This study considered representations of divine and human others in the self-understanding of monotheists from three religions. Self-understanding was conceptualized on the basis of semantic and episodic knowledge in narrative response data. Given the importance of social context in the formation of cognitive schemas, the project emphasized self-understanding in a comparative religious design. The sample included sixty nominated religious exemplars who responded to a structured interview. Schemas were subsequently mapped for Jews, Muslims, and Christians by comparison of self and other (...) representations in a computational model known as latent semantic analysis (LSA). Findings indicated that representation of the divine is far removed from parents in cognitive schemas for all participants. Unlike Jews and Christians, Muslims appear to represent human others on the basis of self-understanding which principally references the divine. When considered in a computational semantic space, exemplars generally represent the self in a manner corresponding with divine and peer figures. (shrink)
An attempt to re-think, within and for the tradition of Husserl and Heidegger, certain central contributions of Greek thought. Interpretations of the Philebus and of other Platonic and Aristotelian texts concerned with problems arising therefrom are carried out; they culminate in an analysis of the fruitful union of intellectual power and impotence in philosophy. The existentialist framework often provides suggestions for the interpretation of difficult transitions in the classical works; conversely, the adherence to the arguments of the Greek texts strengthens (...) the existentialist position with respect to such concepts as world and rationality.--C. B. (shrink)
This article examines a thesis of interest to social epistemology and some articulations of First Amendment legal theory: that a free market in speech is an optimal institution for promoting true belief. Under our interpretation, the market-for-speech thesis claims that more total truth possession will be achieved if speech is regulated only by free market mechanisms; that is, both government regulation and private sector nonmarket regulation are held to have information-fostering properties that are inferior to the free market. After discussing (...) possible counterexamples to the thesis, the article explores the actual implications of economic theory for the emergence of truth in a free market for speech. When confusions are removed about what is maximized by perfectly competitive markets, and when adequate attention is paid to market imperfections, the failure of the market-for-speech thesis becomes clear. The article closes by comparing the properties of a free market in speech with an adversarial system of discourse. (shrink)
Religious diversity is a key topic in contemporary philosophy of religion. One way religious diversity has been of interest to philosophers is in the epistemological questions it gives rise to. In other words, religious diversity has been seen to pose a challenge for religious belief. In this study four approaches to dealing with this challenge are discussed. These approaches correspond to four well-known philosophers of religion, namely, Richard Swinburne, Alvin Plantinga, William Alston, and John Hick. The study is concluded (...) by suggesting four factors which shape one’s response to the challenge religious diversity poses to religious belief. (shrink)
Discussion of the role which religious experience can play in warranting theistic belief has received a great deal of attention within contemporary philosophy of religion. By contrast, the relationship between experience and atheistic belief has received relatively little focus. Our aim in this paper is to begin to remedy that neglect. In particular, we focus on the hitherto under-discussed question of whether experiences of God’s absence can provide positive epistemic status for a belief in God’s nonexistence. We argue that there (...) is good reason to accept an epistemic parity between experiences of God’s presence and experiences of God’s absence. (shrink)
In this article I shall concern myself with the question ‘Is some type of justification required in order for belief in God to be rational?’ Many philosophers and theologians in the past would have responded affirmatively to this question. However, in our own day, there are those who maintain that natural theology in any form is not necessary. This is because of the rise of a different understanding of the nature of religious belief. Unlike what most people in the past (...) thought, religious belief is not in any sense arrived at or inferred on the basis of other known propositions. On the contrary, belief in God is taken to be as basic as a person's belief in the existence of himself, of the chair in which he is sitting, or the past. The old view that there must be a justification of religious belief, whether known or unknown, is held to be mistaken. One of the most outspoken advocates of this view is Alvin Plantinga. According to Plantinga the mature theist ought not to accept belief in God as a conclusion from other things he believes. Rather, he should accept it as basic, as a part of the bedrock of his noetic structure. ‘The mature theist commits himself to belief in God; this means that he accepts belief in God as basic.’. (shrink)
The Abolition of Man, C. S. Lewis's masterpiece in ethics and the philosophy of science,warns of the danger of combining modern moral skepticism with the technological pursuit of human desires. The end result is the final destruction of human nature. From Brave New World to Star Trek, from Steampunk to starships, science fiction film has considered from nearly every conceivable angle the same nexus of morality, technology, and humanity of which C. S. Lewis wrote. As a result,science fiction film has (...) unintentionally given us stunning depictions of Lewis's terrifying vision of the future. In Science Fiction and the Abolition of Man: Finding C. S. Lewis in Sci-Fi Film and Television, scholars of religion, philosophy, literature, and film explore the connections between sci-fi film and the three parts of Lewis's book:how sci-fi portrays "Men Without Chests" incapable of responding properly to moral good, how it teaches the Tao or "The Way," and how it portrays "The Abolition of Man.". (shrink)
An enlightening discussion that will motivate students to think critically, the book opens with Plantinga's assertion that Christianity is compatible with evolutionary theory because Christians believe that God created the living world, and it is entirely possible that God did so by using a process of evolution.
