An historical and critical survey of the various theories of totemism. Lévi-Strauss believes almost every theory explaining the relation held to exist between man and certain natural objects can be demolished: there seems to be no general biological or cultural framework which can account for totemism as an isolated phenomenon. But if totemism is seen as a way of thinking metaphorically, of correlating opposites, or of associating by contrariety then it becomes an example of a mode of thinking common to (...) sophisticated as well as primitive peoples. Observations by Bergson and Rousseau, made outside the framework of modern anthropology, bear out Lévi-Strauss' thesis. A fascinating work, marred only by a rather stiff translation.—C. L. B. (shrink)
The article is devoted to the nature of the topological intuition and disclosure of the specifics of topological heuristics in the framework of philosophical theory of knowledge. As we know, intuition is a one of the support categories of the theory of knowledge, the driving force of scientific research. Great importance is mathematical intuition for the solution of non-standard problems, for which there is no algorithm for such a solution. In such cases, the mathematician addresses the so-called heuristics, built on (...) the basis of guesswork, obtained by intuition. The author substantiates the conclusion that topological intuition significantly specific compared to a traditional mathematical intuitions of Euclidean geometry. Today topology is a rapidly developing field of modern mathematics, integrates nicely with other sections of mathematical science. In its most general form of the topology can be defined as the branch of mathematics that studies the properties of spatial figures, does not change under deformations. The topological intuition is an instrument for development of topology on the basis of typological heuristics, which is the result of applying topological intuition to the objects topology. The author demonstrates in detail providing with the examples the specificity of topological heuristics and establishes its interconnection with Euclidean geometry. The author draws the conclusion about the fundamentality of topological intuition, and that it, perhaps, is primary in relation to traditionally understood mathematical intuition. (shrink)
In Virgil's third eclogue, the goatherd Menalcas responds to his challenger Damoetas by offering as his wager in their contest of song a pair of embossed cups,caelatum diuini opus Alcimedontis, decorated with a pattern of vine and ivy. In the middle of this design, he says, are two figures. One is the astronomer Conon, and the other—at this point Menalcas, afflicted with a sudden loss of memory, professes to have forgotten the name of the second figure, and breaks off into (...) a question :quis fuit alter, | descripsit radio totum qui gentibus orbem, | tempora quae messor, quae curuus arator haberet?Various candidates for the identity of this second astronomer have been suggested, one of the most favoured being Eudoxus of Cnidus, whosePhaenomenahad been versified by the Hellenistic poet Aratus. In 1930 it was proposed by Léon Herrmann that Menalcas in fact answers his own question in his reference tocuruUS ARAToratEcl.3.42: the solution to Virgil's riddle is already written into the question, in the form of the anagram ofAratusconcealed within these two words. Strictly speaking, Hermann notes only that ‘Aratorau v. 42 évoque le nom d’Aratos’; he and later exponents of the theory tend to ignore the preceding ‘-us’—but there seems no reason to exclude it if an allusion to the Greek poet is to be seen in the two following syllables. (shrink)
European animal disease policy seems to find its justification in a “harm to other” principle. Limiting the freedom of animal keepers—e.g., by culling their animals—is justified by the aim to prevent harm, i.e., the spreading of the disease. The picture, however, is more complicated. Both during the control of outbreaks and in the prevention of notifiable, animal diseases the government is confronted with conflicting claims of stakeholders who anticipate running a risk to be harmed by each other, and who ask (...) for government intervention. In this paper, we first argue that in a policy that aims to prevent animal diseases, the focus shifts from limiting “harm” to weighing conflicting claims with respect to “risks of harm.” Therefore, we claim that the harm principle is no longer a sufficient justification for governmental intervention in animal disease prevention. A policy that has to deal with and distribute conflicting risks of harm needs additional value assumptions that guide this process of assessment and distribution. We show that currently, policies are based on assumptions that are mainly economic considerations. In order to show the limitations of these considerations, we use the interests and position of keepers of backyard animals as an example. Based on the problems they faced during and after the recent outbreaks, we defend the thesis that in order to develop a sustainable animal disease policy other than economic assumptions need to be taken into account. (shrink)
