truth claims; Bibliography; (...) Index. (shrink)
Wonder, miracle, occult science, poetry, and the epistemological implications in Renaissance authors: Marsilio Ficino, Giovanni Pico, Pietro Pomponazzi, Agrippa of Nettesheim, Giordano Bruno, Francesco Patrizi, Tommaso Campanella, Francisco Suárez.
Elisabeth Blum and Paul Richard Blum, both Loyola University Maryland, jointly published: Giordano Bruno: Spaccio della bestia trionfante / Austreibung des triumphierenden Tieres, a translation form the Italian into German with introduction and extensive commentary at Meiner Verlag in Hamburg (Germany) 2009. ISBN: 978-3-7873-1805-6.
ISBN-13: 978-1934074480 Plot Summary from the book: "An aristocratic young man, fed up with his studies, contemplates military service. His teacher is unable by any reasoning to call him back him from the path he has embarked upon. The young man enlists another youth who commits himself to the journey, dressed in military garb, and he happens upon two deserting soldiers, unsightly and ill-used both in their dress and in their hygiene. Both young men are so moved by the deserters’ (...) remarks deploring and reviling their lot in life that they return to their studies. One of the deserters, however, hopes to be welcomed back by the wife and small children he had deserted and left penniless and bereft of friends. She gives him a nasty reception, with verbal and corporal abuse, and he barely manages to have his sin forgiven and to return to her good graces." From the Table of Contents: Introduction How to Use this Book Jacobus Pontanus: Biography Jesuit Comedy – Seriously? The Stratocles as a Spiritual Exercise Just War and the Morality of Military Service A Play about War and the Real Wars of Pontanus' Time The Characters and Their Names Pontanus’ Use of Classical Sources The History of the Text of Stratocles Performance Stratocles or War Endnotes Appendices Pontanus on Humanist Studies Pontanus on Writing Comedy Renaissance School Hazing, called “Deposition” Anonymous: Instructions for Deposition Dialogue on Hazing (Progymnasma 100) . (shrink)
Nicholas of Cusa (1402-1464) explored the boundaries of human reason for the sake of making religious belief believable. Unwillingly, he became a milestone in the process of rationalizing Christian theology. Giordano Bruno (1548-1600) is a proof to this perspective by the way he makes use of Cusanus’s approach. In his ’Spaccio de la bestia trionfante’, Bruno discusses Cusanus’s attempts at the geometrical problem of squaring the circle. Bruno not only promotes his atomistic geometry, he also uses the metaphoric meaning of (...) triangle for Trinity as an occasion to supplant ’faith’ with ’sincerity’. For Bruno faith is not anymore the true belief of religion, but rather ’good faith’ and fidelity, i.e., social and political virtues. (shrink)
Syncretism is a challenge to modern philosophy, but it was the main characteristic of Giordano Bruno’s thought. This has been made clear by Frances A. Yates, who in interpreting Bruno and Renaissance Hermeticism was not afraid of connecting theories and cultural expressions which on the surface are alien to philosophy. In doing so Yates was congenial to her object of study, as syncretism of theory was no mere side effect of Hermeticism, but had a philosophical aim. This aim can be (...) identified as the desire to connect the world and its general principle, as well as the powers of the human mind, into a philosophical narrative which strives at unifying oppositions and contradictions. (shrink)
Inhalt: Descartes und das scholastische Argumentieren - Scholastik und Humanismus im Bildungsprogramm der Jesuiten - Nikolaus Cusanus - Marsilio Ficino - Giordano Bruno - Studienordnung und Philosophiebegriff: die Ratio studiorum SJ - Der ...