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March 2, 2017 | History

Volition and Allied Causal Concepts 1 edition

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Volition and Allied Causal Concepts is a work of aetiology and metapsychology. Aetiology is the branch of philosophy and logic devoted to the study of causality (the cause-effect relation) in all its forms; and metapsychology is the study of the basic concepts common to all psychological discourse, most of which are causal. This is a work of ambitious scope, intent on finally resolving philosophical and logical issues that have always impeded progress in psychology.

Excerpts

Volition (or free will) is to be distinguished from causation and natural spontaneity. The latter categories, i.e. deterministic causality and its negation, have been treated in a separate work, The Logic of Causation. Volition may be characterized as personal causality, a relation between an agent (the self or soul) and his actions (acts of will). Unlike causation, this relation cannot be entirely defined using conditional (if–then) propositions. Although we can say that the agent is a sine qua non of his actions, we cannot say that the agent is invariably (in all or specific circumstances) followed by his actions. It appears that both an act of will and its negation remain possible to a soul in any given set of circumstances. This defines freedom of the will, and implies the responsibility of the agent for his actions. Introspection provides knowledge of particular acts of will.
The existence of freewill implies a distinction between necessary causation (determinism independent of volition) and inertial causation (determinism, except when some contrary will interferes). An act of will occurs on a spiritual plane. It may have natural (mental or physical) consequences; those that inevitably follow it may be regarded as directly willed, whereas those that vary according to circumstances must be considered indirectly willed. Volition presupposes some degree of consciousness. So-called involuntary acts of will involve a minimum of attention, whereas mindful acts are fully conscious. Even pure whim involves intention. Most volitions moreover involve valuation, some sort of projection of goals, deliberation on means, choice and decision. To judge responsibility, various distinctions are called for, like that between intentional, incidental and accidental consequences.
added by Avi Sion. "Abstract"
Volitional action can be affected through the terms and conditions of the world surrounding its agent, but also more intimately through the influence of concrete or abstract aspects of that world that the subject has cognized. The causal concept of influence, and its implication of cognition (of inner or outer information, including emotions), are crucial to measuring the effort involved in volition. Influences make willing easier or harder, yet do not curtail its essential freedom. All the causal concepts used in psychological explanation – affections, appetites, instincts, habits, obsessions, compulsions, urges and impulses – can be elucidated thanks to this important finding. Much of human (and animal) behavior can thus be both acknowledged as volitional and as variously influenced.
Volition and Allied Causal Concepts is a work of ambitious scope, intent on finally resolving philosophical and logical issues that have always impeded progress in psychology. It clarifies the structure and workings of the psyche, facilitating hygienic and therapeutic endeavors. The relation between volition and physical laws is discussed, as is the place of volition in biology. Concepts used in biology, analogous to that of purpose, are incidentally analyzed. Theological issues are also dealt with, as are some topics in ethics and law.
added by Avi Sion. "Abstract"
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Volition and Allied Causal Concepts

Published 2004 by Avi Sion in Geneva, Switzerland .
Written in English.

Table of Contents

CHAPTER 1. BASIC CAUSAL RELATIONS ……………………………………………….. 1
1. Causation and volition- 1
2. Causality and modality- 4
3. Spontaneity- 5
4. Relative vs. absolute contingency- 7
CHAPTER 2. INTERACTIONS BETWEEN VOLITION AND CAUSATION ……………... 9
1. Necessity and inertia in causation- 9
2. Direct and indirect volition- 11
3. Matter-mind and spirit- 13
4. Conceiving Divine volition- 14
5. The study of volition- 16
CHAPTER 3. FURTHER ANALYSIS OF VOLITION ……………………………………... 18
1. Knowledge of volition- 18
2. Freedom of the will- 20
3. Decision and choice- 22
4. Goals and means- 23
CHAPTER 4. CONSCIOUSNESS AND RESPONSIBILITY ………………………………. 26
1. The consciousness in volition- 26
2. The factors of responsibility- 28
3. Judging, and misjudging, people- 31
CHAPTER 5. INFLUENCE AND FREEDOM ……………………………………………… 36
1. Influence occurs via consciousness- 36
2. Knowledge of effort, influence and freedom- 38
3. Formal analysis of influence- 39
4. Incitement- 41
CHAPTER 6. FURTHER ANALYSIS OF INFLUENCE …………………………………… 45
1. Some features of influence- 45
2. Processes of influence- 48
3. Instincts in relation to freewill- 50
4. Liberation from unwanted influences- 51
5. Propositions about the future- 52
CHAPTER 7. THE WORKINGS OF VOLITION …………………………………………… 53
1. Cultural context and epistemological considerations- 53
2. Theoretical context- 54
3. Stages in the process of volition- 59
4. The scope of freewill- 63
CHAPTER 8. VOLITION AND THE SPECIAL SCIENCES ………………………………. 66
1. Volition and the laws of physics- 66
2. Volition and biology- 69
3. Therapeutic psychology- 72
CHAPTER 9. WILL, VELLEITY AND WHIM ……………………….…………………..… 75
1. Cognition, volition and valuation- 75
2. Velleity- 79
3. Whim- 80
4. Inner divisions- 81
CHAPTER 10. AFFECTIONS AND APPETITES ….………………………………………. 83
1. Valuation- 83
2. The main valuations- 84
3. Ethology- 88
CHAPTER 11. COMPLICATIONS OF INFLUENCE ……………………………………… 93
1. Habits- 93
2. Obsessions and compulsions- 94
3. The ego abhors a vacuum- 98
CHAPTER 12. URGES AND IMPULSES ………………………………………….…….... 102
1. Physical urges and impulses- 102
2. Mental urges and impulses- 107
3. Formal analysis of physical and mental urges- 109
4. Are there drives within the soul?- 111
5. Formal analysis of spiritual urges- 112
CHAPTER 13. THE QUASI-PURPOSIVE IN NATURE …………………………………. 116
1. Purposiveness- 116
2. Organic functions- 116
3. The continuity of life- 119
CHAPTER 14. CONCEPTS OF EVOLUTION ……………………………………………. 123
1. The logical form of evolution- 123
2. Evidence for evolution- 126
3. Random mutation- 128
4. Natural selection- 131
CHAPTER 15. MORE ABOUT EVOLUTION …………………………………………..… 134
1. Social Darwinism- 134
2. Spiritual Darwinism- 137
3. Theological perspectives- 139
CHAPTER 16. THE SELF ………………………………………………………………….. 143
1. Ungluing the mind- 143
2. Abstract vs. concrete self- 144
3. Sundry reflections on the soul and God- 150
CHAPTER 17. SOME TOPICS IN DEONTOLOGY ...……………………………………. 156
1. Founding ethics- 156
2. Ethics concerns the living, thinking, willing- 159
3. Conscience and conformism- 161
4. Tai Chi, karma yoga and faith- 162
CHAPTER 18. MORE TOPICS IN DEONTOLOGY ………………………...……………. 166
1. Inducing ethics- 166
2. Ethical formulas- 168
3. Philosophy of law- 171
APPENDIXES ………………………………………………………………………………... 175
1. Some formal logic guidelines- 175
2. Aristotle’s four causes - 177
REFERENCES ………………..……………………………………………………………… 179

ID Numbers

Open Library
OL26231160M
ISBN 10
2-9700091-6-1

History Created February 27, 2017 · 3 revisions
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March 2, 2017 Edited by Avi Sion added description
February 27, 2017 Edited by Avi Sion added description
February 27, 2017 Created by Avi Sion Added new book.