• Kant and Hegel's Responses to Hume's Skepticism Concerning Causality: An Evolutionary Epistemological Perspective

      Adam Christian Scarfe; University of Winnipeg (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2012-05-03)
      According to Hume, determinations of necessary causal connection are without empirical warrant, but, as he maintains, the concept of causality qua necessary connection is indispensable to human beings, having survival value for them, a claim which points to the biological significance of this concept. In contrast to Hume, Kant argues that the causal principle qua necessary connection belongs to the a priori conceptual framework by which rational beings constitute their experience and render the world intelligible. In “Kant’s Doctrine of the A Priori in Light of Contemporary Biology” (1941 / 1962) evolutionary epistemologist Konrad Lorenz sought to adapt Kant’s philosophy to contemporary biology by arguing that the a priori concepts of the understanding can be interpreted as comprising a biologically inherited framework, yet one that is provisional and in flux. Such an evolutionary interpretation of both Hume and Kant’s perspectives of the lacuna concerning causality brings the ideas of these thinkers closer together. Kant himself used suggestive analogies between the major epistemological positions concerning the origin of the a priori concepts of the understanding and the major biological theories of his time concerning the generation and development of organisms. Nevertheless, Kant would probably be reluctant to embrace such an evolutionarily-oriented conception of the categories, given his descriptions of them as self-thought, a priori first principles having a purely intellectual origin, belonging as a very condition for the possibility of the experience of rational beings in general, and as neither the product of a process of development, nor subject to one. This paper shows how Hegel’s emphasis on the dialectical progression of the logical Concept (Begriff) can help to ground Lorenz’s evolutionary neo-Kantianism. Toward the end of the paper, I discuss the evolutionary relevance of skepticism and critical thinking in this process via the notion of “Intellectual Selection.”
    • Kantian and Nietzschean Aesthetics of Human Nature: A Comparison between the Beautiful/Sublime and Apollonian/Dionysian Dualities

      Erman Kaplama; University of the South Pacific (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2016-05-23)
      Both for Kant and for Nietzsche, aesthetics must not be considered as a systematic science based merely on logical premises but rather as a set of intuitively attained artistic ideas that constitute or reconstitute the sensible perceptions and supersensible representations into a new whole. Kantian and Nietzschean aesthetics are both aiming to see beyond the forms of objects to provide explanations for the nobility and sublimity of human art and life. We can safely say that Kant and Nietzsche used the dualities of the beautiful/sublime and Apollonian/Dionysian to advocate their general philosophical worldview, and that the initial formation (in Observations and The Birth of Tragedy) and final dissolution (in the Critique of Judgment and Zarathustra and other later works) of these dualities are determined by the gradually established telos of their philosophical endeavor. Therefore, by observing the evolution of these so-called dualities, Kaplama gathers important clues as to how Kant’s and Nietzsche’s aesthetics transformed into different ways to affirm human art and life. On the one hand, Kaplama argues, the Dionysian came to be the heart and soul of Nietzschean aesthetics and ethics, and the Apollonian (or the formal drive of individuation) was reduced into a mere aesthetic criterion. On the other, Kant treats the sublime (which is originally an idea-producing feeling and/or judgment) as a mere appendix to his Critique of Judgment and aesthetic theory teleologically reducing it into its possible moral consequences. This is why Schopenhauer calls the sublime “by far the most excellent thing in the Critique of Judgment” which touches on the real problem of aesthetics very closely but does not provide a real solution for it. Kant’s forced teleological move is to make his theory of aesthetic judgment stand as a ‘reaffirmation’ of the earlier ethical justification he believed to have accomplished in the first two Critiques and the Groundwork where he defends an affirmation of human life through a teleological morality centered on the principle of free-will. In contrast, Nietzsche’s aesthetics (particularly the Dionysian) guides his ethics and metaphysics again through defining an ideal human nature without which ethos would be static and meaningless, lacking the ability to move and change and represent the tragic pathos of human life. 
    • Karin de Boer. On Hegel: The Sway of the Negative

      Katrin Pahl; Johns Hopkins University (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2011-12-30)
      book review
    • Keeping the Faith: On Being Good and How Not to be Evil

