_ Source: _Page Count 12 It is intended in this study to present initial reliability and validity data for the Russian adaptation of the Multidimensional Inventory of Religious/Spiritual Well-being, as being related to personality factors and psychopathology. Therefore, the first version of the MI-RSWB-R was applied to a sample of 192 non-clinical subjects, together with the NEO Five Factor Inventory and the Symptom-Check-List. The original six-factor structure of the scale could be replicated for the MI-RSWB-R, which also provides satisfying psychometric (...) properties. In accordance with previous research the RSWB total score was linked to more favorable personality traits such as Extraversion, Openness to Experience, and Agreeableness, which was paralleled by substantial negative correlations with increased psychopathology. Our findings support the reliability and structural validity of the MI-RSWB-R as a standardized instrument for addressing the spiritual dimension in Russian populations. Further research in clinical surroundings is now recommended. (shrink)
_ Source: _Volume 40, Issue 1, pp 104 - 115 It is intended in this study to present initial reliability and validity data for the Russian adaptation of the Multidimensional Inventory of Religious/Spiritual Well-being, as being related to personality factors and psychopathology. Therefore, the first version of the MI-RSWB-R was applied to a sample of 192 non-clinical subjects, together with the NEO Five Factor Inventory and the Symptom-Check-List. The original six-factor structure of the scale could be replicated for the MI-RSWB-R, (...) which also provides satisfying psychometric properties. In accordance with previous research the RSWB total score was linked to more favorable personality traits such as Extraversion, Openness to Experience, and Agreeableness, which was paralleled by substantial negative correlations with increased psychopathology. Our findings support the reliability and structural validity of the MI-RSWB-R as a standardized instrument for addressing the spiritual dimension in Russian populations. Further research in clinical surroundings is now recommended. (shrink)
This is the first part of a two part work on the monadic theory of short orders (embedding neither ω 1 nor ω 1 * ). This part provides the technical groundwork for decidability results. Other applications are possible.
The prevailing concept in modern cognitive neuroscience is that cognitive functions are performed predominantly at the network level, whereas the role of individual neurons is unlikely to extend beyond forming the simple basic elements of these networks. Within this conceptual framework, individuals of outstanding cognitive abilities appear as a result of a favorable configuration of the microarchitecture of the cognitive-implicated networks, whose final formation in ontogenesis may occur in a relatively random way. Here I suggest an alternative concept, which is (...) based on neurological data and on data from human behavioral genetics. I hypothesize that cognitive functions are performed mainly at the intracellular, probably at the molecular level. Central to this hypothesis is the idea that the neurons forming the networks involved in cognitive processes are complex elements whose functions are not limited to generating electrical potentials and releasing neurotransmitters. According to this hypothesis, individuals of outstanding abilities are so due to a lucky combination of specific genes that determine the intrinsic properties of neurons involved in cognitive functions of the brain. (shrink)
Celem artykułu jest analiza prawnych i etycznych sposobów uzasadnienia dopuszczalności stosowania polityki namierzania i zabijania. Pojawiły się próby usprawiedliwienia tego typu działań poprzez odwołanie do egzekwowania prawa, reguł rządzących konfliktami zbrojnymi, sprawiedliwej odpłaty, prawa do obrony własnej. W artykule dokonuję analizy tych sposobów usprawiedliwiania polityki namierzania i zabijania, a następnie rozważam, które z nich faktycznie mogą uzasadniać tego typu politykę. Rozważania prowadzę w świetle głównej hipotezy projektu badawczego, który obecnie prowadzę, zakładającej, że normy regulujące dopuszczalność i sposoby toczenia konfliktów zbrojnych (...) i używania przemocy w stosunkach międzynarodowych powinny być spójne z moralnymi intuicjami dotyczącymi stosowania przemocy w przypadkach indywidualnych. (shrink)
