The agenda -- The instinctual management of feeling -- The instinctual management of life -- Behind the scenes of choice -- Anger -- Going beyond ego -- Belief system components -- Conscious values -- Conscious morals -- Conscious expectations and self-image -- The conscious management of feelings -- Managing 'mad' -- Managing 'sad' -- Managing 'bad' -- Managing 'fear' -- Managing 'glad' -- Integrity : one choice at a time -- Nature meets nurture : the peace of mind (...) perspective is born. (shrink)
Richard Sorabji presents a ground-breaking study of ancient Greek views of the emotions and their influence on subsequent theories and attitudes, Pagan and Christian. While the central focus of the book is the Stoics, Sorabji draws on a vast range of texts to give a rich historical survey of how Western thinking about this central aspect of human nature developed.
'By their fruits ye shall know them, not by their roots.'The Varieties of Religious Experience is William James's classic survey of religious belief in its most personal, and often its most heterodox, aspects. Asking questions such as how we define evil to ourselves, the difference between a healthy and a divided mind, the value of saintly behaviour, and what animates and characterizes the mental landscape of sudden conversion, James's masterpiece stands at a unique moment in the (...) relationship between belief and culture. Faith in institutional religion and dogmatic theology was fading away, and the search for an authentic religion rooted in personality and subjectivity was a project conducted as an urgent necessity. With psychological insight, philosophical rigour, and a determination not to jump to the conclusion that in tracing religion's mental causes we necessarily diminish its truth or value, in the Varieties James wrote a truly foundational text for modern belief.Matthew Bradley's wide-ranging new edition examines the ideas that continue to fuel modern debates on atheism and faith. (shrink)
Gretchen J. Reydams-Schils - Emotion and Peace of Mind: From Stoic Agitation to Christian Temptation - Journal of the History of Philosophy 40:2 Journal of the History of Philosophy 40.2 255-256 Book Review Emotion and Peace of Mind: From Stoic Agitation to Christian Temptation Richard Sorabji. Emotion and Peace of Mind: From Stoic Agitation to Christian Temptation. New York: Oxford University Press, 2000. Pp. x + 499. Cloth, $45.00. In his latest magisterial study Richard (...) Sorabji casts his net much wider than the title suggests, to give an overview of ancient theories on emotion, including views of the Presocratics, Plato, Aristotle on catharsis, the Pyrrhonists, and the Epicureans, in addition to the material from the Stoics and Christian authors... (shrink)
Currently in Japan, it is extremely difficult to realize the basic wish of protecting personal dignity at the end of life. A patient’s right to refuse life-sustaining treatment has not been substantially warranted, and advance directives have not been legally enforceable. Unfortunately, it is not until the patient is moribund that all concerned parties start to deliberate on whether or not death with dignity should be pursued. Medical intervention is often perceived as a worthwhile goal to not only preserve life, (...) but also provide psychological benefit to the family, regardless of its effect on the patient. To feel they are doing something, family members tend to act against the imperative “Do not inflict on others what you would not wish done to you,” and permit extraordinary measures they would not want themselves. Another complication in Japanese culture is the necessity of unanimous decisions for end-of-life care. If there is conflict between a patient and his/her family on accepting medical intervention, the view of the latter is more likely to prevail due to different perceptions of human dignity. As a result, incapacitated patients in Japanese clinical settings often suffer through extraneous medical procedures, particularly during end-of-life care. Patient dignity is in danger from a national refusal to accept major bioethical principles such as having respect for patient autonomy, serving the best interests of the patient, doing no harm, and ensuring fairness at the end of life. We argue that more education about human dignity and legislation for death with dignity are necessary. Peace of mind for patients during end-of-life care will never be achieved in this society unless drastic changes take place in medical ethics and law. (shrink)
Richard Sorabji presents a ground-breaking study of ancient Greek views of the emotions and their influence on subsequent theories and attitudes, pagan and Christian. The central focus of the book is the Stoics, but Sorabji draws on a vast range of texts to give a rich historical survey of how Western thinking about this central aspect of human nature developed.Stoicism is not, Sorabji makes clear, about gritting your teeth. It can successfully banish stress by showing you how to assess your (...) situation differently. But there were rival views, that emotional stress depends on irrational forces in the mind, or, as modern brain research explains, physical forces in the body, so that changing your assessment is only sometimes effective. The debate also concerns the different roles of philosophy, music, and the arts in calming stress.Orthodox Stoics marginalized as mere side-effects the initial agitations which they could not treat. In Christianity we see how one culture can transform another. Sorabji shows how the Christians turned the Stoic theory of initial agitations into a theory of initial temptations and devised new techniques to combat what came to be called the seven cardinal sins.Emotion and Peace of Mind is a magisterial work of scholarship which will be fascinating for anyone with an interest in the emotions from a historical or contemporary perspective. (shrink)
