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Edited by Bernard Feltz, Marcus Missal and Andrew Cameron Sims

Neuroscientists often consider free will to be an illusion. Contrary to this hypothesis, the contributions to this volume show that recent developments in neuroscience can also support the existence of free will. Firstly, the possibility of intentional consciousness is studied. Secondly, Libet’s experiments are discussed from this new perspective. Thirdly, the relationship between free will, causality and language is analyzed. This approach suggests that language grants the human brain a possibility to articulate a meaningful personal life. Therefore, human beings can escape strict biological determinism.

Karenleigh A. Overmann and Thomas Wynn


Using a model of cognition as extended and enactive, we examine the role of materiality in making minds as exemplified by lithics and writing, forms associated with conceptual thought and meta-awareness of conceptual domains. We address ways in which brain functions may change in response to interactions with material forms, the attributes of material forms that may cause such change, and the spans of time required for neurofunctional reorganization. We also offer three hypotheses for investigating co-influence and change in cognition and material culture.

The Synthetic Cell as a Techno-scientific Mandala

a Jungian Analysis of Synthetic Biology Research

Hub A.E. Zwart

Jason W. Alvis


Although Eugen Fink often reflected upon the role religion, these reflections are yet to be addressed in secondary literature in any substantive sense. For Fink, religion is to be understood in relation to “play,” which is a metaphor for how the world presents itself. Religion is a non-repetitive, and entirely creative endeavor or “symbol” that is not achieved through work and toil, or through evaluation or power, but rather, through his idea of play and “cult” as the imaginative distanciation from a predictable lifeworld. This paper describes Fink’s understanding of religion and its most relevant aspects found in Spiel als Weltsymbol. The paper is organized into five sections—1: An introduction to his phenomenological approach in general, and description of the role of “play”; 2: investigations into the relation between play and world; 3: a description of his phenomenology of religion; 4: engagements in the idea of cult-play and the sacred sphere, and 5: reflection on his idea of the play of God.

Hatice Karaslaan, Annette Hohenberger, Hilmi Demir, Simon Hall and Mike Oaksford


Cross-cultural differences in argumentation may be explained by the use of different norms of reasoning. However, some norms derive from, presumably universal, mathematical laws. This inconsistency can be resolved, by considering that some norms of argumentation, like Bayes theorem, are mathematical functions. Systematic variation in the inputs may produce culture-dependent inductive biases although the function remains invariant. This hypothesis was tested by fitting a Bayesian model to data on informal argumentation from Turkish and English cultures, which linguistically mark evidence quality differently. The experiment varied evidential marking and informant reliability in argumentative dialogues and revealed cross-cultural differences for both independent variables. The Bayesian model fitted the data from both cultures well but there were differences in the parameters consistent with culture-specific inductive biases. These findings are related to current controversies over the universality of the norms of reasoning and the role of normative theories in the psychology of reasoning.

Why Was the Color Violet Rarely Used by Artists before the 1860s?

A Descriptive Summary and Potential Explanation

Allen Tager


Although the color violet is now used in a wide variety of everyday products, ranging from toys to clothing to cars, and although it now appears commonly in artistic works, violet was rarely used in fine art before the early 1860s. The color violet only became an integral part of modern culture and life with the rise of the French Impressionists. I investigated the use of violet in over 130,000 artworks prior to 1863 and found that it appeared in about .06 percent of the paintings. Violet was used substantially more frequently in Impressionist works, and remains popular in fine art and in popular culture today. I examine several explanations for the explosion of the use of violet in the art world during the Impressionist era, and conclude that a cognitive-perceptual explanation, based on the heightened sensitivity of the Impressionists to short wavelengths, may account for it. The findings fit with a new understanding about evolutionary changes in planetary light and human adaptation to light.

Christian McMillan

This paper draws from resources in the work of Deleuze to critically examine the notion of organicism and holistic relations that appear in historical forerunners that Jung identifies in his work on synchronicity. I interpret evidence in Jung’s comments on synchronicity that resonate with Deleuze’s interpretation of repetition and time and which challenge any straightforward foundationalist critique of Jung’s thought. A contention of the paper is that Jung and Deleuze envisage enchanted openings onto relations which are not constrained by the presupposition of a bounded whole, whether at the level of the macrocosm or the microcosm. Openings to these relations entail the potential for experimental transformation beyond sedentary habits of thought which are blocked by a disenchanting ‘image of thought’ that stands in need of critique. Other examples of enchanted openings in Jung’s work are signposted in an effort to counter their marginalisation in some post-Jungian critiques and to signal their potential value from a Deleuzian perspective.

Randy Fertel


Understanding The Red Book as an improvisation and Jung as an improviser offers a new approach to understanding the active imagination and the analytic method that emerged from it. Such an approach uncovers the mētic spirit – the spirit of polytropic intelligence – that informs The Red Book and the archetypal figure of Hermes/Mercurius/Trickster that informs all improvisations and will come to dominate Jung’s career. The rhetoric of improvisation in The Red Book conveys that, uncontaminated by the directed consciousness or ego, personae and imagoes arise spontaneously from his unconscious and control him, not he them. Such gestures privilege non-rational ways of making art and knowing the self and world, part and parcel of the paradigm shift that characterizes the 20th century. Jung’s Red Book is on the leading edge of that effort to shift from objective rationality to a rationality that can embrace subjective elements: the unconscious and the irrational, not just the “broad highways” but also the “back alleys” of human experience.