“Human dignity is inviolable. It must be respected and protected.” What is the status of this proposition? Is human dignity inviolable? Statements on human dignity are closely intertwined with philosophical, anthropological and legal issues – and with the obligations, possibilities and limits of philosophy. Why a plea for human dignity? There are two reasons at least: (i) human dignity is violated, (ii) there are heated debates on exactly what “human dignity“ means. Accordingly, the elements of a normative theory of the (...) state and legal rights are discussed in order to explain what rights and the state should be and can be. After an exposition of the plurality of competing definitions and a short archeology of the concept of human dignity, the author defends the following thesis: Only the conceptualization of human dignity as a principle, concept and norm of positive law allows an appropriate understanding of what should be protected by the guarantee of dignity: i.e. the freedom and equality of everyone who is a human being. (shrink)
Originally published in 1973 the editors of this book collected together those studies which had been considered at the time to yield the best evidence in support of Freudian theory, and found on close examination that they failed to provide any such proof. Each paper is printed in full and is followed by a critical discussion which raises questions of statistical treatment, sufficiency of controls and alternative interpretations. The particular usefulness of this format is that it allows readers to form (...) their own opinions while providing helpful suggestions and guidelines on how to approach experimental studies with a critical mind. (shrink)
Memory is a general attribute of living species, whose diversification reflects both evolutionary and developmental processes. Episodic-autobiographical memory is regarded as the highest human ontogenetic achievement and as probably being uniquely human. EAM, autonoetic consciousness and the self are intimately linked, grounding, supporting and enriching each other’s development and cohesiveness. Their development is influenced by the socio-cultural–linguistic environment in which an individual grows up or lives. On the other hand, through language, textualization and social exchange, all three elements leak into (...) the world and participate to the dynamic shaping and re-shaping of the cultural scaffolding of the self, mental time traveling and EAM formation. Deficits in self-related processing, autonetic consciousness, emotional processing and mental time traveling can all lead to or co-occur with EAM disturbances, as we illustrate by findings from EAM impairments associated with neurological or psychiatric disorders. (shrink)
This paper presents a platform for developing, testing and executing synchronous collaborative applications in a distributed, heterogeneous environment. Even though several environments exist nowadays, specific problems are not treated satisfactorily. Especially in ‘real’ network environments, problems like unstable network connections and low bandwidths have to be considered.The DreamTeam platform addresses the special needs of environments with non-optimal characteristics which can, be found in distance learning scenarios. DreamTeam comprises a development environment, a simulation environment and a runtime environment; it is based (...) upon the concept of a fully decentralised architecture and encourages rapid prototyping.DreamTeam supports developers of shared applications through a component concept. Using components helps to divide a software project into well-defined parts. Well-documented interfaces help to reduce integration efforts and improve software quality. A selection of sample applications with DreamTeam validates our design concept. (shrink)
Can we sensibly attribute some of the happenings in our world to the agency of some of the things around us? We do this all the time, but there are conceptual challenges purporting to show that attributable agency, and specifically one of its most important subspecies, human free agency, is incoherent. We address these challenges in a novel way: rather than merely rebutting specific arguments, we discuss a concrete model that we claim positively illustrates attributable agency in an indeterministic setting. (...) The model, recently introduced by one of the authors in the context of artificial intelligence, shows that an agent with a sufficiently complex memory organization can employ indeterministic happenings in a meaningful way. We claim that these considerations successfully counter arguments against the coherence of libertarian free will. (shrink)
To this day, an adequate interpretation in English of Fichte’s entire philosophy is lacking. Even Frederick Copleston, whose sixty-two pages on Fichte in his History of Philosophy I should recommend as the best general introduction so far available, capitulates at the end before the task of seeing a unity in the thought of this philosopher.
It is argued that Llewellyn's hypothesis about the lack of rapid eye movement (REM)-sleep dreaming leading to loss of personal identity and deficits in episodic memory, affectivity, and prospection is insufficiently grounded because it does not integrate data from neurodevelopmental studies and makes reference to an outdated definition of episodic memory.
