This book introduces Robert Corrington’s “ecstatic naturalism,” a new perspective in understanding “sacred” nature and naturalism, and explores what can be done with this philosophical thought. This is an excellent resource for scholars of Continental philosophy, philosophy of religion, and American pragmatism.
Anyone teaching in theological schools or university departments of religion in the West should be struck by two related factors which seem to influence the attitude and thinking, of today's students. The first is the preoccupation with ‘experience’, while the second is the openness toward Eastern religious insights as well as their meditation techniques. In this paper, the writer intends to reflect on these two factors both as the causes and the effects of the significant change that has taken place (...) in Western man's world of meaning in our time. (shrink)
In these learned essays, Joseph M. Levine shows how the idea and method of modern history first began to develop during the Renaissance, when a clear distinction between history and fiction was first proposed. The new claims for history were met by a new skepticism in a debate that still echoes today. Levine's first three essays discuss Thomas More's preoccupation with the distinction between history and fiction Erasmus's biblical criticism and the contribution of Renaissance philology to critical method and (...) the way in which Renaissance rhetoric, as in Thomas Elyot's Book of the Governor, continued to inhibit the autonomy of history. He then shows how these issues persisted into the eighteenth century, even as critical method developed. He concludes with a close description of the great controversy that culminated in Edward Gibbon's day over the authenticity of a biblical text that had been used for centuries to defend the Trinity but which turned out to be a forgery. Levine shows how by then all sides were ready to concede the autonomy of history. (shrink)
This volume presents a selection of previously published essays by Joseph Boyle, a crucial contributor to 20th century Catholic moral philosophy through his development of the New Classical Natural Law Theory.
This paper develops analogies concerning the evolution of dissipative structures in nonequilibrium thermodynamics to interpret irrational human behavior in which one finds a lack of correspondence between the invested means and the consequences observed. In an attempt to positively explain the process of cooperation between the free human person and interacting God, I use philosophical categories of Whitehead's process philosophy in an aesthetic model that opposes composition and performance in a musical symphony. Certainly, the essence of human freedom can be (...) expressed in neither thermodynamical nor aesthetic terms. The models proposed can, however, facilitate our understanding of the mutual relations between God's action in the world and the drama of human free choice of moral evil. (shrink)
THE SAME PHILOSOPHICAL IDEAS often become the object of extremely diverse opinions. When Leibniz presented his idea of "possible worlds," Voltaire used the occasion for an ironic comment on "metaphysico-theologo-cosmology," whereas for P. L. M. de Maupertuis it was an idea that inspired his important discoveries in the domain of mathematical analysis of dynamic systems. Similar differences of opinion appear today in discussions on the so-called Anthropic Principle. Unequivalent variants of this principle state the existence of close links between the (...) appearance of carbon-based life and the cosmological structure of the universe, between the laws of cosmic evolution and values of physical constants. Many authors question the philosophical significance of the Anthropic Principle, regarding the principle as the product of arbitrary speculations. Their philosophical opponents try to show that certain versions of the principle, which do not go beyond generalization of empirical data, provide grounds for solid teleological assertions claiming that the appearance of the human observer is the goal of cosmic evolution. (shrink)
The literature on human and animal learning suggests that individuals attend to and act on cues differently based on the order in which they were learned. Recent studies have proposed that one specific type of learning outcome, the highlighting effect, can serve as a framework for understanding a number of early cognitive milestones. However, little is known how this learning effect itself emerges among children, whose memory and attention are much more limited compared to adults. Two experiments were conducted using (...) different versions of the general highlighting paradigm: Experiment 1 tested 3 to 6 year olds with a newly developed image-based version of the paradigm, which was designed specifically to test young children. Experiment 2 tested the validity of an image-based implementation of the highlighting paradigm with adult participants. The results from Experiment 1 provide evidence for the highlighting effect among children 3–6 years old, and they suggest age-related differences in dividing attention among multiple cues during learning. Experiment 2 replicated results from previous studies by showing robust biases for both image-based and text-based versions of the highlighting task. This study suggests that sensitivity to learning order emerges early through the process of cued attention, and the role of the highlighting effect in early language learning is discussed. (shrink)
For every Christian, The Comprehensive Guide to Apologetics delivers well-reasoned answers to complex theological issues, preparing believers to testify for their faith with confidence, intention, and Christlike wisdom.
