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Jacob’s Ladder: Logics of Magic, Metaphor and Metaphysics

Stern, Julio Michael (2020) Jacob’s Ladder: Logics of Magic, Metaphor and Metaphysics. Sophia, 59 (2). pp. 365-385. ISSN 0038-1527

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Abstract

In this article, we discuss some issues concerning magical thinking -- forms of thought and association mechanisms characteristic of early stages of mental development. We also examine good reasons for having an ambivalent attitude concerning the later permanence in life of these archaic forms of association, and the coexistence of such intuitive but informal thinking with logical and rigorous reasoning. At the one hand, magical thinking seems to serve the creative mind, working as a natural vehicle for new ideas and innovative insights, and giving form to heuristic arguments. At the other hand, it is inherently difficult to control, lacking effective mechanisms needed for rigorous manipulation. Our discussion is illustrated with many examples from the Hebrew Bible, and some final examples from modern science.


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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Stern, Julio Michael0000-0003-2720-3871
Keywords: Syllepsis, Paronomasia, Magical thinking, Heuristic arguments
Subjects: General Issues > Scientific Metaphysics
General Issues > Explanation
General Issues > Laws of Nature
General Issues > Science and Religion
Depositing User: Prof. Julio Michael Stern
Date Deposited: 26 Mar 2023 18:28
Last Modified: 26 Mar 2023 18:28
Item ID: 21920
Journal or Publication Title: Sophia
Official URL: http://doi.org/10.1007/s11841-017-0592-y
DOI or Unique Handle: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11841-017-0592-y
Subjects: General Issues > Scientific Metaphysics
General Issues > Explanation
General Issues > Laws of Nature
General Issues > Science and Religion
Date: 2020
Page Range: pp. 365-385
Volume: 59
Number: 2
ISSN: 0038-1527
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/21920

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