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141. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 1
Eric Wilson The Ontological Argument Revisited: A Reply To Rowe
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Saint Anselm’s Ontological Argument is perhaps the most intriguing of all the traditional speculative proofs for the existence of God. Yet, his argument has been rejected outright by many philosophers. Most challenges stem from the basic conviction that no amount of logical analysis of a concept that is limited to the bounds of the “understanding” will ever be able to “reason” the existence in “reality” of any thing answering such a limited concept. However, it is not theintent of this paper to prove or disprove Anselm’s argument. Rather, in this paper we concern ourselves with arriving at a sound interpretation of Anselm’s leadingcritic – Immanuel Kant. Kant put forth perhaps the most vaunted criticism of Anselm’s argument. However, Kant has been perhaps the most misunderstood objector to Anselm’s argument. This paper confirms that charge, simultaneously offering what I believe to be a sound interpretation of Kant’s criticism.
142. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 1
Tadeusz Rostworowski Autodeterminazione nella visione personalistica di Karol Wojtyła
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L’autodeterminazione è una categoria fondamentale nella visione personalistica di K. Wojtyła. Essa è una relazione entro la volontà. Una relazione di cui si potrebbe dire: la volontà si rivela come proprietà della persona e la persona come realtà che, riguardo al suo dinamismo, è constituita propriamente dalla volontà. L’autodeterminazione non è un atto chiuso entro se stesso, preché essenziale è il momento della verità e nella verità.
143. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 1
Omid Tofighian Beyond the Myth/Philosophy Dichotomy. Foundations for an Interdependent Perspective
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Philosophy vs. myth; argument vs. narrative. Are these oppositions out-dated clichés or are they realistic dichotomies with universal application? Definitionsof myth are often confronted with exceptions. Mythic themes and elements regularly surface in philosophy, and vice versa. The boundary separating myth andphilosophy continues to be redrawn and the status of the two continually reevaluated. By moving away from an all-encompassing definition of myth I aim to propose a foundation upon which an interdependent relationship between myth and philosophy can be interpreted. New possibilities for interconnection between the two will be suggested along with more compelling questions on which to base inquiries.
144. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 1
Paul B. Cliteur Religion and Violence or the Reluctance to Study this Relationship
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This article is about the religious roots of violence, in particular religious terrorism. The author argues that there is a great reluctance to study this relationship. This is unfortunate because only on the basis of a realistic estimate of the facts can a successful counterterrorist strategy be developed. One of the problems with religious violence is that holy scriptures, in some passages, exhort believers to violent acts. In combination with a theory of ethics that is known as “divine command morality” this is problematic. Even if the holy book contains only a small percentage of passages invoking violence they pose a problem if the whole book is considered to be holy and the word of God.
145. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 1
John Shook God’s Divinely Justified Knowledge is Incompatible with Human Free Will
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A new version of the incompatibilist argument is developed. Knowledge is (at least) justified true belief. If God’s divine knowledge must be justified knowledge, then humans cannot have the “alternative possibilities” type of free will. This incompatibilist argument is immunized against the application of the hard-soft fact distinction. If divine knowledge is justified, then the only kind of facts that God can know are hard facts, permitting this incompatibilist argument to succeed.
146. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 1
Majid Amini, Christopher Caldwell Does “One Cannot Know” Entail “Everyone is Right”? The Relationship between Epistemic Scepticism and Relativism
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The objective of the paper is to seek clarification on the relationship between epistemic relativism and scepticism. It is not infrequent to come across contemporary discussions of epistemic relativism that rely upon aspects of scepticism and, vice versa, discussions of scepticism drawing upon aspects of relativism. Our goal is to highlight the difference(s) between them by illustrating (1) that some arguments thought to be against relativism are actually against scepticism, (2) that there are different ways of understanding the relationship between relativism and scepticism, and (3) that a commitment to either relativism or scepticism does not entail commitment to the other. The paper focuses upon the works of Peter Unger and Paul Boghossian to show how this terrain can be variously conceived and to illustrate that Boghossian’s conception of the landscape is incorrect.
147. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 1
Angus Brook Heidegger’s Notion of Religion: The Limits of Being-Understanding
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In the last two decades, the question of religion has become a central concern of many philosophers belonging to the Continental philosophical tradition.As the interest in religion has grown within Continental philosophy, so also has the question of Martin Heidegger’s relationship with religion. This paper posesthe question of what religion meant to Martin Heidegger in the development of phenomenology as ontology; how he preconceived the notion of religion and whyhe eventually denied any authenticity to religion. In engaging with this question, the paper will also attempt to disclose some delimitations of Heidegger’s approach to religion.
148. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 1
Lloyd Strickland False Optimism? Leibniz, Evil, and the Best of all Possible Worlds
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Leibniz’s claim that this is the best of all possible worlds has been subject to numerous criticisms, both from his contemporaries and ours. In this paper I investigate a cluster of such criticisms based on the existence, abundance or character of worldly evil. As several Leibniz-inspired versions of optimism havebeen advanced in recent years, the aim of my investigation is to assess not just how Leibniz’s brand of optimism fares against these criticisms, but also whetheroptimism as a philosophy has the resources to meet these challenges. I show that none of the criticisms considered has sufficient force to pose a threat to Leibniz’s version of optimism or to one modelled on it.
149. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 1
James Kraft Conflicting Higher and Lower Order Evidences in the Epistemology of Disagreement about Religion
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This paper concentrates on the issue of what happens to the confidence one has in the justification of one’s belief when one discovers an epistemic peerwith conflicting higher and/or lower order evidences. Certain symmetries surface during epistemic peer disagreement, which tend to make one less confident. The same happens in religious disagreements. Mostly externalist perspectives are considered. The epistemology of ordinary disagreements and that of religious ones behave similarly, such that principles used in the former can be seen to apply also in the latter.
150. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 1
Jarosław Charchuła Hobbes’s Theory of State. The Structure and Function of State as the Key to its Enduring
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Thomas Hobbes bequeathed to us a comprehensive system, the interpretation of which remains a matter of disagreement even today. In his politicaltheory, he pays most attention to the state community. He deliberates over the reasons for its origin, its decline and fall. Among the more detailed issues dealt within his reflections, the more important ones are the following: the concept of the state of nature, human motivation, the state of war and peace, as well as considerations concerning the social contract. In order to be consistent in his argument, Hobbes also deals with the analysis of the structures of the state, the division of power and with the functions a state should perform. Due to these deliberations, he finally arrives at the secret of the state’s durability. Though it is certainly the case that, since his times, the socio-political situation and circumstances have changed, many of the solutions postulated by Hobbes have not lost their value.
151. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 1
Maciej Manikowski The Unknown God and His Theophanies: Exodus and Gregory of Nyssa
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The analysis, which aims at the interpretation of the three theophanies from Exodus presents – from the metaphysical and epistemological points of view– three fundamental ideas. First, the idea of the absolute unknowability of the essence of God; second, the idea of the real difference between essence and energies in God’s Being; and third, the idea of the real difference between the one essence, three persons (hypostases) and many uncreated divine energies (the powers or names) of God. One must say that the absolute unknowability of the essence of God means that God is forever the unknown God.
152. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 1
Jan Konior Confession Rituals and the Philosophy of Forgiveness in Asian Religions and Christianity
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In this paper I will take into account the historical, religious and philosophical aspects of the examination of conscience, penance and satisfaction, as well as ritual confession and cure, in Confucianism, Buddhism and Taoism. I will also take into account the difficulties that baptized Chinese Christians met in sacramental Catholic confession. Human history proves that in every culture and religion, man has always had a need to be cleansed from evil and experiencemutual forgiveness. What ritual models were used by Confucianism, Buddhism and Taoism? To what degree did these models prove to be true? What are the connections between a real experience of evil, ritual confession, forgiveness and cure in Chinese religions and philosophies?
153. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 1
Liam Dempsey, Byron Stoyles Comfort in Annihilation: Three Studies in Materialism and Mortality
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This paper considers three accounts of the relationship between personal immortality and materialism. In particular, the pagan mortalism of the Epicureansis compared with the Christian mortalism of Thomas Hobbes and John Locke. It is argued 1) that there are significant similarities between these views, 2) thatLocke and Hobbes were, to some extent, influenced by the Epicureans, and 3) that the relation between (im)mortality and (im)materialism is not as straightforward as is commonly supposed.
154. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 2
James Conlon Against Ineffability
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It is a commonplace assumption that there are realities and types of experience words are just not able to handle. I find the recourse to ineffability to bean evasive tactic and argue that there is inherently nothing beyond words and that this fact has ethical implications. I offer three theoretical considerations in support of my claim. The first two deal with the infinite nature of language itself, as understood first in Chomsky and then Derrida. The third deals with the linguistically structured nature of human experience. Expanding on Heidegger, I then draw some ethical implications from language’s inexhaustibility.
155. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 2
David J. Zehnder The Hermeneutical Keys to William James’s Philosophy of Religion: Protestant Impulses, Vital Belief
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This essay argues that the American psychologist and philosopher William James should be viewed in the Lutheran Reformation’s tradition because this viewpoint offers the hermeneutical key to his philosophy of religion. Though James obviously didn’t ascribe to biblical authority, he expressed the followingreligious sensibilities made possible by Martin Luther and his contemporaries: 1) challenge of prevailing systems, 2) anti-rationalism, 3) being pro-religiousexperience and dynamic belief, 4) need for a personal, caring God, and also 5) a gospel of religious comfort. This essay asks, in one specific form, how religiousconcerns can hold steady over time but cause very different expressions of faith.
156. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 2
Tereza-Brindusa Palade Why Thinking in Faith? A Reappraisal of Edith Stein’s View of Reason
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This paper intends to question the conventional wisdom that philosophy should limit its endeavours to the horizon of modern transcendentalism, thusrejecting the presuppositions of faith. By reappraising Edith Stein’s views of faith and reason, which are also shared by the magisterial document of John Paul II,Fides et ratio, an argument for the possibility of “thinking in faith” is put forward. But why would it be important nowadays to engage in rational research in philosophy in a quest for truth which also draws its inspiration from faith? First of all, as I shall argue, because the two great modern transcendental projects, namely the Kantian and the Husserlian one, which were both in tune with Spinoza’s project to liberate philosophical reason from theology, have failed. Secondly, because “faith” (fides) is not based on “irrational sentiments”, but is ”intellectual understanding”, as Edith Stein argues. Third, because the natural light of the created intellect is, as was shown by St. Thomas Aquinas, a participated likeness of the supernatural light of the uncreated divine intellect. Therefore, even the natural philosopher gets their own light from the eternal Truth of faith. Finally, by following another Thomistic stance, one may argue that the end of human life is an intelligible one: the contemplation of God. In order to attain this end, the human being should endeavour to attain as much as is possible, in an intelligible way, the thing desired. Even if the philosophical inquiry has its own limits, it may however sustain such progress towards the end of human life.
157. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 2
Karol Giedrojc Die Grundlagen des Modernen Fundamentalismus
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The idea of fundamentalism is repeatedly present in mass media and often occupies the center of religious and political discussions. There are somesociological conditions of fundamentalism and different applications of the term in mass media. The psychological research tries to explain the phenomenon aswell. The philosophical analysis put the question of the nature of fundamentalism. The following text tries to give an answer to such a question. The fundamentalism seems to be no traditional, but inherently a modern movement that it´s religious convictions puts absolutely through, mainly in politics.
158. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 2
Joshua Seigal Skeptical Theism, Moral Skepticism, and Divine Deception
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Skeptical theism – a strategy for dealing with so-called ‘evidential arguments from evil’ – is often held to lead to moral skepticism. In this paper I look at some of the responses open to the skeptical theist to the contention that her position leads to moral skepticism, and argue that they are ultimately unsuccessful, since they leave the skeptical theist with no grounds for ruling out the possibility of maximal divine deception. I then go on to argue that the situation is particularly bleak for the skeptical theist, since the most prominent ways of dealing with this pervasive type of skepticism are not available to her. Furthermore, since this pervasive type of skepticism entails moral skepticism, it follows that moral skepticism will after all have found a way in ‘through the back door’. In order to solidify my case, I go on to outline and deal with three potential objections.
159. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 2
Raymond Aaron Younis These Ultimate Springs and Principles: Science, Religion and the Limits of Reason
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The question of the limits of reason, not just within philosophy but also in the modern sciences, is arguably more important than ever given numerousrecent commentaries on “life”, “reality”, meaning, purpose, pointlessness and so on, emanating not from philosophers or metaphysicians, but rather from physicists and biologists such as Steven Weinberg and Richard Dawkins. It will be argued that such commentaries concerning the “pointlessness” of the universe, or the purpose of “life’, and other such things, are flawed and unconvincing, not least because they seem to overlook or forget a number of well known and significant philosophical contributions on the question of limits, particularly by Kant, but also by Hume, Russell and Sir A J Ayer.
160. Forum Philosophicum: Volume > 15 > Issue: 2
Dino Galetti Finding a Systematic Base for Derrida’s Work
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Derrida became increasingly overt in later years in suggesting that his work displays a rigour, and even a ‘logic’. Further, it is becoming accepted thatdeconstruction arose in dialogue with Husserl. In support of these views, this article points out that in 1990 Derrida told us that his first work of 1954 revealsa ‘law’ which guides his career, and that some responses had already arisen there. The work of 1954 is examined, and an interrelated ‘system’ developed by which the responses relate to the law, to help find a common, early and systematic base to apply to Derrida’s oeuvre as it develops. Brief examples will be pointed to in closing to show that this basis subsists, at least in part, in later work.