Interpreting John Paul II's message ca the Pontifical Academy of Sciences in the context of the new scientific discoveries concerning the mitochondrial DNA, one can argue that the human species emerged in Africa some 200,000 years ago. The very problem of the emergence of the human soul in the process of biological evolution represents a subject outside the cognitive competence of science. Attempts can be undertaken to explain this issue in the epistemological perspective of philosophy and theology. In traditional versions (...) of evolutionary theism, God's interaction in nature was interpreted in causal categories when deterministic dependence were stressed in the process of evolutionary growth. In new proposals, God's presence in an evolving nature has been explained in categories of potentialities and propensities built by God into an evolving Nature. Consequently, in this approach God could be conceived not as a Paleyan designer but rather as a composer unfolding the possibilities hidden in His creation. The future of the evolutionary process depends not only on cosmic physical determinants; it depends to a large excent on the quality of cooperation of human actions with the influence of the Divine Creator. Accordingly, the shape of human culture, as well as the state of moral consciousness of Homo sapiens, should be taken into consideration to discuss the future evolution of the human species. (shrink)
One of the chief problems of the American environmental movement is the definition of philosophy—the exploration, examination, and elucidation of ideas—of the many different causes that have been combined in it. In this book Joseph Petulla sorts out the various issues and concepts of environmentalism by tracing their inspiration and values from the three traditions of environmental thought—the biocentric, the ecologic, and the economic. He examines the movement's historical roots, assumptions, goals, values, politics, struggles, successes, limitations, trends, and, finally, (...) the priorities it has brought to the national consciousness. This disentangling, clarifying process involves political implications and judgments about the recent directions of the environmental movement. Absolutist assumptions and methodologies often lead environmentalists and their opponents into conflict, yet even conflict groups must live with each other in the natural world, and that natural world must be understood by reason. This book attempts to establish wider ethical understanding and a political basis for support of environmentalism by promoting rational discussion about increasingly important subjects. (shrink)
Interpreting John Paul II's message to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences in the context of the new scientific discoveries concerning the mitochondrial DNA, one can argue that the human species emerged in Africa some 200,000 years ago. The very problem of the emergence of the human soul in the process of biological evolution represents a subject outside the cognitive competence of science. Attempts can be undertaken to explain this issue in the epistemological perspective of philosophy and theology. In traditional versions (...) of evolutionary theism, God* s interaction in nature was interpreted in causal categories when deterministic dependences were stressed in the process of evolutionary growth. In new proposals, God's presence in an evolving nature has been explained in categories of potentialities and propensities built by God into an evolving Nature. Consequently, in this approach God could be conceived not as a Paleyan designer but rather as a composer unfolding the possibilities hidden in His creation. The future of the evolutionary process depends not only on cosmic physical determinants; it depends to a large extent on the quality of cooperation of human actions with the influence of the Divine Creator. Accordingly, the shape of human culture, as well as the state of moral consciousness of Homo sapiens, should be taken into consideration to discuss the future evolution of the human species. /// Interpretando a mensagem do Papa João Paulo II à Academia Pontifícia das Ciências no contexto das novas descobertas científicas referentes ao DNA mitocondrial, o autor do artigo considera ser possível defender que a espécie humana surgiu em África há cerca de 200 000 anos. Mas o problema da emergência da alma humana no contexto do processo da evolução biológica representa um assunto que está fora da competência cognitiva da ciência. Contudo é possível realizar tentativas no sentido de explicar esta questão na perspectiva epistemológica da filosofia e da teologia. Nas versões tradicionais do teísmo evolutivo, a interacção de Deus com a natureza era interpretada segundo categorias causais quando as dependências deterministicas eram sublinhadas no processo do desenvolvimento evolutivo. No contexto de novas propostas interpretativas, a presença de Deus na ordem evolutiva tem sido explicada em termos das potencialidades e das propensidades induzidas por Deus na Natureza em evolução. Consequentemente, segundo esta abordagem Deus poderia ser concebido não como sábio projectista de que fala William Paley, mas antes como um compositor fazendo vir ao de cima as possibilidades escondidas na sua própria criação. O futuro do processo evolutivo depende não apenas das determinantes físicas do cosmos; ele depende em larga medida da qualidade da cooperação das acções humanas com a influência do Criador. Neste sentido, o artigo defende que a forma da cultura humana, bem como o estado da consciência moral do homo sapiens deve ser tido em consideração em ordem a se poder discutir a evolução futura da espécie humana. (shrink)
