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1. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 8 > Issue: 2
Peter Volek Hylomorphism as a Solution for Freedom and for Personal Identity: A Journal of Analytic Scholasticism
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Secundum Petrum Bieri dualismus ontologicus hoc trilemma generat: 1) Status mentis non sunt status physici. 2) Status mentis causalitatem exerceunt in regionem statuum physicorum. 3) Regio statuum physicorum est causaliter clausa. Haec tertia propositio a Bieri “physicalismum methodologicum” exprimere dicitur. Ut hoc trilemma solvat, Bieri unum eius membrorum reicere suadet. Hylemorphismus causalitatem mentis ut causalitetem formalem explicat, relationem vero hominis ad mundum ut causalitatem efficientem. Unde clausura causalis mundi de causalitate efficiente intelligi potest, quae in physica investigatur. Liberum arbitrium ab intentione mentis originem trahit. Etiam possibilitas libertatis humanae ex intentionalitate mentis explicari potest. Libertas adhuc hominis ut electio unae duarum optionum intelligi potest. Homo eligens rationes ponderat, quae sunt abstractae et distinctae a causis efficientibus rerum materialium, quae sunt concretae. Doctrina hylemorfica insuper fundamenum sufficiens ad problema identitatis personae per tempus solvendum praebere potest. Quoniam omnia elementa materialia in homine per tempus mutantur – imo DNA mutari potest –, principium identitatis immateriale esse debet. Pro principio identitatis igitur forma substantialis personae accipi potest, quae est metaphysica explicatio naturae mentis, quae actionem liberam electione deliberata per intentionalitatem libertatemque arbitrii inchoare potest)Peter Bieri formulates the assumptions of the ontological dualism via a trilemma: 1) Mental states are not physical states. 2) Mental states have causal effects in the realm of physical states. 3) The realm of physical states is causally closed. Bieri labels the third sentence of this trilemma as methodological physicalism. In order to solve this trilemma Bieri proposes to abandon one of the three premises. Hylomorphism explains mental causality as formal causality, and the relation between human beings and the world as efficient causality. Thus, the causal closure of the world can be understood as closure of the efficient causes, which are studied by physics. Free decision begins with the intentionality of the mind. The possibility of human freedom can also be explained through the intentionality of the mind. Human freedom can be understood as a choice between two alternatives. When choosing, human beings weigh reasons which are abstract and distinct from the efficient causes of material objects that are concrete. Hylomorphism can, further, provide sufficient grounds for solving the issue of personal identity through time. Since all the material elements in a human being change through time – even the DNA can change – the principle of identity cannot be material in character. Thus, it is the substantial form of a person (i.e. the metaphysical explanation of the mind, which is capable of initiating free action through its intentionality and freedom of choice in deliberate decision making) that can be accepted as the principle of identity.
2. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 8 > Issue: 2
Yehuda Halper The Convergence of Religious and Metaphysical Concepts: Mofet and Devequt in the Hebrew Translation of Averroës’ Long Commentary on Aristotle’s Metaphysics
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Translators of Aristotle’s and Averroës’ metaphysical works into 14th C Hebrew often associated important philosophical concepts with Hebrew terms that were also used to signify central Jewish and Biblical religious concepts. Here I examine how two such terms, “mofet” and “devequt”, were used to refer to extraordinary, divine wonders and to clinging (in particular to God) respectively in the religious texts, but to Aristotelian demonstration and continuity (especially noetic continuity) respectively in the translations of Averroës’ Long Commentary on Aristotle’s Metaphysics. This kind of convergence of metaphysical and religious terms makes possible, indeed encourages, a re-interpretation of the religious concepts along Aristotelian lines. Biblical expressions of God’s wonders are thus to be interpreted to refer to Aristotelian demonstration and the mystical desire to cling to God is to refer to unifi cation with the Active Intellect.Translatores, qui Aristotelis et Averrois opera metaphysica in linguam Hebraicam saeculi 14. transferebant, notabilibus conceptibus philosophicis saepe nomina Hebraica assignaverut, quibus et principales notiones religiosae Judaicae ac Biblicae solebant exprimi. In hac dissertatione investigatur, quomodo duo talium nominum, scil. “mofet” et “devequt”, quae in textibus religiosis “extra ordinaria miracula divina” et “adhaerentiam” (praecipue ad Deum) proprie significant, in translationibus Averrois Commentarii Magni in Aristotelis Metaphysicam ad demonstrationem Aristotelicam et continuationem (praecipue noeticam) significandas transumebantur. Huiusmodi nominum metaphysicorum cum religiosis coniunctio conceptus religiosos iuxta sensum Aristotelicum denuo explicari permittit, imo suadet. Hinc dicta Biblica quae miracula Dei olim significaverunt ad demonstrationes Aristotelicas relata sunt; item desiderium mysticum adhaerendi ad Deum de unione cum Intellectu Agenti intellectum est.
3. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 9 > Issue: 1
Miroslav Hanke John Mair on Semantic Paradoxes: A Journal of Analytic Scholasticism
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John Mair (1467–1550) was an influential post-medieval scholar. This paper focuses on his Tractatus insolubilium, in which he proposed semantic analysis of self-referential phenomena, in particular on his solution to alethic and correspondence paradoxes and his treatment of their general semantic aspects as well as particular applications. His solution to paradoxes is based on the so-called “network evaluation”, i.e. on a semantics which defines the concepts of truth and correspondence with reality in contextual terms. Consequently, the relation between semantic valuation, synonymy and contradiction must be redefined.
4. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 9 > Issue: 1
James Franklin Science by Conceptual Analysis: The Genius of the Late Scholastics
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The late scholastics, from the fourteenth to the seventeenth centuries, contributed to many fields of knowledge other than philosophy. They developed a method of conceptual analysis that was very productive in those disciplines in which theory is relatively more important than empirical results. That includes mathematics, where the scholastics developed the analysis of continuous motion, which fed into the calculus, and the theory of risk and probability. The method came to the fore especially in the social sciences. In legal theory they developed, for example, the ethical analyses of the conditions of validity of contracts, and natural rights theory. In political theory, they introduced constitutionalism and the thought experiment of a “state of nature”. Their contributions to economics included concepts still regarded as basic, such as demand, capital, labour, and scarcity. Faculty psychology and semiotics are other areas of significance. In such disciplines, later developments rely crucially on scholastic concepts and vocabulary.
5. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 9 > Issue: 1
Michał Głowala What Kind of Power is Virtue? John of St. Thomas OP on Causality of Virtues and Vices: A Journal of Analytic Scholasticism
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The following paper discusses John of St. Thomas’ study of the way in which a habit (moral or epistemic virtue or vice) is a cause of an action it prompts. I begin with contrasting the question of causality of habits with the general question of the causal relevance of dispositions (2). I argue that habits constitute a very peculiar kind of dispositions marked by the connection with the properties of being difficult and being easy, and there are some special reasons to admit the irreducibility of dispositions of this kind. I argue also that there is a special sort of causal connection between a habit and an action it actually prompts. Then I present an analysis of four theses of John of St. Thomas on the causality of habits, which, I think, constitute the most mature and reliable study of the causality of habits in the scholastic tradition: (i) Habits are efficient causes of actions they prompt (3.1). (ii) Virtues do determine the very natures of actions they prompt (3.2); (iii) Virtues do not have a proper counterpart among the characteristics of actions they prompt (3.3); (iv) The formal object of causality of virtue is a masterpiece performance of an action (3.4). In my analyses of John’s arguments for these theses I make three claims: not all powers are “in state of readiness for action”; habits are powers of powers or dispositions of powers; the general concept of a strategy is the key to grasp the properties of being difficult and being easy, and habits should be analysed as a kind of strategies.
6. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 9 > Issue: 1
Paul Richard Blum The Epistemology of Immortality: Searle, Pomponazzi, and Ficino
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The relationship between body and mind was traditionally discussed in terms of immortality of the intellect, because immateriality was one necessary condition for the mind to be immortal. This appeared to be an issue of metaphysics and religion. But to the medieval and Renaissance thinkers, the essence of mind is thinking activity and hence an epistemological feature. Starting with John Searle’s worries about the existence of consciousness, I try to show some parallels with the Aristotelian Pietro Pomponazzi (1462–1525), and eventually show the Neoplatonic approach in Marsilio Ficino (1433–1499). The guiding question is: how can one philosophically address the problem of cognition in terms of corporeality and incorporeality? Searle maintains there is mind, although essentially related to a biological basis, and he is comparable to the Renaissance thinkers for his taking the interaction of the mental and the corporeal seriously.
7. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 9 > Issue: 2
Martin Ossikovski Some Medieval Readings of Aristotle’s Argument for the Collective Superiority of “the Many”: A Journal of Analytic Scholasticism
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An essential challenge of Aristotle’s Politics arises from the juxtaposition of contrasting and competing arguments in favour of virtuous monarchy, on the one hand, and the collective superiority of “the many”, on the other. This paper examines the purely theoretical reception of this contrast in the writings of some late medieval Aristotelians by focusing on a key section in Politics Γ (1280a8–1284b34). After reviewing Aristotle’s problematic position, the paper discusses its interpretation in the commentaries of Albert the Great, Thomas Aquinas/Peter of Auvergne and Walter Burley, as well as its use in the works of Giles of Rome, John of Paris and Marsilius of Padua. On that basis, finally, the paper outlines some general trends with regard to how medieval scholars dealt with Aristotle’s idea of the rule of the many as opposed to that of one or few virtuous persons.
8. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 9 > Issue: 2
Gregory B. Sadler Aneu Orexeōs Nous: Virtue, Affectivity, and Aristotelian Rule of Law
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Passages in Aristotle’s Politics Book 3 are cited in discussions of the “rule of law”, most particularly sections in 1287a where the famous characterization of law as “mind without desire” occurs and in 1286a where Aristotle raises and explores the question whether it is better to be ruled by the best man or the best laws. My paper aims, by exegetically culling out Aristotle’s position in the Politics, Nicomachean Ethics and Rhetoric, to argue that his view on the rule of law and its relations to human subjects is considerably more complex and considerably more interesting. Despite Aristotle’s dictum, laws are not expressions or institutions of a pure and passionless rationality, and in order to be framed, understood and administered well, one must both have the sort of solid understanding of virtues, vices, passions, and motives of human action that Aristotle’s moral philosophy provides and have developed, at least to some degree, certain virtues. My paper focuses particularly on three themes: the role of the passions and desires in judgment, action, virtues and vices; the inescapability of passions and desires in the functioning of law; the possibility for rule of law and a certain level of virtue to be mutually supporting.
9. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 9 > Issue: 2
Miroslav Hanke John Mair on Semantic Paradoxes: Alethic and Correspondence Paradoxes II
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John Mair (1467–1550) was an influential post-medieval scholar. This paper focuses on his Tractatus insolubilium, in which he proposed semantic analysis of self-referential phenomena, in particular on his solution to alethic and correspondence paradoxes and his treatment of their general semantic aspects as well as particular applications. His solution to paradoxes is based on the so-called “network evaluation”, i.e. on a semantics which defines the concepts of truth and correspondence with reality in contextual terms. Consequently, the relation between semantic valuation, synonymy and contradiction must be redefined.
10. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 9 > Issue: 3
Jan Palkoska „Res illa quae cognoscitur“ v Suárezových Metafyzických disputacích Odpověď na kritickou poznámku Daniela Heidera „K objektivnímu bytí u Suáreze“
11. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 9 > Issue: 3
Lukáš Lička Supozice mentálního termínu podle Viléma Ockhama
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This paper investigates Ockham’s claim that there is a diversity of suppositions of a mental term. First, it summarizes the hitherto research in Ockham’s theory of concepts (understood as natural signs) and the theory of mental language ascribed to him (Part 1–2). Secondly, it describes his theory of supposition, focusing on the interpretation of this theory which describes it as a device for interpretation of propositions (Part 3). Thirdly, the paper examines the problems which arise from combining Ockham’s theory concepts and his theory of supposition (Part 4–7) – namely, the problems concerning the nature of mental proposition, the questionof mental syncategoremata, and of equivocation in mental language. Part 8 then reveals the absurdity of understanding the supposition of a mental term as an instrument for interpretation of mental propositions. Finally, I propose a new interpretation of the whole issue, based on Ockham’s early commentary on the Sentences (Part 9). According to this interpretation, the diversity of supposition of a mental term is not triggered by the need of distinguishing various meanings of a mental propositions, but by Ockham’s nominalistic theory of science.
12. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 9 > Issue: 3
Ľuboš Rojka SJ Boh a vznik sveta z ničoho Náčrt obhajoby časového kozmologického argumentu pre Božie jestvovanie
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The kalām cosmological argument for the existence of God proposed by W. L. Craig (in 1970’s) has been subject to much debate on all sorts of issues related to the existence of God and the beginning of the universe. The goal of the paper is to briefly evaluate several complex questions embraced in the argument in order to show the depth and strength of the argument, and to avoid oversimplification, which one can find in some recent publications. The argument as such does not rely on a single thesis or a theory proposed by a single author. The argument has such a support from different fields that its opponents would need to elaborate a theory with much more explanatory power than the most recent cosmological theories.
13. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 9 > Issue: 3
Miroslav Hanke Opusculum insolubilium v kontextu scholastické logiky Analýza traktátu a pracovní edice
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Opusculum insolubilium is an anonymous sixteenth-century British logical treatise dealing with the so-called “insolubles”, i.e. self-reflexive paradoxical propositions. It summarises the fundamental principles of the approach proposed by Roger Swyneshed in the fourteenth century, which became popular in the British academic circles during the fifteenth century. The present paper has two basic aims: to contrive a modern edition of this treatise which could be used fora further research in post-mediaeval scholastic logic, and to provide elementary information about its content and historical context.
14. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 1 > Issue: 1/2
Stanislav Sousedík Vorwort: A Journal of Analytic Scholasticism
15. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 1 > Issue: 1/2
Stanislav Sousedík Slovo úvodem: A Journal of Analytic Scholasticism
16. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 1 > Issue: 1/2
Daniel Heider Leibnizova Disputatio metaphysica De Principio Individui A F. Suárez: A Journal of Analytic Scholasticism
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The article examines the first fruit of Leibniz´s philosophical endeavour, which is his baccalaureate thesis Disputatio metaphysica de Principio Individui, on thebackground of the comparison with Suárez´s conception of individual unity in his Disputationes Metaphysicae. Despite Suárez´s more differentiated attitude to the issue of individuation in general, the author is convinced that one can find strong parallels between both authors, namely the following: purely ontological treatment of the problem of the principle of individuation; search for a single principle which is common both to material and nonmmaterial substances; nominalist tendency, which is apparent not only in the positive statements of the two authors, but also in their criticisms of rival solutions in general, and theScotist conception in particular. The similarities are not limited only to the principle of individuation or to the problem of individual unity in general but they also extend to the problem of the distinction between essence and existence, the conception of transcendental unity and its relation to ens, or to the problem of reification of hylemorphic components of material substances.
17. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 1 > Issue: 1/2
Stanislav Sousedík G. Frege a aristotelská ontologie vztahů: A Journal of Analytic Scholasticism
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The doctrine put forth by G. Frege and now almost universally accepted, according to which a predicate expressing a relative notion has to be supplemented by two (or more) subjects, in order for a statement to arise, appears to be a source of certain difficulties. In the paper, the author defends the view that this doctrine goes against our natural understanding of language, and shows that as soon as an attempt to determine the extension of such “relative” predicates is made, a contradiction in the doctrine is laid bare.
18. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 1 > Issue: 1/2
Lukáš Novák Problém Abstraktních Pojmů: A Journal of Analytic Scholasticism
19. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 1 > Issue: 1/2
Petr Dvořák K modálnímu ontologickému důkazu: A Journal of Analytic Scholasticism
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The article deals with various modal versions of the ontological argument from N. Malcolm’s to P. Tichý’s interpretation of Anselm’s second proof. Three key presuppositions of the modal proof are pin-pointed and examined. The principal problem with the proof seems to be the notion of necessary existence attributed to God. More precisely, the question is whether this is not too strong an attribute, for then there would not be a situation, i.e. a possible world, consistently thinkable which precludes the existence of God. However, this seems to be wrong.
20. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 1 > Issue: 1/2
M. J. Loux Nutné a možné: A Journal of Analytic Scholasticism