Contemporary commentators on Hume's essay, ‘Of miracles’ have increasingly tended to argue that Hume never intended to suggest that testimonial evidence must always be insufficient to justify belief in a miracle. This is in marked contrast to earlier commentators who interpreted Hume as intending to demonstrate that testimonial evidence is incapable in principle of ever establishing rational belief in a miracle. In this article I argue that this traditional interpretation is the correct one.
In his paper ‘Miracles: metaphysics, physics, and physicalism’, 1 Kirk McDermid appears to have two primary goals. The first is to demonstrate that my account of how God might produce a miracle without violating any laws of nature is radically flawed. The second is to suggest two alternative accounts, one suitable for a deterministic world, one suitable for an indeterministic world, which allow for the occurrence of a miracle without violation of the laws of nature, yet do not suffer from (...) the defects of what McDermid terms the ‘Larmerian’ model. I briefly describe my model, reply to McDermid's criticism of it, and evaluate his alternative accounts. (shrink)
The purpose of this paper is to clear up the long-standing veritable mountain of misinterpretation, perpetuated from critic to critic, concerning the admittedly problematic concept of self-authenticating religious experience. While it may well be the case, as many have argued, that a sort of ‘experience’ about which one could not be mistaken is simply a logically impossible state of affairs, this cannot be known to be the case so long as what is under attack is a bogus concept, obviously absurd, (...) having nothing whatsoever to do with the correct interpretation of ‘self-authentication’. Hence, my mission herein is essentially that of philosophical analysis or clarification of meaning. Only upon suitable clarification of this concept will we be in a position to consider the question of its possible application, i.e. whether or not there could be an instantiation of such experience. I might point out that my central concern is somewhat more explicatory than historical, though I believe that the account developed in this paper is essentially congenial with the intent of those who have been proponents of the view that there can be self-authenticating religious experience. Let us begin, then, by turning to some representative criticism of the concept in question. (shrink)
In Anselm's Discovery , Professor Hartshorne makes the rather startling and counterintuitive claim that ‘…there is indeed no issue between theism and pantheism. We all exist in the divine being, as St Paul said.’ 1 Classical or orthodox theists, it seems eminently fair to say, can be expected to recoil from any such suggestion with more than a little indignation. First of all, it might well be objected that Hartshorne - as a ‘process theist’ - is not a classical theist, (...) and, consequently, while there may be no issue between pantheism and his brand of theism, such is simply not the case in so far as classical theism is concerned. According to the latter - in contradistinction, of course, to Hartshorne's ‘neoclassical theism’ - immutability is an ‘essential’ property of God; as such, it would be a conceptual error to ascribe any contingent states to God at all. Now as is well known by philosophers of religion, Hartshorne regards this immutability doctrine of classical theism as a serious ‘logical blunder’ , one which - in so far as it reflects the ‘Greek bias’ which has always identified perfection with the absolutely unchangeable - is profoundly distortive of the biblical concept of Deity. (shrink)
I am grateful to Philip Quinn for his thorough and penetrating critique of my paper on classical theism and pantheism. He has given me much to think about, and it would be philosophically remiss of me not to acknowledge that – in the light of his remarks – the argument which I employed in defence of the thesis that classical theism implies a version of pantheism might well benefit from some amendment. However, the purpose of this brief counter-rejoinder is to (...) establish that the nexus of my argument has emerged from his commentary in reasonably robust health, i.e., to demonstrate that if the argument of my former paper is to be rejected, it will take something more than Professor Quinn's critique to make that clear. Very concisely, then, my response is as follows: At a preliminary point, Professor Quinn claims that my argument ‘merits careful scrutiny’ because, if it succeeds, ‘something shockingly at variance with received views’ will have been established . I find this to be somewhat odd. For it seems clear that St Paul was a ‘classical theist’, indeed a very special one in so far as the shaping of Christian theism is concerned. And while his famous and oftcited dictum that God is the One in Whom ‘we live, move, and have our being’ may be such that it is permissible to construe it in ways which do not imply any version of pantheism, it clearly seems unjustified to maintain that pantheistic doctrines are ‘shockingly at variance’ with that most intriguing statement of St Paul's. (shrink)
To the extent that Mircea Eliade is concerned with millenarianism he is concerned with it as only an instance of religious phenomena generally and is concerned with its meaning rather than its cause. Yet presupposed in the meaning he finds is a theory of its cause, and that theory is worth examining both because it elucidates Eliade's approach to religion as a whole and because as an explanation of millenarianism it is atypical and even unique.