When do objects at different times compose a further object? This is the question of diachronic composition. The universalist answers, ‘under any conditions whatsoever’. Others argue for restrictions on diachronic composition: composition occurs only when certain conditions are met. Recently, some philosophers have argued that restrictions on diachronic compositions are motivated by our best physical theories. In Persistence and Spacetime and elsewhere, Yuri Balashov argues that diachronic compositions are restricted in terms of causal connections between object stages. In a (...) recent article, Nikk Effingham argues that the standard objections to views that endorse restrictions on composition do not apply to a view that restricts composition according to compliance with the laws of nature. On the face of it, such restrictions on diachronic composition preserve our common-sense ontology while eliminating from it scientifically revisionary objects that travel faster than the speed of light. I argue that these attempts to restrict diachronic composition by appealing to either causal or nomological constraints face insurmountable difficulties within the context of special relativity. I discuss how the universalist should best respond to Hudson’s argument for superluminal objects, and in doing so, I present and defend a new sufficient condition for motion that does not entail that such objects are in superluminal motion. 1 Introduction2 Diachronic Composition3 Diachronic Composition and Superluminal Objects4 Restricting Diachronic Composition5 Causal and Nomological Restrictions on Composition in a Relativistic Context6 Superluminal Objects and Motion7 Conclusion. (shrink)
Clarence I. Lewis (1883-1964) delineated the structure of mind based on his “conceptual pragmatism.” Human mind grounds itself on the ongoing dynamic interaction of relational processes, which is essentially mediated and structural. Lewis’s pragmatism anchors itself on the theory of knowledge that has the triadic structure of the given or immediate data, interpretation, and the concept. Lewis takes the a priori given as a starting point of meaningful experience. The interpretative work of mind is the mediator of the a priori (...) given and the concepts. The a priori given is the principle that determines the application of concepts in our interpretative process. Our mind interprets the given in relating to other possible experience. In other words, the meaning of the a priori given is determined by mind, the subject of interpretative process, which performs constructive and legislative activity, and allows room for the existence of alternatives. Lewis’s theory of knowledge calls for pragmatic justification of value experience. In his ethical theory, Lewis pursues to find answers for how to build up the objectivity of value experience regarding the work of mind as conceptual apparatus. For Lewis, knowledge is a claim about valuation and normativity. In our value experience, the normative significance of our empirical assessments for action comprises objective significance for future experience. Mind is “principle- content apparatus” composed of imperatives as the a priori given principles and the contents of experience as a whole.Imperatives are the result of lessons accumulated from the past and function as rules for the future. Individuals start their experience from imperatives and organize their own experience by doing based on the inferential process, which is directional from the past to the future. (shrink)
Yuri Balashov has argued that endurantism is untenable in the context of Minkowski spacetime. Balashov's argument runs through two main theses concerning the relation of coexistence, or temporal co-location. Coexistence must turn out to be an absolute or objective matter; and in Minkowski spacetime coexistence must be grounded in the relation of spacelike separation. If endurantism is true, then leads to absurd conclusions; but if perdurantism is true, then is harmless. I object to both theses. Against, I argue that (...) coexistence is better construed as being relative to a hyperplane of simultaneity. Against, I argue that the consequences of given endurantism are no worse than the consequences of given perdurantism. (shrink)
We examine how Frege’s contrast between identity judgments of the forms “a=a” vs. “a=b” would fare in the special case where ‘a’ and ‘b’ are complex mental representations, and ‘a’ stands for an introspected ‘I’-thought. We first argue that the Fregean treatment of I-thoughts entails that they are what we call “one-shot thoughts”: they can only be thought once. This has the surprising consequence that no instance of the “a=a” form of judgment in this specific case comes out true, let (...) alone a priori true. This further reinforces Glezakos’s objections against the set-up of Frege’s puzzle, while also raising what we think is an acute problem for Fregeans, insofar as I-thought (and indexical thinking more generally), understood in their way, turns out to be incompatible with some basic features of rationality. (shrink)
I argue that recent developments in animal cognition support the conclusion that HOT theory is consistent with animal consciousness. There seems to be growing evidence that many animals are indeed capable of having I-thoughts, including episodic memory, as well as have the ability to understand the mental states of others.
