In his work on personal identity, Derek Parfit makes two revolutionary claims: firstly, that personal identity is not what matters in survival; and secondly, that what does matter is relation R. In this article I demonstrate his position here to be inconsistent, with the former claim being defensible only in case the latter is false. Parfit intends his famous fission argument to establish the unimportance of identity – a conclusion disputed by, among others, Mark Johnston. My approach is to (...) critically assess their debate, focusing on Johnston's reductio of Parfit's position. I contend that although Parfit's own response fails, there are other ways to save the fission argument. The unimportance of identity then comes at a cost, however, because the reductio can only be avoided by accepting either that nothing matters in survival, or else that facts about particles and forces do. Either way, relation R cannot be what matters. (shrink)
Derek Parfit famously argued that personal identity is not what matters for prudential concern about the future. Instead, he argues what matters is Relation R, a combination of psychological connectedness and continuity with any cause. This revisionary conclusion, Parfit argued, has profound implications for moral theory. It should lead us, among other things, to deny the importance of the separateness of persons as an important fact of morality. Instead, we should adopt impersonal consequentialism. In this paper, I argue that (...) Parfit is mistaken about this last step. His revisionary arguments about personal identity and rationality have no implications for moral theory. We need not decide whether Relation R or personal identity contain what matters if we want to retain the importance of the separateness of persons. (shrink)
In section 96 of Reasons and Persons, Derek Parfit offers his now familiar tripartite distinction among candidates for ‘what matters’: (1) Relation R with its normal cause; (2) R with any reliable cause; (3) R with any cause. He defends option (3). This paper tries to show that there is important ambiguity in this distinction and in Parfit's defence of his position. There is something strange about Parfit's way of dividing up the territory: I argue that those who have (...) followed him in viewing the choice among (1)–(3) as the (or an) important question in thinking about ‘what matters’ are mistaken, and that they bypass what seems to be a more important, even crucial, set of options and considerations. I am less concerned with what he does say than with what he ought to say, given his intuitions and arguments, and the general framework within which he is working. And I am particularly concerned to show that whether or not I am correct about what he is doing with his tripartite distinction, it is a distinction with which we should not be particularly concerned in the analysis either of what matters or of psychological continuity. (shrink)
Current research in affectivity is often dominated by perspectives on the feeling/thinking dichotomy. In the paper first I reconstruct Collingwood’s position on this point as it is presented in his Religion and Philosophy, The Principles of Art, and New Leviathan, and then compare it shortly with Bergson’s view. In total five of Collingwood’s different readings of the feeling/thought relation are brought to light. Finally, I opt for a view that takes feeling and thought to be complementary and inseparable, and (...) I try to explain why and how they are better treated in this way. (shrink)
Despite having put the concept of HPS on the institutional map, N.R. Hanson’s distinctive account of the interdependence between history of science and philosophy of science has been mostly forgotten, and misinterpreted where it is remembered. It is argued that Hanson’s account is worthy of renewed attention and extension since, through its special emphasis on a variety of different normative criteria, it provides the framework for a fruitful and transformative interaction between the two disciplines. This essay also examines two separate (...) threads of Hanson’s account of philosophy of science: his analysis of the conceptual dynamics of science and of the interrelation of the history and philosophy of science. While the two strands appear incongruent, and were perhaps inconsistent, a new interpretation of them is offered which is both consistent with Hanson’s fundamental intuitions and defensible in its own right. It is demonstrated that Hanson’s account compares favorably with those of Kuhn and Lakatos, and that it may provide a constructive means of scaling the barriers erected by fears of the genetic fallacy and ‘whiggish’ history. (shrink)
Parfit has argued for the revolutionary thesis that personal identity does not matter in ordinary survival, only the R-relation does. “Reconciliationists,” such as Lewis, have tried to stop this revolution, arguing that both personal identity and the R-relation matter. The disagreement has been between those who hold that only the R-relation matters and those who hold that, in addition, personal identity matters. But there is a third option. I argue that Parfit is right that personal identity does (...) not matter but he is wrong that the R-relation matters, and the reconciliationists are wrong to think both matter since neither does. (shrink)
