We begin by presenting William of Ockham's various formulations of his principle of parsimony, Ockham's Razor. We then define a reaction mechanism and tell a personal story of how Ockham's Razor entered the study of one such mechanism. A small history of methodologies related to Ockham's Razor, least action and least motion, follows. This is all done in the context of the chemical (and scientific) community's almost unthinking acceptance of the principle as heuristically valuable. Which is not matched, to put (...) it mildly, by current philosophical attitudes toward Ockham's Razor. What ensues is a dialogue, pro and con. We first present a context for questioning, within chemistry, the fundamental assumption that underlies Ockham's Razor, namely that the world is simple. Then we argue that in more than one pragmatic way the Razor proves useful, without at all assuming a simple world. Ockham's Razor is an instruction in an operating manual, not a world view. Continuing the argument, we look at the multiplicity and continuity of concerted reaction mechanisms, and at principal component and Bayesian analysis (two ways in which Ockham's Razor is embedded into modern statistics). The dangers to the chemical imagination from a rigid adherence to an Ockham's Razor perspective, and the benefits of the use of this venerable and practical principle are given, we hope, their due. (shrink)
Machine generated contents note: -- Preface -- Acknowledgments -- Introduction, by Michael Weisberg and Jeffrey Kovac. -- 1 Trying to Understand, Making Bonds, by Roald Hoffmann -- Part 1: Chemical Reasoning and Explanation -- 2. Why Buy That Theory?, by Roald Hoffmann. -- 3. What Might Philosophy of Science Look Like If Chemists Built It?, by Roald Hoffmann -- 4. Unstable, by Roald Hoffmann -- 5. Nearly Circular Reasoning, by Roald Hoffmann -- 6. Ockham's Razor and Chemistry, by Roald Hoffmann, (...)Vladimir I. Minkin, and Barry K. Carpenter -- 7. Qualitative Thinking in the Age of Modern Computational Chemistry, or What Lionel Salem Knows, by Roald Hoffmann -- 8. Narrative, by Roald Hoffmann -- 9. Learning from Molecules in Distress, by Roald Hoffmann and Henning Hopf -- 10. Why Think Up New Molecules? by Roald Hoffmann -- 11. Protean, by Roald Hoffmann and Pierre Laszlo -- 12. How Should Chemists Think? by Roald Hoffmann -- Part 2: Writing and Communicating in Chemistry -- 13. Under the Surface of the Chemical Article, by Roald Hoffmann -- 14. Representation in Chemistry, by Roald Hoffmann and Pierre Laszlo -- 15.. The Say of Things, by Roald Hoffmann and Pierre Laszlo -- 16. How Symbolic and Iconic Languages Bridge the Two Worlds of the Chemist: A Case Study from Contemporary Bioorganic Chemistry, by Emily R. Grosholz and Roald Hoffmann -- 17 How Nice to Be an Outsider, by Roald Hoffmann -- 18. The Metaphor, Unchained, by Roald Hoffmann, -- Part 3: Art and Science -- 19. Art in Science? by Roald Hoffmann -- 20. Science and Crafts by Roald Hoffmann -- 21. Molecular Beauty, by Roald Hoffmann -- Part 4 Chemical Education -- 22. Teach to Search by Roald Hoffmann -- 23. Some Heretical Thoughts on What Our Students Are Telling Us, by Roald Hoffmann and Brian P. Coppola -- 24 Very Specific Teaching Strategies, and Why They Work, by Roald Hoffmann and Saundra Y. McGuire -- Part 5 Ethics in Science -- 25. Mind the Shade, by Roald Hoffmann -- 26. Science and Ethics: A Marriage of Necessity and Choice for this Millennium," by Roald Hoffmann -- 27. Honesty to the Singular Object, by Roald Hoffmann -- 28. The Material and Spiritual Rationales Are Inseparable, by Roald Hoffmann -- Index. (shrink)