The main goal of this paper is to argue the relevance of Hegel’s notion of the Trinity with respect to two aspects of Hegel’s idealism: the overcoming of subjectivism and his conception of the ‘I’. I contend that these two aspects are interconnected and that the Trinity is important to Hegel’s strategy for addressing these questions. I first address the problem of subjectivism by considering Hegel’s thought against the background of modern philosophy. I argue that the recognitive structure of Hegel’s (...) idealism led him to give the Trinity a decisive role in his philosophical account. Next, I discuss the Trinity by analysing the three divine persons. This analysis paves the way for the conclusion, where I argue that the Trinity represents a model for re-thinking the ‘I’ in a way that overcomes a ‘naïve realist’ and a ‘subjective’ account of the self. I suggest that Hegel’s absolute idealism can be conceived as an approach to the ‘I’ that considers the role of acts of mutual recognition for the genesis of self-conscious thought, and that the Trinity is the Darstellung of the relational and recognitive structure of the ‘I’. (shrink)
Presenting the first step-by-step commentary on Husserl’s Ideas I, Marcus Brainard’s Belief and Its Neutralization provides an introduction not only to this central work, but also to the whole of transcendental phenomenology. Brainard offers a clear and lively account of each key element in Ideas I, along with a novel reading of Husserl, one which may well cause scholars to reconsider many long-standing views on his thought, especially on the role of belief, the effect and scope of the epoché, and (...) the significance of the universal neutrality modification. (shrink)
This review confirms Herman’s work as a praiseworthy contribution to East-West and comparative philosophical literature. Due credit is given to Herman for providing English readers with access to Buber’s commentary on, a personal translation of, the Chuang-Tzu; Herman’s insight into the later influence of I and Thou on Buber’s understanding of Chuang-Tzu and Taoism is also appropriately commended. In latter half of this review, constructive criticisms of Herman’s work are put forward, such as formatting inconsistencies, a tendency toward verbosity and (...) jargon, and a neglect of seemingly important hermeneutical issues. Such issues, seemingly substantive but neglected by Herman, are the influence of Buber’s prior familiarity with Hasidic teachings on his encounter with Chuang-Tzu, as well as the prevalence of Hasidic and Taoist thought in Buber’s conception of good and evil. (shrink)
One of the modern approaches to the laws of nature regards them as relations between universals. The most advanced version of such an approach has been presented by D. M. Armstrong. The aim of this paper is to reconstruct and interpret Armstrong’s conception but also to evaluate his theory and to point out what expectations from it are inadequate. My point of reference are two objections to Armstrong’s ideas, namely the problems of identification and inference. I claim that Armstrong’s theory (...) in general and his response to both problems in particular are based on some fundamental metaphysical principles, namely: the principle of identity for universals, the principle of non-contradiction, the relational principle of the indiscernibility of identicals and the principle of contingent necessity. The central part of my interpretation shows how from the laws of nature, properly understood, the occurrence of some states of affairs necessarily results provided that these principles are employed. (shrink)
I examine the main arguments of Elizabeth Anscombe’s difficult but fecund paper ‘The First Person’. Anscombe argues that the first‐person singular is not a device of reference, and, in particular, that it is not a device of indexical reference. Both arguments fail, but in ways that we can learn from.
