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symposium on philosophical practice: logic-based therapy (lbt)
1. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 2
Vikas Beniwal Psychotherapy Using Religious Texts
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The paper presents a method for interpreting religious texts for use in psychotherapy. In particular, the paper takes the example of the pivotal character Arjuna in Bhagavad-Gita as having low frustration tolerance and uses the collective philosophy of the Bhagavad-Gita and Bhagavata-Purana through six steps of Logic-Based Therapy (LBT) to overcome it. Although the paper uses Hindu religious texts, the treatment of these texts will speak to anyone interested in the possibility of integrating religious texts into psychotherapy.
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2. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 2
Guy du Plessis Philosophy as a Way of Life for Addiction Recovery: A Logic-Based Therapy Case Study
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In this essay I explore the notion of philosophy as a way of life as a recovery pathway for individuals in addiction recovery. My hypothesis is that philosophy as a way of life can be a compelling, and legitimate recovery pathway for individuals in addiction recovery, as one of many recovery pathways. I will focus on logic-based therapy (LBT) applied in the context of addiction recovery. The aim of presenting a case study is to show how a client receiving LBT is provided with techniques and a worldview that can contribute to a philosophically oriented recovery program. In the case study the client was advised to apply the moral philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche as an uplifting philosophical framework to counteract his unproductive worldview and fallacious thinking. Considering that there is an ostensibly low efficacy rate for the treatment of addiction, articulating the value of philosophy as a way of life as a recovery pathway provides a conceptual and methodological framework for the development of novel philosophically-based addiction treatment and recovery-oriented programs—thus expanding the treatment and recovery options available for those seeking recovery from addiction.
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3. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 2
Elliot D. Cohen, Ph.D. What is an Emotion?
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This paper distinguishes between two types of emotion: (1) “bottom-up” largely “prewired” or conditioned responses to environmental stimuli and (2) “top-down” “evaluative” emotions that are a function of a person’s evaluative inferences and use of “emotive” language. The paper, in turn, develops an analysis of the latter type of emotion and formulates a definition that tracks three interrelated levels of activity transpiring during an emotional episode: logico-linguistic (a chain of practical syllogistic inferences), phenomenological (interoceptive feelings), and neurological (cortical and subcortical brain activities). In the light of this analysis, it shows how Logic-Based Therapy (LBT), a prominent form of philosophical counseling created by the author, can be used to overcome self-destructive forms of evaluative emotions such as intense anxiety, anger, and guilt, and depression.
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4. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 2
Michael A. Istvan Jr. Orcid-ID Addressing Albert’s Anger Through Logic-Based Therapy
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Here I recount my practicum sessions with Albert, a client who struggles with anger outbursts. Since it can be hard to draw a line between a DSM and a non-DSM issue, my first inclination as a practitioner of Logic-Based Therapy (LBT)—and in line with practice boundaries and referral standards affirmed by the National Philosophical Counseling Association (NPCA)—was to refer Albert to a licensed therapist. But since Albert was already seeing a therapist, and since Albert never loses cognizance of what he is doing during an outburst, I proceeded with Albert anyway. I did make it clear, however, that we would not focus directly on past traumas or substance abuse or family dynamics, but simply on his emotional reasoning in and around those times when he feels angry. Ultimately, I found (1) that damnation, can’tstipation, and perfectionism were the chief fallacies nurturing Albert’s tendency for outbursts and (2) that the uplifting philosophy of Spinoza would be especially effective at stoking self-respect, self-control, and metaphysical security (the direct antidotes to these fallacies) in someone like Albert, an informed and committed naturalist and determinist.
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articles
5. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 2
Gianluca Di Muzio The Dawn of the Future-Like-Ours Argument Against Abortion
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Although several scholars have held that the Greeks and the Romans viewed abortion as morally unproblematic, an examination of three ancient texts reveals that, starting around the first century CE, some Greek and Roman writers were willing to explore reasons for opposing abortion on ethical grounds (i.e., reasons based on the conviction that abortion is an injustice committed against the fetus). The three texts introduce a form of opposition to abortion that has come to be known in our time as the future-like-ours argument against abortion. The present paper explores the argument that emerges from the three ancient texts and compares it to the work of Don Marquis, the best-known contemporary defender of a future-like-ours argument against abortion. The comparison reveals significant similarities, which are ultimately attributable to a common set of intuitions about what makes killing wrong and premature death tragic.
