It is the purpose of this short article to defend the realism of Holmes Rolston and other environmental philosophers against the social constructionism of Neil Evernden and others who have written on the social construction of nature. This defense is attempted through appeal to a deceptively simple example: seeing a bear in a zoo.The following four claims are defended in the effort to show the deficiencies of the anthropocentrism of social constructionists like Evernden: there is a difference between a bear (...) in a zoo and one in the wild; this difference legitimates the belief that the former is an attenuated version of the latter; the danger posed by a bear in the wild is not due to an overly active imagination; and experience of sublime beauty in the presence of a wild bear is only partly of one's own doing. (shrink)
While considered by many as one of the greatest philosophers of religion and metaphysicians of the 20th century, Charles Hartshorne’s contributions to the study of aesthetics are perhaps the most neglected aspect of his extensive and highly nuanced thought. DIVINE BEAUTY offers the first detailed explication of Hartshorne’s aesthetic theory and its place within his theocentric philosophy.
Considered together, Butler and Whitehead draw from a wide palette of disciplines to develop distinctive theories of becoming, of syntactical violence, and creative opportunities of limitation. The contributors of this volume offer a unique contribution to and for the humanities in the struggles of politics, economy, ecology, and the arts.
A moral orientation of a historically existing state is superior to an immoral one; but even a moral state or leader cannot be perfectly moral. The republic (or its symbol, ancient athens) is impossible for metaphysical and practical reasons, and it must suffer the same fate as atlantis in this story, i.e., Destruction at the hands of nature.
John Rawls is widely acknowledged to be the most influential political philosopher of the twentieth century. But the implications of his views for both religious belief and religious believers are hotly contested. Some think that he is largely on the right track, indeed that he solves many of the traditional problems regarding the relationship between politics and religion.1 Others are critical of his approach.2 Perhaps the most insightful of these critics of Rawls, who argues from the perspective of a metaphysical (...) view or a comprehensive religious doctrine, is Franklin Gamwell. It will be the purpose of the present article to both order Gamwell’s criticisms of Rawls, which are spread across seven... (shrink)
In this article I argue both that an understanding of sport?s general character as competitive play can help us to read Homer more insightfully and that this reading can boomerang back to us to further illuminate the sport as competitive play thesis. My overall method is that of (Rawlsian) reflective equilibrium. The three sections of Homer that I examine are the Phaiacian games in Book 8 of the ?Odyssey?, the Patroclos games in Book 23 of the ?Iliad?, and the Penelope (...) games in Books 21?22 of the ?Odyssey? (shrink)
This work contains thirteen essays that constitute Hartshorne's final contributions to "technical philosophy." Although they deal with a wide range of topics, they hang together in terms of the common themes of creativity and freedom. I will discuss these essays in terms of three groups.First, it should be noted that five of the essays have never before been published; hence they are welcome additions to philosophical literature in process thought. One example is "My Eclectic Approach to Phenomenology." Here Hartshorne relies (...) on both his experiences studying under Husserl and Heidegger in Germany in the 1920s (he wrote the first review in English of Heidegger's Being and Time) and his thorough knowledge of .. (shrink)
In this short article I call into question the view that the current United States war in Afghanistan is a war of necessity. In this effort I am primarily engaged with the thought of the famous just war theorist Michael Walzer as it has developed from 1977 until 2009.
In this article I concentrate on three issues. First, Graham Oppy’s treatment of the relationship between the concept of infinity and Zeno’s paradoxes lay bare several porblems that must be dealt with if the concept of infinity is to do any intellectual work in philosophy of religion. Here I will expand on some insightful remarks by Oppy in an effort ot adequately respond to these problems. Second, I will do the same regarding Oppy’s treatment of Kant’s first antinomy in the (...) first critique, which deals in part with the question of whether the world had a beginning in time or if time extends infinitely into the past. And third, my examination of these two issues will inform what I have to say regarding a key topic in philosophy of religion: the question regarding the proper relationship between the infinite and the finite in the concept of God. (shrink)
One of the most controversial features of Alfred North Whitehead’s enormous influence on how philosophers and theologians think about God and religion is the close connection he sees between religion and solitariness in his classic work Religion in the Making.1 The purposes of the present article are: to understand the connection White-head sees between religion and solitariness; to understand why Whitehead’s view of this connection is so controversial; and nonetheless to defend the close connection that Whitehead sees. Regarding this last (...) purpose, I will appeal to authors who write from or about the “Bloodlands,” a term coined by the historian Timothy Snyder that refers to a large.. (shrink)
There is a well known debate between those who defend a traditional (or classical) concept of God and those who defend a process (or neoclassical) concept of God. Not as well known are the implications of these two rival concepts of God in the effort to understand religious experience. With the aid of the great pragmatist philosopher John Smith, I defend the process (or neoclassical) concept of God in its ability to better illuminate and render as intelligible as possible mystical (...) experience. (shrink)
In “Rawls and Animals” I try to do two things. First, I try to bring together for the first time Rawls’ thoughts on animals in “A Theory of Justice” as well as the often contradictory secondary literature on this topic. And second, I examine for the first time Rawls’ treatment of animals in his recent work “Political Liberalism.”.
I have argued elsewhere that the overall method that is required in liberal political philosophy is that of reflective equilibrium and that this method can be best understood in processual terms. In the present article I try to show how neoclassical (and other) theists can bring their convictions to bear in a politically liberal society, within the confines of this method, in a rational (rather than irrational or mad) manner.