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1. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Elena Avramidou Sage-king and Philosopher-king: Parallels and Divergences in Confucius and Plato
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Confucius (551-479 B.C) and Plato (427-347 B.C) live in the so called Axial age (Jaspers) and in a social and political situation that presents similarities (strong social conflicts, civil wars, crisis of traditional institutions, moral decay). Thus, both thinkers, inspired by their passion for virtue and justice and the desire for a better political organization, introduce ways to restore peace, order and harmony (he 和). They develop, accordingly, a political and moral theory that aims at combining knowledge and power through ethics. The sage-king (sheng ren 聖人) and the philosopher-king are, respectively, the capstone of the political system that they introduce. Therefore, both of them propose a pattern of political management, which, as it differs from the old political example, introduces new aspects on governance by placing knowledge, ethics and education as the foundation of governance. However, we observe some fundamental differences between the two thoughts, related to a different perception of the world that is philosophically presented in terms of being/becoming. The main points, in which the Confucian sage-king (sheng ren聖人) and the Platonic philosopher-king differ, therefore emerge; in these points we generally distinguish the basic differences between the Greek and the Chinese thought.
2. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
James Behuniak Pragmatism and Dao-practice in Zhuangzi
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The theme of this world conference, “Philosophy as Inquiry and Way of Life,” evokes some of the central ideas in the works of the Chinese philosopher, Zhuangzi and the American pragmatic philosopher, John Dewey. As different as these two thinkers are, each regarded a particular mode of philosophical inquiry to be detrimental to the process of living, and in its place, each recommended a more natural and sustainable method of philosophy, one consistent with life-processes and responsive to the demands of changing circumstances and problematic situations. This paper argues that the proposals of Zhuangzi and Dewey, while undeniably different, are similar in important respects. By reading them together, one might better understand and more clearly draw out their lessons for philosophy itself. Using Zhuangzi’s famous story of “Cook Ding” as a point of departure, a new way of thinking about the role of “reflective knowing” will be articulated; and drawing from Dewey and the pragmatic tradition, a new alignment for philosophy and its function will be proposed along lines suggested in the work of Zhuangzi.
3. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Marianna Benetatou The Philosophy of No-Action: Daoist wu wei and Stoic apragmosynê
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The paper surveys the ancient Daoist and ancient Stoic theories of moral conduct. In both cases, ethics are grounded in cosmology and even cosmogony (Laozi). Right conduct reproduces, copies, or transposes to human scale the way the cosmic principle works in the vast universe. Its existential dimension is described negatively as not purposeful, not ego-centered and not-object oriented and positively as supremely creative, free, wise, efficient and good. The Stoics underline its rational nature, whilst the Daoists explain its all-embracing function. Essential divergences cluster around the nature of the cosmic principle and its relation to humans. Expectedly, they determine the specific content and style of ethics. Nonetheless, significant convergences point to a fundamental “inversion” of intentionality and consequent actions. The inner disposition coincides with a conscious disengagement from conventional morality. Wisdom is attained by a process of un-learning how to pursue specific targets in order to attain a state of consciousness similar in many respects to cosmic polycentrality. Creativity, freedom, sagehood, even personality and subjectivity acquire a fresh and original meaning. The paper comports the following sections: Ethics and cosmology. Learning from nature, Universal harmony.
4. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Aglaia Blioumi Intercultural Philosophy in Late Capitalism: On the Problem of Hybridity
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This paper focus on the questions: does hybridity portray a new intellectual approach for intercultural philosophy because it’s confronted with the problem of solving cultural differences? Can the hybrid paradigm, which ultimately possesses structural similarities to intercultural philosophy, facilitate the fundamental reflection of the research sector? At first the paper presents the facets of Intercultural Philosophy behave on the German-language discussion and then the compatibility of Hybridity and Intercultural Philosophy. As a topic for reflection the discourse on hybridity seems to be an efficient research field for intercultural philosophy although the concept of hybridity has been rather cautiously received in the German-language discourse. Currently intercultural philosophy, which has quite a changed relationship with difference, can occupy itself with hybridity as a utilization concept of late capitalism.
5. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Chung-ying Cheng On Virtue and Reason: Toward an Integrative Theory of de and arête
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As virtue (de 德) is experienced and understood in Confucian ethics as power to act and perform a moral action, we must inquire into the source and foundation of such a power and see how the Daoist-Confucian understanding of virtue as de is significant and illuminating. The crux of the matter is that virtue has to be onto-cosmologically explicated, not just teleo-logically explained, for its creative ability to achieve an end. Thus we see how virtue (de) is a power derived from self-reflection and self-restraining and how it also functions as a motivated action for attaining its practical end in a com-munity. But in order to attain such a practical end, one needs to practice and make one’s practice effective and sustainable. It has to achieve a self-integrat-ed moral consciousness so that one’s experiences, action and ideal end remain in creative coherence. This leads then to the Aristotelian notion of virtue as excellence (arête). In light of this understanding we see how virtue as arête could be introduced as a second feature of virtue as de, namely as the power for effective action in the whole system of virtues, apart from the first feature of de as self-restraining power.
6. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Eveline Cioflec Judging: Taking into Account Particular Situation
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In this paper I will present Arendt’s concept of judging as related to imagination. Her concept of judging is rooted in Kant’s philosophy, yet bears the potential for the political account of the particular. Inserted in the ongoing debate in intercultural philosophy, as of how to take into account particular circumstances, this paper offers an insight into moral judgment as a possible corrective to normative politics. Reflecting on lived politics through moral judgment in particular situations, this paper highlights the importance of imagination and experience for individual decisions. Bearing as a horizon the intercultural debates it refers only to the question as of how particulars can be taken into account in a political intercultural debate.
7. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Hossein Falsafi Studying and Evaluating Kant’s Attitude towards Plato’s Ideas
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One of the most fundamental thoughts is Plato’s ideas. Great philosophers after Plato have interpreted different ideas of Plato. Some of them are true and some of them are not. Kant also has special but untrue interpretation of Plato’s ideas. In this paper, first, critical philosophy of Kant is briefly reported and then, special look of Kant at ideas is studied and evaluated and it is made evident that Kant has misinterpreted Plato’s ideas.
8. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Weilin Fang Phoenixism as a Way of Life
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Phoenixism is a new contemporary Asian philosophy which follows after Taoism, Confucianism and Buddhism. Phoenixism, which is based on the Phoenixist School, is a doctrine advocating being open and using all the resources to create new things. Phoenixism uses a concept of “an open container” to incorporate different theories and philosophies varying from scientific philosophies, eastern philosophies, and western philosophies to African traditions. Phoenixist liberalism and Phoenixist naturalism are two main parts of Phoenixist ethics, which advocates ethics with the least ammount of norms and government with the least amount of control. Phoenixism’s earliest followers include followers of Taoism, Confucianism, Buddhism, Judaism, Christianism, and Islamism. Phoenixism has a religious status which is so-called “containing” religious status, thus pushing forward the status of religions to an open coexisting status.
9. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Yannis Fikas The Harmonization of Opposites
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The theory of the harmonization of opposites as reflected in Western and Eastern philosophy is presented in this paper. Initially, the theory of the harmonization of opposites is found in the philosophical views of the Pre-Socratic philosophers, Plato, the Neoplatonic philosophers, the Renaissance philosophers as well as in contemporary philosophers. Then the paper focuses on the Eastern philosophy and mainly on those schools of philosophy that harmonize antitheses such as the schools of Buddhism, Samkhya, Yoga and Uttara Mimamsa.
10. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Karen Gloy The Project of Intercultural Philosophy
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Intercultural philosophy is the name of a relatively young discipline that did not emerge in German-speaking universities until the 80s and 90s. Its goal is to establish dialogue and understanding between the diverse, often vastly heterogenous cultures to make a peaceful coexistence possible that became a necessity in the course of globalization. Cultures differ not only in respect of the religious, political and social, but also in the patterns of thinking and acting, i.e. in respect of logic, the conceptions of time and space, causality or analogy etc. It cannot be assumed that there are universals of thought and action. Is it even possible to establish a dialogue under these conditions? Several theories need to be discussed: 1. In case that we assume with Gadamer that philosophy in content and form is a European project that evolved in the west, then true dialogue would only be possible under the same or similar cultural conditions, specifically under the assumption of a euro-centrism that must be imposed on all cultures if a dialogue should be possible. Habermas’ discourse theory too turns out to be a disguised euro-centrism that assumes equality of opportunity for all participants of discourse while relying on identical communicative, constative, representative and regulative speech acts that belong to western logic. 2. In case that we limit philosophy to questions of content that are for example already characteristic of children and not to questions of form that may be different in different cultures, then mutual understanding would not be entirely impossible, but difficult, since the contents would have to be translated into different verbal or averbal modes of explication, e.g. in the case of primitive cultures also into artistic, mimic, gestic modes of expression. In any case, intercultural philosophical understanding is a difficult project that has little to do with soapbox oratories of mutual understanding and the advent of uniform global peace.
11. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Chiyohiko Hakoishi The Description of Psychological States of Zazen in Rinzai School and Sōtō School
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What Zen schools aim for is to reach the quintessence of Buddhism directly through zen. Investigating the descriptions of psychological states of zazen in Rinzai School and Sōtō school in Japan, the ultimate results of both schools’ methods have similarity even though the former makes the most use of Buddhist terminologies and exploits sophisticated language, while the latter speaks in unaffected language.
12. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Carlos Hernandez Diaz A Single Cultural Hermeneutics
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In this paper, I propose, first, to reflect on the characteristics of philosophical inquiry, the task of philosophy of law in relation to the vision of intercultural philosophy. Philosophy is plural because it is a “task context”. Otherwise, it is imprisoned in an arrogant tradition which seeks exclusive center of all possible exercise. Then it is possible to encounter it in many and varied places and forms of expression. You learn to philosophize reading the classics. However, in the line we are following, philosophy is not only a study of texts, a discipline, but also a “contextual knowledge”. The latter is not about knowing mere ideas or learning systems of thought, but, above all, it is a true knowledge and the method to acquire it. Contextual knowledge is articulated within relevant historical processes, so the philosophical context is fundamentally practical.
13. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Katsuhito Inoue The Modern Western Intellect and our Environmental Crisis: Expectation for Eastern Wisdom
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The global ecosystem is now facing the crises of global warming and the desertification caused by excessive deforestation. The cause of this environmental pollution is ‘Western’ modernization as an observational perspective which reduces all relationships to horizontal ones. Eastern wisdom gives us an alternative. In this presentation, I will think through the problem of the Eastern ethical viewpoint in the modern techno-scientific age from the perspective of the Song period Confucian standpoint of the ‘compassion of heaven and earth as one body’. I explain this standpoint as an intentionality towards a transcendent ‘absolute Other’ and do so based on the modern Japanese Kyōto School ethics of ‘trans-descendance’. What comes to be seen here is a downwardly directed sense of degradation that first appears as the opposite of transcendence. And yet such an awareness of finitude becomes the thorough-going form of no-self and hence endless repentance through the infinite Other which has sunk to the depths of the self. In such Eastern Wisdom, philosophy becomes a ‘logic of conversion’ able to face the crises of modernity.
14. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Xinyan Jiang The Unity of Opposites: A Comparative Study of Heraclitus and Laozi
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In the universe, there are countless pairs of opposites. In Chinese philosophy, there are general names for these opposites, i.e., yin and yang. In this paper I argue that the unity of opposites is a theme common to Heraclitus, a pre-Socratic philosopher, and Laozi, the best known Daoist. More specifically, I argue that both Heraclitus and Laozi believe the following: 1) opposites produce and depend on each other, without one there can’t be another; 2) each thing in the universe consists of opposites and is a unity of opposites, there is nothing that is absolutely one-sided; 3) the conflict between opposites changes everything and makes new things possible. Nothing is at rest and new beings constantly come to exist, since there is constant struggle between opposites. As far as their views on the unity of opposites are concerned, Heraclitus’s and Laozi’s philosophies are extremely similar.
15. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Mehmet Karabela The Emergence of Modern Dialectic: A Comparison between European and Islamic Intellectual History
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This paper compares the trajectories and defining moments in the evolution of dialectic in Islamic and European civilizations in the early modern intellectual history. The paper begins with a discussion of the concept of contradiction in the history of dialectic, and traces the shifts in the meaning of contradiction in the pre- and post-Hegel periods by focusing on the works of Immanuel Kant, G.W.F. Hegel and Karl Marx to illuminate how Islamic intellectuals (philosophers, theologians and jurists) understood dialectic at the very moment in which a new form was being constructed in Europe. This paper aims to demonstrate that in Islamic civilization, dialectic was used as a tool for finding the truth whereas in Europe, especially in the post-Hegel period, dialectic was a tool for understanding the contradiction in nature and the world.
16. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
John W. M. Krummel Chōra in Heidegger and Nishida
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In this presentation I discuss the concept of “place” (basho) in the Japanese twentieth century philosopher and founder of the Kyoto School of philosophy, Nishida Kitarō, in light of the ancient Greek concept of chōra, and compare it with the German thinker Martin Heidegger’s notion of “region” (Gegend) that was also inspired by chōra. We can point to Plato’s concept of chōra in his Timaeus as an important source for both twentieth century philosophers of the East and the West. But we can also draw connections to the pre-Platonic everyday understanding of chōra as well. I argue that chōra in general entails concretion-cum-indetermination, a space that implaces human existence into its environment and clears room for the presencing-absencing of beings.
17. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Pablo Lazo Briones Recognition and Intercultural Ethics
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Taking into account the ethical-political proposals by Charles Taylor and Axel Honneth on recognition, I want to think on the fact that action in the social and political arena is shaped by the need for recognition among the different social players, recognition that has to do directly, on the one hand, with the manifestation of the ethical and cultural identity that forms them as such, and, on the other hand, with the possibility of inclusive treatment in the space of the multicultural diversification that constitutes contemporary societies. I wish to maintain that the insistence on not only ensuring free choice in the way of life of individuals in a community (from a liberal point of view), but also protecting and guaranteeing already existing cultural ways of life, passed down from generation to generation within a specific cultural framework (from a communitarian point of view), is only possible if a series of ethical-hermeneutic orientations are adopted that impact on the political decisions and legal frameworks that regulate the relationships between groups and individuals. I will argue that the ethical-hermeneutic focus contributes both a self-critical understanding of the strong evaluations that we cannot avoid making of cultures that are different from our own in a multicultural space, and also basic orientations regarding ways in which legal and political practices that either fall short of or go beyond violence should be implemented, both for the interpretation of ways of life that are foreign to our own, and for implementations or decisions related to these, in public life. It also offers us the assessments we need for guiding our political action with at least a minimum of tolerance and respect, the effectiveness of this action depending on a change in attitude that involves consistent ethical and interpretive virtues with each historical situation.
18. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Sergei Yu Lepekhov The Problem of Text and “Personality Context”: Intercultural Approach
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One of the central problems of society and a civilization has always been the ratio of personality and common culture. One of these aspects is a hermeneutic problem of understanding and interpretation of the text or, as one of options, – a ratio of the text and a personal context. There are both generality and distinctions in approaches of various cultures to this problem. There are many parallels that can be drawn between the directions and results of the investigation of the European and Buddhist hermeneutic traditions. The European hermeneutics on the whole is known to be based on the presumption of the unique personal authorship of a text, a multitude of historical viewpoints and meanings. Thus the problem of understanding and interpretation acts as a problem of combining differences. The mechanism of conveying the cultural traditions under such conditions inevitably turns into a mechanism of interpreting the message conveying a definite cultural meaning. Modifying the meaning of any message is supposed to be dictated by the very fact of the temporal distance between the moments of creating and reading the text. In a number of oriental cultures we face a somewhat different understanding of the problems of authorship, communication, ontology and existence and on the whole with a different understanding of the very problem of understanding. Just like we admit that it is necessary to preserve all existing natural landscapes, in the cultural life we must consider every existing culture and their bearers – ethnic groups self-valuable and necessary.
19. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Olga Louchakova-Schwartz Phenomenological Approach to Comparison: Suhrawardī’s nūr mujarrad and Husserl’s Reduction
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In this paper, a comparison is made between the rationalistic and phenomenological approaches to understanding the Islamic philosophy of illumination. The analysis shows that the rationalistic bias in translations of the relevant texts causes a misunderstanding of Suhrawardī’s argument and a subsequent misinterpretation of his key terms. The Islamic philosophy of illumination is especially vulnerable to rationalistic mis-translations due to the intuitional-eidetic character of its epistemology. In contrast to rationalism, the new phenomenological ontologies provide an adequate framework for reading Suhrawardī. A parallel is made between Suhrawardī’s treatment of the central principle, nūr mujarrad, and Husserl’s epoché and phenomenological reduction. Without this comparison, nūr mujarrad is translated as a symbolic, metaphoric term referring to an ideal entity. However, the closeness of Husserl’s and Suhrawardiīs views on consciousness, and the phenomenological nature of evidence in Part 2 of Hikmat-al Ishrāq, prove that nūr mujarrad refers to the pure subjectivity of consciousness, which is lived reality available in presentive intuition. Consequently, the term nūr mujarrad is not metaphorical, but descriptive, i.e. direct signification referring to pure awareness as the self-effulgence of consciousness-being, an ontological principle by which all selves and things in existence are present for us.
20. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 8
Margaret McLaren, D. Hoyt Edge Intersectionality and Moral Responsibility: Gender and Cultural Differences in Moral Reasoning
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Our paper examines the impact of the intersection of cultural and gender identity on moral reasoning. Much research has been done on gender differences in moral thinking/reasoning, and increasingly research has also examined cultural differences in moral thinking. In agreement with a number of scholars we support the following claims about culture, moral reasoning, and concepts of self: concepts of self and approaches to moral reasoning are connected, concepts of self are differing by gender and culture, moral reasoning differs by gender and culture. We propose that philosophy, particularly moral philosophy, follow the lead of psychology and strive to be as inclusive as possible by including the full range of human diversity and experience. For philosophers, this would mean embracing – indeed, starting from – a multicultural, feminist approach to moral theories and questions; this approach would not only be sensitive to gender and cultural bias, but also offer an alternative model to the paradigmatic rational, autonomous, independent agent of traditional moral theory. The implications of this go far beyond moral reasoning, but also have implications for other areas of philosophy as well, such as recent work in philosophy of mind on the idea of extended cognition.