The saga of Ceyx, king of Trachis, begins at Met. 11.266 and continues to 11.748. Ceyx' adventures form the longest single episode in the Metamorphoses, slightly longer than the Phaethon legend. Three metamorphoses take place in the course of the Ceyx narrative. The first is that of Ceyx' brother Daedalion who is transformed into a hawk. The second transformation occurs in the course of the exiled Peleus' visit to Ceyx when a wolf attacks Peleus' cattle and sheep and is eventually (...) turned into stone. The third metamorphosis is that of Ceyx and his wife Alcyone into halcyons. The linking together of these three metamorphoses was entirely an Ovidian invention: it had never been done before. It is therefore important to see the Ceyx story as a whole, as it was put together by Ovid. Attention naturally concentrates on the most interesting episode in it – the Ceyx–Alcyone – but the Daedalion and Peleus episodes are integral parts of the narrative and not separate legends. The story is framed by the contrasting transformations of the two brothers. The fierce and bellicose Daedalion becomes a bird of prey. The gentle and uxorious Ceyx becomes a happily paired halcyon. It is ironic that we first meet Ceyx when he is mourning the transformation of his brother into a bird, since the same end awaits him. The brothers' characters are very different but their fates are similar. Ceyx' dealings with Peleus bring out the king of Trachis' hospitable, peace-loving, godly and husbandly qualities and give us a rounded and detailed picture of his personality to balance the developed character-study of his wife Alcyone which is to follow. The spotlight passes from Ceyx to Alcyone at Met. 11. 410. (shrink)
Neptunus et Apollo dicuntur Troiam muro cinxisse; his rex Laomedon uouit quod regno suo pecoris eo anno natum esset immolaturum. id uotum auaritia fefellit. alii dicunt †parum eum promisisse. The story that Neptune and Apollo together built the walls of Troy for Laomedon is well known from Homer. At the end of their year's service the perfidious king refused to pay the agreed wages. Ovid tells the familiar story in one of his transitional sections in the Metamorphoses. Hyginus' account poses (...) the textual problem indicated above. H. I. Rose comments on ‘parum’ as follows: ‘procul dubio corruptum hoc neque arridet Schmidtii coniectura promsisse. fuitne partum equarum? hoc enim plerumque narratur, equos quos a Ioue accepisset promisisse Laomedontem mercedis nomine…sed Herculi; quod facile ad deos mercennarios transferri potuit; atque non equos sed equas fuisse tradit Apollod. II, 104’. Rose rightly rejects Schmidt's emendation ‘promsisse’. ‘Promisisse’ has every sign of soundness and the difficulty lies, as Rose sees, with ‘parum’. Rose's own conjecture ‘partum equarum’, however, will not do. Apart from the oddity of the expression, one would need a good deal more persuasion than Rose offers to accept that the well-known promise of Zeus' horses which Laomedon made to Hercules was transferred from Hercules to Neptune and Apollo. There is no suggestion anywhere in the sources that Laomedon promised to give Neptune and Apollo the famous horses as payment for building the walls. (shrink)
The literature on corporate responsibility contains a wide range of arguments for business sector involvement in matters of social and political community. Some writers argue for extensive involvement, while others draw relatively narrow boundaries around the appropriate sphere of a company's nonbusiness activity. One way to classify and clarify these various views is to examine each in light of the notion of business-society relationship which underlies it. Four ways of understanding the business-society relationship are articulated here, together with the arguments (...) for corporate responsibility that emerge from them. (shrink)
In recent times, daily, ordinary medical practices have incontrovertibly been developing under the condition of complexity. Complexity jeopardizes the moral core of practicing medicine: helping people, with their illnesses and suffering, in a medically competent way. Practical wisdom has been proposed as part of the solution to navigate complexity, aiming at the provision of morally good care. Practical wisdom should help practitioners to maneuver in complexity, where the presupposed linear ways of operating prove to be insufficient. However, this solution is (...) unsatisfactory, because the proposed versions of practical wisdom are too individualistic of nature, while physicians are continuously operating in varying teams, and dealing with complicated technologies and pressing structures. A second point of critique is, that these versions are theory based, and thus insufficiently attuned to the actual context of everyday medical practices. Now, our proposal is to use an approach of practical wisdom that enables medical practices to counter the complexity issue and to re-invent the moral core of medical practicing as well. This implies a practice oriented approach, as thematized by practice theory, qualitative empirical research from the inside, and abduction from actual performed practical wisdom towards an apt understanding of phronèsis. (shrink)
The “Tower of London” puzzle was adapted to tablet PCs to be used as a clinical bedside test. “Iso-problems”, a specific class of problems, require identical moves but ball colours are permuted. Thus difficulty is the same even if the appearance is different. We wanted to determine the impact of these as yet little-studied tasks and hypothesised that there may be a learning effect specific to them (the “iso-effect”). We interspersed a set of six iso-problems within one selection of 22 (...) tasks and analysed problem solving by 81 healthy adults (mean age 41.6 years). Participants showed learning across iso-problems (less time, fewer moves, increasingly efficient solutions). This effect was distinct from general learning, as was obvious from comparison with a series of non-isomorphic tasks. However, participants seem not to be aware of solving such problems. This “iso-effect” may be related to implicit memory, a domain that so far has not been assessed using the Tower of London. (shrink)
The foundations of a theory of nonminimal coupling of matter and the gravitational field in the framework of Riemannian (or Riemann-Cartan) geometry are presented. In the absence of matter, the Einstein vacuum field equations hold. In order to allow for a Newtonian limit, the theory contains a new parameter l0 of dimension length. For systems with finite total mass, l0 is set equal to the Schwarzschild radius.