Thanks to developments in genomics,dietary recommendations adapted to genetic riskprofiles of individual persons are no longerscience fiction. But what are the consequencesof these diets? An examination of possibleimpacts of genetically tailor-made diets raisesmorally relevant concerns that are analogous to(medical-ethical) considerations aboutscreening and testing. These concerns oftengive rise to applying norms for informedconsent and for the weighing of burdens andbenefits. These diets also have a broaderimpact, especially because food patterns arefull of personal, social and cultural meanings.Diets will change one's food patterns (...) and one'sattitude towards food, and this may implychanges in one's identity. We argue that suchan impact does not necessarily raise moralproblems. Moral concerns are, however, relevantif collective values and shared meanings infood practices are at issue. Therefore, thedevelopment of genetically tailor-made dietsdoes not merely require emphasis on weighingpersonal benefits and burdens and on informedconsent. It also asks for attention to andmoral reflection on the collective valuesinvolved in food practices. (shrink)
Planned home birth has been considered by some to be consistent with professional responsibility in patient care. This article critically assesses the ethical and scientific justification for this view and shows it to be unjustified. We critically assess recent statements by professional associations of obstetricians, one that sanctions and one that endorses planned home birth. We base our critical appraisal on the professional responsibility model of obstetric ethics, which is based on the ethical concept of medicine from the Scottish and (...) English Enlightenments of the 18th century. Our critical assessment supports the following conclusions. Because of its significantly increased, preventable perinatal risks, planned home birth in the United States is not clinically or ethically benign. Attending planned home birth, no matter one’s training or experience, is not acting in a professional capacity, because this role preventably results in clinically unnecessary and therefore clinically unacceptable perinatal risk. It is therefore not consistent with the ethical concept of medicine as a profession for any attendant to planned home birth to represent himself or herself as a “professional.” Obstetric healthcare associations should neither sanction nor endorse planned home birth. Instead, these associations should recommend against planned home birth. Obstetric healthcare professionals should respond to expressions of interest in planned home birth by pregnant women by informing them that it incurs significantly increased, preventable perinatal risks, by recommending strongly against planned home birth, and by recommending strongly for planned hospital birth. Obstetric healthcare professionals should routinely provide excellent obstetric care to all women transferred to the hospital from a planned home birth. The professional responsibility model of obstetric ethics requires obstetricians to address and remedy legitimate dissatisfaction with some hospital settings and address patients’ concerns about excessive interventions. Creating a sustained culture of comprehensive safety, which cannot be achieved in planned home birth, informed by compassionate and respectful treatment of pregnant women, should be a primary focus of professional obstetric responsibility. (shrink)
Divine Simplicity has it that God is absolutely simple. God exhibits no metaphysical complexity; he has neither proper parts nor distinct intrinsic properties. Recently, Jeffrey Brower has put forward an account of divine simplicity that has it that God is the truthmaker for all intrinsic essential predications about him. This allows Brower to preserve the intuitive thought that God is not a property but a concrete being. In this paper, I provide two objections to Brower’s account that are meant to (...) show that whatever merits this account of divine simplicity has, plausibility is not one of them. (shrink)
As I will use the term, an object is a mereological sum of some things just in case those things compose it simply in virtue of existing. In the first half of this paper, I argue that there are no sums. The key premise for this conclusion relies on a constraint on what, in certain cases, it takes for something to ground, or metaphysically explain, something else. In the second half, I argue that in light of my argument against sums, (...) Universalism, which is perhaps the most widely accepted answer to the Special Composition Question, is false. (shrink)
