Knowing other-wise: philosophy at the threshold of by James H. Olthius

By James H. Olthius

Fresh discussions within the a variety of circles of feminism, postmodernism, and environmentalism have started to clarify that ontology and epistemology with out ethics is lethal - oppressive to ladies, oppressive to males, oppressive to the earth. in accordance with this situation of cause in modernity, this number of essays indicates the significance of figuring out other-wise, non-rational methods of understanding that are clever to the opposite- a religious realizing of the guts with the passionate eye of affection. understanding another way calls into query the Western philosophical culture of giving delight of position to cause within the acquisition of information. Reasoning is just one of many ways within which we interact, i.e. comprehend, the realm. we all know greater than we predict. we all know through contact, through think, by way of style, by means of sight, by way of sounds, via scent, via symbols, via intercourse, by way of belief - via each modality of human adventure. Philosophy turns into, within the style of Levinas, the knowledge of affection on the provider of affection. Tracing connections among epistemology, ethics, and spirituality - among understanding and the opposite, among an different and the opposite - all of the essays function issues of convergence among postmodern discussions and the Calvinian spirituality that's the house for writers during this assortment. particularly, this assortment explores the contributions of feminist idea and thinkers comparable to Emmanuel Levinas, Richard Rorty, Jacqes Derrida, and John D. Caputo to a spiritually and ethically delicate understanding. . . . remarkably obtainable . . . necessary for Christians who understand a moment, extra confident postmodernism.-Third manner . . . remarkably available . . . critical for Christians who understand a moment, extra confident postmodernism. 3rd approach

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Ethics and/of the Other As the previous essays indicate, the questions of plurality and otherness are questions of ethical import; no longer can a line be so conveniently drawn between epistemology and ethics. In this section, the authors thematize the status of the Other in ethics, particularly from the viewpoint of and in dialogue with Emmanuel Levinas. By reading Rorty through a Levinasian lens, Ronald Kuipers, in his Page 11 essay, "Singular Interruptions," finds in Rorty points of convergence with Derrida's ethical concern for the other, despite their different paths of criticism.

And although a yes is called for, not any yes will do. The yes may be mechanical, halfhearted, or devious. Genuine yeses of love need to be as different as the situations into which they are spoken, as unique as the persons who speak them. There are no prescribed, unambiguous responses that are guaranteed to be appropriate in particular situations. The very space needed for genuine response opens the possibility of contamination. Responsible and healing yeses always involve risk, the risk of violence.

For all that would be needed in this case is to avoid the occult or immaterial meaning of spirituality and to amplify the acceptable meaning. Why is this not done? What else is at stake? I think we are helped to understand this resistance by examining Page 25 certain key features of the Enlightenment, features concentrated in its emancipatory aspiration. The vision of emancipation has filled the hopes and dreams of all who have become inspired by the spirit of the Enlightenment. In what we now call modernity, however, that emancipatory interest is essentially tied to a human autonomy focused upon the autonomy of reason.

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