The Liturgical and the Ethical in Lacoste and Kierkegaard

By: ALEXANDER GILMAN The relationship between the liturgical, defined by Jean-Yves Lacoste as “the logic that presides over the encounter between man and God writ large,” and the ethical is deeply ambiguous. Throughout Lacoste’s phenomenological work, Experience and the Absolute, the call of man and the world is set in contrast with the call of the Absolute. In this text Lacoste begins with the Heideggerian notion of our being as being-in-the world-toward-death and explores how a liturgical relationship with the absolute subverts, but also sublates, our being-in-the-world in favor of a being-toward-God. Without rejecting Heidegger’s fundamental ontology, Lacoste aims to … Continue reading The Liturgical and the Ethical in Lacoste and Kierkegaard

Justified False Beliefs and Truth as a Redundant Condition

By: STEVE TENSMEYER Despite the common intuition that something is very wrong with the Gettier problems, after forty years they still seem to be intractable. The responses to these paradoxes of knowledge range from complaints against their logical structure to conclusions that knowledge simply cannot be analyzed. Most philosophers, however, take a position somewhere in between these two extremes; their responses advocate changing the traditional Justified True Belief model of knowledge to something that “de-Gettierizes” knowledge. This almost always means either adding some fourth condition or clarifying or changing the definition of justification. In this essay I will consider different … Continue reading Justified False Beliefs and Truth as a Redundant Condition

Reason and Self-Interest in Hobbes’ Reply to the Fool

By JOSEPH CARLSMITH ABSTRACT: The Fool offers a famous objection to Hobbesian ethics: if practical rationality is rooted in self-interest, then isn’t it rational to abandon ethical reasoning when doing so “conduces to one’s benefit”? In this paper, I examine Hobbes’ reply to the Fool as it reveals the limitations of the moral theory presented in Leviathan. I begin by sketching out the reply and two traditional ways of interpreting it – the “case-by-case” interpretation and the “rule-commitment” interpretation. I argue that for empirical reasons both these interpretations fail to answer the Fool’s challenge. I then turn to an interpretation … Continue reading Reason and Self-Interest in Hobbes’ Reply to the Fool

Therapy, Ethics, and Religiosity: The Necessity of Conversion Included in Wittgenstein’s Philosophical Therapy

By MICHAEL PUTNAM In Ludwig Wittgenstein’s Philosophical Investigations, he writes that the ideal philosopher “treats a question; like an illness” (PI 255). This move from treating a question as something to be answered to treating it as something to be cured might encapsulate the focus of the Investigations; it certainly sums up Wittgenstein’s approach to various problems relating to the philosophy of language, the philosophy of logic, and the philosophy of mind. In this sense, Wittgenstein considers his method therapeutic and concludes that philosophy should do nothing more than demonstrate how its own questions are rooted in mistake. But Wittgenstein … Continue reading Therapy, Ethics, and Religiosity: The Necessity of Conversion Included in Wittgenstein’s Philosophical Therapy

Hellfire: A Loving God, Infinite Suffering, and the Reliability of the Bible

By ERIN McDONNELL ABSTRACT: One of the most imposing problems facing the modern theist philosopher is the ‘problem of Hell,’ or the problem of how to make the Bible’s depiction of Hell as a place of eternal punishment logically consistent with the generally held theist idea that God is perfectly loving. This issue has been dealt with by a number of philosophers; some have attempted to re-imagine Hell into something less severe than eternal punishment, and some have attempted to give justifications for the traditional version of Hell. An overview of these various views and attempts will conclude that universalism—the … Continue reading Hellfire: A Loving God, Infinite Suffering, and the Reliability of the Bible

The Will to Act and the Paradigm Shift Away From Aristotle’s Physics

By JUAN M. BOTERO-DUQUE ABSTRACT: The present study seeks to put together a critical assessment of the role that that “Will,” actualized through techné, played in Aristotle’s physics. It will be shown how said concept of Will led to a theoretical fissure of the Aristotelian cosmos between the natural and the artificial, which was finally detrimental to the sustainability of his scientific proposals. Furthermore, light will be shed on the incompatibility between Aristotelian physics and mathematics, an area of knowledge that was to become the primordial tool of modern scientific inquiry. As a manner of conclusion, brief remarks will be … Continue reading The Will to Act and the Paradigm Shift Away From Aristotle’s Physics

A Defense of Divine Command Theory Against Moral Arbitrariness

By GARRETT LASNIER When evaluating the soundness of a philosophical argument, one must test the argument against the most extreme cases to find a possible counterexample. An evaluation of Divine Command Theory (DCT) is no exception to this critical process. One extreme case is where in DCT, under certain circumstances, could it be morally permissible, indeed, even morally required, to torture an innocent three year old via DCT. After a brief exegesis of DCT, the paper will develop a response to this objection that defends the DCT argument. Ultimately, however, after putting forth the response to this counterexample, it will … Continue reading A Defense of Divine Command Theory Against Moral Arbitrariness