Whitehead does not provide us with a systematic account of the various types of experience to which the word “memory” is applied. Nevertheless, he does provide us with a way of understanding the world, and living creatures who inhabit it, that places the discussion in a different context from the usual one: the diverse features of human experience that we call memory are developed forms of basic patterns of relationship that characterize all actual entities. I will first review the relevant (...) features of Whitehead's conceptuality, then contrast the resulting view with its usual formulation, and then speculate about some forms of memory in Whiteheadian categories. (shrink)
Against its prominent compatiblist and libertarian opponents, I defend Galen Strawson's Basic Argument for the impossibility of moral responsibility. Against John Martin Fischer, I argue that the Basic Argument does not rely on the premise that an agent can be responsible for an action only if he is responsible for every factor contributing to that action. Against Alfred Mele and Randolph Clarke, I argue that it is absurd to believe that an agent can be responsible for an action when no (...) factor contributing to that action is up to that agent. Against Derk Pereboom and Clarke, I argue that the versions of agent-causal libertarianism they claim can immunize the agent to the Basic Argument actually fail to do so. Against Robert Kane, I argue that the Basic Argument does not rely on the premise that simply the presence of indeterministic factors in the process of bringing an action about is itself what rules out the agent's chance for being responsible for that action. (shrink)
Philosophers and scientists have maintained that causation, correlation, and "partial correlation" are essentially related. These views give rise to various rules of causal inference. This essay considers the "claims of several philosophers and social scientists for causal systems with dichotomous variables. In section 2 important commonalities and differences are explicated among four major conceptions of correlation. In section 3 it is argued that whether correlation can serve as a measure of A's causal influence on B depends upon the conception of (...) causation being used and upon certain background assumptions. In section 4 five major kinds of "partial correlation" are explicated, and some of the important relations are established among two conceptions of "partial correlation", the conception of "screening off", the conception of "partitioning", and the measures of causal influence which have been suggested by advocates of path analysis or structural equation methods. In section 5 it is argued that whether any of these five conceptions of "partial correlation" can serve as a measure of causal influence depends upon the conception of causation being used and upon certain background assumptions. The important conclusion is that each of the approaches (considered here) to causal inference for causal systems with dichotomous variables stands in need of important qualifications and revisions if they are to be justified. (shrink)
This is a review of the book Cultivating Original Enlightenment: Wŏnhyo's Exposition of the Vajrasamādhi-Sūtra , by Robert E. Buswell, Jr., published by the Univeristy of Hawaii Press (2008). This volume, the first to be published in the Collected Works of Wŏnhyo series, contains the translation of a single text by Wŏnhyo, the Kŭmgang Sammaegyŏng Non.