      Alex Ling; University of Melbourne (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2006-10-27)
      Review of Alain Badiou, emEthics: An Essay on the Understanding of Evil/em, trans. Peter Hallward, New York, Verso, 2001. ISBN: 1-85984-435-9br /
    • Keeping the Faith: On Being Good and How Not to be Evil

      Alex Ling; University of Melbourne (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2006-10-27)
      Review of Alain Badiou, emEthics: An Essay on the Understanding of Evil/em, trans. Peter Hallward, New York, Verso, 2001. ISBN: 1-85984-435-9br /
    • Kierkegaard’s Ethical Stage In Hegel’s Logical Categories: Actual Possibility, Reality And Necessity

      María J. Binetti; Conicet (Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas), Argentina; Hong Kier (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2007-12-28)
      During decades, the history of philosophy has kept Kierkegaardrsquo;s and Hegelrsquo;s thought apart, and their long-standing opposition has swept through the speculative greatness of Kierkegaardian existentialism and the existential power of Hegelian philosophy. In contrast to such unfortunate misinterpretation, this article aims at showing the deep convergence that relates interiorly the Kierkegaardian ethical stage with the most important Hegelian logic categories. Kierkegaard and Hegel conceive of the idea as the real power of subjective becoming, and the existence as the actual concretion of the ideal. To both of them, the pure emeneacute;rgeia/em of freedom, which starts in the abstract and aesthetical possibility of the subjective immediacy, realizes itself as the actual concretion of finitude, assuming time and contingency by the eternal and necessary force of duty. The Kierkegaardian repetition is nothing but this powerful idea, mediating the flux of finite differences in the eternal identity of subject. However, for Kierkegaard as well as for Hegel there is an absolute contradiction, which promotes the overcoming of ethics.
    • Kierkegaard’s Ethical Stage In Hegel’s Logical Categories: Actual Possibility, Reality And Necessity

      María J. Binetti; Conicet (Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas), Argentina; Hong Kier (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2007-12-28)
      During decades, the history of philosophy has kept Kierkegaardrsquo;s and Hegelrsquo;s thought apart, and their long-standing opposition has swept through the speculative greatness of Kierkegaardian existentialism and the existential power of Hegelian philosophy. In contrast to such unfortunate misinterpretation, this article aims at showing the deep convergence that relates interiorly the Kierkegaardian ethical stage with the most important Hegelian logic categories. Kierkegaard and Hegel conceive of the idea as the real power of subjective becoming, and the existence as the actual concretion of the ideal. To both of them, the pure emeneacute;rgeia/em of freedom, which starts in the abstract and aesthetical possibility of the subjective immediacy, realizes itself as the actual concretion of finitude, assuming time and contingency by the eternal and necessary force of duty. The Kierkegaardian repetition is nothing but this powerful idea, mediating the flux of finite differences in the eternal identity of subject. However, for Kierkegaard as well as for Hegel there is an absolute contradiction, which promotes the overcoming of ethics.
    • L. E. J. Brouwer and Karl Popper: Two Perspectives on Mathematics

      Alexander John Naraniecki; School of Humanities, Griffith University (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2015-08-23)
      This article provides an appraisal of Karl Popper’s criticism of L. E. J. Brouwer’s intuitionist mathematics. Although the discussion presented below concerns primarily the problem of intuition (or rather immediate perception) in relation to mathematics, the problem of such pre-linguistic perceptions discussed here is not limited to this. Both Popper and Brouwer agreed that difficulty of sequential or rational reasoning concerning immediate perceptions is a crucial problem for human knowledge. For Popper, language or sequential rationality distorts our very immediate perceptions. Brouwer on the other hand, viewed a greater private accessibility of such intuitions or immediate perceptions, however language, including mathematical language is incapable of providing the means of communicating them to others. Where Brouwer had the objects of mathematical thought in mind, Popper had in mind the theories of scientists as seen from an evolutionary psycho-linguistic perspective. For Popper, such theories are organically related to all acts of rational problem-solving, and indeed, “in-born” or dispositional pre-cognitive problem solving behaviour. As such the problem of intuition or as Popper preferred “unconscious expectations” and its relationship to knowledge is not restricted to mathematics nor the hard sciences as its implications have reverberations in other fields such as aesthetics and morality.
    • Lacanian Materialism and the Question of the Real

