The article considers L.N. Tolstoy not only as a thinker who represents but also accomplishes Enlightenment. Through a comparison of his ideas with philosophy of Spinoza and Diderot, the author clarifies the aspects of the transition from Enlightenment to the unique Tolstoy’s religious and philosophical doctrine. A special attention is paid to the way of thinking, the relation to science and the specifics of the worldview of Tolstoy and Diderot. The contradiction between the way of thinking and the way of (...) life of the three philosophers is revealed. The author also researches their philosophical interpretations of the nature of creative thought. Diderot describes the nature through the concept of paradoxism, Spinoza describes it with the concept of integrity, and Tolstoy uses the method of cohesion that he founds in literary works. If for the philosophers of European Enlightenment, the way of thinking is directly related to human nature, which is presented as a unity of natura naturans and natura naturata, then Tolstoy considers that the most important is a certain a priori sense of life, which is imbued with faith in God and with an instinct of self-giving that is love for the Supreme and other people. The method of cohesion leads Tolstoy away from the direct continuation of educational ideas, stressing the significance of appealing not only to reason but also to creative intuition. Tolstoy gradually moves away from rational perception of Life to its religious and existential foundations. Tolstoy’s worldview undergoes transition from the idea of a natural man to the idea of a human being who lives by commandments of Christ. Starting from the worldview of Enlightenment, Tolstoy comes to the creation of religious and philosophical doctrine, which is relevant to early 20th century. (shrink)
The article discusses how the meaning of the principle of “non-resistance to evil by violence” was changing in L.N. Tolstoy's religious and philosophical teachings and how this principle was evaluated in Russian religious philosophy of the late XIX - early XX century. In the first version of Tolstoy’s teachings, set forth in the book “What is my faith?”, the principle of non-resistance was understood in a moral sense, as the norm for all people; its execution should lead to the perfection (...) of earthly life. This idea of L. Tolstoy was sharply criticised by his contemporaries, who noted that there was no truly religious content in Tolstoy’s teachings, it was turning into a utilitarian doctrine of the earthly progress of mankind. Given this criticism, Tolstoy in his later works changed his understanding of the principle of non-resistance. Drawing a distinction between two levels of human life - “animal” and divine, Tolstoy recognised the principle of non-resistance to the law as the divine life of a man. As a result, the principle of non-resistance has acquired a religious rather than moral meaning, since the transition of a man to a divine life means a mystical transformation of his being. He is aware of his super-spatial and super-temporary unity with all people and with all being, and therefore can evaluate the consequences of his actions not only in the limited sphere of his life, but also in all infinite being. In this regard, a person realizes the absolute superiority of good deeds over evil, even if the latter are committed to confront evil. It is shown that some critics of Tolstoy came to a similar understanding of the religious meaning of the principle of non-resistance at the end of their lives. (shrink)
The name Nikolai Fedorovich Fedorov has entered the ranks of the most outstanding thinkers who are worthy representatives of Russian philosophy. However, we shall not forget that this has become obvious only in recent years in the homeland of this unique philosopher. The scandal created by the publication in 1982 of Fedorov's works in the series Filosofskoe nasledie [Philosophical Heritage] is still remembered. On instructions from above, publication of the works was followed by dismissals, investigations, and allegations about the resurrection, (...) under conditions of "developed socialism," of the works of a "religious-conservative utopian"; there was also an anti-Fedorov campaign in the press. True, enthusiastic investigators—philosophers, literary figures, and artists—did not cease their efforts either before or after this ill-starred scandal to study and publish the works of this "strange" thinker. But it should be said—and this is pointed out in the book under review here—that under conditions of unfree development of philosophical thought, Fedorov's ideas were sometimes distorted to better accord with official attitudes, to make them "acceptable" for publication under the circumstances of that time, as well as for the sake of adapting them for the propaganda of various unofficial ideas, such as "native soil" ideas. Both Fedorov's person and his works have been surrounded by legend. Paradoxical though it may seem, foreign students of the works of the Russian philosopher have had more favorable conditions to study his legacy and have written many articles and books about him. Among them, the dissertation by Michael Hagemeister, Nikolai Fedorov. Studies of His Life, Works, and Influence, published as a book in the series Marburg Studies in the History and Culture of Eastern Europe in 1989, occupies a worthy place. (shrink)
Study of the social determinants of consciousness is one of the more timely problems of contemporary philosophy. It requires a complex study of various factors determining the social nature of human consciousness and the cultural-historical mediation of humankind's reflection of the world. Esthetics, which studies the phenomenon of esthetic consciousness, has a place among these scientific disciplines.