The problem of satisfaction conditions arises from the apparent difficulties of explaining the nature of the mental states involved in our emotional responses to tragic fictions. Greg Currie has recently proposed to solve the problem by arguing for the recognition of a class of imaginative counterparts of desires - what he and others call i-desires. In this paper I will articulate and rebut Currie's argument in favour of i-desires and I will put forward a new solution in terms of genuine (...) desires. To this aim I will show that the same sort of puzzling phenomenon involved in our responses to tragic fictions arises also in a non-fictional case, and I will offer a solution to the problem of satisfaction conditions that dispenses with i-desires. The key to the explanation is in the notion of condition-dependent desires triggered by fictions. (shrink)
The paper presents the idea of cross‐cultural philosophy, which have inspired the organizers of the cyclic global conferences held at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, USA, since 193 First, the author discusses some definitions of the comparative method applied in contemporary philosophy and promoted, among others, through the project of the “East‐West Philosophers’ Conference”. Then, she reports the major themes and panel topics raised during the eleventh conference organized in Honolulu, May 25–31, 2016.
The use of WhatsApp as a means of communication is widespread amongst today‘s youth, many of whom spend hours in virtual space, in particular during the evenings and nighttime in the privacy of their own homes. This article seeks to contribute to the discussion of the dialogical language and ―conversations‖ conducted in virtual-space encounters and the way in which young people perceive this space, its affect on them, and their interrelations within it. It presents the findings of a study based (...) on a community of philosophical inquiry in which young adults students discussed the ―I‖ and ―Thou‖ (the other) and the interaction between them in a WhatsApp community. The results evince that the youth related to the virtual space in very similar fashion to Buber‘s ―I-Thou‖ concept, the language they employed to describe what happened in it enabling an expansion of the conceptualization and research language to an ―I-Space-Thou‖ model. (shrink)
The simplest bimodal combination of unimodal logics \ and \ is their fusion, \, axiomatized by the theorems of \ for \ and of \ for \, and the rules of modus ponens, necessitation for \ and for \, and substitution. Shehtman introduced the frame product \, as the logic of the products of certain Kripke frames: these logics are two-dimensional as well as bimodal. Van Benthem, Bezhanishvili, ten Cate and Sarenac transposed Shehtman’s idea to the topological semantics and introduced (...) the topological product \, as the logic of the products of certain topological spaces. For almost all well-studies logics, we have \, for example, \. Van Benthem et al. show, by contrast, that \. It is straightforward to define the product of a topological space and a frame: the result is a topologized frame, i.e., a set together with a topology and a binary relation. In this paper, we introduce topological-frame products \ of modal logics, providing a complete axiomatization of \, whenever \ is a Kripke complete Horn axiomatizable extension of the modal logic D: these extensions include \ and \, but not \ or \. We leave open the problem of axiomatizing \, \, and other related logics. When \, our result confirms a conjecture of van Benthem et al. concerning the logic of products of Alexandrov spaces with arbitrary topological spaces. (shrink)
Shehtman introduced bimodal logics of the products of Kripke frames, thereby introducing frame products of unimodal logics. Van Benthem, Bezhanishvili, ten Cate and Sarenac generalize this idea to the bimodal logics of the products of topological spaces, thereby introducing topological products of unimodal logics. In particular, they show that the topological product of S4 and S4 is S4 ⊗ S4, i.e., the fusion of S4 and S4: this logic is strictly weaker than the frame product S4 × S4. In this (...) paper, we axiomatize the topological product of S4 and S5, which is strictly between S4 ⊗ S5 and S4 × S5. We also apply our techniques to (1) proving a conjecture of van Benthem et al concerning the logic of products of Alexandrov spaces with arbitrary topological spaces; and (2) solving a problem in quantiﬁed modal logic: in particular, it is known that standard quantiﬁed S4 without identity, QS4, is complete in Kripke semantics with expanding domains; we show that QS4 is complete not only in topological semantics with constant domains (which was already shown by Rasiowa and Sikorski), but wrt the topological space Q with a constant countable domain. (shrink)
Brian Garrett has criticized my diagnosis of the paradox of self-consciousness. In reply, I focus on the classification of 'I'-thoughts, and show how the notion of immunity to error through misidentification can be used to characterize 'I'-thoughts, even though an important class of 'I'-thoughts (those whose expression involves what Wittgenstein called the use of 'I' as object) are not themselves immune to error through misidentification. 'I'-thoughts which are susceptible to error through misidentification are dependent upon those which are not. The (...) dependence here has to do with how a thinker understands what would defeat such thoughts. (shrink)
In Jorge Luis Borges’ short story, “Borges and I,” one character, referred to in the first person, complains about his strained and complex relation with another character, called “Borges.” But the characters are both presumably the author of the short story. I try to use ideas from the philosophy of language to explain how Borges uses language to express complex thoughts, and then discuss two interpretations of the story.
