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editorial
1. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 27 > Issue: 4
Charles Brown, Malgorzata Czarnocka, Values and Ideals. Theory and Praxis
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eco philosophy for the human and more than human world
2. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 27 > Issue: 4
Sam Cocks, Environmental Pluralism, Polar Harmonies and Resolution
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The point of this essay is to draw on the resources of phenomenology to argue that a global environmental ethics is one that should embrace cultural pluralism. My further claim is that due to the presence of a large variety of what Edmund Husserl understands as home-worlds and alien-worlds, any attempt at a universal environmental ethics might be impossible and perhaps unattractive. Nonetheless, I do believe there should be a dialogue that unfolds across these differences for the sake some operative environmental ethics. I believe that an aesthetic model that can help us understand the former is the idea of “polar harmonies” put forth by Hebert Speigelberg. I end by claiming that even when a “common nature” is discovered through the interaction with the alien-world, what is found cannot become universalized due to the unavoidable influence of cultural differences upon this very commonality.
3. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 27 > Issue: 4
Nadja Furlan Štante, Eco-Feminist Ethics of Interdependence
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The paper examines the perception of nature and of the human-nature relationship which is deeply marked by the collective memory of human’s destroying domination over nature, especially in the Western world. In this segment the positive contribution of Christian theological eco-feminism is of utmost importance, as it discloses and breaks down the prejudice of the model of human’s superiority over nature by means of a critical historical overview of individual religious traditions. The centrepiece here is an analysis of the tensions inherent in contemporary gender and nature religious policy and the implication of theological eco-feminist ethics of interdependence in everyday life and in understanding the identity of women and nature from this perspective.
4. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 27 > Issue: 4
Renat Apkin, Science and Environmental Health. Case of Radon Radiation
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This paper offers a contribution to ecophilosophy from the perspective of the scientific research of the environment. The problem considered in the paper deals with a specific issue of environmental risk, namely, the problem of radon ionizing radiation and the highest permissible security norms of it. This problem, now rarely discussed in ecological communities, is one of more important for humankind’s health and safe existence. The awareness of harmful and beneficial biological effects of various environmental factors is a basic step towards ensuring the security of public health. The admissible norms of radon radiation are different in different countries. The article suggests possible causes of these differences and puts forward the thesis that today’s science alone is not a sufficient ground of resolving ecological problems.
5. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 27 > Issue: 4
Krystyna Najder-Stefaniak, Security and Sustained Development
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Interesting for the debate on human security is the concept of coexistence of culture and civilization. According to Albert Schweitzer, civilization and culture were not mutually exclusive and did not compete against each other. However, if civilizational growth began to dominate over cultural development, or, in other words, if culture began to lag behind civilization, human life would be reduced to its biological aspect and man would become unable to take the adequate care of his natural and social ecosystems. He/she, dominated by the impersonal forces of nature and economy, would be reduced by them to an object. That is what Schweitzer called the neoprimitive man. Contemporary man is in danger of becoming the neoprimitive man.Culture adapted to contemporary technological civilization grows out of a thought paradigm ordered by a metaphor rooted in the eco-system concept, which replaces the modern machine metaphor. In thinking based on eco-systemic relations the difference between them does not antagonize but enriches, and rivalry is replaced by synergy. In this new paradigm the axiological aspect of the modern-day development concept becomes very complicated and needs the qualifier “sustained,” thanks to which development ceases to threaten the coincidental and ruthless change. The application of the term “sustained development” to the relation between technological civilization and culture forces the discourse on human security to take stock of the human capacity for metanoia and existence within the ethical dimension, and make room for education in formulating creative responses to danger.
