In verse twelve of the Tao Te Ching, Lao Tzu makes a curious claim about the five flavors; namely that they cause people not to taste or that they jade the palate. The five flavors are: sweet, sour, salt, bitter and spicy or hot as in 'heat'. To the Western mind, the claim, 'The five flavors cause them [persons] to not taste,' is counterintuitive; on the contrary, the presence of the five flavors in a dish or in a meal would (...) expand or enhance the senses and the palate, i.e., taste would be augmented by the five flavors. So what is the plausible meaning of the Taoistic claim? To answer this question, I look very briefly at the history of the doctrine of the five flavors and the history of Chinese cuisine. Lao Tzu probably has Confucian feasts in mind in making such a claim, but other interpretations are discussed. (shrink)
Recently David Best has advanced the claim that sport is not an art form, and that although sport may be aesthetic, it is not artistic. Such a claim is false and runs counter to ordinary usage and sport practice. On behalf of sport practice, let me cite as an example the world-class Canadian skater, Toller Cranston, who thinks there are such things as ‘artistic sports, those being gymnastics, diving, figure skating’. Best claims that athletes like Cranston are conceptually confused and (...) that they endow sport with greater respectability than should be allowed. Ascribing the predicate ‘artistic’ to sport performances reflects ‘barbarous usage’. Why does Best exclude the artistic from the realm of sport? Upon examination of his argument, one finds that this exclusion derives mainly from his concepts of art and sport. He thinks that art has a subject-matter, a content, and that sport does not. Sport is contentless, so ‘sport’ and ‘art’ are two logically distinct regions. But is this so? Are we to accept Best's argument or are we to listen to accomplished, reflective athletes in the area of artistic sports? It seems the most reasonable analytic procedure would be to listen to Cranston's case and decide whether such a piece of intentionalist criticism5 should override Best's premises. (shrink)
The oriental martial arts tend to be viewed as having deep, mysterious significance and secret, occult practices. An adept in a martial art is supposed to be not only an expert in combat but also a spiritual master, worthy of assuming a religious status for his students. Much of what is written under the name of "philosophy of the martial arts" emphasizes these characteristics, and makes claims about the results of martial arts training that may well perplex an outsider. We (...) propose to examine three of these claims in such a way that they become intelligible, and are put in terms compatible with the Western philosophical tradition. The task that we set ourselves, then, is not so much to assess the truth of these claims, as to determine and to explain what claims are being made, and what their justifications might be. We seek to show that, although some of the experiences that a person in the martial arts may have may be esoteric, the comprehension of claims made about these experiences need not be. We shall, thus, try to make a start at bringing what is called the philosophy of the martial arts out of a close connection with near mystic insight into a more public domain in which philosophical issues in the martial arts can be discussed in a way compatible with Western philosophy. (shrink)
Recent research has focused on establishing the values of preserving biodiversity both in agriculture and in less managed ecosystems, and in showing the importance of the role of cultural diversity in preserving biodiversity in food production systems. A study of the philosophy embedded in cultural systems can reveal the importance of the technological information for preserving genetic biodiversity contained in such systems and can be used to support arguments for the protection/preservation of cultural diversity. For example, corn or maize can (...) serve as a paradigm of Native American thinking and can provide one of the few areas from which common philosophical conceptions can emerge. An examination of the cultivation of corn or maize as an agricultural activity and as a cultural activity in Native American literature reveals a philosophy that recognizes the importance of biodiversity and provides techniques for its preservation. Corn, and the food and the materials derived from it, is something thought out, not by specialists, but by the entire tribe and its ancestors, even if this thinking is done within what we might consider a framework of highly mythical notions. Importantly, this framework yields an understanding of both the genetics and nutrition of corn. A survey of these mythical notions (myths and stories) and agricultural practices makes this thought explicit and exemplifies the value of cultural diversity and biodiversity. (shrink)
How does aesthetic education begin and expand over time? David Hume’s idea of the narrow circle provides us with an answer when considering this question. He uses the narrow circle to explain how moral practices evolve, and by analogy, we can also use this conception to explain how aesthetic practices evolve. So I will first of all begin with a discussion of his essay “The Standard of Taste.”1 In this essay, Hume gives an excellent profile of the critic who has (...) the traits to generate the standard of taste: delicacy of taste or a delicate imagination; practice in a particular art; ability to make comparisons, free from prejudice; and good sense in exercising the former traits. He says that few are qualified... (shrink)