When do children become consciously aware of events in the world? Five possible strategies are considered for their usefulness in determining the age in question. Three of these strategies ask when children show signs of engaging in activities for which conscious awareness seems necessary in adults , and two of the strategies consider when children have the ability to have the minimal form of higher-order thought necessary for access consciousness and phenomenal consciousness, respectively. The tentative answer to the guiding question (...) is that children become consciously aware between 12 and 15 months. (shrink)
The article highlights the challenges and potential of religious peacebuilding in resolving conflict in multi-ethnic and multi-religious context. This paper seeks to examine the conduct of religious leaders in Kenya as key actors in society and how their involvement in partisan politics undermines their role as peacebuilders. Informed by theoretical underpinnings on the concepts of peace, peacebuilding and religious peacebuilding the author defines the expected character of religious leaders that would qualify them as strategic (...)peace actors. (shrink)
Religion is intrinsically social, and hence irretrievably organizational, although organization is often seen as the darker side of the religious experience--power, routinization, and bureaucracy. Religion and secular organizations have long received separate scholarly scrutiny, but until now their confluence has been little considered. This interdisciplinary collection of mostly unpublished papers is the first volume to remedy the deficit. The project grew out of a three-year inquiry into religious institutions undertaken by Yale University's Program on Non-Profit Organizations and sponsored (...) by the Lilly Endowment. The scholars who took part in this effort weree challenged to apply new perspectives to the study of religious organizations, especially that strand of contemporary secular organizational theory known as "New Institutionalism." The result was this groundbreaking volume, which includes papers on various aspects of such topics as the historical sources and patterns of U.S. religious organizations, contemporary patterns of denominational authority, the congregation as an organization, and the interface between religious and secular institutions and movements. The contributors include an interdisciplinary mix of scholars from economics, history, law, social administration, and sociology. (shrink)
What if you could, like a diamond forged through heat and pressure, transform every painful, scary, and stressful experience in your life into one that is meaningful, courageous, and inspiring? What if you were provided with the tools that allow you to tap and manifest the true power that exists within you--the power to shine? Are you ready to discover your path to peace? In this fascinating book, Dr. Darren Weissman shares ancient spiritual wisdom fused with a modern-day understanding (...) of the mind's relationship to biology and behavior that has implications not only for your health, but for the well-being of the entire planet. You'll learn how to use The LifeLine Technique Ô --a philosophy and technology for awakening your infinite potential for healing and wholeness--and share the experiences of scores of people whose lives have been forever changed as a result. Conscious visionaries pronounced more than 40 years ago that the road to peace is paved with the power of love. Dr. Weissman's book provides the steps you can use to learn to walk that path, and it will help you understand why it is your moral imperative to choose love over fear. (shrink)
Are there trans-religious, trans-cultural constants in psychological aspects of religion across different religions and cultures? An excessively culturalistic approach may overlook this possibility, putting an emphasis on the uniqueness of the religious phenomenon studied as emerging from a complex of multiple contextual factors. This article reviews empirical studies in psychology of religion in the 1990s that mainly include participants from different Christian denominations, but also from other religions: Muslims, Jews and Hindus. It appeared, at first, that several (...) cross-cultural/religious differences can be documented , but the interpretation of these differences is not simple, as other factors may interfere. Secondly it turned out that an impressive series of psychological constants also exist across different denominations, religions, and cultures. These constants include personality correlates, gender and gender orientation, positive and negative values, cognitive and affective aspects, identity formation, social attitudes and consequences. (shrink)