One of the trademarks of Nicolai Hartmann’s ontology is his theory of levels of reality. Hartmann drew from many sources to develop his version of the theory. His essay “Die Anfänge des Schichtungsgedankens in der alten Philosophie” testifies of the fact that he drew from Plato, Aristotle, and Plotinus. But this text was written relatively late in Hartmann’s career, which suggests that his interest in the theories of levels of the ancients may have been retrospective. In “Nicolai Hartmann und seine (...) Zeitgenossen,” Martin Morgenstern puts the emphasis on contemporaries of Hartmann: Émile Boutroux, Max Scheler, Heinrich Rickert, Karl Jaspers, and Arnold Gehlen. But there is another plausible source for Hartmann’s conception of levels that has so far remained overlooked in the literature. Hartmann studied with and was influenced by Nikolai Lossky. Lossky has a theory of levels that he adopted from Vladimir Solovyov. Solovyov presents his theory of levels, among other places, in Oпpaвдaнie дoбpa, where he says that the five principal stages of the cosmogonic process of ascension toward universal perfection, which are given in experience, are the mineral or inorganic realm, the vegetal realm, the animal realm, the realm of natural humanity, and the realm of spiritual or divine humanity. This theory appears to bear significant similarities with the theory of levels of reality that Hartmann will develop a few decades later. Solovyov was widely read in Russia and it would be unlikely that Hartmann was not at least minimally acquainted with his work. Chances are that Hartmann came into contact with it in some details. An intellectual lineage could thus likely be traced from Hartmann back to Solovyov. In this paper, I document and discuss this possible lineage. (shrink)
Resumen: El pasado 6 de junio se cumplieron 30 años de la muerte del pensador Vladimir Jankélévitch, acaecida en Paris en 1985. Se trata de un lapso temporal considerable, casi un tercio de siglo, que nos permite realizar un balance de la actualidad y previsible pervivencia en el futuro de su obra. En el presente trabajo pretendo realizar un breve recorrido por algunos de los temas filosóficos que abordó en sus obras más relevantes, reivindicando la vigencia de su pensamiento (...) en este siglo XXI, que va abriéndose paso entre profundos dramas humanos. En cierta forma, tan complejas circunstancias constituyen otras tantas proyecciones de las que Jankélévitch conoció a lo largo de su extraordinaria peripecia vital. Con todo ello como telón de fondo, focalizaré mi atención en cinco grandes asuntos: el estatuto del saber filosófico, la ética como base de la relación con el otro, el amor, la muerte y la búsqueda de la pureza.: On June 6 the 30th anniversary of the death of Vladimir Jankélévitch, happened in Paris in 1985. After a considerable time lag, almost a third of a century, allows us to take stock of the present and foreseeable future survival of his work. In this paper we try to provide a brief overview of some of the philosophical issues addressed in his most important works, vindicating their importance thought this century, which are presented through deep human dramas. In a way, such complex circumstances are projections of those that Jankélévitch met throughout his extraordinary life. With all this as background, I will focus my attention on five major issues: the status of philosophical knowledge, ethics as the basis for the relationship with the other, love, death and the search for purity. (shrink)
Moral absolutes were perceived, by Solov'ëv, in a dual manner: a) from the side of content, of psychology, as when we speak of feelings, emotions, etc.; and b) under a formal aspect, as “ideas,” i.e. logically. Neither of these can be treated without relating to moral absolutes astrue, and without a rationalbelief in their truth, a truth that cannot be logically proved. In my opinion, our time has become keenly aware of the universally human value of Vladimir Solov'ëv's ethics, (...) of its humanist nature, oriented towards the everyday and the ideal tasks of man, and of the concrete direction of his philosophy of “practical idealism”. (shrink)
Vladimir JankéLéVitch, who teaches philosophy at the Sorbonne, is one of the most highly individual philosophical writers in France today. He has been publishing books for some quarter of a century on both philosophy and music, of which the most recent, entitled La Rhapsodie: Verve et improvisation musicale , unites his two specialities. It is with his philosophical work that I want to deal here.