What are the historical origins of aesthetic education? One of these comes from the eighteenth century. This became an important theme in a novel of the time. Published in 1761, Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s Julie, or the New Heloise: Letters of Two Lovers Who Live in a Small Town at the Foot of the Alps1 was an instant success in eighteenth-century Europe. Widely read, the novel made European culture self-conscious and forced it to pay attention to aspects of living that had gone (...) unnoticed or underappreciated, including taste and food.2 These aspects—taste and food—become concrete manifestations of aesthetic education. Through the voices of Julie and her tutor-turned-lover Saint Preux, they provide a lively critique of .. (shrink)
The phrase “the end of art” has a long association with Arthur C. Danto.1 Indeed, Danto popularized the idea and offered an explanation of this puzzling notion. How could there have been an end of art when it has robustly continued? For this question to make sense, the meaning of “end” is not in the sense of termination, finality, or death in a literal, physical sense. So in 1912 when Marius de Zayas pronounced “art is dead,” he must have thought (...) the historical circumstances warranted it and found the metaphor illuminating: “[Art’s] present movements are not at all indications of vitality; they are not even the convulsions of agony prior to death; they are the mechanical reflex actions of a corpse.”2 In less .. (shrink)
In this editorial note, the editor thanks Division 24's Executive Committee for their praise and continuing support of the Bulletin format; introduces the current issue while mentioning its new features; and notes that it includes a brief description of two books, a listing of new books, and Executive Committee suggestions. 2012 APA, all rights reserved).
The perception created by the combination of olfaction and taste is called flavor.What is the number of tastes or flavors we have? Is it five, as most Chinese believe? None, as the ancient Taoists asserted? Four, as Western science traditionally claims? Or is it six or seven or even fourteen? World cuisines are at odds on this issue, and I shall briefly explore here their reasons for their numbers. There is a consensus among some of the elements that tells us (...) something about the human makeup or constitution. The other elements reveal social and cultural differences and varying environmental conditions.The doctrine of the five flavors dates to the Xia Dynasty (c. twenty-first to sixteenth centuries BCE), where .. (shrink)
Husserl focused perhaps more than any other philosopher on the relationship between philosophy and psychology. This problem was important to him because the European project of universal science must include sciences of consciousness that address questions of meaning, value and purpose so crucial for humanity. This paper provides a sketch of the later Husserl’s thinking on this issue in order to clarify the relationships among transcendental philosophy as the mother of the sciences, psychology as the foundational mental science, and the (...) various regional sciences of persons. Radicalizing and extending the transcendental tradition to free philosophy from naturalism, Husserl developed methods and fundamental concepts for understanding consciousness in its distinctive world constituting function. In parallel fashion, Husserl traced the historical failures of psychology to its naturalistic philosophy, from which he liberated the discipline by means of phenomenological reflections on the intentional property of its subject matter. This pure focus on mental processes resulted in the clarification of the transcendental phenomenological foundation of psychology as well as a recognition of the paradoxical manner in which psychological processes are both world constituting and mundanely present in the lives of persons. The apperceptive synthesis of transcendental consciousness and mundane embodiment in the identification of the person is proposed as essential for a non-naturalistic, intentional psychology, which provides appropriate concepts and the method of intentional analysis for such sciences of persons as sociology, history, literary studies, and religious studies. The problems, means, and inevitable inadequacies of communicating transcendental insights in language are discussed. Analysis of the complexity of living persons discloses their transcendental dimension in the manifolds their mundane activities and in their products, including use, cultural, and art objects as well as social institutions. Attention is drawn to resources in phenomenology beyond Husserl and in the genuine psychological intuitions of non-phenomenologists for generating non-naturalistic, phenomenologically grounded person sciences. (shrink)
Reviews the general orientation of cognitive psychology, some contemporary difficulties and problems noted by cognitive psychologists, and apparent commonalities between phenomenological and cognitive psychologies. It is argued that the problems of cognitive psychology are inevitable consequences of its natural scientific orientation, which is far more traditional than it is revolutionary. A phenomenologically based, human science approach to psychology is offered as a solution of fundamental disciplinary problems. 2012 APA, all rights reserved).