Stakeholder theory has become a central issue in the literature on business ethics / business and society. There are, however, a number of problems with stakeholder theory as currently understood. Among these are: 1) the lack of a coherent justificatory framework, 2) the problem of adjudicating between stakeholders, and 3) the problem of stakeholder identification. In this essay, I propose that a possible source of obligations to stakeholders is the principle of fairness (or fair play) as discussed in the political (...) philosophic literature of Rawls, Simmons, and Cullity among others. The principle of fairness states that, “Whenever persons or groups of persons voluntarily accept the benefits of a mutually beneficial scheme of co-operation requiring sacrifice or contribution on the parts of the participants and there exists the possibility of free-riding, there exist obligations of fairness on the part of these persons or groups to co-operate in proportion to the benefits accepted.” In this essay I discuss the gaps in the current stakeholder literature, elucidate and defend a principle of fairness that fills the gap, compare the fairness model to other similar models of business ethics, and draw some conclusions for the future of stakeholder theory. (shrink)
Are materially constituted entities, such as statues and glasses of liquid, something more than their material constituents? The puzzle that frames this paper stems from conflicting answers to this question. At the core of the paper is a distinctive way of thinking about material constitution that posits two concepts of constitution, compositional and ampliative constitution, with the bulk of the discussion devoted to developing distinct analyses for these concepts. Distinguishing these concepts solves our initial puzzle and enriches the space of (...) possibilities for constitution views. (shrink)
Although ethics consultation is offered as a clinical service in most hospitals in the United States, few valid and practical tools are available to evaluate, ensure, and improve ethics consultation quality. The quality of ethics consultation is important because poor quality ethics consultation can result in ethically inappropriate outcomes for patients, other stakeholders, or the health care system. To promote accountability for the quality of ethics consultation, we developed the Ethics Consultation Quality Assessment Tool. ECQAT enables raters to assess the (...) quality of ethics consultations based on the written record. Through rigorous development and preliminary testing, we identified key elements of a quality ethics consultation, established scoring criteria, developed training guidelines, and designed a holistic assessment process. This article describes the development of the ECQAT,.. (shrink)
Stakeholder theory is often unable to distinguish those individuals and groups that are stakeholders from those that are not. This problem of stakeholder identity has recently been addressed by linking stakeholder theory to a Rawlsian principle of fairness. To illustrate, the question of stakeholder status for the non-human environment is discussed. This essay criticizes a past attempt to ascribe stakeholder status to the non-human environment, which utilized a broad definition of the term "stakeholder." This paper then demonstrates how, despite the (...) denial of stakeholder status, the environment is nonetheless accounted for on a fairness-based approach through legitimate organizational stakeholders. In addition, since stakeholder theory has never claimed to be a comprehensive ethical scheme, it is argued that sound reasons might exist for managers to consider their organization's impact on the environment that are not stakeholder-related. (shrink)
This book presents the major teachings of Mahāyāna Buddhism in a precise, dramatic, and even humorous form. For two millennia this Sūtra, called the “jewel of the _Mahāyāna Sūtras_,” has enjoyed immense popularity among Mahāyāna Buddhists in India, central and southeast Asia, Japan, and especially China, where its incidents were the basis for a style in art and literature prevalent during several centuries. Robert Thurman’s translation makes available in relatively nontechnical English the Tibetan version of this key Buddhist scripture, (...) previously known to the English-speaking world only through translations from Chinese texts. The _Tibetan_ version is generally conceded to be more faithful to the original Sanskrit than are the Chinese texts. The Tibetan version also is clearer, richer, and more precise in its philosophical and psychological expression. The twelve books of the Sūtra are accompanied by an introduction and an epilogue by Dr. Thurman and by three glossaries: Sanskrit terms, numerical categories, and technical terms. (shrink)
Research on positive psychology demonstrates that specific individual dispositions are associated with more desirable outcomes. The relationship of positive psychological constructs, however, has not been applied to the areas of business ethics and social responsibility. Using four constructs in two independent studies (hope and gratitude in Study 1, spirituality and generativity in Study 2), the relationship of these constructs to sensitivity to corporate social performance (CSCSP) were assessed. Results indicate that all four constructs significantly predicted CSCSP, though only hope and (...) gratitude interacted to impact CSCSP. Discussion focuses upon these findings, limitations of the study, and future avenues for research. (shrink)
This engaging and informative text will hold the attention of students and scholars as they take a journey through time to understand the role that history and philosophy have played in shaping the course of sport and physical education in Western and selected non-Western civilizations. Using appropriate theoretical and interpretive frameworks, students will investigate topics such as the historical relationship between mind and body; what philosophers and intellectuals have said about the body as a source of knowledge; educational philosophy and (...) the value of physical education and/or sport; philosophical positions that have impacted the historical development of sport and physical education; the history of women in sport and physical education; the role and scope of sport and physical education in Ancient Greece and Rome; the Ancient Olympic Games; the relationship between sport and religion in ancient and modern times; the theoretical and professional development of physical education; the rise of sport in modern America; the history and politics of the modern Olympic Games; and the contributions of men, women, and social movements to the development of sport and physical education from ancient times to the modern era. (shrink)
In 1984 we reported the results of surveying a nationwide sample of college students about selected business ethics issues. We concluded that (a) college students were in general concerned about the issues investigated and (b) female students were relatively more concerned than were male students. The present study replicated our earlier study and not only corroborated both of its conclusions, but also found a higher level of concern than had been observed previously.
