Zeno's paradoxes of motion and the semantic paradoxes of the Liar have long been thought to have metaphorical affinities. There are, in fact, isomorphisms between variations of Zeno's paradoxes and variations of the Liar paradox in infinite-valued logic. Representing these paradoxes in dynamical systems theory reveals fractal images and provides other geometric ways of visualizing and conceptualizing the paradoxes.
Formal systems are standardly envisaged in terms of a grammar specifying well-formed formulae together with a set of axioms and rules. Derivations are ordered lists of formulae each of which is either an axiom or is generated from earlier items on the list by means of the rules of the system; the theorems of a formal system are simply those formulae for which there are derivations. Here we outline a set of alternative and explicitly visual ways of envisaging and analyzing (...) at least simple formal systems using fractal patterns of infinite depth. Progressively deeper dimensions of such a fractal can be used to map increasingly complex wffs or increasingly complex 'value spaces', with tautologies, contradictions, and various forms of contingency coded in terms of color. This and related approaches, it turns out, offer not only visually immediate and geometrically intriguing representations of formal systems as a whole but also promising formal links (1) between standard systems and classical patterns in fractal geometry, (2) between quite different kinds of value spaces in classical and infinite-valued logics, and (3) between cellular automata and logic. It is hoped that pattern analysis of this kind may open possibilities for a geometrical approach to further questions within logic and metalogic. (shrink)
Introduction: "Know yourself" -- The revelation of God's wisdom -- Credo ut intellegam -- Intellego ut credam -- The relationship between faith and reason -- The interventions of the Magisterium in philosophical matters -- The interaction between philosophy and theology -- Current requirements and tasks -- Conclusion.
(2013). Heidegger, Wittgenstein and St Paul on the Last Judgement: On the Roots and Significance of ‘The Theoretical Attitude’. British Journal for the History of Philosophy: Vol. 21, No. 1, pp. 143-164. doi: 10.1080/09608788.2012.686980.
Alfred Loisy (1857-1940), the excommunicated French modernist priest and historian of religions, and Franz Cumont (1868-1947), the Belgian historian of religions and expert in pagan mystery cults, conducted a lively correspondence in which they intensively exchanged ideas. One of their favorite subjects for discussion was the dependence of St Paul on the pagan mysteries. Loisy dealt with this early 20 th century moot point for Protestant, Catholic and non-religious scholars in his publications, while Cumont always remained silent. This study (...) of their unpublished letters sheds new light on the strategies lying behind their publications. It reveals what they chose not to say, and what they meant by what they did say. (shrink)
The biocentric outlook on nature affirms our fellowship with other living creatures and portrays human beings as members of the Earth’s community who have equal moral standing with other living members of the community. A comparison of Paul Taylor’s biocentric theory of environmental ethics and the life and writings of St. Francis of Assisi reveals that Francis maintained a biocentric environmental ethic. This individualistc environmental ethic is grounded in biology and is unaffected by the paradigm shift in ecology in (...) which nature is regarded as in flux rather than tending toward equilibrium. A holistic environmental ethic that accords moral standing to holistic entities (species, ecosytems, biotic communities) is more vulnerable to these changes in ecology than an environmental ethic that accords moral standing to individuals. Another strength of biocentrism is its potential to provide a unified front across religious and scientific lines. (shrink)
St. Vincent de Paul (1581–1660) is well known for his contribution to charitable and social works. Even though he left no detailed examination of his business practices, by examining his life and his commitment to the poor, it is possible to frame a Vincentian theology of business ethics. Such an understanding would include educating students in the social teaching of the Catholic Church, a preferential option for the poor, good organization, sound business theory, economizing, and a foundation in the (...) liberal arts. (shrink)
There is a way of looking at Christian doctrine as classically formulated by St. Paul in “Letter to the Romans” that enables us to see it as proceeding in a quite rigorous sense to introduce variations on monotheism (excavating and defining new dialectical pathways) that had been inaugurated by Judaism. The structure of Jewish belief that confronted St. Paul and his contemporaries had given rise to certain jarring paradoxes that St. Paul, with his Rabbinically trained mind1 that (...) is amply in evidence in the text of Romans, sought to resolve. I would like to map the emergence of these paradoxes…. (shrink)
This paper considers the questions that Badiou's theory poses to the culture of economic managerialism within education. His argument that radical change is possible, for people and the situations they inhabit, provides a stark challenge to the stifling nature of much current educational debate. In Saint Paul: The Foundation of Universalism , Badiou describes the current universalism of capitalism, monetary homogeneity and the rule of the count. Badiou argues that the politics of identity are all too easily subsumed by (...) the prerogatives of the marketplace and unable to present, therefore, a critique of the status quo. These processes are, he argues, without the potential for truth. What are the implications of Badiou's claim that education is the arranging of 'the forms of knowledge in such a way that truth may come to pierce a hole in them' ( Badiou, 2005 , p. 9)? I will argue that Badiou's theory opens up space for a kind of thinking about education that resists its colonisation by the cultures of management and marketisation and leads educationalists to consider the emancipatory potential of education in a refreshing new light. (shrink)
The essay distils from Badiou's writing a pedagogy based on his theories of knowledge and truth, as brought to bear on poetry and the arts. By following Badiou's implicit ontology of learning, which presupposes a dynamic and passionate engagement with a concrete situation, the essay argues that Badiou's view of modernity, in particular, contributes greatly to the educational topic, and offers an alternative teaching paradigm to the outmoded schools of criticism of the 20 th century. It also argues that the (...) concept of universalism in education, as against identitarian particularism, is further evinced from a discussion of Badiou's study of St. Paul. (shrink)
Søren Kierkegaard used his literary, philosophical, and theological voice to reintroduce Christianity to Christendom. In this effort, he repeatedly uses the Apostle Paul’s first letter to the church in Corinth. Though some have noted the importance of 1 Corinthians for Kierkegaard, they have not explained this importance nor this letter’s role in Kierkegaard’s corpus. This essay seeks to fill this gap in Kierkegaard scholarship by explaining the role this letter plays in Kierkegaard’s Climacean authorship. Paul’s battle with the (...) Corinthian view of wisdom and Kierkegaard’s battle with Hegelian philosophy, which seeks to go beyond faith through speculative thinking, share similarities that engender both their works. In their battles with their respective foes, both develop a Christocentric epistemology that displaces the import of human understanding and cognitive content with the person Jesus who inverts their opponents’ epistemic values by salvifically redefining wisdom and knowledge. This epistemology of a different kind is an offense, foolishness, and absurd to their opponents because it cannot be intellectually grasped by human understanding, but rather in and through the passion of faith, which places the individual in relation with Jesus. For both authors, this relation is the essential point for the Christian life. (shrink)
This paper revisits Giorgio Agamben’s text The Time That Remains and through a comparative analysis contrasts the author’s reading of St Paul’s Romans to relevant Derridean thematics prevalent in the text. Specific themes include language, the law, and the subject. I illustrate how Agamben attempts to revitalise the idea of philosophical anthropology by breaking away from the deconstructive approach. Agamben argues that language is an experience but is currently in a state of nihilism. Consequently, the subject has become lost; (...) or, more specifically, the subject and its object have not disappeared in language but through language. The resuscitation of experience is thus required to defeat this condition: only in language does the subject have its site and origin. Unlike deconstruction, which highlights an inherent paradox within a situation unearthing a questionable foundation, Agamben argues that, by investigating the “exception,” one finds neither a norm nor an inherent truth of the situation, but the confusion which surrounds them both. (shrink)