      Tom Eyers; Centre for Research in Modern European Philosophy, Kingston University (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2011-10-13)
      This article attempts to explain the ambiguous association of Lacanian psychoanalysis with materialism. Resisting attempts to divide Lacan's work into discrete periods, I argue that, throughout his work, Lacan was concerned with articulating aspects of language and subjectivity that resist incorporation into networks of idealised meaning or sense, and that it is this emphasis on the materiality of language, routed through the concept of the Real, that makes up the particular 'materialism' of Lacanian theory. The emergence of this strain of thinking is located in Lacan's radical reworking of Freud's theses on primary narcissism.
    • Language, the Parent of Thought: Speculating with Hegel

      Lewis & Clark College; Samantha Park Alibrando; Independent Scholar; J. M. Fritzman; Lewis & Clark College; Sarah Marchand Lomas; Independent Scholar; McKenzie Judith Southworth; Independent Scholar (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2017-01-27)
      We speculate with Hegel about language, critiquing interpretations of Hegel’s views on language given by Jim Vernon, John McCumber, Stephen Houlgate, and Michael N. Forster, as well as defending Sophisticated Radical Whorfianism from the objections of Maria Francisca Reines and Jesse Prinz.  Prior to discussing Forster, we explicate Hegel’s views on mechanical memory.  We conclude by discussing why, although thought grows up, it does not move out.
    • Leonardo da Vinci's World Map

      Christopher Tyler (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2017-03-26)
      In addition to his better known artistic, scientific and engineering talents, Leonardo da Vinci has an extensive reputation as a cartographer, drawing maps for a wide range of hydro-engineering projects for the rulers of Florence, Milan, Arezzo and the Vatican, amongst others.  However, he is not generally acknowledged as authoring a world map (or mappamundi) spanning the globe, which was the domain of a few specialized cartographers of the era. Nevertheless, there is a world map among his papers in the Royal Library, Windsor, which is one of the very first to name the Americas, and has the correct overall configuration of the continents, including an ocean at the north pole and a continent at the south pole. Moreover, it has a unique cartographic projection onto eight spherical-geometry triangles that provide close to isometric projection throughout the globe. Although the authenticity of this world map has been questioned, there is an obscure page of his notebooks in the Codex Atlanticus containing a sketch of this precise form of global projection, tying him securely to its genesis. Moreover, the same notebook page contains sketches of eight other global projections known at that time (early C16th), from the Roman Ptolomaic conic section projection to Rossellli's [[i]] oval planispheric projection. This paper explores further remarkable aspects of the geometry and history of Da Vinci's unique mappamundi.   References [i] Rosselli F (1508) In: Almagià  R. (1951) On the cartographic work of Francesco Rosselli. Imago Mvndi. International Society for the History of Cartography 8:  27-34.
    • Levinas separates the (hu)man from the non(hu)man, using hunger, enjoyment and anxiety to illuminate their relationship

      Angela Hirst; University of Queensland (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2007-08-17)
      This paper is part of my journey with Emmanuel Levinas on a dystopic path to the ethical encounter. For the journey, I agree to be Levinas#39;s human subject, to encounter his quot;otherquot;. And he agrees to traverse a path through my world, a world of food and eating. To ready me for the encounter, Levinas tells me the story of his ethics, narratively (we #39;journey#39; through it), and so this paper is unavoidably #39;story#39; too. To preface, then: The ethical encounter is a quot;face to facequot; encounter between a quot;humanquot; subject (me) and an quot;otherquot; (Totality and Infinity, 39). In my encountering the other face to face in the world of food, food production and eating, Levinas tells the story of the violences of my existence- of my #39;eating#39; of the world at the expense of the other. Face to face with the other, I cannot avoid my responsibility for the needs and suffering of the other. In quot;proximityquot; with the other, I am guilty for eating; in proximity, I respond by giving the other quot;bread from [my] mouthquot; (Otherwise than Being, 100). In this first part of the journey, I am hungry, and Levinas leads me through scenes replete with food and eating. He shows me how this world can satiate my needs, but how it will, inevitably and inextricably, leave me, a not-yet ethical human subject, vulnerable and exposed.
    • Levinas separates the (hu)man from the non(hu)man, using hunger, enjoyment and anxiety to illuminate their relationship