El artículo propone una interpretación de la obra literaria "Las Crónicas de Narnia" del autor ingles C. S Lewis. Tal interpretación posibilita considerar la alegoría religiosa que esta obra literaria realiza sobre la experiencia de la divinidad a través de la figura del León.
For each natural number n, let C (n) be the closed and unbounded proper class of ordinals α such that V α is a Σ n elementary substructure of V. We say that κ is a C (n) -cardinal if it is the critical point of an elementary embedding j : V → M, M transitive, with j(κ) in C (n). By analyzing the notion of C (n)-cardinal at various levels of the usual hierarchy of large cardinal principles we show (...) that, starting at the level of superstrong cardinals and up to the level of rank-into-rank embeddings, C (n)-cardinals form a much finer hierarchy. The naturalness of the notion of C (n)-cardinal is exemplified by showing that the existence of C (n)-extendible cardinals is equivalent to simple reflection principles for classes of structures, which generalize the notions of supercompact and extendible cardinals. Moreover, building on results of Bagaria et al. (2010), we give new characterizations of Vopeňka’s Principle in terms of C (n)-extendible cardinals. (shrink)
Praise for First Edition: `This book is highly recommended to a wide range of people as a clear and systematic introduction to phenomenological psychology... the book has set the stage for possible new colloquia between the phenomenological and other approaches in psychology' - Changes `As a trainee interested in matters existential, I have been put off in the past by the long-winded and confusing texts usually available in academic libraries. Thankfully, here is a text that remedies that situation... [it] provides (...) a readable and insightful account' - Clinical Psychology Forum 'Spinelli’s classic introduction to phenomenology should be essential reading on all person-centred, existential and humanistic trainings, and any other counselling or psychotherapy course which aims to help students develop an in-depth understanding of human lived-experience. This book is sure to remain a key text for many years to come' - Mick Cooper, Senior Lecturer in Counselling, University of Strathclyde 'This is by far the most monumental, erudite, comprehensive, authoritative case that Existentialism and Phenomenology (a) have a rightful place in the academy; (b) are tough-minded bodies of thought; (c) have rigorous scientific foundations; (d) bequeath a distinctive school of psychotherapy and counselling; and (e) are just as good as the more established systems of psychology' - Alvin R. Mahrer, Ph.D. University of Ottawa, Canada, Author of The Complete Guide To Experiential Psychotherapy 'This book’s rich insight into the lacunae of modern psychological thinking illustrates the contribution that existential phenomenology can make to founding a coherently mature Psychology that is both fully human(e) and responsibly ‘scientific’ in the best sense of that term' - Richard House, Ph.D., Magdalen Medical Practice, Norwich; Steiner Waldorf teacher. The Interpreted World, Second Edition, is a welcome introduction to phenomenological psychology, an area of psychology which has its roots in notoriously difficult philosophical literature. Writing in a highly accessible, jargon-free style, Ernesto Spinelli traces the philosophical origins of phenomenological theory and presents phenomenological perspectives on central topics in psychology - perception, social cognition and the self. He compares the phenomenological approach with other major contemporary psychological approaches, pointing up areas of divergence and convergence with these systems. He also examines implications of phenomenology for the precepts and process of psychotherapy. For the Second Edition, a new chapter on phenomenological research has been added in which the author focuses on the contribution of phenomenology in relation to contemporary scientific enquiry. He describes the methodology used in phenomenological research and illustrates the approach through an actual research study. The Interpreted World, Second Edition demystifies an exciting branch of psychology, making its insights available to all students of psychology, psychotherapy and counselling. (shrink)