Celem pracy jest zarysowanie najważniejszych wątków filozofii wolności Jeana-Paula Sartre’a. Autor w pracy stara się zawrzeć najważniejsze elementy sartrowskiej ontologii, będącej podstawą filozofii wolności – pojęcia wolności, odpowiedzialności oraz złej wiary. Następnie pokazuje, jakie znaczenie dla wolności człowieka ma obecność Innego będącego jej ontologiczną i etyczną granicą. W tym celu autor przedstawia rozważania Sartre’a na temat jednostki i jej relacji z innymi ludźmi. Tekst jest także próbą zestawienia egzystencjalistycznej myśli Sartre’a z komunitarystyczą koncepcją podmiotowości Charles’a Taylora.
The present study explores the Bianchi type I universe in the frame work of f theory of gravity by considering strange quark matter attached to string cloud and domain walls in the presence and absence of magnetism. Field equations are solved by choosing a constant curvature method. It is found that obtained cosmological models are relevant to the early era of evolution of the universe. The strange quark matter may be a source of string cloud and domain walls.
У статті зроблена спроба привернути увагу фахівців до такого напряму економіки й розваг, як гральний бізнес. Описано розвиток i стан цього бізнесу в США, Росiйськiй Федерацiї й Українi. Наголошено на перспективності розвитку грального бізнесу в Україні.
In this article I explore how cosmopolitanism can be a challenge for ordinary language philosophy. I also explore cosmopolitan aspects of Stanley Cavell’s ordinary language philosophy. Beginning by considering the moral aspects of cosmopolitanism and some examples of discussions of cosmopolitanism in philosophy of education, I turn to the scene of instruction in Wittgenstein and to Stanley Cavell’s emphasis on the role of autobiography in philosophy. The turn to the autobiographical dimension of ordinary language philosophy, especially its use of “I” (...) and “We”, becomes a way to work on the tension between the particular and the universal claims of cosmopolitanism. I show that the autobiographical aspects of philosophy and the philosophical significance of autobiographical writing in ordinary language philosophy can be seen as a test of representativeness—a test of the ground upon which one stands when saying “I”, “We” and “You.”. (shrink)
The article deals with Kant's theory of the self in Patricia Kitcher's Kant's Thinker in three respects: (1) I argue that it is doubtful whether accompanying representations with the as such yields a principle for the categories since it does not require any strong kind of connection between them. (2) I discuss textual evidence for and against Kitcher's attempt to make sense of Kant's claim that the requires the continued existence of cognizers per se. (3) I ask whether Kitcher's understanding (...) of Kant's positive theory of the self leans towards minimal substantialism or towards functionalism. (shrink)
The Qur’an has been transmitted as both a written text and an oral recital. This has led to the development of a reading tradition that permits numerous different vocalisations to be made upon the basic skeletal text of the established ʿUthmānī codex. Ibn al-Jazarī chose ten early readers whom he felt were most representative of this tradition and whose readings are treated as canonical up until this day. One of these, the Kufan linguist al-Kisāʾī has been characterised in the literature (...) as more focused on the grammar of the Qur’an than his reader peers. This article explores al-Kisāʾī’s process of ikhtiyār when deciding between various possible readings. The sample for analysis consists of Kisāʾī’s tafarrudāt, the approximately fifty cases in which his reading differs from the other nine readers. By comparing his reading with the comments of early scholars of Qur’anic linguistics, especially his near-contemporary al-Farrāʾ, it is possible to construct a typology of the suspected principal reasons for al-Kisāʾī’s tafarrudāt. Not only are many of these based on grammatical preferences, but they demonstrate a significant degree of consistency. Furthermore, analysis of a cluster of readings with implications for the interpretation of the sharīʿa provides evidence for a subtle exegetical dimension to al-Kisāʾī’s work as a reader-grammarian. (shrink)
