Academic journal article The Review of Metaphysics

Journal of the History of Philosophy: Vol. 42, No. 3, July 2004

Academic journal article The Review of Metaphysics

Journal of the History of Philosophy: Vol. 42, No. 3, July 2004

Article excerpt

Virtue as "Likeness to God" in Plate and Seneca, DANIEL C. RUSSELL

Although Plato's thesis that virtue is "likeness to God" is repeated in several dialogues and is prominent among ancient Platonists, today it is often treated as too otherworldly to be of much relevance to us. In this paper the author takes a new approach to this thesis, as he works, on the one hand, from its development in Plato's Philebus and, on the other, from the development of an analogous thesis in Stoicism, particularly Seneca. In both cases, likeness to God is net an escapist ideal but instead demonstrates the superiority of out character that acts in relation to circumstances, to those circumstances themselves.

Sympathy and Benevolence in Hume's Moral Psychology, RICO VITZ

In this paper the author argues that Hume's account of sympathy is substantially unchanged from the Treatise to the second Enquiry. He shows that Hume uses the term "sympathy" to refer to three different mental phenomena (a psychological mechanism or principle, a sentiment, and a conversion process) and that he consistently refers to sympathy as a cause of benevolent motivation. The author attempts to resolve an apparent difficulty regarding sympathy and humanity by explaining how each is an "original principle" in Hume's sense. He concludes by suggesting how his interpretation might make a contemporary evaluation of Hume's account of benevolent motivation possible.

Hume's Knave and the Interests of Justice, JASON BALDWIN

On one straightforward reading, Hume's Treatise argues that justice and other artificial virtues originally arise due to rational reflection on serf-interest. …

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