The readers/hearers of the Fourth Gospel are not meant simply to learn from its scenes; they must encounter Jesus and be challenged by him, so they are led to perceive God's ways rather than fitting Jesus into their own preconceived needs.
Against the background of some positions taken up in a recent document of the Pontifical Biblical Commission, the article studies RaymondBrown’s attempt to combine mainstream historical‐critical exegesis of the Bible with a Roman Catholic theological pre‐understanding. Particular reference is made to his handling of issues connected with the virginal conception of Jesus. Some of his religious presuppositions such as those concerning the relation between faith and reason, and the development of doctrine, are presented. Biblical criticism in (...) class='Hi'>Brown’s understanding is an essentially historical discipline which has as its principal object the literal sense of the text, that is, what the text meant when it was written. His religious presuppositions make the practice of the discipline ineliminable in an integral hermeneutic. From an analysis of his treatment of the virginal conception, it is argued that Catholic pre‐understanding and historical criticism, when combined, inevitably result in a two‐stage hermeneutic. In a first stage appeal is made to presuppostions common to all practitioners of historical criticism. In a second stage religious presuppostions come into play. The distinction between these two stages is seen as more fundamental than Brown’s better known distinction between the literal and more‐than‐literal senses of the text. It is argued that the relation between the two stages is to be understood in chalcedonian terms as exemplifying the dialectic of faith and reason: they must be distinguished, but cannot be separated. Brown’s grasp of an incarnational economy of salvation is presented in terms of David H. Kelsy’s concept of a discrimen, and emerges as fundamental for an ecclesial hermeneutic of the Bible. Questions about the place of the historical‐critical method, the promise of alternative approaches and the role of hermeneutical theory can only be adequately addressed in terms of it. (shrink)
In what sense can we not help thinking that every event has a cause? One answer is, that this begs the question: we can think of events as uncaused. Well, we can think of events in isolation from causes, and we can formulate the proposition that some events have no cause, or that no event needs a cause. But the first of these does not constitute thinking of an event as not caused , but thinking of an event not-as-caused ; (...) while the implications of the second, forming anti-causal propositions, are obscure. I can verbally formulate the proposition ‘some events are uncaused’; the question is, whether it makes sense to affirm it. Now I can verbally formulate the proposition ‘some triangles are quadrilateral’, and we must not say that this does not make sense ; for I know the criteria for being a triangle, and I know the criteria for being quadrilateral; and the proposition simply asserts that there are some figures which satisfy both sets of criteria. That this is logically impossible is true, but it is not unintelligible. It does not, however, make sense to affirm a logical impossibility, simply because I cannot meaningfully affirm what I do not understand and believe to be possible , and if I understand what it means to be both triangular and quadrilateral, I cannot also believe it to be possible, since to understand what it means for a plane figure to have three sides is to understand that this excludes its having any other number of sides, e.g. four. But ‘some events are not caused’ is not logically incoherent in this way, or not apparently so; for in thinking of an event I am by definition thinking of a happening in isolation from any cause; I am thinking of it not as caused . Thus ‘some events are uncaused’ is not incoherent ex vi terminorum. (shrink)
In this study, we comprehensively examine the relationships between ethical leadership, social exchange, and employee commitment. We find that organizational and supervisory ethical leadership are positively related to employee commitment to the organization and supervisor, respectively. We also find that different types of social exchange relationships mediate these relationships. Our results suggest that the application of a multifoci social exchange perspective to the context of ethical leadership is indeed useful: As hypothesized, within-foci effects (e.g., the relationship between organizational ethical leadership (...) and commitment to the organization) are stronger than cross-foci effects (e.g., the relationship between supervisory ethical leadership and commitment to the organization). In addition, in contrast to the “trickle down” model of ethical leadership (Mayer et al. in Org Behav Hum Decis Process 108:1–13, 2009), our results suggest that organizational ethical leadership is both directly and indirectly related to employee outcomes. (shrink)
Emotional states of consciousness, or what are typically called emotional feelings, are traditionally viewed as being innately programed in subcortical areas of the brain, and are often treated as different from cognitive states of consciousness, such as those related to the perception of external stimuli. We argue that conscious experiences, regardless of their content, arise from one system in the brain. On this view, what differs in emotional and non-emotional states is the kind of inputs that are processed by a (...) general cortical network of cognition, a network essential for conscious experiences. Although subcortical circuits are not directly responsible for conscious feelings, they provide non-conscious inputs that coalesce with other kinds of neural signals in the cognitive assembly of conscious emotional experiences. In building the case for this proposal, we defend a modified version of what is known as the higher-order theory of consciousness. (shrink)
This book adds to the growing literature on thought experiments. There are numerous examples drawn from the sciences and philosophy. The principle claim is that thought experiments are a limiting case of real experiments. It is a moderate empiricist view, in contrast to, e.g., the Platonism of Brown or the strict empiricism of Norton. Highly recommended.