Whitehead himself, in Essays in Science and Philosophy, called Hegelian metaphysical speculations "complete nonsense." Notwithstanding this critique, many authors argue that there are Hegelian elements in both Whitehead's vague terminology and the basic tenets of his process metaphysics. Hegel's idea of Prozeß, his holistic approach, and the use of teleological categories bear a likeness to Whiteheadian patterns of explanations. Resemblances of these two thinkers have been already investigated for more than fifty years. D. E. Christensen's reflections on this topic, following (...) upon twenty-five years of his studies on Hegel, are announced by the author as A Treatise on Self-Evidence and Critical Method in Philosophy. (shrink)
IN DEBATES CONCERNING the relationship between basic principles of Whiteheadian process philosophy and the classical doctrine of substance, one can distinguish at least three types of essentially different approaches to the discussed issue: Process metaphysics implies definitive rejection of substantialist categories of traditional philosophy, and introduces a radically new perspective in which notions of flux and change replace the former categories of enduring substances and relative immutability of individual subjects. Whitehead's approach to the traditional doctrine of substance results in a (...) strong critique of it but not in total rejection. Certain elements of the Aristotelian and Cartesian legacy must be critically revised, but they cannot be eliminated from a rational interpretation of nature. Their implicit presence in Whiteheadian interpretative schemes substantiates the opinion that process metaphysics introduces a reformed version of the doctrine of substance. In spite of explicit critique of the concept of substance found in Whitehead's texts, the same texts implicitly presuppose the necessity of reference to certain substantialist categories. Whitehead himself did not always formally recognize such a necessity; his metaphysical assertions, however, provide an objective basis for developing a modified theory of substance. (shrink)
Recent research in moral psychology highlights the role of emotion and intuition in moral judgment. In the wake of these findings, the role and significance of moral reasoning remain uncertain. In this article, we distinguish among different kinds of moral reasoning and review evidence suggesting that at least some kinds of moral reasoning play significant roles in moral judgment, including roles in abandoning moral intuitions in the absence of justifying reasons, applying both deontological and utilitarian moral principles, and counteracting automatic (...) tendencies toward bias that would otherwise dominate behavior. We argue that little is known about the psychology of moral reasoning and that it may yet prove to be a potent social force. (shrink)
The design argument for God’s existence was critically assessed when in the growth of modern science the cognitive value of teleological categories was called into question. In recent discussions dealing with anthropic principles there has appeared a new version of the design argument, in which cosmic design is described without the use of teleological terms. The weak anthropic principle (WAP), a most critical version of all these principles, describes the fine-tuning of physical parameters necessary to the genesis of carbon-based life. (...) Consequently, a new version of the philosophical design argument can be developed on the basis of the weak anthropic principle.(edited). (shrink)
This book is an attempt to read the totality of Camus’s oeuvre as a voyage, in which Camus approaches the fundamental questions of human existence: What is the meaning of life? Can ultimate values be grounded without metaphysical presuppositions? Can the pain of the other penetrate the thick shield of human narcissism and self-interest? Solipsism and solidarity are among the destinations Camus reaches in the course of this journey. This book is a new reading of one of the towering humanists (...) of the twentieth century, and sheds new light on his spiritual world. (shrink)
This study surveys the internal audit department of a large financial services organization. Respondents were challenged to recognize and evaluate ethical and unethical situations often encountered in practice. Four key demographic variables were investigated: gender, age, years of employment and peer group influence. For the most part, respondents view themselves as more ethical than their peers. There does appear to be a gender effect suggesting females' ability to identify ethical behavior better than their male counterparts. This study contributes to the (...) extant literature in that it has explored a previously unexplored profession, namely, the internal auditing profession. (shrink)