Author: Jedliński Marek Title: WESTERN CULTURE THROUGH THE EYES OF RUSSIAN ROMANTICS. ON CAPITALISM AND RATIONALISM (Kultura Zachodu oczami romantyków rosyjskich. Rzecz o kapitalizmie i racjonalizmie) Source: Filo-Sofija year: 2011, vol:.12, number: 2011/1, pages: 373-383 Keywords: RUSSIAN ROMANTIC, WESTERN CULTURE, CAPITALISM, RATIONALISM Discipline: PHILOSOPHY Language: POLISH Document type: ARTICLE Publication order reference (Primary author’s office address): E-mail: www:The article presents Russian Romantics’ reflections on Western culture, highlighting their views on capitalism and rationalism. Russian thinkers regarded farewell with religious outlook and (...) the associated development of capitalism as unambiguously negative. According to them, capitalism led to egocentric perception of reality and finally to demise of culture. They called capitalism ‘a contemporary form of barbarism’ as it encouraged fighting and increased the desire to possess. They claimed it would precipitate an acute crisis resulting in regression of civilization. The capitalism-induced process of degradation of Western culture was accelerated by the affirmation of reason. Rationalism limited human freedom. The views were expressed in the oeuvre of the poet Alexei Khomakov and of the historians Stepan Shevyriov and Mikhail Pogodin, as well as, in a more structured manner, in Vladimir Odoyevsky’s novel titled ‘Russian Nights’ (1844). (shrink)
Après les traités 38, 50 et 25, les Éditions du Cerf récidivent avec un nouveau titre, le traité 20 Sur la dialectique. Il faut toutefois aborder ce livre d’une manière toute spéciale, car il se distingue radicalement des autres parutions de cette collection. L’auteur, Vladimir Jankélévitch, s’est en effet éteint à Paris en 1985, à l’âge de quatre-vingt-deux ans. Le travail qu’on offre au public prend donc la forme d’un hommage posthume à ce philosophe français dont les publications s’étendent (...) sur cinquante ans, de 1924 à 1974. C’est précisément sa toute première composition d’importance, celle de 1924 lors de son diplôme d’études supérieures, qui s’ajoute désormais à l’ensemble de ses écrits et permettra de voir à quel état d’élévation se trouvait alors sa pensée du haut de ses vingt ans. L’édition moderne qu’on en propose respecte autant que possible l’original manuscrit. Par exemple, toutes les annotations que fit Émile Bréhier en marge du travail de son étudiant apparaissent au bas des pages. Même les quelques erreurs de langage subsistent dans leur intégralité. Nos attentes doivent alors s’ajuster au type de travail qu’on s’apprête à lire. En tant que relique et témoignage d’une intelligence en plein développement, il prend une tout autre tangente que les ouvrages plus matures qu’a écrits P. Hadot sur les traités 38 et 50. La division de la recherche en introduction, traduction et commentaire, si constante d’un livre à l’autre, s’évanouit dans le traité Sur la dialectique. On n’y trouve aucune traduction et seulement un commentaire plus ou moins suivi sur la seconde moitié du traité. Le lecteur fera bien de se munir au préalable de son édition de Plotin chez Les Belles Lettres, afin de se rafraîchir au besoin la mémoire sur le traité I, 3. (shrink)
The universal social significance of the phenomena of artistic culture has its own specific features. Often it is something standing alone, an "exception to the rule," which nonetheless gives expression to some important tendency in the evolution of literature and art. This has been the case, in particular, with the works of Vladimir Vysotskii, who only a short time ago still seemed to some as some almost peripheral offshoot of the real artistic process, a kind of "nonsense," having no (...) direct bearing on the social problems and questions bothering us. In light of the lessons of truth, interpreted and experienced by the public under the impact of the recent party congress, the situation is literally changing before our very eyes. (shrink)
Ce texte se propose de nuancer la dichotomie stricte entre les concepts d’histoire et de justice, qui est courante dans l’interprétation de la pensée hobbesienne. L’attitude critique de Hobbes envers l’histoire s’explique par sa polémique contre l’héritage de l’antiquité classique, qui découle de son projet d’une science rigoureuse de la morale et de la politique. Cependant la conception hobbesienne de la justice ne se laisse pas développer sans faire appel à certains éléments factuels et empiriques; elle ne se réduit donc (...) pas à une construction purement rationnelle. Ces éléments ouvrent la pensée hobbesienne à la problématique de l’histoire réelle; pour Hobbes, le représentant le plus important de ce genre d’histoire est Thucydide. Enfin la dimension historique de la pensée de Hobbes nous permet d’entrevoir chez lui un concept de justice plus large, qui franchit les limites de la justice contractuelle. (shrink)
The purpose of this paper is to shed light on different aspects of the hermeneutical problem in post-Kantian philosophical 'constellation'. In this domain, the problem of the relationship between the text and its commentary is theorized in terms of the antithesis between 'Spirit' and 'Letter', which clearly has religious roots. Therefore, the first part of the paper examines the historical origins of this antithesis, as well as its application in philosophical discussions which developed by the end of the 18th century (...) about the problem of finding the 'true' interpretation to Kant's philosophy. The second part of the text, which is to be published in the next issue of this review, brings the duality of spiritual and literal interpretation into closer connection with the topics of Kant's moral philosophy. (shrink)
In the article I presentSolov'ëv's views on the national question(including the so-called Polish question)presented in his writings of the 1880s. Thequestion involved uniting the Churches as wellas Russia's specific mission in building thefuture Kingdom of God. Solov'ëv's position,according to which individual nations acquire aconcrete place in the course of mankind'sexistence, was subjected to criticism by thePolish historian Stanisaw Tarnowski. Thiscontributed to an interesting discussion andpolemic between the two thinkers that tookplace on the pages of the journal PrzegldPolski (The Polish Review).