The problem of the article is based on a long tradition of studying the category ‘antinomy‘ in the history of philosophy from antiquity until the early twentieth century. Antinomical thinking has particular importance for the spiritual life in the 20th century. The author draws attention to the fact that, for example, in the poetry of Thomas Stern Eliot antinomies and paradoxes are of philosophical and religious nature especially in then dealing with questions of reaching the Truth by rational way exclusively. (...) The basic material for studies are the works of modern Russian poets Olesya Nikolaeva, Sergei Kruglov, Timur Kibirov, Olga Sedakova and Helen Schwartz. It is shown how moral and philosophical themes and descriptions of the spiritual lives of the characters associated with the interpretation of ideas of compositions in the form of antinomies. The idea of the influence of the antinomies of thinking on aesthetics and system of images of Russian poets verses is justified. Article reveals the originality of each of the poets whose poems are analyzed in the work. The author concludes that modern poetry gives traditional antinomies personal psychological nature, but at the same time, problems and poetics of paradox are in tune with thinking of twentieth century as a whole - with its disastrous spirit, full of doubt and contradiction. (shrink)
I do not feel I have the authority to evaluate the individual speeches, much less to venture any conclusion sans appel. Let me just limit myself to some cursory comments about the course of today's conversation and the prospects of a further discussion of this extremely complicated and serious topic.
Early in the fourth century Constantine made Christianity the religion of the Roman Empire, and at once had reason to regret his having done so; for now not only the Church but the state was convulsed by controversies about the Holy Trinity. These controversies raged for over two hundred years, after which the bishops found new intellectual outlets, if not more rational ones, for their animosities. But Trinitarian trouble was not dead, only sleeping. The Great Schism of the eleventh and (...) twelfth centuries, which split the Western from the Eastern Church, took place, on its theological side, over a question concerning the Trinity. This was, of course, that most famous of all theological questions, the question of the procession of the Holy Ghost, or of the filioque. The Orthodox theory was that the Holy Ghost proceeds from the Father alone. The Western bishops, however, were equally adamant that the Holy Ghost proceeds from the Father filioque - 'and the Son'. (shrink)
First of all, I should like to express my gratitude to the organizers of this discussion for their initiative in posing and debating the question of Soviet philosophy. I cannot but note the timeliness of this question: today we are sobering up from the mindless nihilism toward all that is "Soviet" and we observe an increasingly sober and realistic, balanced, and analytic approach to the assessment of our past history, including the history of Russian social thought. Indeed, we cannot dismiss (...) as nonexistent or nonessential the range of problems touching on the nature and character of Soviet philosophy and its social functions. In my opinion they exist and they are essential in any event, even when it is claimed that Soviet philosophy was only a failure, a "hole" in the history of Russian philosophical thought. There are several questions: what caused this failure, who is responsible for it, and can one in that case describe Marxist philosophy as the absence of philosophy? (shrink)
Purpose. To turn to the diaries and journalistic works by Leo Tolstoy, to study the content and method of his religious and ethical search. To doubt the faithfulness of his interpretation of the evangelical message of Christ. Theoretical basis. The author proceeded from the necessity of a dialectical understanding of the concepts of nonviolence, mercy, justice and a cultural-historical focus on the possibilities of society in realizing the spirituality principles. Originality. The author focuses on the unilateral nature of the methodology (...) that Leo Tolstoy uses to deny violence, as well as on the ambiguous role of Tolstoy's ideology in the morality of society. Conclusions. The spiritual activities an individual person is able to do and that are instructive for society from the point of view of its moral influence may not be sufficient means for educating moral responsibility in a society as a whole. Tolstoy's methodological approach to justifying the absoluteness of nonviolence principle is one-sided and not productive for a true interpretation of the spiritual nature of the Christ’s message about love and mercy. (shrink)
The paper situates India’s global position with respect to its R&D and patent development and then highlights the current status of university system in India as a causative factor since majority of universities are busy in teaching merely how to qualify a paper-pencil test without much impetus on Research and Development. The paper also presents the perceived scenario of a national university and its characteristics. It also suggests ways in which universities can prioritize to produce researchers and innovators.