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6. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 2
Ognjen Arandjelović Orcid-ID On the Value of Life
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That life has value is a tenet eliciting all but universal agreement, be it amongst philosophers, policy-makers, or the general public. Yet, when it comes to its employment in practice, especially in the context of policies which require the balancing of different moral choices—for example in health care, foreign aid, or animal rights related decisions—it takes little for cracks to appear and for disagreement to arise as to what the value of life actually means and how it should guide our actions in the real world. I argue that in no small part this state of affairs is a consequence of the infirmity of the foundations that the claim respecting the value of life supervenes upon once its theological foundations are abandoned. Hence, I depart radically from the contemporary thought and argue that life has no inherent value. Far from lowering the portcullis to Pandemonium, the abandonment of the quasi-Platonistic claim that life has intrinsic value, when understood and applied correctly, leads to a comprehensive, consistent, and compassionate ethical framework for understanding the related problems. I illustrate this using several hotly debated topics, including speciesism and show how the ideas I introduce help us to interpret people’s choices and to resolve outstanding challenges which present an insurmountable obstacle to the existing ethical theories.
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7. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 2
Jane Duran Applied Political Philosophy: Indira Gandhi and the Subcontinent
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More than one line of argument is adduced to buttress and support the contention that the writings of Indira Gandhi constitute a valuable political philosophy for today. Her Peoples and Problems is alluded to, and the advertence of her thought to Vedanta made clear.
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8. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 2
Uros Prokic Hume’s “Third Way”: A Pareto Optimal Account of Convention
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This inquiry critically assesses previous research utilizing a game theory framework to understand Hume’s account of convention as the tangible expression of justice for the purpose of regulating possessions. In so doing, this research offers an alternative understanding of Humean convention that first clearly lays out the rules and main assumptions of the game, as presented in A Treatise of Human Nature, and then proceeds to analyze the implied optimal strategy and outcome. Rejecting commonly held views considering Humean convention in terms of the Nash equilibrium and pure contractarianism, this research offers a novel middle approach—a “Third Way” between self-interest and sympathy, between cooperation versus non-cooperation, and ultimately between contractarianism versus utilitarianism. This “Third Way”conceives of Hume’s account of convention as a cooperative game with binding threats that necessarily always rests on the Pareto optimal strategy, and seeks a resulting Pareto optimal outcome.
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9. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 2
James Rocha Professional Responsibility as a Response to Systematic Moral Ambiguity
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There is something mysterious about what explains the foundations or grounding for professional responsibility. What grounds the distinct professional responsibility that an engineer, doctor, or lawyer has that is separate from their moral duties and legal requirements? I argue that professional responsibility can derive from a systematic response to ambiguities that occur within moral issues that arise for given professions. Moral problems can often be solved in different ways that are equally permissible, which I will say provides a “moral ambiguity.” Sometimes these moral ambiguities in professional settings require the same solutions across the profession because of the public’s legitimate expectations for uniformity. In such cases, professional organizations set professional responsibilities to provide a uniform set of duties to establish a necessary and predictable order.
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10. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 2
Stephen Kershnar Bioethics and Non-Consequentialism: The Problem of Coming to Own One’s Self
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The various features of bioethics center around a person’s right to decide what happens to her body and what she may do with it. This is true for patients and medical professionals. Our intuitions concerning rights in bioethics are similar to our intuitions concerning rights in other areas. Consider, for example, rights concerning movement, privacy, religion, sex, speech, and thought. Intuitively, these rights are consistent with one another, trump other moral considerations, and can be lost. If people were to own themselves, this would provide a unified explanation of what justifies other rights, what particular rights people have, why these particular rights are consistent with one another, and why these particular rights have certain features, such as trumping utility. Here I explore whether people own themselves.
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about the contributors
11. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 2
About the Contributors
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articles
12. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 1
Jovana Davidovic When Should the Military Get Involved in Politics?
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Commonly the military stays out of politics, and for good reason. Federal law regulates political activity for active duty military rather strictly because the consequences of having a military that is partisan can be devastating, as history has shown us repeatedly. In this paper, I argue that the current rules of political neutrality are too broad and that there are times when our military leaders ought to engage in political debate so as to serve the same aims that justify having strict political neutrality rules in the first place: namely building civilian-military trust, and promoting troop cohesion and morale.
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13. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 1
James Stacey Taylor The Myth of Semiotic Arguments in Democratic Theory and How This Exposes Problems with Peer Review
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In a recent series or books and articles Jason Brennan and Peter M. Jaworski (writing both together and separately) have developed criticisms of what they term “semiotic” arguments. They hold that these arguments are widely used both to criticize markets in certain goods, to defend democracy, and criticize epistocracy. Their work on semiotics is now widely (and approvingly) cited. In this paper I argue that there is no reason to believe that any defenders of democracy or critics of epistocracy have offered semiotic arguments for their positions. I then explain how the operation of academic incentives has led to this being overlooked by both Brennan and Jaworski and their critics. I conclude with suggestions for how to revise peer review so that such errors are less likely to be made in the future.