I attempt to clarify the connection between two late texts by V.S. Solov'Ã«v: Justification of the Good and Theoretical Philosophy. Solov'Ã«v drew attention to the intrinsic connection between moral and intellectual virtues. Theoretical Philosophy is the initial -- unfinished -- sketch of the dynamism of mind seeking truth as a good. I sketch several parallels and analogies between the doctrine of moral experience set out in Justification and the account of the intellect's dynamism based on immediate certitude set out in (...) Theoretical Philosophy. Solov'Ã«v can thus be considered as a âvirtue epistemologistâ in the current meaning given to this description. I conclude by suggesting that Solov'Ã«v's position on these questions does not easily cohere with the âimpersonalismâ he appears to defend in Theoretical Philosophy. (shrink)
¿Cómo conceptualizar la temporalidad? ¿Qué analítica puede inteligir su carácter inefable? ¿Dónde reside la potencia heurística capaz de dar cuenta de la experimentación de su multiplicidad? Este artículo intentará poner en valor las herramientas elaboradas por la filosofía modal de V. Jankélévitch, a fines de contribuir a la tarea de arquitecturar una "episteme de la intuición" del tiempo presente. Si antes de Bergson la experiencia del tiempo había quedado ligada a la fijación de un concepto, Jankélévitch, proseguirá el trabajo de (...) su maestro, poniendo en foco el dominio disímil de "las maneras" en las que el tiempo se vivencia subjetivamente y se experimenta con-otros. Para ello, creará nociones capaces de indagar cualitativamente un dominio complejo, fugaz e irreversible, surcado por experiencias diversas, singulares, intransferibles. Así, la sutil elaboración efectuada por Jankélévitch en las nociones del "Yo-no-sé-qué" y el "Casi-nada", devendrá aquí la puerta de entrada a este mundo en movimiento, constituido por saberes que se producen siempre de modo fragmentario, "semi-gnosis" como caracterizará Jankélévitch, visto que atienden a una intelección "intuitiva" de la temporalidad, cuya capacidad heurística sobre nuestros modos de producción de la subjetividad sin duda puede sumar un aporte a las perspectivas de la filosofía contemporánea. How to conceptualize temporality? Which analytics can understand its ineffable character? Where does the heuristic strength capable of accounting an experimentation of its multiplicity lie? The aim of this article is to bring in value the tools developed by the modal philosophy of V. Jankélévitch, in order to contribute to the task of building an architecture for an "episteme of intuition" of present time. If before Bergson the experience of time had been linked to the setting of a concept, Jankélévitch will continue the work of his master, putting in focus the dissimilar domain of "ways" in which the time is subjectively lived and experienced with-others. To affront this challenge, he will propose notions capable to qualitatively inquire a complex domain, fugacious and irreversible, marked by diverse experiences, unique, non-transferable ones. Thus, the subtle elaboration made by Jankélévitch on the notions of "I-don't-know-what" and the "Almost-nothing", will become here the entrance gate to this moving world, constituted by a production of knowledge that always occurs in a fragmentary way, "semi-gnosis" as Jankélévitch's would characterize, as it serves to an "intuitive" intellection of temporality, whose heuristic capability on our modes of production of subjectivity can definitely contribute to the perspectives of the contemporary philosophy. (shrink)
I attempt to clarify the connection between two late texts by V.S. Solov''ëv: Justification of the Good and Theoretical Philosophy. Solov''ëv drew attention to the intrinsic connection between moral and intellectual virtues. Theoretical Philosophy is the initial -- unfinished -- sketch of the dynamism of mind seeking truth as a good. I sketch several parallels and analogies between the doctrine of moral experience set out in Justification and the account of the intellect''s dynamism based on immediate certitude set out in (...) Theoretical Philosophy. Solov''ëv can thus be considered as a virtue epistemologist in the current meaning given to this description. I conclude by suggesting that Solov''ëv''s position on these questions does not easily cohere with the impersonalism he appears to defend in Theoretical Philosophy. (shrink)