The History of Islam, which makes use of the Qur’ān, ḥadīth and many auxiliary sources, did not ignore the different elements that would shed light on the events of the periods it studied. At this point, the poem draws attention as an important source containing much data on the history of the prophets, sīrat, genealogy, and socio-cultural life. Umayya b. Abū l-Ṣalt (d. 8/630) is an important poet who has witnessed both the Jāhilī Period and the Islamic period, and has (...) poems containing the above-mentioned themes. There are different opinions about his belief status. In this context, there are discourses that consider him as Christian, Jewish, Hanīf, and monotheist. However, although it is a fact that Umayya was a ḥanīf in Jāhilī Period, his oppositional attitude with the advent of Islam is another fact. In the historical sources, there are many poems which are attributed to Umayya and contain different subjects. When these poems are examined, especially the poems that deal with the belief of oneness and the hereafter; it is seen that the creation of the world, the lives of past tribes and prophets, sīrat, some cultural elements, elegy, praise, and lineage were also handled by him. However, when the content and style of Umayya's poems, especially about the lives of the prophets, are examined, there are doubts as to whether these poems belong to him. For example, his poem about the story of Adam is as follows: “And they all prostrated to Adam by His permission / Only the damned, the sinner, and the expelled refused it /The Lord of the servants said to Iblis: / Get out of there fired, cursed and vilified.” When compared with the verses of the Qur'ān, it is seen that the information presented by Umayya about the story of Adam does not contradict with the information in the Qur'ān. “It is We Who created you and gave you shape; then We bade the angels prostrate to Adam, and they prostrate; not so Iblis; He refused to be of those who prostrate.” “(Allāh) said: "Get thee down from this: it is not for thee to be arrogant here: get out, for thou art of the meanest (of creatures).” In Umayya's poems, the story of Noah is discussed in with more details: “In the evening the flood was sent and the water overflowed. / There was no container to hold it. / He swims like an arrow seeking revenge. / And crossing the sea. / Everything began to speak with a miracle. / And the crow responded to the rooster's trust with treason. / After seven days the dove was sent / That; was unafraid of dangers and showed courage. / It was said, let's search the earth / Can you find a dry place with a water source in its furthest part? / Flew away fast. / Then he brought a cluster of black sticky mud on it.” In the poems of Umayya, in which he talks about the stories of the Prophet, many words and stories that the Arabs do not know are used. The story of the crow, rooster, and pigeon in this poem is one such example. It is said that Umayya was influenced by the old books and the words of the People of the Book in the story about the crow, the rooster, and the pigeon. Because, although there are differences in the details, it is seen that this issue is mentioned in the Torāh. Cevād Ali, who touches on this issue, states that “if it is true that these poems belong to him” and says that the available data is evidence that Umayya met with the People of the Book and knew the content of their books. While evaluating this issue, Behcet Abdulagafur referred to the 49th verse of the Surah Hūd and he emphasized two possibilities, pointing out that the story was not known to people before, including the Prophet Muḥammad: Umayya recited them from the Qur'ān and sang his poems according to the Qur'ān. However, this is a low probabilirty. Or, this poem does not belong to him and was later made up for him. He saw the second option more strongly and said that the poem did not resemble Umayya's style as a reason. The Prophet avoided a wholesale approach and evaluated Umayya's poems according to their content. Because while approving some of his poems, he also banned his poems that he sang as a lament for the polytheists killed in Badr, which did not comply with the Islamic understanding. The Prophet said about him: “His poetry became a Muslim, but his heart denied it.” Thus, while revealing that the content of Umayya's poems is generally suitable for Islam, he also stated that he was not a Muslim. At the same time, he banned his poems that were against Islam. (shrink)
Within the professional practice of psychology the code of ethics characterizes what is morally right or wrong, by means of a set of principles, values, and standards of conduct. While there are numerous international mental health organizations that incorporate ethical guidelines such as the APA and EFPA; these codes still fall short in providing guidelines for psychologists working in non-western cultures, especially when there are no universally adopted and valid cross-cultural ethics codes. This paper explores various challenges psychologists in the (...) Arab region face when using a western code which does not reflect the values and traditions of their culture. A comparison of several ethical codes from different Arab countries is presented, with a focus on challenging areas of interest such as confidentiality, informed consent and multiple relationships. (shrink)
This is a review of CONDITIONALS: FROM PHILOSOPHY TO COMPUTER SCIENCE, edited by Crocco G., del Cerro L. Fariñas, and Herzig A., Studies in logic and computation, no. 5, Clarendon Press, Oxford University Press, Oxford and New York 1995.
