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Drawing on a Leibnizian panpsychist ontology of living beings that have a body and a soul, this paper outlines a theory of space based on the perceptual and appetitive relations among these creatures’ souls. In parallel with physical space founded on relations among bodies subject to efficient...
Whereas in Idea for a Universal History Kant without much hesitation resorts to biological concepts to understand history, this fundamentally changes in Critique of the Power of Judgment. In this work, history and biology are separated; they are understood as two different forms of teleological...
The problem of natural teleology in biology has traditionally focused on reconciling Aristotle’s efficient and final causation. In this paper, however, I emphasize the importance of formal causation in natural teleological explanations and suggest that undermining its legitimacy is a backdoor...
The distinction between teleology and teleonomy that biologists sometimes refer to seems to be helpful in certain contexts, but it is used in several different ways and has rarely been clearly drawn. This paper discusses three prominent uses of the term “teleonomy” and traces its history back to...
For Kant, the main aim of teleology in nature is to identify or to segregate as a particular class of objects certain types of causal systems, specifically, systems of interdependent parts.With the development of physiology as a distinct science at the beginning of the 18th century, the idea of...
Thomas Aquinas is known for having endorsed the view that in our universe everything strives for a certain purpose. According to him not only rational agents act for the sake of specific ends, but every active substance (like animals and elements) does. It is this claim I reconstruct and discuss...
Hume seems to have discarded with final causes and teleology. However, his invocation of a pre-established harmony between the course of nature and the succession of our ideas suggests otherwise. This paper takes Hume’s general strategy of shifting to the external perspective into account, and...
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