The theory of knowledge proposed by Polo helps to clarify the neuroscientific approach to the mind-brain problem, as well as contributing towards an interesting hypothesis to keep developing it. However, his systems theory, as argumentative overture, is an obstacle so that Polo’s work could very well be recognized and assimilated by the experimental sciences. In this article I first analyze such difficulty identifying the main problem: the justification of Polo’s cybernetics from the point of view of themodynamics. Secondly, I reformulate (...) the theleology problem with the objective of acquiring a more legitimate step from one area to the other. In the conclusions, I defend that it is only possible to find a privileged access to some phenomena, which is crucial to understand intelligence, purpose and lige. (shrink)
For over eight hundred years, philosophers—men and women—who called themselves Cynics, literally "dogs" in their language, roamed the streets and byways of the Hellenistic world, teaching strange ideas and practicing a bizarre way of life. Among them, the most important and distinctive was Diogenes of Sinope, who became the archetype of Classical Cynicism. In this comprehensive, thoroughly researched, and engaging book, philosopher Luis E. Navia undertakes the task of reconstructing Diogenes' life and extracting from him lessons that are valuable (...) in our time. The book is divided into five chapters. Chapter 1 provides a biographical sketch of Diogenes constructed on the basis of ancient testimonies. In Chapter 2, the practice of Cynicism, as exemplified by Diogenes, is elucidated. This "war against the world," as Navia describes it, especially the rhetoric of Cynicism, was the primary medium used by the Cynics to convey their message. Chapter 3 clarifies the roots and basis of the Cynic metamorphosis, that is, the process by which Diogenes transformed himself into a dog. This process involves complex psychological, sociological, and philosophical factors, chief among which was Socrates' influence on Diogenes through the agency of Antisthenes. Chapter 4 reconstructs the philosophy of Diogenes by identifying twelve principles of his thought. In Chapter 5, the influence of Diogenes is discussed. Navia emphasizes the vast difference between Diogenes' ideas and style of life on the one hand and, on the other, what is nowadays called cynicism. The book provides abundant references to ancient testimonies and modern scholarship. It includes an extensively annotated translation of Diogenes Laertius's biography of Diogenes and a comprehensive bibliography. (shrink)
The present work is developed within the frame of so-called critical neuroscience. The aim of this article is to explain the transition from a kind of neuroscience understood as a strict scientific discipline, possessing a methodology and a specific praxis, to a kind of neuroscience that has been transformed into a meta-narrative with totalizing claims. In particular, we identify and examine eleven catalysts for such a transition: 1) a lack of communication between scientists and journalists; 2) the abuse of information (...) by the sensational press; 3) the acceptance of specific philosophical approaches by a wide range of scientists; 4) the widespread transmission of two conceptual mistakes: a) an identification between methodological and ontological reductionism and b) the mereological fallacy; 5) the influence of post-Cartesian philosophical thinking in the scientific community; 6) an overwhelming scientific hyper-specialization; 7) the illegitimate transfer of authority from humanities to the sciences; 8) an inbuilt human preference for visual data; 9) economic interests; 10) scientific utopianism; and 11) the new self-help movements and their alliance with neuro-enhancement. Finally, our essay seeks to draw attention to the most damaging consequences for both science and human ways of living. (shrink)
The concept of scaffolding has wide resonance in several scientific fields. Here we attempt to adopt it for the study of development. In this perspective, the embryo is conceived as an integral whole, comprised of several hierarchical modules as in a recurrent circularity of emerging patterns. Within the developmental hierarchy, each module yields an inter-level relationship that makes it possible for the scaffolding to mediate the production of selectable variations. A wide range of genetic, cellular and morphological mechanisms allows the (...) scaffolding to integrate these modular variations into a functionally coordinate unit. A genetic scaffolding accounts for the inherited invariance of pattern formation during the embryo’s growth. At higher level, cells behave as agents endowed with the capacity to interpret any scaffolding variation as signs. The full hierarchy of a multi-level scaffolding is eventually attained when the embryo acquires the capacity to impose a number of developmental constraints on its constituting parts in a top-down direction. The acquisition of this capacity allows a semiotic threshold to emerge between the living cellular world and the underlying non-living molecular world. As this boundary is gradually defined during development, cells enter into new functional relationships, while, at the same time, are relieved from their physical determinism. The resulting constraints can thus become the driving forces that upgrade embryonic scaffolding from the simple molecular signalling to the complexity of sign recognition proper of a cellular community. In this semiotic perspective, the apparent goal directness of any developmental strategy should no longer be accounted for by a predetermined genetic program, but by the gradual definition of the relationships selected amongst the ones historically explored. (shrink)
El consentimiento informado en investigación se inscribe en la relación médico-paciente, que ha sufrido, y sigue sufriendo, importantes cambios: desde el planteamiento clásico, como relación de amistad, al planteamiento contemporáneo, como relación entre extraños, que es regulada por normas éticas y legales. El principal objetivo de estas últimas es conseguir, mediante requisitos formales, que dicha relación no perjudique al paciente. Bajo esta luz, se examina y compara el consentimiento informado en las principales normativas internacionales y en la ley española. Especialmente, (...) nos centramos en la hoja de información al paciente, la comprensión, la voluntariedad, la certificación y la comunicación de los resultados de la investigación. Se concluye con la observación de la seria limitación intrínseca de la que adolecen estas normativas, que impiden, más que favorecen, el trato adecuado al paciente. doi: 10.5294/pebi.2015.19.2.3. (shrink)
Antonio Damasio elabora una teoría de la mente humana y de la conducta moral a partir de su hipótesis sobre la evolución de los mecanismos de autorregulación biológicos. En ella, a la capacidad para representar relaciones organismo-mundo se le confiere un importante papel en los cambios organizacionales que emergen de los sistemas con un sistema nervioso central. Concretamente, en nuestro artículo analizamos, en primer lugar, la tesis acerca de la doble homeostasis biológica- mental que caracteriza a los agentes racionales. Desde (...) su perspectiva, la conciencia es producto y manifestación de complejos procesos del procesamiento de representaciones, los cuales favorecen la regulación no consciente. Además, para entender los procesos conscientes también es clave, según Damasio, conocer cómo la evolución de tales mecanismos está asociada con el desarrollo de áreas neuronales próximas al córtex emocional, especialmente, el giro cingulado. Los argumentos que Damasio utiliza para vincular los procesos representacionales con la particular preocupación humana por los sentimientos de los otros es la segunda cuestión que evaluamos. (shrink)
Una de las más célebres contiendas de la Edad Media es la que enfrentó en Sens (1140) a Pedro Abelardo y Bernardo de Claraval. El primero llegó a esa localidad como acusado; el segundo había reunido el concilio como acusador.
An introduction, from an al-Ghazâlî´s text, into a philosophic theodicy and an Arabic rationalistic theology (mu`tazili). Both of them, theology and philosophy, belive that God has created the best of possible worlds, so that, this world is optimistic and deterministic. However this optimism sense has different causes in them; for theodicy that is owing to Good wishes, while for philosophy is because of the causality and logical necessity.
Socratic Testimonies offers a well-structured introduction to the study of Socrates by way of exploring some of the main writings about him from Aristophanes, Xenophon, and Plato. In this second edition, the translations have been revised and annotated by the author. An extensive bibliography of modern works on Socrates is included. The selections are accompanied by extensive and detailed annotations that clarify names and terms with which the reader many not be familiar. Intended as an introductory text for undergraduate students, (...) Socratic Testimonies will help students gain an appreciation of the importance of the philosophical legacy and traditions associated with Socrates. (shrink)