Several forms of naturalism are currently extant. Proponents of the various approaches disagree on matters of strategy and detail but one theme is common: we have not received any revelations about the nature of the world -- including our own nature. Whatever knowledge we have has been acquired through a fallible process of conjecture and revision. This common theme will bring to mind the writings of Karl Popper and, in many respects, Popper is the father of contemporary naturalism. Along with (...) Popper, the form of naturalism that I would defend is realistic in the following sense: it considers the acquisition of knowledge of the nature of the world to be a pursuable long-term goal of our epistemic activities. (See Brown [1987, 1988, 1990].) Popper's central interest in truth has led him to object to the pervasive concern with concepts among contemporary philosophers. Truth, Popper insists, is the fundamental epistemic concern; propositions are the bearers of truth; and the evaluation of propositions should be at the center of our epistemic focus (e.g., 1965, pp. 18-21; 1972, pp. 123-24). Concern with concepts, Popper maintains, is a distraction. Yet, this leaves us in an odd position. When we study a particular subject matter, one of our main problems is to determine what kinds of entities and processes occur in that domain. But the kinds of entities and processes we attribute to a domain will be captured in the concepts we use for describing that domain and, from a naturalistic point of view, concepts are no more available through revelation than are propositions. As our knowledge develops, we must not only propose and evaluate propositions, we must also propose and evaluate concepts. (shrink)
I present and defend an original semantic theory which assigns representatives to expressions, in addition to referents. The theory is nominalistic--i.e., it avoids reference to possible worlds and other abstract entities--and yet is strong enough, I claim, to serve as a theory of meaning. More precisely, it provides a means for interpreting, in a nominalistically acceptable manner, the non-extensional linguistic contexts in which the "meanings" of expressions are supposed to play a semantic role. ;The intuitive ancestry of the theory can (...) be traced back to an analysis of meaning first proposed by Nelson Goodman and later expanded by Rolf Eberle. I construct a precise formal semantics which embodies the basic ideas of these earlier proposals, and apply this theory to the interpretation of a language which contains one primitive non-extensional predicate--"about". In addition, I furnish a rigorous axiomatic treatment of this language, and demonstrate formally the soundness and completeness of this axiomatic theory relative to the semantics. (shrink)
In this book, Michael Brown provides original and critical analysis of the state of the social sciences and the humanities. He examines the different disciplines that address human affairs--from sociology, philosophy, political science, and anthropology to the humanities in general--to understand their common ground. He probes the ways in which we investigate the meaning of individuality in a society for which individuals are not the agents of the activities in which they participate, and he develops a critical method for (...) studying the relations among activities, objects, and situations. __The Concept of the Social in Uniting the Humanities and Social Sciences__ restores the centrality of sociality to all disciplines that provide for and depend on the social dimension of human life. Ultimately, he establishes a theory of the unity of the human sciences that will surely make readers rethink the current state and future of theory in those fields for years to come. (shrink)