Throughout philosophical history, there has been a recurring argument to the effect that determinism, naturalism, or both are self-referentially incoherent. By accepting determinism or naturalism, one allegedly acquires a reason to reject determinism or naturalism. _The Epistemological Skyhook_ brings together, for the first time, the principal expressions of this argument, focusing primarily on the last 150 years. This book addresses the versions of this argument as presented by Arthur Lovejoy, A.E. Taylor, Kurt Gödel, C.S. Lewis, Norman Malcolm, Karl Popper, J.R. (...) Lucas, William Hasker, Thomas Nagel, Alvin Plantinga, and others, along with the objections presented by their many detractors. It concludes by presenting a new version of the argument that synthesizes the best aspects of the others while also rendering the argument immune to some of the most significant objections made to it. (shrink)
This article presents Alvin Plantinga’s views on epistemic justification. The first part situates Plantinga’s epistemological views in the context of his epistemology of religion and debates of general epistemology. The second part discusses Plantinga’s argument that the internalism of 20th century epistemology stems from deontologism and that the views on the epistemic justification of analytic philosophers reflect the relationship between classical deontologism and classical internalism. The last part points to the objections with which the Plantinga’s conception met and tries (...) to balance the depth and weakness of its position. (shrink)
Alvin Plantinga over the decades has developed a particular theory of warrant that would allow certain beliefs to be warranted, even if one lacked propositional arguments or evidence for them. One such belief that Plantinga focuses on is belief in God. There have been, however, numerous objections both to Plantinga's theory of warrant and to the religious application that he makes of it. In this article I address an objection from both of these categories. I first tackle an objection (...) that attempts to show that proper function isn't a necessary condition for warrant. After tackling this, I move on to interact with the Pandora's Box Objection. This objection argues that Plantinga's epistemology is weakened by the fact that all sorts of serious religious beliefs could be warranted by using his system. (shrink)
This paper advances a version of physicalism which reconciles the “a priori entailment thesis” (APET) with the analytic independence of our phenomenal and physical vocabularies. The APET is the claim that, if physicalism is true, the complete truths of physics imply every other truth a priori. If so, “cosmic hermeneutics” is possible: a demon having only complete knowledge of physics could deduce every truth about the world. Analytic independence is a popular physicalist explanation for the apparent “epistemic gaps” between phenomenal (...) and physical truths. The two are generally seen as incompatible, since the demon’s deductions seem to presuppose analytic connections between physical and phenomenal terms. I begin by arguing, in support of the APET, that implications from the complete truths of physics to phenomenal truths cannot be a posteriori. Such implications are (according to the physicalist) necessarily true. But they cannot be Kripke-style a posteriori necessities, since (according to the physicalist) the complete truths of physics fix any relevant a posteriori facts about the reference of terms. I then show how the physicalist can turn the tables: the demon can exploit the physical fixing of reference to bridge the gap between the vocabularies, by deducing when phenomenal and physical terms co-refer. This opens the way for a “type-C” physicalism, which accepts in-principle deducibility while still appealing to analytic independence to explain why we (who are not demons) find it impossible to see phenomenal-physical connections a priori. (shrink)
It is often argued that the great quantity of evil in our world makes God’s existence less likely than a lesser quantity would, and this, presumably, because the probability that some evils are gratuitous increases as the overall quantity of evil increases. Often, an additive approach to quantifying evil is employed in such arguments. In this paper, we examine C. S. Lewis’ objection to the additive approach, arguing that although he is correct to reject this approach, there is a sense (...) in which he underestimates the quantity of pain. However, the quantity of pain in that sense does not significantly increase the probability that some pain is gratuitous. Therefore, the quantitative argument likely fails. (shrink)