Purpose: Understanding the place of Ernst von Glasersfeld's Radical Constructivism (RC), and some of its implications, in the development of epistemology. Design: Characterization of two main options for the content of "knowledge" (without and with belief in mind-independent structures), sketch of their history in occidental thought; comparison of their properties concerning subjectivity, objectivity, second-order cybernetics, reliability of mental tools, and the needs and mechanisms for certainty and overall structures. Findings: Awareness that we structure mental working tools can, as RC suggests, (...) replace belief in mind-independent reality, and this change dissolves the conceptual problem of metaphysics-ontology, but also eliminates the certainty expected from it, which raises the possibility of relativism. Working-concepts cannot be deconstructed because they imply no ontological claims. Subject(s) are necessarily included in all knowledge (which does not mean solipsism): because subjective experience encompasses all mental tools, including those of objectivity and mathematics, while in contrast the subject itself cannot become an objective system. Practical reliability of mental tools differs from subjective certainty, which requires an ontological leap of faith to positive beliefs: for specific tools including automata, and for positive holistic structures. However, in agreement with the constructivist view, holistic views can instead have an unstructured center, with reliability = viability, which prevents relativism. In sum, belief in mid-independent reality is needed for certainty if desired; for all other purposes constructivism is more helpful. Implications: The change in view suggested by von Glasersfeld's work is of relevance for a number of fields of study with conceptual problems (such as the mind-brain relation). However, due to their generality, the implications will need evaluation in specific instances. The question of certainty needs attention for practical reasons. (shrink)
It will be my business in what follows to show, in my "longwinded" manner, that we have here no callow confusion to be thus disposed of, but the very quintessence of Spinoza's solution of the otherwise insoluble problems of human epistemology and ontology.
Patients in a vegetative state/ unresponsive wakefulness syndrome pose ethical dilemmas to those involved. Many conflicts occur between professionals and families of these patients. In the Netherlands physicians are supposed to withdraw life sustaining treatment once recovery is not to be expected. Yet these patients have shown to survive sometimes for decades. The role of the families is thought to be important. The aim of this study was to make an inventory of the professional perspective on conflicts in long-term care (...) of patients in VS/UWS. A qualitative study of transcripts on 2 Moral Deliberations in 2 cases of patients in VS/UWS in long-term care facilities. Six themes emerged: 1) Vision on VS/UWS; 2) Treatment and care plan; 3) Impact on relationships; 4) Feelings/attitude; 5) Communication; 6) Organizational aspects. These themes are related to professionals and to what families had expressed to the professionals. We found conflicts as well as contradictory feelings and thoughts to be a general feature in 4 of these themes, both in professionals and families. Conflicts were found in several actors: within families concerning all 6 themes, in nurse teams concerning the theme treatment and care plan, and between physicians concerning all 6 themes. Different visions, different expectations and hope on recovery, deviating goals and contradictory feelings/thoughts in families and professionals can lead to conflicts over a patient with VS/UWS. Key factors to prevent or solve such conflicts are a carefully established diagnosis, clarity upon visions, uniformity in treatment goals and plans, an open and empathic communication, expertise and understanding the importance of contradictory feelings/thoughts. Management should bridge conflicts and support their staff, by developing expertise, by creating stability and by facilitating medical ethical discourses. Shared compassion for the patient might be a key to gain trust and bridge the differences from non-shared to shared decision making. (shrink)
Purpose: This conceptual-epistemological paper deals with the old problem of inversion of thinking, as typified by traditional metaphysics-ontology. It is proposed that a thorough constructivism -- which views structures of mind, nature, and all, as not derived from (not referring to) any pre-structured given mind-independent reality (zero-derivation, 0-D) -- can go beyond this conceptual impasse; it can also serve as a fall-back position for positive ontologies. Practical implications: The practical result of 0-D is that all structures of experience are understood (...) as tools serving individual and collective subjects. Conclusion: This conceptual correction results in a simplification for the understanding of some conceptual puzzles, such as the mind-brain relation, but also in a considerable increase of responsibility, because entities and agents formerly considered responsible, and outside the mind, are recognized to be extensions of the subjects. (shrink)
Originally published in 1942, this book constitutes the companion volume to The Heart of Pascal ; both volumes were formed using selections from Pascal's Pensées. The text gathers together a series of selections, presented in French, which illustrate Pascal's Christian faith and thoughts on the relationship between man and God. An appendix and preface by the editor are also provided. This is a highly informative book that will be of value to anyone with an interest in Pascal and his late (...) thought. (shrink)
Originally published in 1945, this book constitutes the companion volume to The Apology of Pascal ; both volumes were formed using selections from Pascal's Pensées. The text contains his meditations and prayers, notes for his anti-Jesuit campaign, and remarks on language and style. An index and preface by the editor are also provided. This is a highly informative book that will be of value to anyone with an interest in Pascal and his late thought.