In this article, I examine the issue of forgiveness of oneself by looking at the writings of two postwar French philosophers: Georges Gusdorf and Vladimir Jankélévitch. Gusdorf believes that forgiving oneself is necessary for being able to forgive others. On the other hand, Jankélévitch sees no possibility of forgiveness for oneself and for similar reasons is very suspicious of traditional views of the role accorded to repenting and penitence. In short, the main view that separates the thinkers is, quite (...) literally, whether work on oneself—such as repentance and penitence—comes first before forgiveness, or whether repentance and penitence are the result of some prior gracious act, such as forgiveness. Somewhat ironically, their views, when all is said and done, may not really be all that far apart from each other, especially in light of how each views the nature of the self. In the end, the main factor dividing the two thinkers is metaphysical allegiances. Reflecting a tendency that is shown in most—if not all—of his early works, Gusdorf views the self more from the perspective of anthropology. Jankélévitch, like his mentor Henri Bergson, has faith in science and does not have a supernatural view of the human soul. (shrink)
In this narrative analysis oftwo Soviet dissertations in philosophy Idiscuss the role of Solov'ëv as one of themajor characters in the Soviet academicnarration of Russian philosophy: I show how theauthors (Turenko and Spirov) cope with thenecessity of criticizing Solov'ëv from theMarxist position and protect him from Westernscholars as the latter attempted to reviseRussian philosophy. I also discuss the way inwhich this requirement both to criticize andprotect is represented in the dissertations inwhich the strong Marxist posture and loyalty tocommunist doctrine corresponded (...) to the authors'belief that Solov'ëv was a greatphilosopher who made mistakes, although hisphilosophy remains a part of Russia's culturalheritage. The main conclusion is that in spiteof their vision of the world as split into thecommunist and bourgeois camps, both authors tryto avoid straightforward Manichean assessmentsand, in 60s and 70s, were keen to find as manypositive elements in Solov'ëv's philosophyas possible. (shrink)
Vladimir Solov’ëv, Sergej Bulgakov, Nikolaj Berdjaev, and Semën Frank shared the conviction that Creation is incomplete: humanity must arrive at organizing social life on an “eighth day.” Thus they prophesied the Universal Church, “social Christianity,” “personalist socialism,” and “spiritual democracy.” Their attempt to avoid any illegitimate confusion between independent rational thought and Christian faith prompted Bulgakov to become an ordained theologian, Berdjaev a “philosophical poet,” and Frank a “Christian realist.” Solov’ëv’s theosophical attempt to philosophically substantiate faith and consequently eschatological (...) prophecy finds itself in the same tragic predicament as Christian faith in general when amalgamated on a one to one basis with the world. I am to show that this is not the case for any of the three other authors discussed, however, much they did adhere to some of Solov’ëv’s major lines of thought. (shrink)
I recall that Solov''ëv wasRussia''s first professional philosopher andpresent the most important currents andconcepts of his many-sided theoretical edifice.Solov''ëv conceived philosophy in a verybroad sense of the term, for which reason histhinking comprises metaphysics no less thantheology, ecclesiology, history, and sociology.I show how Solov''ëv sought constantly to bringthese diverse elements into agreement with oneanother for the sake of a consistent systematicproject, how he attempted to synthesizenumerous oppositions (including patriotism anduniversalism, humanism and theocentrism).