The C (n)-cardinals were introduced recently by Bagaria and are strong forms of the usual large cardinals. For a wide range of large cardinal notions, Bagaria has shown that the consistency of the corresponding C (n)-versions follows from the existence of rank-into-rank elementary embeddings. In this article, we further study the C (n)-hierarchies of tall, strong, superstrong, supercompact, and extendible cardinals, giving some improved consistency bounds while, at the same time, addressing questions which had been left open. In addition, we (...) consider two cases which were not dealt with by Bagaria; namely, C (n)-Woodin and C (n)-strongly compact cardinals, for which we provide characterizations in terms of their ordinary counterparts. Finally, we give a brief account on the interaction of C (n)-cardinals with the forcing machinery. (shrink)
Section 1 of this essay distinguishes between four interpretations of Socratic intellectualism, which are, very roughly: a version in which on any given occasion desire, and then action, is determined by what we think will turn out best for us, that being what we all, always, really desire; a version in which on any given occasion action is determined by what we think will best satisfy our permanent desire for what is really best for us; a version formed by the (...) assimilation of to, labelled the ‘standard’ version’ by Thomas C. Brickhouse and Nicholas D. Smith, and treated by them as a single alternative to their own interpretation; and Brickhouse and Smith’s own version. Section 2 considers, in particular, Brickhouse and Smith’s handling of the ‘appetites and passions’, which is the most distinctive feature of interpretation. Section 3 discusses Brickhouse and Smith’s defence of ‘Socratic studies’ in its historical context, and assesses the contribution made by their distinctive interpretation of ‘the philosophy of Socrates’. One question raised in this section, and one that is clearly fundamental to the existence of ‘Socratic studies’, is how different Brickhouse and Smith’s Socrates turns out to be from Plato himself, i.e., the Plato of the post-‘Socratic’ dialogues; to which the answer offered is that on Brickhouse and Smith’s interpretation Socratic moral psychology becomes rather less distinguishable from its ‘Platonic’ counterpart—as that is currently understood—than it is on the interpretation they oppose. (shrink)
Recent work in the history of philosophy of science details the Kantianism of philosophers often thought opposed to one another, e.g., Hans Reichenbach, C.I. Lewis, Rudolf Carnap, and Thomas Kuhn. Historians of philosophy of science in the last two decades have been particularly interested in the Kantianism of Reichenbach, Carnap, and Kuhn, and more recently, of Lewis. While recent historical work focuses on recovering the threatened-to-be-forgotten Kantian themes of early twentieth-century philosophy of science, we should not elide the differences between (...) the Kantian strands running throughout this work. In this paper, I disentangle a few of these strands in the work of Reichenbach and Lewis focusing especially on their theories of relativized, constitutive a priori principles in empirical knowledge. In particular, I highlight three related differences between Reichenbach and Lewis concerning their motivations in analyzing scientific knowledge and scientific practice, their differing conceptions of constitutivity, and their relativization of constitutive a priori principles. In light of these differences, I argue Lewis’s Kantianism is more similar to Kuhn’s Kantianism than Reichenbach’s, and so might be of more contemporary relevance to social and practice-based approaches to the philosophy of science. (shrink)
The strong weak truth table (sw) reducibility was suggested by Downey, Hirschfeldt, and LaForte as a measure of relative randomness, alternative to the Solovay reducibility. It also occurs naturally in proofs in classical computability theory as well as in the recent work of Soare, Nabutovsky, and Weinberger on applications of computability to differential geometry. We study the sw-degrees of c.e. reals and construct a c.e. real which has no random c.e. real (i.e., Ω number) sw-above it.