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14. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 1
Matan Shelomi Pain, Suffering, and Euthanasia in Insects
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While unnecessarily killing or injuring an insect is arguably wrong, euthanasia of an accidentally injured insect raises anew issues of whether insects can experience pain. The question takes renewed significance due to increasing insect farming for food and feed and concerns over farmed insect welfare. For euthanasia of a damaged insect to be justifiable, the damage must be sensed as a noxious stimulus (nociception) that the insect consciously experiences as pain. This pain must then lead to suffering or frustrated desire, with the possibility of the animal preferring death to continued existence. A failure at any of these points would deem euthanasia moot. The neurological, behavioral, and evolutionary evidence so far suggests the concept of euthanasia does not apply to insects.
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15. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 1
Stephen Kershnar The Sabermetrics of State Medical School Admissions
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In this paper, I argue that medical school admissions should be limited to statistically relevant factors. My argument rests primarily on three assumptions. A state professional school should maximize production. If a state professional school should maximize production, then it should maximize production per student. If a state professional school should maximize production per student, then, within the optimum budget, a state medical school should maximize quality-adjusted medical services per graduate. I put forth a tentative equation for ranking applicants as a way of maximizing quality-adjusted medical services per graduate. This way of ranking is cheaper than the way admissions is currently done. Hence, the proposal is practically as well as theoretically appealing.
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16. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 1
Raja Halwani The Palestinian Right of Return
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The paper argues that individual Palestinians have a right of return to historic Palestine in virtue of being members of the Palestinian people that continues to have occupancy rights in historic Palestine. More specifically, the paper argues that the Palestinians were, when Israel was founded, a people with occupancy rights to their lands, that they continue to be a people to this day, and that their occupancy right has not been alienated, forfeited, or prescripted. The paper then argues that individual Palestinians have the right of occupancy in virtue of being members of the Palestinian people. Because the right has been blocked by Israel since 1948, the right of return is the right of individual Palestinians to be allowed to return to their homeland and exercise their occupancy rights there.
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symposium on forgiveness
17. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 1
John Kleinig Forgiveness and Unconditionality
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If forgiveness is to be seen as a virtuous act, it must satisfy certain conditions. For many, those conditions are construed narrowly and must involve some change of heart on the part of the wrongdoer who is to be forgiven: remorse, apology, a willingness to provide recompense, and so forth. Such an account is usually characterized as one of conditional forgiveness. Others construe the conditions differently—not eschewing remorse and apology, but neither always requiring it—and see those conditions as those relevant to exercises of generosity, love, mercy, gifting and grace. Such an account is usually characterized as one of unconditional forgiveness. The present essay attempts to remove some of the resistance to unconditional forgiveness.
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18. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 1
Derek R. Brookes Moral Grounds for Forgiveness
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In this paper, I argue that forgiveness is a morally appropriate response only when it is grounded in the wrongdoer’s demonstration of genuine remorse, their offer of a sincere apology, and, where appropriate, acts of recompense and behavioral change. I then respond to John Kleinig’s suggestion (in his paper “Forgiveness and Unconditionality”) that when an apology is not forthcoming, there are at least three additional grounds that, when motivated by virtues such as love and compassion, could nevertheless render “unconditional forgiveness” a morally laudable option. I argue that such grounds could indeed constitute or result in laudable responses to wrongdoing, but only if they are not conceived of or described in terms of forgiveness.
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19. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 1
John Kleinig Defending Unconditional Forgiveness: A Reply to Brookes
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My differences with Derek Brookes reflect an alternative understanding of what forgiveness is intended to achieve, and how it achieves it. I express some skepticism about his account of wrongdoing as an expression of contempt, of wrongdoing posing an ongoing threat, of resentment as a protective shield, and apology/remorse as the only morally acceptable means for removing such a threat. I remain unconvinced that forgiveness in the absence of an apology is likely to evidence condonation or a failure of self-respect. In emphasizing that forgiveness is a morally discretionary gift, I depart from the idea that it must somehow be earned (by apology, etc.) to be morally laudable. Its character as forgiveness is therefore not morally impugned if not made dependent on the wrongdoer’s repentance.
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20. International Journal of Applied Philosophy: Volume > 35 > Issue: 1
Derek R. Brookes Forgiveness as Conditional: A Reply to Kleinig
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In my paper “Moral Grounds for Forgiveness,” I argued that forgiveness is morally appropriate only when a sincere apology is received, thus ruling out the three grounds for unconditional forgiveness suggested by John Kleinig in his paper “Forgiveness and Unconditionality.” In response to his reply “Defending Unconditional Forgiveness,” I argue here that my terminology, once clarified, does not undermine my construal of resentment; that conditional forgiveness is just as discretionary as unconditional forgiveness; and that what we choose to take into account when we forgive must be a morally appropriate grounding for that particular end, but that only a sincere apology could satisfy this condition. I end by conceding that the three grounds suggested by Kleinig nevertheless play an essential role in the process of (conditional) forgiveness insofar as they facilitate a willingness to forgive and an openness toward accepting an apology.
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