Despite the fact that the history of eugenics in Canada is necessarily part of the larger history of eugenics, there is a special role for oral history to play in the telling of this story, a role that promises to shift us from the muddled middle of the story. Not only has the testimony of eugenics survivors already played perhaps the most important role in revealing much about the practice of eugenics in Canada, but the willingness and ability of survivors (...) to share their own oral histories makes the situation in western Canada almost unique. Conversely, I also discuss the role that oral history plays in “surviving a eugenic past”, trading on the ambiguity of this phrase to reflect both on the survivorship of those who have been viewed as subhuman via some kind of eugenic lens and on the collective legacy with which Canada’s eugenic past presents us. (shrink)
Where does the mind begin and end? Most philosophers and cognitive scientists take the view that the mind is bounded by the skull or skin of the individual. Robert Wilson, in this provocative and challenging 2004 book, provides the foundations for the view that the mind extends beyond the boundary of the individual. The approach adopted offers a unique blend of traditional philosophical analysis, cognitive science, and the history of psychology and the human sciences. The companion volume, Genes and (...) the Agents of Life, explores the theme in the biological sciences. Written with verve and clarity, this ambitious book will appeal to a broad swathe of professionals and students in philosophy, psychology, cognitive science, and the history of the behavioural and human sciences. You can download the table of contents here. (shrink)
This paper considers recent heated debates led by Jerry A. Coyne andMichael J. Wade on issues stemming from the 1929–1962 R.A. Fisher-Sewall Wrightcontroversy in population genetics. William B. Provine once remarked that theFisher-Wright controversy is central, fundamental, and very influential.Indeed,it is also persistent. The argumentative structure of therecent (1997–2000) debates is analyzed with the aim of eliminating a logicalconflict in them, viz., that the two sides in the debates havedifferent aims and that, as such, they are talking past each other. (...) Given aphilosophical analysis of the argumentative structure of the debates,suggestions supportive of Wade's work on the debate are made that areaimed, modestly, at putting the persistent Fisher-Wright controversy on thecourse to resolution. (shrink)
The Architecture of the Mind is itself built on foundations that deserve probing. In this brief commentary I focus on these foundations—Carruthers’ conception of modularity, his arguments for thinking that the mind is massively modular in structure, and his view of human cognitive architecture.
A vacuum is arising in the social policy of advanced countries. It is due to the fact that both of the currently dominant bases for social policy, market-oriented policy, and its presumed antagonist, welfare state policy, have the same and an insufficiently broad production value model at their core. The solution is to create a true new alternative, work quality policy, based on a re-understanding of work organization and the alternative forms of value it can create. Understanding work organization’s consequences (...) can help resolve current dilemmas relating to economic growth based on low production cost instead of skill development, hidden costs of work intensity and job insecurity, true service sector productivity, and current fragility of democratic institutions. (shrink)
This essay shows why Karl Rahner’s “Chalcedon: End or Beginning?,” also titled “Current Problems in Christology”, stands as a breakthrough in contemporary Catholic Christology. After describing the Neo-Thomism and Neo-Scholasticism of the early twentieth century, it examines one instance of this body of thought: Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange’s “Christ the Savior”. Then, the essay reviews the argument of “Chalcedon: End or Beginning?” Finally, it contrasts Garrigou-Lagrange’s literal Thomism and Rahner’s transcendental Thomism.
