Category: Edition 1 - April 2005
 
 

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pdf.png Editorial for Volume 5, Edition 1 (April 2005) - By Editor-in-Chief  

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According to phenomenological icons such as Aron Gurwitsch, Herbert Spiegelberg and Maurice Natanson, amongst others, phenomenology has developed out of a philosophical movement that is still in the process of being clarified and that consequently there are multiple interpretations and modifications of what has now become known as phenomenological philosophy. In this regard, phenomenology concerns itself with the fundamental problems of knowledge and the experience, at both the scientific and the pre-theoretical levels, which we have of the surrounding perceptual world and by which we are guided in our everyday life. ...


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pdf.png Unconscious Influences on Discourses about Consciousness: Ideology, State-Specific Science and Unformulated Experience - By David Edwards  

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Discussions about consciousness are complicated by the fact that participants do not share a common underlying "ordinary" consciousness. Everyday experience is founded on what Teasdale calls implicational cognition, much of which is not verbally formulated. An unacknowledged aspect of debate is individuals' attempts to negotiate the expression of their unformulated experience. This is further complicated by the way in which a discourse, based on particular ontological assumptions, exercises an ideological control which limits what underlying aspects of experience can be formulated at all. Tart's concept of state specific sciences provides a framework within which the role of unformulated experience can be acknowledged and taken into account. Unless this is done, debates will be vitiated by participants engaging in ideological struggles and talking at cross-purposes.


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pdf.png Enlightenment and Individuation - By Gabriel Rossouw and Brendon Stewart  

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It is important for psychology - as a discipline of thought about the nature of psyche - and for psychotherapy, as its practice of understanding, to draw a distinction between neurotic and authentic suffering if it aims to assist a person to become an indivisible being. A difficulty with mainstream psychology is the conviction that psyche begins and ends in the realm of Reason as this conviction tends to establish a reality of permanence, absolutes and substance, and hence consequently, colludes with the 'ten thousand things' of neurotic suffering. When reason sets the rules of reality, it is argued, a deep sense of alienation and meaninglessness takes root. A psychology stuck in this realm is unable to attend to authentic human suffering, which is the reconciliation and synthesis of opposites in human nature. In the dichotomy of subject and object, and unconscious and conscious, a psychology of the reason unwittingly identifies with and acts out that which it rejects as inferior. It thus suffers from the very condition it sets out to alleviate. The concepts of enlightenment and individuation on the other hand draw a clear distinction between neurotic and authentic suffering. They conceive of a reality in which subject and object are one, so providing support to one suffering authentically so as to remain true to oneself and thus to become an indivisible being.


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pdf.png The Palliation of Dying: A Heideggerian Analysis of the “Technologization” of Death - By Franco A. Carnevale  

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The modern West has vigorously sought to overcome death, or at the very least minimize the suffering that it entails. Whereas the former has been predominantly pursued through modern scientific medicine, the minimization of the adversity of death and dying has been sought through ‘death technologies'. This technologization of death is analyzed in light of Martin Heidegger's phenomenological philosophy. The analysis begins with an outline of the fundamental tenets of Heidegger's ‘philosophy of Being'. In turn, his philosophical framework is utilized to highlight the manner in which the technologization of dying serves to conceal the central existential questions about being and finitude that dying gives rise to. The paper concludes with a discussion of how Heidegger's work can inspire a more authentic stance toward dying. Leo Tolstoy's The Death of Ivan Ilych is referred to in order to illustrate Heidegger's construal of this existential struggle toward dying.


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pdf.png When Intimacy and Companionship are at the Core of the Phenomenological Research Process - By Steen Halling  

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Historically, there has been an ambivalent attitude in psychology toward the place of the "subjective" both in clinical practice and in research. This has been true even for phenomenological research where there is a desire to embrace the personal while there is also a concern that findings be presented as if they are objective in the sense of having an existence independent of the particular researcher's relationship to them. This article discusses a collaborative approach to research that depends on the development of a relationship of intimacy among the researchers and between the researchers and the phenomenon under study. The dialogal phenomenological approach has a twenty-year history and has been used to study phenomena such as social activism, helping and healing, forgiveness, and hopelessness. Focusing especially on two recent studies of hopelessness, the paper discusses how, in the context of dialogue among researchers, presence and intimacy, as well as truth and understanding become possible, and how working collaboratively makes it easier to find words to speak to what one encounters.


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pdf.png Educators’ Experience of Managing Sexually Abused Learners: Implications for Educational Support Structures - By Tshepo Tlali and Samantha Moldan  

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The purpose of this study was to establish the personal impact that managing sexually abused learners had on primary school educators working in an East London (South Africa) community. In addition, the researchers sought to establish what support these educators felt they needed in order to help alleviate the personal impact that managing sexually abused learners might have on them. A phenomenological approach was employed to address the research questions. Using availability-sampling methods, four educators from a local primary school were interviewed and the data systematically analysed in accordance with Morrisette's (1999) seven-step procedural model. The present study confirmed the finding of Skinner (1999) and Mzamo (2003) that managing cases of sexually abused learners had a profound personal effect on the participants. What was most commonly felt was a sense of frustration with the justice system, as well as a sense of personal responsibility. In addition, the participants felt that they needed support structures to assist them in managing sexual abuse cases in the school. In particular, they felt that they needed a forum where they could share their own experiences and feelings, as well as receive guidance on how to deal with problems in their class. A need for more support from professional psychologists was also expressed, as well as a need for counselling skills training and general training in the area of child sexual abuse. It is hoped that these findings will prove useful in providing guidelines for the development of appropriate support structures for educators managing cases of child sexual abuse in South African schools. More research on the subject needs to be conducted within South Africa, however, in order to ensure that the support structures implemented address context-specific needs.


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pdf.png BOOK REVIEW (by Plamen Gradinarov) - Husserl and Yogacara  

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Dan Lusthaus (2002). Buddhist Phenomenology: A Philosophical Investigation of Yogacara Buddhism and the Ch'eng Wei-shih Lun. London: Routledge-Curzon. (Reprinted 2003). 611 pages
ISBN 0-7007-1186-4


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