Background Residual dried blood spots (rDBS) from newborn screening programmes represent a valuable resource for medical research, from basic sciences, through clinical to public health. In Hong Kong, there is no legislation for biobanking. Parents’ view on the retention and use of residual newborn blood samples could be cultural-specific and is important to consider for biobanking of rDBS. Objective To study the views and concerns on long-term storage and secondary use of rDBS from newborn screening programmes among Hong Kong Chinese (...) parents. Methods A mixed-method approach was used to study the views and concerns on long-term storage and secondary use of rDBS from newborn screening programmes among Hong Kong Chinese parents of children 0–3 years or expecting parents through focus groups (8 groups; 33 participants) and a survey (n = 1012, 85% mothers) designed with insights obtained from the focus groups. We used framework analysis to summarise the themes as supportive factors, concerns and critical arguments for retention and secondary use of rDBS from focus group discussion. We used multiple logistic regression to assess factors associated with support for retention and secondary use of rDBS in the survey. Results Both in focus groups and survey, majority of parents were not aware of the potential secondary use of rDBS. Overall secondary use of rDBS in medical research was well accepted by a large proportion of Hong Kong parents, even if all potential future research could not be specified in a broad consent. However parents were concerned about potential risks of biobanking rDBS including leaking of data and mis-use of genetic information. Parents wanted to be asked for permission before rDBS are stored and mainly did not accept an “opt-out” approach. The survey showed that parents born in mainland China, compared to Hong Kong born parents, had lower awareness of newborn screening but higher support in biobanking rDBS. Higher education was associated with support in rDBS biobanking only among fathers. Conclusion Long-term storage and secondary use of rDBS from newborn screening for biomedical research and a broad consent for biobanking of rDBS are generally acceptable to Hong Kong parents given their autonomy is respected and their privacy is protected, highlighting the importance of an accountable governance and a transparent access policy for rDBS biobanks. (shrink)
This book stands as a panegyric of the glories and grandeur of Indian philosophy without managing to embody or display those heights of attainment itself. In the few essays that are worthwhile, the author attempts to correct a number of misconceptions about Indian thought: that it is world-denying, that it promotes spiritual pessimism, that it bases its philosophical claims more on intuition than on rational argument, and that it is concerned more with inner than with outer reality. In support of (...) his claims, he sets forth what he believes to be the basic tenets of Indian philosophy, which are: the divine or spiritual nature of the universe, the ultimate moral order of the universe, the transmigration of the soul, the ultimate destiny of man through "the liberation of the soul from bondage to the body," and the implicit trust placed in the testimony of seer-saints "to whom they [truths] are supposed to have been revealed beyond doubt in their direct and immediate experience." In a chapter entitled, "Svapramanatva and Svaprakasatva: An Inconsistency in Kumärila's Philosophy," he presents a fairly informative and well-reasoned argument that the validity of cognitions cannot be verified on the basis of both the inherent quality of the senses which give immediate satisfaction and the quality of external conditions which must await subsequent investigation. Finally, he soundly criticizes R. C. Zaehner's The Comparison of Religions for interpreting and evaluating Hindu religion and philosophy through the spectacles of Catholic Christianity. But his own contention, reiterated again and again throughout the book, that "there is nothing in common between Hindu religion and philosophy," makes no sense. Surely, one thing which distinguishes Indian philosophy from Greek and modern philosophy in the western world is the continual insistence by Indian thinkers that philosophical reflection and rational argumentation are not ends in themselves but merely means to salvation, paths to Enlightenment.--J. B. L. (shrink)
The scholar who translated The Edicts of Ashoka into English has now set out to present and critically analyze some of "The Great Ideas of Indian Culture." While apparently engaging in a search for the ever-elusive "Perennial Philosophy" by invoking Plato, Aristotle, Kant, Hegel, et al., the author's comparative statements come off as being little more than decorative paraphernalia. He submits too completely to the mystique of the Socratic dialogue in claiming that "the outstanding characteristic of Indian thought is dialogue". (...) We can agree that one does find a type of verbal exchange which might merit the designation of "conversation," but not dialogue. At no place in either the Upanisads or Gïta does the student ever feel the slightest compulsion to question or contradict the words of his guru. Nikam also commits the grave philosophical indiscretion of using Platonic language about "universals" to speak of the Vedäntin "Universal Absolute,". This sort of cross-cultural comparison is extremely misleading in cases where the ideas being compared are similar or identical in appearance but dissimilar in substance. Even so, the book is extremely informative, and, in places, inspiring, in its illumination of the subtler dimensions of Indian thought. Western philosophers and interested lay-students should find this small volume most helpful in gaining a succinct but comprehensive presentation of the "Great Ideas of Indian Culture."--J. B. L. (shrink)