Christian Deism broke radically with the past and had its starting point in the notion that Christianity, as it was known, was perverted and no longer represented in the true and apostolic faith. Many of the titles of most of the Deist's books expressed this dismay over the state of the Christian religion, the need for re-interpretation of the nature of the true gospel and for reform. While most books reflected on the matter, the individual perspectives differed on the questions: (...) Whom to blame for this fall? How to date it? What was the correct issue? The article argues that it was not the contention of the English Deists that some churches had erred in some points, but that all the churches had erred in all points: The entire system of the Christian religion was perverted. Their view of the history of Christianity was intimately connected with their view of the person and significance of Jesus. (shrink)
Der Begriff ‚Gedächtnis‘ wird im Deutschen in verschiedenen Bedeutungen gebraucht: Im Sinne eines kollektiven Gedächtnisses, das in erster Linie ein kulturelles Gedächtnis ist; im Sinne von Gedenken (memoria) und im Sinne von Erinnerung, also dem Aufnehmen, Abrufen und Ordnen von Informationen, Begebenheiten und Ereignissen aus der Vergangenheit. Letzteres hat primär eine Funktion für einzelne lebende Organismen und betrifft deren Fähigkeit, aus vergangenen Ereignissen Orientierung für ihr gegenwärtiges und künftiges Verhalten zu gewinnen – eine Fähigkeit, die auch vielen Lernprozessen zugrunde liegt (...) und beim Menschen für die Herausbildung eines Selbst zentral ist. Die beiden ersten Bedeutungen betreffen hingegen die kulturelle Identität von Gemeinschaften. (shrink)
The principles of relativity are assertions about the structure of physical laws, whose validity or nonvalidity can only be empirically confirmed or falsified. The weakest forms of those principles are the so-calledglobal propositions. They furnish statements as to which operations—assumed to be performed simultaneously throughout the whole universe—have no influence upon the physical events. Much stronger principles are those of alocal nature. These assert that the physical properties of a system do not change, when the relation of the system is (...) altered vis-à-vis the universe at large. On formulating these local principles, we presuppose either that it is possible to eliminate any influence of the environment or that the influence can be compensated as in the case of universal forces (e.g., gravitational) which can principally not be removed. Still weaker, however, are those formulations of the relativity principles which postulate relativity only for infinitesimally small space-time domains or regions. This distinction yields clarification of all discussions about existence and meaning of a general relativity principle. Such an analysis was already performed by Einstein and Abraham in 1912. (shrink)
The famous thesis of the underdetermination of our theories about the world through the available observational data is the basis of Quine's skepsis which forces him to commit himself to the theses of the inscrutability of reference and the indetermination of translation. On the basis of an examination of Quine's distinction between observational and theoretical sentences, I intend to show the impossibility of translating observational sentences without their being affected by the indeterminacy of translation. They too, cannot be translated without (...) the aid of analytical hypotheses only by equating them with observational reports of the language into which they are to be translated. The consequence of this is that the basis of this assumption, the empirical equivalence of logically incompatible systems of the world, loses its point. (shrink)
It is outstanding in its originality and brilliance, its force of argument, and the relevance of its diagnosis. It is also outstanding in the arbitrariness of its argumentation from history and in the partiality with which the central problem is posed and developed. Its over-all impression, at least upon this reader, is not unlike Spengler's: irritation over much that is obviously one-sided and false and admiration for a political thinker of the first order who has something important to say. It (...) should be noted in parenthesis that Professor Brogan's Preface and the excellent translator's footnotes and epigraph add nothing to the merits of the book. They only add to the irritation: the Preface in its pretentiousness is mere advertisement, the translator's contributions are partly superfluous, partly misleading, and partly obnoxious in their gloating exploitation of the author's grosser prejudices. (shrink)
The biochemistry of geotropism in plants and gravisensing in e.g. cyanobacteria or paramacia is still not well understood today . Perhaps there are more ways than one for organisms to sense gravity. The two best known relatively old explanations for gravity sensing are sensing through the redistribution of cellular starch statoliths and sensing through redistribution of auxin. The starch containing statoliths in a gravity field produce pressure on the endoplasmic reticulum of the cell. This enables the cell to sense direction. (...) Alternatively, there is the redistribution of auxin under the action of gravity. This is known as the Cholodny-Went hypothesis , . The latter redistribution coincides with a redistribution of electrical charge in the cell. With the present study the aim is to add a mathematical unified field explanation to gravisensing. (shrink)