La primera comprensión husserliana de la evidencia en cuanto “vivencia de la verdad”, se ve reformulada en las Investigaciones lógicas con la consideración de la vivencia como mención –que implica una gradualidad de la dación y del cumplimiento– por la que es dada una objetividad. La reducción fenomenológica y los análisis noético-noemáticos que de ella resultan en Ideas I , manifiestan la remisión necesaria de toda conciencia modificada a la que da originariamente como fundamento primitivo de su legitimidad. Esta originariedad (...) del cumplimiento se ve determinada por una clase y estilo de evidencia propios de cada región de objetos. (shrink)
Buber's assertions about the relation between the self (I) and God (the Eternal You) amount to an "argument" which means reasonably to bring its audience to awareness of God. This reasoning is better understood and evaluated if it is presented in a more conventionally argumentative form than Buber gave it. The key premises are: 1) Buber's account of I-You saying as a general theory of meaning and criterion of reality, and 2) Buber's claim that You-saying in encounters with finite beings (...) does not exhaust the I's capacity to say You. Thus 1) whenever I say You, I meet reality; and 2) I can say You infinitely. Both in its premises and in its non-coercive way of soliciting assent, this Buberian argument exhibits the actual valid appeal of all the best-known arguments to God. (shrink)
The use of critical exposition of previous doctrines is a methodological procedure usual in Aristotle. But the distinctive characteristic of Book I of the Metaphysics is that, rather than to establish a new doctrine, a review of predecessors serves to confirm the own concepts to be used in the evaluation of the doctrines examined. This imposition of own terms has cost him the charge of distorting historical understanding. With the detailed analysis of the criticisms of Plato's theory of Ideas in (...) Metaphysics I, 9, we intend to show a) that the criticism of manipulation and distortion of his predecessors' views overshadow the degree to which Aristotle's own positions emerge from a critical review of previous thought and b) that the imposition of own terms does not suppose a distortion but a proposal of solution to the problems that previous theories have left unresolved. (shrink)
C I Lewis showed up Down Under in 2005, in e-mails initiated by Allen Hazen of Melbourne. Their topic was the system Hazen called FL (a Funny Logic), axiomatized in passing in Lewis 1921. I show that FL is the system MEN of material equivalence with negation. But negation plays no special role in MEN. Symbolizing equivalence with → and defining ∼A inferentially as A→f, the theorems of MEN are just those of the underlying theory ME of pure material equivalence. (...) This accords with the treatment of negation in the Abelian l-group logic A of Meyer and Slaney (Abelian logic. Abstract, Journal of Symbolic Logic 46, 425–426, 1981), which also defines ∼A inferentially with no special conditions on f. The paper then concentrates on the pure implicational part AI of A, the simple logic of Abelian groups. The integers Z were known to be characteristic for AI, with every non-theorem B refutable mod some Zn for finite n. Noted here is that AI is pre-tabular, having the Scroggs property that every proper extension SI of AI, closed under substitution and detachment, has some finite Zn as its characteristic matrix. In particular FL is the extension for which n = 2 (Lewis, The structure of logic and its relation to other systems. The Journal of Philosophy 18, 505–516, 1921; Meyer and Slaney, Abelian logic. Abstract. Journal of Symbolic Logic 46, 425–426, 1981; This is an abstract of the much longer paper finally published in 1989 in G. G. Priest, R. Routley and J. Norman, eds., Paraconsistent logic: essays on the inconsistent, Philosophica Verlag, Munich, pp. 245–288, 1989). (shrink)
Although Denmark managed to stay neutral throughout World War I, it nevertheless generated a heated debate in the country; most people took a clear stand for one side or the other. After the traumatic Danish defeat in the 1864 war with Prussia and Austria, Germany was regarded as the arch enemy and not unexpectedly mostDanes sided against the Central Powers in the public debate. This was not least the case amongst the national-conservative politicians, intellectuals and artists. They form the focus (...) of my article, and the questions I address are: how did the national-conservatives experience the mental watershed of the war? Was it as a blessing or a curse? (shrink)