Effective public policy to mitigate climate change footprints should build on data-driven analysis of firm-level strategies. This article’s conceptual approach augments the resource-based view of the firm and identifies investments in four firm-level resource domains to develop capabilities in climate change impact mitigation. The authors denote the resulting framework as the GISTe model, which frames their analysis and public policy recommendations. This research uses the 2008 Carbon Disclosure Project database, with high-quality information on firm-level climate change strategies for 552 companies (...) from North America and Europe. In contrast to the widely accepted myth that European firms are performing better than North American ones, the authors find a different result. Many firms, whether European or North American, do not just “talk” about climate change impact mitigation, but actually do “walk the talk.” European firms appear to be better than their North American counterparts in “walk I,” denoting attention to governance, information management, and systems. But when it comes down to “walk II,” meaning actual Technology-related investments, North American firms’ performance is equal or superior to that of the European companies. The authors formulate public policy recommendations to accelerate firm-level, sector-level, and cluster-level implementation of climate change strategies. (shrink)
Management and non-management employees of a northeastern bank read a description of a manager who engaged in a breach of confidentiality. Subjects were asked to evaluate the acceptability of 27 excuses. Results showed that subjects' ratings of acceptability were affected by their individual perception of the severity of the stimulus manager's breach of confidentiality. Subjects' rank did not affect acceptability of accounts.
1. The Situation in Cognition 2. Situated Cognition: A Potted Recent History 3. Extensions in Biology, Computation, and Cognition 4. Articulating the Idea of Cognitive Extension 5. Are Some Resources Intrinsically Non-Cognitive? 6. Is Cognition Extended or Only Embedded? 7. Letting Nature Take Its Course.
Sociobiology developed in the 1960s as a field within evolutionary biology to explain human social traits and behaviours. Although sociobiology has few direct connections to eugenics, it shares eugenics’ optimistic enthusiasm for extending biological science into the human domain, often with reckless sensationalism. Sociobiology's critics have argued that sociobiology also propagates a kind of genetic determinism and represents the zealous misapplication of science beyond its proper reach that characterized the eugenics movement. More recently, evolutionary psychology represents a sophistication of sociobiology (...) that attends to the mind as the "missing link" between evolution and behaviour (Cosmides and Tooby 1992, Pinker 1997). (shrink)
The conducivity process, a methodology for creating healthier workplaces by promoting conducive production, is illustrated through the use of the “conducivity game” developed in the NordNet Project in Sweden, which was an action research project to test a job redesign methodology. The project combined the “conducivity” hypotheses about a combination of employees’ skills and the Scandanavian “dialogue-based” participatory practice. The goal of the conducivity game is to develop a flexible division of labor that enhances employees’ skills and facilitates development of (...) customer-adaptable products. The game develops “local languages” of worker coordination using visual images of a multiworker skill integration based on “skill plates.” Usage of the game in the companies activated shop-floor workers and companies to engage in self-managed work reorganization activities. (shrink)
Genes and the Agents of Life undertakes to rethink the place of the individual in the biological sciences, drawing parallels with the cognitive and social sciences. Genes, organisms, and species are all agents of life but how are each of these conceptualized within genetics, developmental biology, evolutionary biology, and systematics? The 2005 book includes highly accessible discussions of genetic encoding, species and natural kinds, and pluralism above the levels of selection, drawing on work from across the biological sciences. The book (...) is a companion to the author's Boundaries of the Mind (2004), also available from Cambridge, where the focus is the cognitive sciences. The book will appeal to a broad range of professionals and students in philosophy, biology, and the history of science. You can download the table of contents and the first chapter here. (shrink)
IN HIS ARTICLE "MIRACLES AND NATURAL EXPLANATION" DAVID BASINGER TAKES ISSUE WITH THE CLAIM I ADVANCED IN MY EARLIER ARTICLE "MIRACLES AND CRITERIA" THAT ONLY A DOGMATIC AND UNCRITICAL ASSUMPTION THAT NATURE IS IN FACT AN ISOLATED SYSTEM CAN EXPLAIN THE INSISTENCE OF SOME PHILOSOPHERS THAT, NO MATTER WHAT THE EVENT AND NO MATTER WHAT THE CONTEXT IN WHICH IT OCCURS, IT IS ALWAYS MORE RATIONAL TO LIVE IN THE FAITH THAT SUCH AN EVENT HAS A NATURAL EXPLANATION RATHER THAN (...) BELIEVE IT A MIRACLE. BASINGER URGES THAT MY ARGUMENT CONTAINS TWO BASIC CONFUSIONS. IN REPLY, I ARGUE THAT BOTH HIS OBJECTIONS ARE MISTAKEN. (shrink)