The problems of religion, or, more accurately, the critical-philosophical interpretations of Christianity, appeared quite early in the focal point of Marx's scientific interests. In the Germany of those times, these interpretations were means for discussing the everyday problems of social life; and political positions were frequently expressed in terms of Hegel's theory of religion, in various philosophical conceptions of the origin of Christianity, in disputes about the historical reality of Christ, etc.
In recent years the term "dialogue" has taken on a special nuance and, in the literature, usually refers to specially organized gatherings between Marxists and Christians. Intense arguments rage around the "dialogue." An extensive literature contains the most diverse explanations of its origins and content, objectives and possible outcomes. An attempt "on the run" to smash through this picket fence of judgments and single out some "rational core" is hardly promising in the final analysis. Another path is required, reconstructing the (...) very mechanism of the appearance of various evaluations out of some initial material, independent of the opinions of the theorists of the "dialogue." There appears to be no need for recourse to the history of the "dialogue," which is sufficiently known. Let us cite only certain factors. (shrink)
In the creep literature, time has often been elevated from its role as a means of ordering events to that of a fully fledged state variable. It is hoped that this paper will highlight the dangers of this approach and will illustrate the proper role of time in mathematical physics, emphasizing the important distinction between coordinate and state variables.
One of the most important problems for contemporary Catholicism is its dialogue with the contemporary world. In recent years, the leaders of the Catholic Church have been speaking of this with increasing frequency. The Catholic journal La Civiltà cattolica has even written of the need to found a "theology of dialogue" . The recent papal encyclicals - "Mater et Magistra" , "Pacem in Terris" , and "Ecclesiam suam" - express the effort of the leaders of Catholicism to establish more intimate (...) contacts with the world in which the religious people of today find themselves. It is therefore no accident that this problem of dialogue was taken up in discussions at the Second Ecumenical Council and particularly at its third session held in the autumn of 1964. (shrink)
Four theories of political obligation are here subjected to meticulous scrutiny and found wanting, from which "We must conclude," Simmons says, "that citizens generally have no special political bonds which require that they obey and support the governments of their countries of residence". The four are consent theory, fairness theory, the natural duty of justice, and gratitude theory. As Simmons acknowledges, all four "fall squarely within the mainstream of liberal political theory", and the question is, how does Simmons draw his (...) sweeping conclusion from so limited a study? The answer is that he has arrived at the four "most plausible" theories by a process of elimination. Utilitarianism is eliminated because act utilitarianism cannot account for obligation of the sort required, while rule utilitarianism has been shown to be incoherent. The "linguistic front" is eliminated because its contention that obedience to and support of "legitimate government" are tautological begs the real questions. Finally, "a large number of widely supported answers to questions about political obligation" are eliminated by a requirement of theories of such obligation that Simmons formulates as the "particularity requirement". What remain are the four theories within the liberal mainstream, to each of which Simmons directs skillful analysis. (shrink)
Some people have supposed that utility is good in itself, non-in-strumentally good, as distinct from good because conducive to other good things. And in modern versions of this view, utility often means want-satisfaction, as distinct from pleasure or happiness. For your want that p to be satisfied, is it necessary that you know or believe that p, or sufficient merely that p is true? However that question is answered, there are problems with the view that want-satisfaction is a non-instrumental good. (...) What if you want something only because you have a false belief? What if the time at which you want that p is fifty or five hundred years before the time to which p itself refers? To meet these difficulties, qualifications have to be introduced, and much has been written about how exactly these qualifications are to be framed.1 There is however what may be a rather more serious objection to the view that want-satisfaction is a non-instrumental good, or rather to the combination of that view with the principle that it is sufficient for your want that p to be satisfied simply that p is true. The objection is that this combination forces you to give undue weight to the mere acquisition of desires when you come to make judgements about changes in the value of things. It forces you to say that for any true proposition p, which initially you do not want to be true, your mere acquisition of a desire that p will, other things being equal, make the world better. Non-instrumental value can be increased merely by multiplying desires, even though everything else remains the same. Surely, however, improving the world is not as easy as that. (shrink)