Studies concerning the relationship between religion and mental health have provided substantial evidence for the existence of a positive relationship. Nevertheless, it remains largely unclear which aspects of both religion and mental health take part in this relationship. The present study uses multiple measures of religion and of mental health to obtain a more refined view of this relationship. The results show the importance of distinguishing between if a person believes and how a person believes . Religious persons (...) who have a symbolic attitude towards religion scored higher on positive aspects of mental health . No significant results were found for negative mental health. (shrink)
The various schools of the Indian classical philosophy have discussed the issue how we understand the meaning from an utterance. In the present paper, I analyse the ancient controversy on this issue between two schools, Naiyāyikas and Vaiśeṣikas, and attempt to show that it has two aspects of religious and epistemological natures. Vaiśeṣikas, on the ground that the process of the verbal understanding is identical with that of the inference, claim that the verbal understanding is merely a type (...) of the inference. Naiyāyikas oppose this and assert that the former is distinct from the latter. I summarise Vaiśeṣikas’ argument into two points: (1) the similarity of the objects of the cognition and (2) that of the relations between the object and what denotes it. Naiyāyikas rejects both thesimilarities. The above discussion, which may stimulate our epistemological interest, has a close connection with the issue of scriptures. The utterance as a source of knowledge seems to have stood, in the early period, only for the scriptures, as pointed out by Hiryanna. Taking this into consideration, Vaiśeṣikas’ thesis can be understood to imply that they deny the intrinsic authority of scriptures and reduce it to the rational faculty of human beings. Naiyāyikas also deny itsintrinsic authority, but their view on the cognitive process of the verbal understanding is different from that of Vaiśeṣikas. The reason of this divergence may lie in how they treat the reliability of the speaker in respect to the cognitive process. (shrink)
This article connects philosophical debates about cognitive enhancement and situated cognition. It does so by focusing on moral aspects of enhancing our cognitive abilities with the aid of external artifacts. Such artifacts have important moral dimensions that are addressed neither by the cognitive enhancement debate nor situated cognition theory. In order to fill this gap in the literature, three moral aspects of cognitive artifacts are singled out: their consequences for brains, cognition, and culture; their moral status; and their (...) relation to personal identity. (shrink)
Historical analysis confirms the home-grown character of Nigeria’s conflicts and the complexity of their peaceful resolution. Religious leaders have traditionally contested political space with other actors and continue to do so. But the religiosity of popular culture is such that Nigerian religious leaders can make a substantive contribution to peace building and countering religious extremism if given the time, space and tools to do so. Elections have been critical moments in the evolution of religious tensions (...) and conflicts owing to the country’s geographical demographic and history, and the popular hope of correcting injustice that they evoke. There is a need to distinguish between genuine religious conflicts and conflicts that are essentially socio-economic or about competition for political power which become “religionised.” The evolution of the terrorist organisation, Boko Haram, can be traced back to intra-Muslim conflicts and anti-Sufi movements. But it reflects no less the underdevelopment and poverty of the Northeast and the impact of corruption on the perception of state and national government. The crude and violent narrative of Abubakar Shekau, its leader, shows a deterioration beyond that of its founder Malam Yusuf, who was able to offer financial and economic inducements over and above a rejection of most aspects of modernity and Western education. Increasingly, efforts are being made by religious leaders at both national, and local levels through formal, and grassroots networks to build better understanding and awareness between faiths to change and challenge narratives. With the appropriate support, these networks have great potential for improving communal relations and overcoming Boko Haram’s narratives of hate. (shrink)
We cannot disregard that the neuroscientific research on religious phenomena such as religious experiences and rituals for example, has increased significantly the last years. Neuroscientists claim that neuroscience contributes considerably in the process of understanding religious experiences, because neuroscience is able to measure brain activity during religious experiences by way of brain‐imaging technologies. No doubt, those results of neuroscientific research on religious experiences are an important supplement to the understanding of some types of religious (...) experiences. However, some conclusions drawn from neuroscientific research on religious experiences are arguable. For example, one such conclusion is that religious experiences are actually nothing but neural activity, i.e. there is nothing ‘religious’ to the experiences at all. Another such conclusion is that a person’s religious experiences actually derive from some ultimate reality, meaning that religious experiences are real. It is the latter assertion that will be analyzed in the present paper. The question is asked whether neuroscience alone is able to affirm that religious experiences are real or whether there are, besides neuroscientific issues, also cultural‐religious assumptions that underlie this conclusion. (shrink)