Values are an important part of human existence, his society and human relations. All social, economic, political, and religious problems are in one sense is reflection of this special abstraction of human knowledge. We are living in a globalized village and thinking much about values rather than practice of it. If we define religion and spirituality we can say that religion is a set of beliefs and rituals that claim to get a person in a right relationship with God, and (...) spirituality is a focus on spiritual things and the spiritual world instead of physical/earthly things. If we think rationally we can find the major evils related to religion exiting in present society are due to lack of proper understanding of religion and spirituality. If we really know our own religions and values associated with it, we can create a beautiful world, full or love and respect for each and every human being. The proper knowledge and practice of any religion’s values can make an integrated man. In the book, The Buddha and His Dhamma, Dr. Ambedkar elucidated the significance and importance of Dhamma in human life. The Dhamma maintained purity of life, which meant abstains from lustful, evil practices. The Dhamma is a perfection of life and giving up craving. Dhamma’s righteousness means right relation of man to man in all sphere of life. The basic idea underlying religion is to create an atmosphere for the spiritual development of the individual. He said that Knowing the proper ways and means is more important than knowing the ideal. The major objective of this paper is to the study the religious philosophy of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar and to study how he established that religious and spiritual values enables religious people in particular and humanity at large to solve contemporary problems. (shrink)
We try to find a possible origin of the holographic principle in the Lorentz-covariant Yang’s quantized space-time algebra (YSTA). YSTA, which is intrinsically equipped with short- and long-scale parameters, λ and R, gives a finite number of spatial degrees of freedom for any bounded spatial region, providing a basis for divergence-free quantum field theory. Furthermore, it gives a definite kinematical reduction of spatial degrees of freedom, compared with the ordinary lattice space. On account of the latter fact, we find a (...) certain kind of kinematical holographic relation in YSTA, which may be regarded as a primordial form of the holographic principle suggested so far in the framework of the present quantum theory that appears now in the contraction limit of YSTA, λ→0 and R→∞. (shrink)
We will prove in Zermelo-Fraenkel set theory without axiom of choice that the transitive hull R* of a relation R is not much “bigger” than R itself. As a measure for the size of a relation we introduce the notion of κ+-narrowness using surjective Hartogs numbers rather than the usul injective Hartogs values. The main theorem of this paper states that the transitive hull of a κ+-narrow relation is κ+-narrow. As an immediate corollary we obtain that, for (...) every infinite cardinal κ, the class HCκ of all κ-hereditary sets is a set with von Neumann rank ϱ ≤ κ+. Moreover, ϱ = κ+ if and only if κ is singular, otherwise ϱ = κ. The statements of the corollary are well known in the presence of the axiom of choice . To prove them without AC - as carried through here - is, however, much harder. A special case of the corollary has been treated independently by T. JECH. (shrink)
As with the problem of universals, late medieval thinkers were very concerned with the ontological status of relations, for they were central to numerous theological and philosophical problems. These relations were of various types: relations of identity, qualitative similarity, quantitative equality, causal relations, and intentional relations, such as those between knower and the object known. Each of these relations was taken to be an Aristotelian accident. Does it differ from the substance which is related? Broadly speaking, I have discovered four (...) alternative theories: as sentence of the form "a is related by a real relation R to b" is true only if the relation R is an extra-mental thing really distinct from a and b ; R only exists as a concept in a mind ; a and b exist in a certain real way ; the term "R" is connotative, signifying a directly and connoting b . Using printed sources and my critical edition of various codices, I ask the following thinkers whether a real relation is distinct from that which is related: Thomas Aquinas, Giles of Rome, Henry of Ghent, Richard of Middleton, John Duns Scotus, Henry of Harclay, Hervaeus Natalis, and Peter Aurioli. (shrink)
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