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Aristotle's De Anima discusses the psychological causes of what he calls locomotion – i.e, roughly, purpose-driven behavior. One cause is desire. The other is cognition, which falls into two kinds: thought (nous) and imagination (phantasia). Aristotle’s discussion is dense and confusing, but I argue that we can extract from it an account that is coherent, compelling, and that in many ways closely anticipates modern psychological theories, in particular Dual Processing theory. Animals and humans are driven to pursue objects that attract us. Objects take on that power when we cognize them as valuable. If we rely on imagistic, automatic, uncontrolled processing mechanisms – Aristotle’s phantasia, which closely anticipates the modern notion of Type 1 processing – our resulting desires and actions will be impulsive. If we rely instead on rational, critical, deliberative capacities – Aristotle’s thought, which closely anticipates the modern notion of Type 2 processing – our resulting desires and actions will be reflective. Animals are capable only of the first kind of behavior; the human psyche is constituted of an animal psyche united with an intellectual one, so we are capable of both.
I add support to Phillips et al.'s thesis that representations of knowledge are more basic than representations of belief through a historical account of the development of philosophical theories of knowledge and belief. On the basis of Aristotle's criticisms of his Presocratic predecessors, I argue that Western philosophy developed theories of knowledge long before it developed theories of belief.
The current work focuses on optimizing aptamer scaffolds that are tailored to allow for the formation of binding pockets for both a redox active signaling molecule and the target miR-92a. These newly designed allosteric nucleic acid systems are studied for efficacy to undergo a target based conformational switch. Two hairpin scaffolds were designed with differing stem stabilities and were explored using fluorescence quenching measurements. The dose dependent data for the detection of miR-92a shows the importance of scaffold design where the stability of the intra-molecular hairpin structure has to be optimized for target binding. Additional experiments explored the selectivity of the aptamer scaffolds in the presence of competing miR’s and mismatched sequences. These results provide an important precursor to constructing nucleic acid scaffolds for the detection of miR’s using label-free redox signaling.
The chapter argues that Plato's psychology represents our motivations as themselves person-like with the aim of showing us the lineaments of philosophic virtue and of the self-transformation required for its development. It examines the way one ordinarily uses personification to think about our own motivations. The chapter highlights that Plato uses personification in a similar way with respect to the development of philosophic virtue. Parallels between Plato's psychology and the theology of the Republic suggest that one ought to regard personification as a likely story told for its effects on our self-conceptions and behavior. Finally, it is important to acknowledge that personification is a feature not only of Plato's middle-period but also of his late psychology, where it appears to conflict with two significant theoretical developments in the psychology: the denial of belief to appetite, and the recognition of the requirements for unity of the experiencing subject.
The Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST) Paradigm is designed to improve end-of-life care by converting patients’ treatment preferences into medical orders that are transferable throughout the health care system. It was initially developed in Oregon, but is now implemented in multiple states with many others considering its use. Accordingly, an observational study was conducted in order to identify potential legal barriers to the implementation of a POLST Paradigm. Information was obtained from experts at state emergency medical services and long-term care organizations/agencies in combination with a review of relevant state law. Legal analysis of survey responses and existing laws identified several potential state legal barriers to a POLST Paradigm implementation. The most potentially problematic barriers are detailed statutory specifications for out-of-hospital DNR (do not resuscitate) protocols (n = 9 states). Other potential barriers include limitations on the authority to consent to forgo life-sustaining treatments (n = 23 states), medical preconditions (n = 15), and witnessing requirements (n = 12) for out-of-hospital DNR protocols.
Plato's argument against poetry in Republic 10 is perplexing. He condemns not all poetry, but only “however much of it is imitative [hosē mimētikē]” (595a). A metaphysical charge against certain works of poetry - that they are forms of imitation, “at a third remove from the truth” - is thus used to justify an ethical charge: that these works cripple our thought and corrupt our souls. Unfortunately, it is not at all clear how to understand the connection between the two charges. We can see how they are related in a loose way: imitators are concerned with images far removed from the truth about what they represent (596a-598b); many people are too foolish to distinguish imitation from reality and thus accept ignorant imitators as experts and guides (598c-602b); imitation appeals to and thereby strengthens an inferior part of the soul unconcerned with truth (602c ff.); worst of all, the charms of imitation can seduce even those who generally know better (605c-607a). But when we try to make Book 10's argument more precise, trouble ensues. Plato certainly never spells out the connection between the metaphysics of imitation and the charge of ethical harm. Moreover, he seems in the end (603c ff.) to abandon metaphysical considerations and give a straightforward argument against tragedy and the works of Homer based on their content - they represent people behaving immoderately - and psychological effect: as audience we weep and wail and behave as immoderately as the characters, and this undermines the order of our souls. This argument makes no mention of imitation or ignorance or removes from truth; what, then, is the relevance of the metaphysical charge, to which Plato devotes so much discussion?
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