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1. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Valtteri Arstila Apparent Motion and Ontology of Time
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Introspectively, it appears that we can have experiences as of temporally extended phenomena such as change, motion, and the passage of time. A central question in the ontology of time is whether we can make sense of these experiences without assuming that the passage of time is real. The antireductionist argument against such a possibility maintains that if there is no passage of time, but only static time slices, then our experiences as of arguably temporally extended phenomena cannot be explained. Consequently, insofar as we can have such experiences, reductionists need to show that these experiences are in fact realized by static means. By drawing from cognitive sciences, this is exactly what Laurie A. Paul recently aimed to show. I will argue that Paul’s argumentation fails on two grounds. First, even if her argument for accounting apparent motion by static means is successful, it does not apply to other experiences of temporal phenomena. Second, there are reasons to doubt that even apparent motion is represented by static means. Accordingly, the antireductionist argument remains to be addressed.
2. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Ming-Fui Chai Rationality and Identity: It’s More Personal than You Think
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In this paper, I will show how the distinction between consciousness and self-consciousness can clarify Locke’s doctrine of personal identity in An Essay Concerning Human Understanding and help us to better respond to Reid’s “brave officer” objection in Inquiry and Essays. We will see how Reid has misunderstood Locke and made wrong assumptions that undermine the credibility of his objection. Firstly, Locke differentiates between the terms ‘man’ and ‘person’ but Reid uses them interchangeably in his criticism of Locke. Secondly, Reid thinks that consciousness is equivalent to memory and that Locke’s theory of personal identity will result in contradictory conclusions. On one hand, the general is not the same person as the child because he cannot remember what he did as a child. But on the other hand, transitivity means they are in fact the same person. Reid fails to realize that Locke is in fact talking about self-consciousness in his Essay and the difference between consciousness and self-consciousness is grounded on the difference between a non-rational being like an animal, which can only have identity, and rational beings like us, who have personal identity. Also, to say that memory is equivalent to self-consciousness is wrong because memory is only a subset of self-consciousness.
3. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Gang Chen Hierarchy, Form, and Reality
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Scientific progress in the 20th century has shown that the structure of the world is hierarchical. A philosophical analysis of the hierarchy will bear obvious significance for metaphysics and philosophy in general. Jonathan Schaffer’s paper, “Is There a Fundamental Level?”, provides a systematic review of the works in the field, the difficulties for various versions of fundamentalism, and the prospect for the third option, i.e., to treat each level as ontologically equal. The purpose of this paper is to provide an argument for the third option. The author will apply Aristotle’s theory of matter and form to the discussion of the hierarchy and develop a form realism, which will grant every level with “full citizenship in the republic of being.” It constitutes an argument against ontological and epistemological reductionism. A non-reductive theory of causation is also developed against the fundamental theory of causation. I will argue that Aristotle’s in re forms, not Plato’s ante rem Forms, are involved in causation on each level of hierarchy. Based on ontological reductionism, I will argue against epistemological reductionism.
4. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Gaetano Chiurazzi Kant’s Revolutionary Metaphysics as a New Policy of Reason
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Kant’s critical project has been understood as a description of the functioning of knowledge (Strawson). Such an understanding of the first Critique seems however limited, especially if we consider Kant’s frequent use of political analogies. These analogies suggest another reading in which Kant’s critical project emerges as an attempt to overcome a state of nature in reason (marked by unavoidable conflict) through the institution of a legal state in and by reason itself. Seen in this perspective, Kant’s critical metaphysics can be considered revolutionary, because it assumes the issues of the two revolutions of modernity, the political and the scientific one: from the former, Kant adopts the conviction that a conflict can be settled only through the separation and reciprocal limitation of powers, as theorized by Locke and Montesquieu - and thus neither by force nor by the establishment of an absolute power; from the latter, he acquires a model of proof, which is based, not on description, but on the elaboration of an explicative hypothesis (of a condition of possibility). The Critique of Pure Reason, then, is not a mere treatise of epistemology or of descriptive metaphysics, but the attempt of setting up a policy of reason at the service of peace and civil communal life.
5. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Harris Hatziioannou Conceivability and Knowledge of Metaphysical Modality
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I first examine and reject a prominent rationalist approach to knowledge of metaphysical modality, advocated by philosophers such as Yablo and Chalmers, who rely on the notion of conceivability to explain how we can achieve such knowledge. The focus of my criticism concerns a particular requirement of these accounts, namely that the content of modally reliable conceivability intuitions, which is in the first instance a simple imaginary situation, can be extended to completeness and thus considered to be verifiable by a range of possible worlds. I thus argue that the notions these philosophers employ cannot provide the criteria by which we could understand how such an operation could be understood in a purely epistemic way. This is because they rely on substantial metaphysical assumptions, for instance the assumption that all aspects of (actual as well as possible) reality can in principle be represented and grasped by the human mind as a unified whole. These assumptions render their notion of conceivability inadequate to be used as an epistemic guide to possibility. Finally, I outline the broad epistemological principles that pertain to a specific Kripkean understanding of metaphysical necessity that I favor (Edgington 2004), which construes it as a kind of natural necessity.
6. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Antonios Kalatzis Life as Concept – Concept as Life: Hegel
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The paper I am willing to present in the 23. World Congress of Philosophy deals with the central philosophical figure of the so-called Ger-man Idealism movement, G.W.F. Hegel. In concrete I will discuss the grounds which led Hegel to an organicist conception of reality, resulting from the social and philosophical problems of his time. After having discussed the intellectual and political background I will provide a reconstruction of Hegel’s magnum opus, the Science of Logic, putting the focus on its structure and its basic ar-gumentative means: the positive re-evaluation of contradiction and the use of logical instability (dialectics). These insights, as I will further argue, allow He-gel to substantiate his claim, which is to be seen as an argument against phil-osophical enterprises, operating on the basis of otherworldly, inconceivable entities in order to explain reality. In the conclusion I will sketch what Hegel is actually trying to articulate with his organicist thesis and show that the concept of Logical Life is not to be narrowly understood as a theory dealing with living organisms but rather as the core of a philosophy which illustrates reality as a logical and ontological self-sufficient organic whole.
7. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Jerry Kapus Rationality and Free Will
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It is evident that we identify problems and reason about and implement solutions. Doing this involves deliberation of choices. Doing this involves rationality and free will. However, determinism tells us that this is not the case and that free will is an illusion. I think that this is a mistake, but I also think that we do not have an adequate alternative for understanding rationality in the context of free, deliberative choice. In this short paper, I sketch some problems with the compatibility of rationality with determinism, but I also argue that we are no better off with understanding free will as a necessary condition for rational action.
8. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Serguei L. Katrechko How is Metaphysics Possible: On the way to Transcendental Metaphysics
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The answer to the question “How is metaphysics possible?” can be obtained with the help of Kant’s transcendental method. Discussing the possibility of metaphysics, Kant distinguishes two modes of it: metaphysica naturalis and metaphysics as a science. Therefore, the possibility of metaphysics is divided into two sub-questions. Postulated by Kant, metaphysica naturalis, which underlies philosophy, associated with active “Kraft” of mind (imagination and understanding) and roots in metaphysics of the language connected with the sense of language (conceptual and categorial) and its formal–structural nature. Thereby the man is homo metaphysicus. Before discussing the possibility of a “scientific” metaphysics it is necessary to consider, first of all, that metaphysics per se consists of metaphysica generalis and metaphysica specialis, and secondly, the development of it includes three historical modes: antiquity meta-physics (ontology), meta-psychology (epistemology) of modern era, contemporary (post-Kantian) metaphysics. The possibility of metaphysica generalis (or transcendental ontology) is manifested by specific ontological (transcendental) predicates, i.e. categories in the Kantian sense, which exist in our language. The possibility of metaphysica specialis (or transcendental metaphysics) is manifested by impredicative wholeness, or encompassing totalities (comp. with the Encompassing (das Umgreifende of K. Jaspers), which determine the appropriate regional ontology (Husserl).
9. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Krzysztof Kiedrowski The Main Ideas of Leszek Nowak’s Negativistic Unitarian Metaphysics
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In the paper I present the main assumptions of Leszek Nowak’s negativistic unitarian metaphysics on the metaphilosophical, methodological and postulative plane. From a metaphilosophical angle the fundamental theses concern: metaphysical radicalism and theoretical pluralism. Among the methods applied by L. Nowak, I point out the method of idealization and concretization (main constructional method), as well as the method of paraphrase allowing to ‘collate’ philosophical concepts. I also outline basic metaphysical statements which indicate that unitarian metaphysics is a pluralistic negativistic attributivism, i. e. it develops the ideas of: plurality-of-worlds, non-substantialism and negativism.
10. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Heesung Kim The Significance of Subjective Materialistic Thought in Kant’s Philosophy
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Subjective materialism is a new worldview of the subject of self-awareness based on man-in-the world, and a methodology of man interconnecting the world. Subjective materialism is a logical result of development in western philosophy. This logic comes from the metaphysics of Graeco, while its thinking originates from Kantian philosophy. Kant’s philosophy has been occupying the most important position in the history of western philosophy. Of important significance in the history of philosophy is a fact implied by the Copernican Revolution in Kant’s philosophy, namely the indication of the possibility for subjective materialism. A particular transcendental epistemology and its point of view about man’s free nature led to today’s subjective materialism. Subjective materialism is a finalization of Kantian philosophy in a materialistic form.
11. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Naoaki Kitamura The Connection between Grounding and Truthmaking
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The purpose of this paper is to clarify the connection between two notions of growing interest in contemporary metaphysics – truthmaking and grounding. The former has provoked a great deal of controversy since the 1980s, whereas the latter has attracted serious attention only since the beginning of this century. Although the two notions are closely connected, only a few attempts have been made so far at clarifying that connection. The present paper is intended as an investigation of the connection on the basis of the appreciation of the core ideas of truthmaker theory. To begin with, two conceptions of the connection are distinguished, and the conception that truthmaking can be defined in terms of grounding is endorsed. Next, two ideas that form the core of truthmaker theory are delineated, and it is argued that the definition of truthmaking should be based on the idea that truthmakers are metaphysically fundamental entities. Finally, it is shown that a particular problem with grounding can be resolved by restricting a relevant logical principle for grounding, justified by the idea that truth is a derivative aspect of reality. The discussion reveals the significance of appreciating the core of truthmaker theory in developing a theory of grounding.
12. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Jimmy Alfonso Licon Properly Functioning Brains and Personal Identity: A Novel Argument for Neural Animalism
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Surely, I persist through time; thus, I must be identical to something that persists through time. But, what is identical to me, which persists through time? First, I argue that we should take reductive materialism and the Lockean view of personal identity seriously. But, these positions appear in tension. Second, I argue a plausible way to reconcile them is to embrace a novel kind of animalism that I call neural animalism. This says that I am identical to my properly functioning brain.
13. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Natalia Martishina Construction of Objects and Construction of Realities
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The essence of human activity is a permanent constructing of objects. It means a creation of artifacts that have an internal structure and a logic of operating. What is the difference between constructing of objects and constructing of new realities as a metaphysical process? We understand a reality as a localized area of being or a set of objects that exist in a certain way (social reality, virtual reality, etc.). The criterion for the existence of local autonomous reality is its having the characteristics of the system, and these characteristics ensure its functioning, at least in part, as self-based. From this point of view, the presence of a number of objects of a particular type is a necessary but not a sufficient condition for the emergence of a new reality. The formation of the connections between the objects that fix the logic of the system is more important. A certain amount of immanent links is required for the birth of a new reality. The trend of the links development consists of their coordination to the point of logical completeness. Reality is constructed when the links have become sufficiently developed for the internal determination of new events in the system and / or requests for the extension of objects with established parameters. This transition can be illustrated by means of the art practice: at a certain point in a creative act when developing a story line, characters and the story itself begin to go their own line (not defined by the initial creative idea). Thus, the constructing activity aimed at new reality creating has a certain optimum.
14. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Gregory Moss Three Dogmas of Universality
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In this essay I argue that the traditional concept of universality entails three dogmas, the validity of which have seldom been called into question. To each of these dogmas correspond to common commitments to the universal in the Western tradition. I argue that the only legitimate answer to the question ‘what is the universal?’ requires abandoning the three dogmas of universality and the entailments that follow from them. Moreover, the question ‘what is the universal?’ requires that we adopt self-reference into our concept of the universal, a feature rarely allowed to be predicated of the universal in contemporary and classical Analytic philosophy yet required if any progress on the question ‘what is universality?’ may be had. If my argument is successful, philosophers have an obligation to investigate the work of G.W.F. Hegel more closely, since he is the only philosopher in the rationalist tradition to properly identify these dogmas and think a concept of the universal that avoids the pitfalls that follow from their adoption.
15. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Satoshi Suganuma Toward the Absolute Ultimate End
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In general, the ultimate end is the end beyond which there can be no further end. However, almost all the ultimate ends considered so far— “a man’s ultimate end”, “humanity’s ultimate end”, “the ultimate end of the universe”, and so on—are relative, in that they can in fact have a further end. Additionally, many of the ideas are based on dubious presuppositions such as teleology. Can there, then, be a meaningful idea of the absolute ultimate end without dubious presuppositions, beyond which there can never be any further end? And if so, what will it be like? This paper, by raising such questions, suggests a possible study of the absolute ultimate end, which has never been attempted before, at least explicitly. At first, the classic ideas of the ultimate end (typically attributed to Aristotle and Aquinas) and modern criticisms of them (typically attributed to Anscombe and Geach) are surveyed; then, postulates for the concept of the absolute ultimate end are presented (in §1: Toward a concept of the absolute ultimate end). Next, a definition of the absolute ultimate end (hereafter AUE) is presented, and it is argued that the idea of AUE is not based on (at least clearly) dubious presuppositions, and that AUE is the strongest meaningful ultimate end. Further, it is suggested that a study of AUE would be highly metaphysical—or even mystical—in character (in §2: Toward a study of the absolute ultimate end). Lastly, the possible relationships between us human and AUE are suggested (in §3: Toward the absolute ultimate end as our ultimate end).
16. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Zhengyu Sun Philosophy’s Adventures as Metaphysics
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As the theoretically human self-consciousness, Philosophy is a kind of metaphysics which represents the metaphysical nature of human beings in denying reality and achieving their ideals. The most fundamentally cultural connotation of Philosophy lies in some metaphysical adventures which are to establish the holy form and to dissolve the unholy forms by means of conceptual critique. However, the meta-metaphysics resulting from the metaphysical adventures is not the end of Philosophy which aims at abandoning representing human self-consciousness in a theoretic way, but a kind of self-consciousness in contemporary human beings which is dedicated to unmask human selfestrangement in the unholy forms. And the latter is represented in regarding Philosophy itself as the object of critique.
17. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Tiancheng Wang On the Implementations of Traditional Metaphysics in China and the West
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Chinese metaphysics and Western metaphysics share common resources, which are theoretical understandings on the contradiction between finiteness and eternity embedded in human beings, and the human reflections on the nature of their life. Nevertheless, the two kinds of metaphysics differ from each other concerning their constructing modes in the following two aspects. First, as to the establishing mode, Chinese metaphysics is in the ascending way, which is from the ethical world to the field of metaphysics; while Western metaphysics in the descending way, which starts from ontology, and arrives at ethics. Second, as to the methods of transcending the finiteness of human life, or the methods leading to eternity, the Chinese way is inner, while the Western one transcendent. The unity of these two aspects constitutes the difference between the constructing mode of Chinese metaphysics and that of Western metaphysics.
18. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Chris Weigel Free Will: A Case of Perspective
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Successor views in the free will literature are views that reject the assumption behind the compatibility question, the question of whether free will is compatible with causal determinism. Specifically, they challenge the assumption that the compatibility question must be answered with either a yes or a no (in the exclusive sense of “or”). One premise typically found in arguments for successor views is the premise that there are certain challenging cases where we have compatibilist and incompatibilist intuitions within the same case. This paper gives empirical support for that premise by presenting an experiment that yields an actor-observer asymmetry in intuitions about the compatibility questions. Given causal determinism, intuitions are incompatibilist when we think about someone else doing an action, but intuitions are compatibilist when we think about our own action as judged by someone else.
19. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Helena Yatsenko Thinking in the Metaphysical Categories
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The problem of legitimacy of metaphysical knowledge is examined in the paper in connection with the antimetaphysical fervor of philosophy of postmodern, tendencies to “escape from ontology”, and deep crisis of humanities. The conceptual analysis of fundamental grounds of traditional metaphysics is conducted as a method of localization and orientation in space. The metaphysical systems of separate historical epochs are based on certain spatial metaphors: circle, cross, system of co-ordinates, surface. As an alternative practices a deconstruction offers fundamental ontology of Martin Heidegger which is focused on time as organizing principle of the universe. There is a task to proof a necessity and productivity of metaphysics as sciences and as a method of cognition.
20. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 23
Gal Yehezkel Fear of Death and the Metaphysics of Time
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Lucretius points out a puzzling asymmetry in our attitudes towards our prenatal non-existence and our post-mortem non-existence. Normally, we view birth as a happy occasion, and death as a sad event. Some philosophers argue that these asymmetry in our attitude is justified by the A-theory of Time, which reflects the common sense way of thinking about time, and so they discredit the B-theory of Time. In this paper I critically examine these claims and argue that this belief is false. Our attitude is neither justified nor discredited by anything which is in debate between the A-Theory and the B-theory of time. Thus the existence of this asymmetry does not favor one theory over the other, and the dispute between the two theories will have to be settled on other grounds.