Where has the Western attraction to the study and practice of shamanic techniques brought us? Where might it take us? In what ways have our Western biases and philosophical underpinnings influenced and changed how shamanism is practiced, both in the West and in the traditional cultures out of which they emerged? Is it time to stop using the umbrella term “shamanism” to refer to such diverse cross-cultural practices? What are our responsibilities, both as researchers and as spiritual seekers? In this (...) conversation, researcher-authors Stephan Beyer, Stanley Krippner, and Hillary S. Webb discuss their work in field and consider some of the ramifications of the Western world's intellectual and spiritual fascination with shamanic practices. Special attention is paid to the language used to describe these techniques and their practitioners, the developing relationship between researchers and cultural participants, and the ethical implications of merging what are often very distinct worldviews. (shrink)
For those to whom John Bowring's name means anything, the most likely association with it is the complex and question-begging term ‘Benthamite’. Contemporaries certainly used the term, particularly when they wanted to suggest that his actions were narrowly ideological or theoretical. But to some of Bowring's contemporaries another association served hostile intent almost as well: his Unitarianism.
The ethical culture of any organization is not simply a reflection of its mission statement or even its code of conduct. Rather, the real ethics of institutions are often embedded in their reward systems. We suggest how ethics professors can lead students to develop a greater understanding of rewards by providing a review of various forms of organizational rewards. We also offer insights into how professors can compare reward systems in their classes. We conclude by addressing a number of pedagogical (...) approaches that are useful in equipping ethics students with awareness and understanding of reward systems’ power and influence on employee attitudes and behaviors surrounding ethical decision making. (shrink)
Background: The Declaration of Helsinki, the World Medical Association’s statement of ethical guidelines regarding medical research, is published in the three official languages of the WMA: English, French and Spanish.Methods: A detailed comparison of the three official language versions was carried out to determine ways in which they differed and ways in which the wording of the three versions might illuminate the interpretation of the document.Results: There were many minor linguistic differences between the three versions. However, in paragraphs 1, 6, (...) 29, 30 and in the note of clarification to paragraph 29, there were differences that could be considered potentially significant in their ethical relevance.Interpretation: Given the global status of the Declaration of Helsinki and the fact that it is translated from its official versions into many other languages for application to the ethical conduct of research, the differences identified are of concern. It would be best if such differences could be eliminated but, at the very least, a commentary to explain any differences that are unavoidable on the basis of language or culture should accompany the Declaration of Helsinki. This evidence further strengthens the case for international surveillance of medical research ethics as has been proposed by the WMA. (shrink)