      Angela Hirst; University of Queensland (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2007-08-17)
      This paper is part of my journey with Emmanuel Levinas on a dystopic path to the ethical encounter. For the journey, I agree to be Levinas#39;s human subject, to encounter his quot;otherquot;. And he agrees to traverse a path through my world, a world of food and eating. To ready me for the encounter, Levinas tells me the story of his ethics, narratively (we #39;journey#39; through it), and so this paper is unavoidably #39;story#39; too. To preface, then: The ethical encounter is a quot;face to facequot; encounter between a quot;humanquot; subject (me) and an quot;otherquot; (Totality and Infinity, 39). In my encountering the other face to face in the world of food, food production and eating, Levinas tells the story of the violences of my existence- of my #39;eating#39; of the world at the expense of the other. Face to face with the other, I cannot avoid my responsibility for the needs and suffering of the other. In quot;proximityquot; with the other, I am guilty for eating; in proximity, I respond by giving the other quot;bread from [my] mouthquot; (Otherwise than Being, 100). In this first part of the journey, I am hungry, and Levinas leads me through scenes replete with food and eating. He shows me how this world can satiate my needs, but how it will, inevitably and inextricably, leave me, a not-yet ethical human subject, vulnerable and exposed.
    • Life and the Homeostatic Organization View of Biological Phenomena

      Robert Arp; Buffalo Univeristy (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2009-03-14)
      In this paper, I argue that starting with the organelles that constitute a cell – and continuing up the hierarchy of components in processes and subsystems of an organism – there are clear instances of emergent biological phenomena that can be considered “living” entities. These components and their attending processes are living emergent phenomena because of the way in which the components are organized to maintain homeostasis of the organism at the various levels in the hierarchy. I call this view the homeostatic organization view (HOV) of biological phenomena and, as is shown, it comports well with the standard philosophical accounts of nomological (metaphysical) emergence and representational (epistemological) emergence. To proffer HOV, I describe properties of biological entities that include internal-hierarchical data exchange, data selectivity, informational integration, and environmental-organismic information exchange. Further, a distinction is drawn between particularized homeostasis and generalized homeostasis, and I argue that because the various processes and subsystems of an organism are functioning properly in their internal environments (particularized homeostasis), the organism is able to exist as a hierarchically-organized entity in some environment external to it (generalized homeostasis). Stated simply: that components of biological phenomena are organized to perform some function resulting in homeostasis marks them out to be living emergent entities distinguishable, in description and in reality, from the very physico-chemical processes of which they are composed.
    • Life Before Matter, Possible Signification Before Tangible Signs: Towards a Mediating View

      Floyd Merrell; Purdue University (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2009-03-14)
      Life is a creative response to creative nature. This notion heeds Norm Hirstrsquo;s call, by way of Robert Rosen, that life as creativity follows a lsquo;logicrsquo; that is radically distinct from classical logical principles. This alternate lsquo;logicrsquo; of creative life follows differentiating Identity and Included-Middle Principles. Charles S. Peircersquo;s process philosophy and his concept of the sign, offer a sense of the nonlinear, nonmechanistic, creative emergence of signs and life through possibly possible signification and living forms as illustrated by means of amorphous topological variability.
    • Life Is Semiosis

      Marcello Barbieri (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2009-03-14)
      The idea that life is based on signs and codes, i.e., that “Life is semiosis”, has been strongly suggested by the discovery of the genetic code, but so far it has made little impact, and is largely regarded as philosophy rather than science. The main reason for this is that there are at least three basic concepts in modern biology that keep semiosis squarely out of organic life. (1) The first is the classical model that describes the cell as a biological computer made of genotype and phenotype. A computer contains codes but is not a semiotic system, and this makes it possible to say that the cell too can have a genetic code without being a semiotic system. (2) The second idea is physicalism, the doctrine that everything in life must ultimately be accounted for by physical quantities. This amounts to saying that signs and codes do not exist at the molecular level and are but linguistic metaphors that biologists use simply because they are convenient. (3) The third concept is the idea that all biological novelties have been brought into existence by natural selection, an idea which implies that semiotic processes did not have any creative role in evolution. These arguments have effectively ruled out the existence of semiosis in the organic world, thus depriving the discovery of the genetic code of all its revolutionary potential, but here it will be shown that there are experimental facts against all of them. More precisely, it will be shown that the cell is a true semiotic system, and that the genetic code has been the first of a long series of organic codes that have shaped the whole history of life on our planet. Biological semiosis, in other words, is a scientific reality because the organic codes are experimental realities. This paper intends to underline precisely the scientific nature of biosemiotics and argues that the time has come to acknowledge that semiosis not only is a fact of life but is ‘the’ fact that allowed life to emerge from inanimate matter.
    • Life Questioning Itself: By Way of an Introduction

      Arran Gare; Swinburne University (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2009-03-14)
      This is the general introduction to the special edition of Cosmos & History devoted to the question What is Life?
    • Life, Thought, and Morality: Or, Does Matter Really Matter?