This is the second edition of a very imaginative collection of readings in aesthetics from Plato to the present. In this second edition, seven selections have been deleted and fifteen new selections have been added to greatly enhance its usefulness to beginning students in aesthetics. Additional readings on artistic creation and drama have been provided and a number of illustrations of works by Raphael, Giotto, Matisse, Dürer, Brancusi, Henry Moore, et al. have been included this time to illustrate relevant textual (...) materials. As in the first edition, the author's primary intention is to establish the field of aesthetics as having the same integrity and adventuresomeness as other areas of philosophical inquiry and debate. With this goal in view, he has organized the readings around "certain sets of basic problems that still seem worth debating and attempting to solve." Each section is centered around specific problems and issues in aesthetics, beginning with the broadest question, "What is Art?," and moving on to such issues as the nature of the various art forms, the nature of tragedy, the problem of response to art and, finally, the nature and goal of art criticism. Various readers and teachers in aesthetics no doubt, will find fault with or gaps in his selections of readings. But laying aside such parochial matters as ideology and personal taste, this volume puts in the hands of the student of aesthetics a compendium of essays on the major issues and areas of concern in aesthetics which can easily be supplemented by use of a xerox machine. The editor has included such scholarly aids as a brief introduction to each section, interpretative and cross-referential footnotes and a minimal bibliography.--J. B. L. (shrink)
Sūkṣmāgama I: Chapters 1–13. Critical Edition. Edited with an introduction by S. Sambandhaśivācārya and T. Ganesan. Collection Indologie, vol. 114, no. 1. Pondicherry: Institut Français de Pondichéry / École Française d’Extrême-Orient, 2010. Pp. l + 203. 650 Rs., € 28. Sūkṣmāgama II: Chapters 14–53. Critical Edition. Edited with an introduction by S. Sambandhaśivācārya, B. Dagens, M.-l. Barazer-Billoret, and T. Ganesan. Jean Filliozat Series in South Asian Culture and History, no. 3. Pondicherry: institut Français de Pondichéry, 2012. Pp. clxiii + 403.
We report specific heat and μSR measurements on Th and/or B substituted UBe13. The specific heat data show that either Th or B substitution reduces the Kondo temperature TK and increases the entropy at the superconducting transition by almost 20%, indicating an enhanced density of states. However, whereas μSR shows clear evidence for magnetic correlations for Th substitutions, no magnetism is observed for B substitutions. The enhanced specific heat jump in the B-substituted material is associated with a change in the (...) superconducting properties as TK is reduced. (shrink)
A systematic presentation of Buddhist philosophy from the Madhyamika standpoint, combining careful documentation and technical precision with effective explications in terms of Western concepts. Often misunderstood as nihilism, the Madhyamika system is here presented as an absolutism which employs a negative dialectic to expose the incompetency of reason to grasp ultimate reality, yet affirms a supra-rational intuitional union with it. Conceptual construction is the source of bondage and pain; freedom is made possible by the critical renunciation of conceptualization but is (...) realized only in the positive, immediate intellectual intuition of the Absolute. This system is presented sympathetically yet not uncritically as a live philosophical alternative by no means incommensurable with our major systems.--L. K. B. (shrink)
An examination of four types of logico-mathematical formalisms, conceived as attempts to avoid paradoxes, leads to the conclusion that there can be no general, formal criterion of nonsense. Crahay holds that formal systems must be treated as dynamic, as the not-fully-formalizable becoming formal, the "conceptual" becoming "notional." Though technically competent and based on a vast amount of material, the treatment is too diffuse and sketchy to be more than suggestive.--L. K. B.
There are practically no sincere and consistent "Westernizers" left in our country after the almost universal "Westernist" euphoria at the end of the eighties. This applies equally to active politicians of all camps and to the predominant moods in society.