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101. 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.
102. 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.
103. 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.
104. 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“
105. 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.
106. 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.
107. 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.
108. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 15 > Issue: 3
Franz Brentano, Hynek Janoušek Ontologický důkaz Boží existence: překlad a úvodní studie
109. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 15 > Issue: 2
Lidia Lanza, Marco Toste Sixteenth-Century Sentences Commentaries from Coimbra: The Structure and Content of Some Manuscripts
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In the second half of the sixteenth century, many universities influenced by Salamanca adopted the Summa theologiae as the textbook for teaching scholastic theology. At the same time, the universities decided that some minor chairs should teach one of the Sentences commentaries written by one of the following authors: Duns Scotus, Durand of Saint-Pourçain, or Gabriel Biel. As a result, some commentaries on these commentaries (so-called supercommentaries) started to appear. This is most notably the case when it comes to the University of Coimbra, where Aquinas’s Summa became the textbook only very late and where the chairs of Scotus, Durand and Biel were instituted in the second half of the century. This article provides a list of questions making up thirteen commentaries produced in Coimbra, where, unlike what happened in Salamanca, the professors belonged to different religious orders (the commentaries presented here were written by one Cistercian, one Carmelite, two Augustinians, one Franciscan and one secular). It also presents the list of questions of one commentary connected with a Franciscan convent. Some reflections on the need to study late-scholastic manuscripts as well as on the structure of these commentaries are also offered.
110. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 15 > Issue: 2
Tero Tulenheimo Johannes Rudbeckius’s View on the Nature of Logic
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Johannes Rudbeckius (1581–1646), one of Sweden’s most influential figures in theology, pedagogy, and church-state relations in the 17th century, published two books on logic: Logica ex optimis et præstantissimis autoribus collecta & conscripta (1625) and Controversiæ logices vel potius earum epitome (1629). In this paper, I present and critically discuss Rudbeckius’s view on the nature of logic as it can be reconstructed from these two works. This requires, in particular, identifying the larger intellectual framework within which Rudbeckius operated. The single most important philosopher having affected Rudbeckius’s ideas on logic is Jacopo Zabarella (1533–1589), which leads me to consider at some length the views on logic that Zabarella puts forward in his De Natura Logicæ (1578).
111. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 15 > Issue: 4
Lukáš Lička Intencionalita a pojem poznání ve středověké Filosofii
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The paper investigates relations between the notions of intentionality and cognition in medieval philosophy. (The investigation is restricted to Latin works written between ca. 1240–1320, mainly those by Albert the Great, Thomas Aquinas, Giles of Rome, John Duns Scotus, and Peter Auriol.) It is argued that two different conceptions of intentionality (or esse intentionale) were endorsed by medieval philosophers. In the first conception (called “Aristotelian” here) “to be intentional” is a physical property of the form insofar as abstracted from the matter. On the contrary, the proponents of the second conception (called “Scotistic”) ascribe the property of being intentional to the objects insofar as they are grasped by a cognitive act. Further, it is argued and documented (against some Thomistic commentators) that only the second notion of intentionality relates to the notion of cognition. Esse intentionale in the first meaning, as demonstrated here, is neither sufficient nor even necessary condition of being cognitive.
112. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 15 > Issue: 7
Jan Čížek Encyklopedismus J. H. Alsteda jako jedna z inspirací Komenského pansofismu?
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The paper aims to introduce the encyclopaedic project presented by the reformed philosopher and theologian Johann Heinrich Alsted (1588–1638) and study it as one of the possible sources of the pansophism of the Czech philosopher, theologian and educational reformer Jan Amos Comenius (1592–1670). For this reason, the author first briefly describes the genesis, development and structure of Alsted’s encyclopaedic work with a special focus on his mature and monumental Encyclopaedia septem tomis distincta (1630). The crucial part of the paper is devoted to comparing Alsted’s and Comenius’s conceptions of metaphysics, physics (or philosophy of nature) and other important fields of their shared interest. The author concludes that Comenius was undoubtedly influenced by Alsted in structural and terminological matters; furthermore, that both Alsted and Comenius inclined to base their philosophy of nature on so-called Mosaic physics and tended to understand metaphysics as a primary science not only in view of its dignity, but also with regard to its place in the system of sciences and in the curriculum.
113. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 16 > Issue: 1
Vlastimil Vohánka Love or Contemplation?: Hildebrandian and Aristotelian Ways to High Happiness
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This is an article in the philosophy of happiness — but one with an untypical focus. It clarifies the claim of the phenomenologist Dietrich von Hildebrand that (H) high happiness comes especially from loving others, and compares it with the apparently rival Aristotelian claim that (A) high happiness comes especially from contemplating God. The former claim is understood to be about felt love (love defined as an emotional rather than volitional state). Both claims are understood to be about felt happiness (happiness defined as an emotional state rather than a state of objective flourishing). The article argues that, in fact, the two claims are not rival but mutually consistent, since the beloved person can be God, and the contemplation can be a loving one. Both claims are also consistent with scientific evidence, although it is tangential and tentative. Moreover, both claims are plausible, since both are backed up by intuitive explanations of why they should be regarded as true. However, both are in need of a further philosophical or scientific research that could confirm them even more.
114. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 16 > Issue: 1
Michele Paolini Paoletti Respects of Dependence
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In this paper I consider respects of dependence, namely, the fact that some entities depend on other entities in some respect or another. In the first section, I provide a characterization of contemporary debates on dependence based on respects of dependence. I also single out seven desiderata a good theory of dependence should satisfy and three ways of interpreting respects of dependence. In the second section, I criticize two such ways and, in the third section, I defend the remaining option, namely, that respects of dependence correspond to different dependence-relations between entities (e.g., existence-dependence, identity-dependence, and so on). In the fourth section, I develop my theory of Respect-of-Dependence (RD ) Relations in order to distinguish between partial and full dependence and between specific and generic dependence, and to qualify RD -relations in temporal and modal terms. Finally, in the last section, I anticipate and reply to three objections against dependence pluralism.
115. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 16 > Issue: 1
David S. Oderberg On a So-called Demonstration of the Causal Power of Absences
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Tyron Goldschmidt has recently published a non-paper in which he claims to demonstrate the causal power of absences. His non-paper is, precisely, an empty page. The non-paper is ingenious and at first “glance” the “reader” might think that the absence of words on the page does prove that negative beings can literally cause states such as surprise or disappointment. Closer analysis, however, shows that Goldschmidt’s clever non-paper not only lacks words but also lacks causal power. Serious metaphysical problems pile up if we suppose otherwise.
116. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 16 > Issue: 1
Louis Groarke A Response to “How (Not) to Be an Aristotelian with Regard to Contemporary Physics”
117. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Petr Dvořák Neurčitá Identita v Kvantové Oblasti a Strukturní Realismus
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The paper deals with the problem whether there can exist indeterminate identity. If one accepts Evans’s argument, then statements about indeterminate identity can be true, but only those, in which at least one of the singular terms does not refer determinately. One does not have to explain all vagueness as semantic, i.e. as indeterminacy of meaning, because some such statements can be true on account of indeterminacy of reality. This can be shown in the particular quantum case introduced by Lowe concerning the identity of an absorbed and emitted electron. The singular terms within the identity statements in this example are to be understood in the way pointed out by Abasnezhad and in the manner Barnes and Williams take names in statements of identity between Kilimanjaro and one of the precise aggregates of particles of which the mountain consists: One of the names refers indeterminately. This indeterminacy is of the kind belonging to indefinite descriptions. The issue of individuality on quantum level can be understood using resources of structural realism of James Ladyman.
118. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 16 > Issue: 4
Petr Pavlas Komeniáni v Karteziánském Zrcadle: Boj o definice některých metafyzických pojmů v polovině 17. století
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The article picks up the threads of especially Martin Muslow’s 1990s research and describes the distinctiveness of the “relational metaphysics of resemblance” in the middle of the seventeenth century. The late Renaissance metaphysical outlines, carried out in the Comenius circle, are characteristic for their relationality, accent on universal resemblance, providentialism, pansensism, sensualism, triadism – and also for their effort to define metaphysical terms properly. While Comenians share the last – and only the last – feature with Cartesians, they differ in the other features. Therefore, Cartesians and Comenians cannot come to terms in the issue of the proper definitions either. Quite on the contrary, they oppose each other on this issue. By means of Johann Clauberg’s criticism of Georg Ritschel and René Descartes’s only supposedly “mysterious” and “solipsist” second meditation, the article turns a Cartesian mirror to the Comenian metaphysical project. In its light, the definitions of Georg Ritschel, Johann Heinrich Bisterfeld and Jan Amos Comenius turn out to be unacceptable for Cartesians (and also for Thomists and, in part, for Baconians). Despite their superficially Aristotelian-scholastic appearance, their content is notably Paracelsian-Campanellian (with a Timplerian foundation). Even though Comenian definitions of metaphysical terms had been refused and refuted by Cartesians, they experienced a second lifespan in their robust influence on Leibniz and Newton.
119. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 10 > Issue: 1
Theodore Scaltsas Relations as Plural-Predications in Plato
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Plato was the first philosopher to discover the metaphysical phenomenon of plural-subjects and plural-predication; e.g. you and I are two, but neither you, nor I are two. I argue that Plato devised an ontology for plural-predication through his Theory of Forms, namely, plural-partaking in a Form. Furthermore, I argue that Plato used plural-partaking to offer an ontology of related individuals without reifying relations. My contention is that Plato’s theory of plural-relatives has evaded detection in the exegetical literature because his account of plural-subjects through the Theory of Forms had not been recognised for what it is. I further submit that Plato’s handling of related individuals through plural-predication is not only a “first” in philosophy, but also an “only”, having remained a unique account in the metaphysics of relations. I hope that Plato’s account will introduce a fresh approach to contemporary debates on the subject.
120. Studia Neoaristotelica: Volume > 10 > Issue: 1
Derek von Barandy How to Save Aristotle from Modal Collapse
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On Jaakko Hintikka’s understanding of Aristotle’s modal thought, Aristotle is committed to a version of the Principle of Plenitude, which is the thesis that no genuine possibility will go unactualized in an infinity of time. If in fact Aristotle endorses the Principle of Plenitude, everything becomes necessary. Despite the strong evidence that Aristotle indeed accepts that Principle of Plenitude, there are key texts in which Aristotle seems to contradict it. On Hintikka’s final word on the matter, Aristotle either endorses the Principle of Plentitude or Aristotle is simply inconsistent. Without challenging Hintikka’s interpretation of the relevant texts, I show how Aristotle may accept a form of the Principle of Plenitude that allows for genuine unactualized possibilities in the world. What allows me to reconcile theseemingly inconsistent data is to show how Aristotle is only committed to a de re version of the Principle of Plenitude. After I lay out my proposal, I show how it opens up new ways in which we might understand Aristotle’s attempt to reject fatalism in his De interpretatione 9.