Issue 112

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Issue 112: February/March 2016


Feel Free To Differ

by Grant Bartley


News: February/March 2016

University scraps philosophy exams • Ethics teaching the Meiji way • Canadians consider euthanasia for children — News reports by Anja Steinbauer


Free Will Is An Illusion, But Freedom Isn’t

Ching-Hung Woo says freedom is compatible with choices being determined.

The New Argument About Freedom

Natasha Gilbert says out with the old arguments, and in with the new.

The Brain’s Risk/Reward System Makes Our Choices, Not Us

Graham W. Boyd argues that choice is an illusion.

Akrasia: Why Do We Act Against Our Better Judgement?

George Singleton asks why we splash out on luxuries worth a month’s income, struggle to give up smoking, and resort to below-the-belt insults in heated arguments.

Reclaiming Freedom

Steve Taylor says of determinism: “I refute it thus!”


Leibniz & the Infinite Mechanism of Life

Audrey Borowski peers into the infinity inside all organisms, including us.

Herder & Human Identity

Brian King says that to understand the herd, you need a Herder.

How Nietzsche Inspired Dalí

Magdalena Scholle looks for Apollonian and Dionysian traits in Salvador Dalí’s art.

Justifying Our Moral Judgments

Thomas Dabay combines the ideas of David Hume and Immanuel Kant to help show how we can be right about what’s right.

Why Self-Interest Makes Relationships Valuable

Daniel Tippens argues that our self-interestedness has a positive side after all.

Colin Wilson (1931-2013)

Vaughan Rapatahana remembers the singular English existentialist.


D.D. Raphael

The moral and political philosopher D.D. (David Daiches) Raphael died just before Christmas – a month short of his 100th birthday. Shortly before his death, he spoke to Gideon Calder about what more than eighty years in philosophy involves.



The Tears of Many Clowns • Original Thinking • Liberty, Equality, Technology • Can Robots Wrestle with Ethics? • Uncommon Sensations • Absurd Speculations? • Who Am I? • Atheism On Its Own Terms


Eastern Promises

Peter Adamson spots some similarities between ancient Greek and ancient Indian philosophies.

“What A Possessive!”: On Being Embodied

Raymond Tallis takes a good look at himself.


The Most Good You Can Do by Peter Singer

Joel Marks critiques Peter Singer’s popular ethics.

Does Altruism Exist? by David Sloan Wilson

William Irwin asks if pure ethics exists at all.

Good Will Hunting

Tamás Szabados gives it an existential analysis.


Simon & Finn

by Melissa Felder

Bubble Therapy

by Steve Delmonte

The Auto-Icon

A comic by Corey Mohler about the inevitable anguish of living a brief life in an absurd world.



by Peter Duff

“… as it was determined to be so.”

Kevin Heinrich follows the fate of some determined townsfolk.

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