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1. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 58 > Issue: 1
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2. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 58 > Issue: 1
Yinghua Lu, Shame and the Confucian Idea of Yi (Righteousness)
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This paper analyzes the relation between shame and a Confucian notion of yi (righteousness, rightness), especially through discussions from Confucius and Mencius. Section one clarifies Mencius’s position that righteousness is both external and internal. Although this idea includes rules, it is primarily something intended by our innate moral feelings. Section two illustrates the point that if one’s action is not right (yi), the feeling of shame spontaneously arises and motivates a self-correction. This section also clarifies the difference between the idea of shame in Max Scheler and in Confucian thought. Section three compares absolute yi with general li (ritual propriety) as well as the roles that shame and duty play in relation to ren (primarily humane love).
3. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 58 > Issue: 1
Joseph L. Lombardi, S.J., Possible-Worlds Metaphysics and the Logical Problem of Evil: Concerning Alvin Plantinga’s Solution
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Alvin Plantinga’s solution to J. L. Mackie’s logical problem of evil invokes possible-worlds metaphysics. There are reasons for thinking that the solution is, at least, problematic. Difficulties emerge in the attempts to answer four related questions. (1) Can God’s necessary existence, understood in terms of possible-world metaphysics, make God’s actual existence impossible to explain? (2) Can an omniscient being with knowledge of the contents of every possible world (a being endowed with “middle knowledge”) prove ignorant of the consequences of his creative acts? (3) Can an immoral action performed by an agent suffering from “transworld depravity” also be free in the libertarian sense? (4) Does the possible-worlds interpretation of libertarian freedom generate a vicious infinite regress? Special focus is on the possibility, advanced by Plantinga, that there are possible worlds that even an omnipotent being cannot create. Plantinga’s views are contrasted with those of Thomas Aquinas.
4. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 58 > Issue: 1
Michael F. Wagner, Time without Measure: Plotinus, Bergson, and Husserl
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This paper compares Plotinus’s neoplatonic conception and account of time with Bergson’s and Husserl’s phenomenologic conceptions and accounts of it. I argue that despite fundamental differences owing to their respective approaches, their conceptions and accounts are remarkably comparable, especially in considering time to play a fundamental role in the organic unity of our physical environment—in what I characterize also as the continuously and intrinsically connected sequentiality of its events, processes, and constituents—in Plotinus’s case, of our physical environment as such; in Bergson’s and Husserl’s case, as it manifests itself to us in experience and our reflective awareness of that experience.
5. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 58 > Issue: 1
Michael Futch, Norris and the Soul’s Immortality
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John Norris’s novel and compelling theory on the soul’s immortality is both a central element of his overall philosophical vision and a vital engagement with his contemporaries on the topic. Even so, it has been mostly neglected in the secondary literature. This article aims to fill this lacuna by providing a detailed analysis of how Norris arrives at two seemingly inconsistent theses: the soul is naturally immortal in the sense of being incorruptible but naturally mortal in the sense of being perishable. I focus particularly on how Norris articulates this position in dialogue with a number of Scholastic philosophers whose views he rejects. I conclude by suggesting that Norris’s arguments against these thinkers are less than fully successful.
6. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 58 > Issue: 1
Gary B. Herbert, Bringing Morality to Justice: The Juridical Applicability of the Supreme Principle of Kantian Morality
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Kant suggests that moral metaphysics can be shown to be politically applicable by thinking of the analogically similar applicability of the principles of speculative reason to the external world of sense experience. Just as the categories of understanding, e.g., causality, substance, and so on must be schematized, i.e., given a temporal representation in order to be made applicable to the forms of sensuous intuitions, so also the principles of morality—most especially the idea of the autonomous will—must be schematized to be made politically applicable. The paper shows how Kant employs his schematism in metaphysics to make the principles of morality applicable to political experience and concludes with observations on the moral and political implications of a politics that pays homage to Kantian morality.
7. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 58 > Issue: 1
Lucas Scripter, Ordinary Meaningful Lives
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Neil Levy has argued that “superlative meaning” can be attained only through “inherently open-ended” projects. This implies a two-tier system of meaning: one for elites, the other for ordinary people. It sets lives characterized by “open-ended” work over and against those that find meaning in commonplace sources, e.g., personal relationships. I argue that Levy’s argument rests on two mistakes. First, it confuses two senses of “superlative meaning”—superlative abundance and superlative safety. Even if his argument succeeds, it merely shows that certain sorts of work produce the most reliably meaningful lives rather than the most abundantly meaningful. Second, contra Levy, who assumes that only work can generate superlative meaning, I build on Thaddeus Metz’s argument that loving relationships can count as superlatively meaningful. I argue that recognition of this point undermines the philosophical basis for Levy’s two-tier system of meaning. Ordinary lives are not doomed to be second-class meaningful lives.
8. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 58 > Issue: 1
Louis Caruana, S.J., Nature, Science, and Critical Explicitation: Does Conceptual Structure Reflect How Things Are?
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Science has uncovered many mistakes that had been hidden for centuries among implicit everyday assumptions. When we make explicit what lies implicit within language, there is no guarantee that we will arrive at truth about the world. Many therefore assume that only science delivers truth. Recent debates on this issue often refer to Wilfred Sellars’s arguments against the pre-conceptual given but conclude that his additional insistence on the exclusivity of the scientific image of the world is unfounded. In this paper I resort to Robert Brandom’s development of these arguments to show that saying a word, understanding a concept and engaging in some practices go together. Both laws of nature and social norms regulate these practices and determine the identity conditions of objects. I argue therefore that the conceptual scheme indeed reflects the nature of things because it results from our successful engagement with the world during the long sweep of evolutionary time.
book reviews
9. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 58 > Issue: 1
John J. Conley, S.J., Wagering on an Ironic God: Pascal on Faith and Philosophy. By Thomas S. Hibbs
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10. International Philosophical Quarterly: Volume > 58 > Issue: 1
Thornton C. Lockwood, Jr., Socrates and Alcibiades: Plato’s Drama of Political Ambition and Philosophy. By Ariel Helfer
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