In many research studies, tumor biopsies are an unavoidable requirement for achieving key scientific aims. Yet some commentators view mandatory research biopsies as coercive and suggest they should be optional, or at least optional until further data are obtained regarding their scientific usefulness. Further complicating the ethical picture is the fact that some research biopsies offer a potential for clinical benefit to trial participants. We interviewed and surveyed a convenience sample of participants in phase I clinical trials at a single (...) institution. Our primary aim was to describe phase I participants’ understanding of whether a research biopsy offered them the prospect of medical benefit. We also endeavored to describe participants’ views about biopsies—specifically, the benefits of biopsies, if any, and whether biopsies were acceptable, risky, or discouraged trial participation. Finally, we collected data on demographics and attitudes to see if any strong correlations with misunderstanding, acceptability, or riskiness existed. Overall, the respondents tended to view research biopsies as acceptable, though they did not succeed in identifying the lack of benefit of a research biopsy. These findings call for renewed efforts in consent conversations and documents to carefully describe the benefits, or lack thereof, of research biopsies. (shrink)
This paper explores the question whether war was regarded as eugenic or dysgenic before, during and after the First World War. The main focus is on the positions of the German military officer and historian Friedrich von Bernhardi, who in Germany and the Next War, first published in 1912, argued for war as eugenic, and Vernon Kellogg’s Headquarters Nights, published in 1917, which marks an important work characterizing war as dysgenic. I argue that an international community of biologists and social (...) scientists who debated the hereditary effect of war existed before World War I and trace how the concepts of altruism and group selection contributed to a eugenic or dysgenic interpretation of war. (shrink)
In an instant classic paper ; 2002: 179–182) biologist Yuri Lazebnik deplores the poor effectiveness of the approach adopted by biologists to understand and “fix” biological systems. Lazebnik suggests that to remedy this state of things biologist should take inspiration from the approach used by engineers to design, understand, and troubleshoot technological systems. In the present paper I substantiate Lazebnik’s analysis by concretely showing how to apply the engineering approach to biological problems. I use an actual example of electronic (...) circuit troubleshooting to ground the thesis that, in engineering, the crucial phases of any non-trivial troubleshooting process are aimed at generating a mechanistic explanation of the functioning of the system, which makes extensive recourse to problem-driven qualitative reasoning possibly based on cognitive artifacts applied to systems that are known to have been designed for function. To show how to translate these findings into biological practice I consider a concrete example of biological model building and “troubleshooting”, aimed at the identification of a “fix” for the human immune system in presence of progressing cancer, autoimmune disease, and transplant rejection. The result is a novel immune system model—the danger model with regulatory cells— and new, original hypotheses concerning the development, prophylaxis, and therapy of these unwanted biological processes. Based on the manifest efficacy of the proposed approach, I suggest a refocusing of the activity of theoretical biologists along the engineering-inspired lines illustrated in the paper. (shrink)
Hillel Braude offers a thoughtful paper that explores the nature of suffering, with particular relation to—and distinction from—pain, as regards the work of Eric Cassell, and in reflection of the perspectives of Karl Jaspers and Emmanuel Levinas. To be sure, establishing distinction(s) between pain and suffering is not an easy task. As Yuri Maricich and I have noted, pain and suffering are often used synonymously, even in medical conversation(s). Yet, we have urged that such colloquialisms should be rectified, particularly (...) in clinical contexts, because they can, and often do, foster ambiguities regarding the nature of these experiences, meanings to patient and clinician, and attendant trajectories and .. (shrink)