      Murray Code; University of Guelph (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2009-03-14)
      Modern, science-centered naturalisms can be charged with a certain moral laxity, according to S. T. Coleridge. This fault reflectsnbsp; a devitalizing, materialistic metaphysics informed by a narrow and self-serving conception of reason. Thus seeking a remedy that can bring justice to the spiritual as well as the physical aspects of experience, Coleridge envisages a lsquo;true naturalismrsquo; that will not only address the question lsquo;What is Life?rsquo; but also frame a lsquo;true realismrsquo; that includes what might be called a lsquo;true moralismrsquo;. This calls, however, for a Heraclitean metaphysics capable of linking lsquo;goodnessrsquo; in both thinking and acting to a *Logos*mdash;that is, an essentially nonmodern theory of actuality that can do justice at once to the quicknesses and the uniformities of both Life and Thought. Coleridgersquo;s thus presents an outline of how one might respond to a challenge that can be best met, I argue, with the help of certain insights of Maurice Merleau-Ponty, A. N. Whitehead, Gilles Deleuze, and C. S. Peirce. By enlisting Hannah Arendtrsquo;s individual-centered conception of morality, which ties ethics to public concerns, it is also possible to sketch a metaphysically grounded response to Friedrich Nietzschersquo;s call for a lsquo;healthy moralityrsquo; capable of overturning the nihilistic values entrenched in modern thought. br /
    • Life, Thought, and Morality: Or, Does Matter Really Matter?

      Murray Code; University of Guelph (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2009-03-14)
      Modern, science-centered naturalisms can be charged with a certain moral laxity, according to S. T. Coleridge. This fault reflects a devitalizing, materialistic metaphysics informed by a narrow and self-serving conception of reason. Thus seeking a remedy that can bring justice to the spiritual as well as the physical aspects of experience, Coleridge envisages a 'true naturalism' that will not only address the question 'What is Life?' but also frame a 'true realism' that includes what might be called a 'true moralism'. This calls, however, for a Heraclitean metaphysics capable of linking 'goodness' in both thinking and acting to a *Logos* - that is, an essentially nonmodern theory of actuality that can do justice at once to the quicknesses and the uniformities of both Life and Thought. Coleridge thus presents an outline of how one might respond to a challenge that can be best met, I argue, with the help of certain insights of Maurice Merleau-Ponty, A. N. Whitehead, Gilles Deleuze, and C. S. Peirce. By enlisting Hannah Arendt's  individual-centered conception of morality, which ties ethics to public concerns, it is also possible to sketch a metaphysically grounded response to Friedrich Nietzsche's call for a healthy morality capable of overturning the nihilistic values entrenched in modern thought.
    • Life’s Hidden Resources for Learning: Conversations with a Radical Idea

      Phil Henshaw; HDS (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2009-03-14)
      One of the great mysteries of life is that science canrsquo;t find anything mysterious about it. This exploration approaches the question of lsquo;what is lifersquo; from looking at the blinders that science and other kinds of formal representational thinking have built into them which serve to hide the life.nbsp; Science teaches us to lsquo;make sensersquo; of things, using self-consistent models with no independent parts. We could use the same models to see the life in what departs from the models, pointing directly to the life of independent whole communities and organisms from which the emergent eventfulness of life seems to come. We donrsquo;t though. Not seeing the independent parts except as definitions gives us confusing lsquo;functional fixationsrsquo; and large mistakes. Any exploration begins with some accumulation of small steps, after stumbling around a bit to find a productive direction. Hopefully this will offer some productive stumbling around, and some places from which to begin an accumulation of small steps toward a whole new way of thinking about life. Scientific methods for exploring a living world are mentioned.