This article makes the case for a contemporary philosophy of Islam to help Muslims surmount the challenges of postmodernity and to transcend the hiatuses and obstacles that Muslims face in their interaction and relationships with non-Muslims. It argues that the philosophy of critical realism so fittingly underlabours for the contemporary interpretation, clarification and conceptual deepening of Islamic doctrine and practice as to suggest and necessitate the development of a distinctive Islamic critical realist philosophy, social and educational theory and world-view, specifically (...) suited for this purpose. This approach is called Islamic critical realism. (shrink)
ABSTRACT Critical realist thought has theorised convincingly that epistemic relativism is constellationally embedded in ontological realism which in turn necessitates judgemental rationality. In social science, judgemental rationality involves acting upon plausible decisions about competing points of view. However, the tools for doing this are, as yet, under-articulated. This paper addresses this absence by articulating triangulation and depth-reflexivity as two tools for doing judgemental rationality in empirical research. It draws on the experiences of a diverse team working on an international comparative (...) research project on conversion to Islam in prisons. It demonstrates how epistemic and relational gaps between researchers and research subjects can be bridged by mobilising the ‘laminated’ properties and personal attributes of a diverse research team that factors in attributes that are absent as well as those present. The biographical experiences of the team are analyzed in a variety of intersecting dimensions: faith, ethnicity/ethno-culture, gender, class and professionality. (shrink)
Recent highly publicized ethical breaches including those at Enron and WorldCom have focused attention on ethical behavior within the accounting profession. At the heart of the debate is whether ethical attitudes of accountants are to blame. Using a nationally representative sample of accounting practitioners and a multidisciplinary student sample at two Southern United States universities, we compare sample responses to 25 ethically charged vignettes to test whether they differ. Overall, we find no significant difference – even for a specific “accounting (...) tricks” vignette, which resembles the Enron and WorldCom situations. We do find, however, that the practitioners were more accepting of vignettes that involved physical harm (PH) to individuals and those that were legal (but ethically questionable). We postulate that accounting practitioners may apply a legalistic framework to their assessment of the acceptability of each vignette. Focusing on an “accounting tricks” vignette, we also find no significant difference between auditors and institutional practitioners compared to all other types of accountants in the sample. We conclude that ethical attitudes of accounting practitioners do not differ significantly by specialty area. (shrink)
The understanding of value in moral naturalism as a descriptivist endeavor will be analized through an application of the naturalistic fallacy on an evolutive perspective of moral psychology. From a brief analysis of the naturalistic fallacy as proposed by Dall’Agnol, I’ll criticize the author’s application of such on what he refers to as moral naturalism. Contrasting E. Wilson’s sociobiology with R. Triver’s theory of reciprocal altruism I will procure a definition of naturalized ethics by investigating the psychological roots of moral (...) motivation. Once identified the descriptive and non-reductionist aspects of contemporary moral naturalism, the naturalistic fallacy presents itself as unbecoming of its hallmark and metaethical importance, and it becomes clear that a naturalized comprehension of human moral behavior is vital to the understanding of the motivations for action and the conception of value; though weak under a normative perspective. (shrink)
I’ll attempt to describe contemporary moral naturalism by an analysis of cognitivist and non-cognitivist theories, elucidating a normative dichotomy in current ethics. Although a recent model in the history of philosophy, post-humean moral naturalism has a myriad of different theories under its name. I’ll attempt to delineate a standard definition of the naturalistic perspective of morality to then divide cognitivist and non-cognitivist theories in order to better understand key points of their difference. This will uncover a normative dichotomy between theories (...) of action, purely descriptive, and of value, which focuses on prescriptiveness. (shrink)
Recent ethical breeches by corporate governorsat the highest levels have called into questionwhether ethical attitudes have changed sincethe Corporate Raider scandals of the mid-1980s. We exploit a unique opportunity to follow-up ona previous investigation of college students inthe mid-1980s to analyze this question. Usinga similar survey instrument, we find thatstudents surveyed in 2001 are significantlyless accepting of the ethically questionablesituations in seven of 15 scenarios and moreaccepting in only one. Seven scenarios showedno significant change. We conclude that,overall, ethical attitudes of (...) students in 2001appear to have become higher over time. To theextent that current students are futurebusiness leaders, we find these results to beencouraging for the long term. (shrink)