human values and ideals. their role in personal and cultural identities
6. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 27 > Issue: 4
Andrey I. Matsyna, The Metaphysics of Overcoming—Ontological Foundations
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This article studies the phenomenon of overcoming and provides a rationale of the understanding of the totality of human experience that integrates the situation of overcoming as that of the transcendence of human existence. As the basis of the research we use an integrated model of archaic cultural overcoming of the life–death dichotomy—a metaphysics of overcoming. A result of this metaphysics is a specific dialectical ontology of myth, represented as an ontology of return. Manifestationism, holism, alogism, metamorphism, animism, cyclism, and sacralism are the general principles of this ontology. Return ontologies are in conflict with the ontology and metaphysics of the finite present in the religious and scientific worldviews. The author sees the prospects for a further study of the phenomenon of overcoming in using the subjective energistic approach that leads to understanding the phenomenon of overcoming at the biosocial level. The results of the research can be used as a philosophical basis for the development of an archaeological activity theory, in particular, a unified integrated approach to the ancient burial ritualism. They also allow to deepen the theoretical concepts of man, society, and culture.
7. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 27 > Issue: 4
Hu Jihua, Bildung and Paideia: The Connection between the Early German Romanticism’s and Plato’s Ideas about Humanist Education
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The purpose of this paper is to reconsider the role of humanistic education (Bildung) played in the cultural project of the early German Romanticism through tracing back to Plato’s idea of philosophical cultivation (paideia). Like Plato, the early German Romantics postulate Bildung or the education of humanity as the central goal or the highest aspiration for the cultural practice of mankind in order to settle the fundamental problems concerning the social and political crisis. This attitude is similar to Plato’s critique of the degenerate regime in the guise of democratic politics. There is an apparent and inevitable divergence between Plato’s aristo-cracy and the Romanticism poesie-cracy. That is to say, the early German Romanticism wagered a war against ancient moral idealism represented by Plato and finally turned it on its head, but they write a paradigmatic apocalypse of the soul for moderns.
8. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 27 > Issue: 4
Sheldon Richmond, How to Alleviate the Cultural Obstacles to Dialogue: Socratic Dialogue as Social Architecture
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How do we alleviate the cultural obstacles to dialogue? The answer, we argue, is by using Socratic dialogue as the architecture for the design of social systems, societies can overcome the cultural obstacles to inter-cultural dialogue of imposed insider-outsider social divisions, of imposed social hierarchies, and of imposed social walls around cultures. We elaborate on how Socratic Dialogue removes those cultural obstacles to intercultural dialogue when used as social architecture or as a blueprint for institutions that open the social gates to all “outsiders” through the social levelling of hierarchies, and through the creation of social bridges among all “parallel” cultures.
9. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 27 > Issue: 4
Xing Guozhong, The Chinese Moral Crisis and Moral Capital
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“Moral capital” is a concept emerged in the China ethical community at the end of the 20th century. The issue of moral capital arises from discussions about economy and ethics. The controversial point in this concept consists in that morality is a kind of capital. Will morality become a capital? I think it is possible. The interpretation of the concept “capital” should go back to the logical starting point of economics, namely, “rational-economic man.” From the perspective of moral philosophy, every economic activity is committed to morality. The maximization of self-interest is only a part of rationality. Rationality should also cover the acquisition of no self-interest valuable goals. People’s economic behaviors may also be connected with culture, ethics, intelligence, aesthetic appreciation or emotions. I think it is time to radically reform rationality. The issue of moral capital reinterprets capital by basing on humanity. The core of moral capital consists in the revealing of capital’s property of value; this value functions against the background of the socialist market economy system. It is the issue of economic justice in the context of contemporary China.
10. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 27 > Issue: 4
German Melikhov, Ludwig Wittgenstein: Philosophizing as the Gesture of Keeping Silent
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Ludwig Wittgenstein’s philosophizing is deeply ontological, and can be defined as a reflexive gesture of keeping silent. The silence secured by reflexing is an essential part of a philosophy. A philosopher has to use language, but things that pass over in silence must influence things he or she says. The speech manifests not only in the spoken, but also in the unspoken. How is it possible? Through understanding a reflexive speech as an action or gesture of annihilation of speech. The expressed words in philosophy and expressed philosophical concepts are just means of referring to the ultimate value which should be thrown away immediately because it cannot say anything about the inexpressible. The philosophy as a gesture of keeping silent is an attempt to meaningfully keep silent through the constantly evolving reflexive annihilation of your own speech. The philosophizing which takes into account the importance of silence becomes a minimalistic gesture.