This study sets out to establish which Buddhist values contrasted with or were shared by adolescents from a non-Buddhist population. A survey of attitudes toward a variety of Buddhist values was fielded in a sample of 352 non-Buddhist schoolchildren aged between 13?15 years in London. Buddhist values where attitudes were least positive concerned the worth of being a monk/nun or meditating, offering candles & incense on the Buddhist shrine, friendship on Sangha Day, avoiding drinking alcohol, seeing the world as empty (...) or impermanent and Nirvana as the ultimate peace. Buddhist values most closely shared by non-Buddhists concerned the Law of Karma, calming the mind, respecting those deserving of respect, subjectivity of happiness, welfare work, looking after parents in old age and compassion to cuddly animals. Further significant differences of attitude toward Buddhism were found in partial correlations with the independent variables of sex, age and religious affiliation. Correlation patterns paralleled those previously described in theistic religions. Findings are applied to spiritual, moral, social and cultural development and for the teaching of religion to pupils of no faith adherence. The study recommends that quantitative psychometrics employed to conceptualize Buddhist values by discriminant validity in this study could be extended usefully to other aspects of the study of Buddhism, particularly in the quest for validity in the conceptualization of Buddhist identity within specifically Buddhist populations. (shrink)
In the first part of this essay, the author discusses certain aspects of the Hindu and Buddhist philosophical and religious conceptions that could have made some impact on the European ethics before Schopenhauer. In the second part, he deals with various channels of possible Buddhist influence on Schopenhauer's ethical thought. Finally, in discussing Buddhist-Wittgenstein relationship, one is confronted with convergent, yet independent, responses to similar sets of problems. Independently, and less systematically than Buddhist philosophical schools, Wittgenstein indicates the (...) way of liberation that cures from the "metaphysical pain " emerging from inappropriate use of language. His own project, however, was not metaphysical, but meta-linguistic in a very specific sense. The philosophical "cure" from the language disease leads ultimately to the "purification " and "decontamination " of thought: in turn, the mind rests in peace and silence before the senseless, paradoxical questions of the moral, esthetical religious or metaphysical character. (shrink)
This paper discusses some aspects of foreign language learning within the divided school system of Northern Ireland. It is argued that an improvement of foreign language learning must be seen in a sociocultural context whereby a change in attitudes to languages in general, including Irish, may lead not only to a balanced interest among girls and boys in the language classroom, but also to a more tolerant approach to the cultural differences among the Catholic and Protestant communities.
The phenomenon of aspect recognition is at the core of Wittgenstein's later views on logic and language; it is also central to his reflections on religious language and experience. In both contexts, the uptake and use of pictures is the critical element in concept formation and in understanding. Clarity and confusion in religious thought lie in a domain defined by the structure, aesthetics, and functions of the pictures religious people use, and by the relations among them. The (...) argument is conveyed through analyses of experiences of characters in _The Wind in the Willows and Homer's _Odyssey. (shrink)
We tested the hypothesis that more frequent exposure to multiword phrases results in deeper entrenchment of their representations, by examining the performance of subjects of different religiosity in the recognition of briefly presented liturgical and secular phrases drawn from several frequency classes. Three of the sources were prayer texts that religious Jews are required to recite on a daily, weekly, and annual basis, respectively; two others were common and rare expressions encountered in the general secular Israeli culture. As expected, (...) linear dependence of recognition score on frequency was found for the religious subjects (being most pronounced for men, who are usually more observant than women); both religious and secular subjects performed better on common than on rare general culture items. Our results support the notion of graded entrenchment introduced by Langacker and shared by several cognitive linguistic theories of language comprehension and production. (shrink)
The problem of war and peace has always attracted the close attention of philosophers, historians, political and military figures, as well as of millions of people in all parts of the globe. Today this problem has become particularly crucial. Humanity is now deeply concerned by questions pertaining to elimination of the danger of world nuclear war, prohibition forever of using means of mass extermination, preservation of world peace, and the safety of peoples.