[Pathways] 'In Defence of Plato' by D. R. Khashaba


Countering the misunderstanding and distortion introduced by Aristotle and embraced in learned circle as unquestionable truth.


D. R. Khashaba

[Pathways] Thinking About Nothing: Philosophy, Negation and the Mystical


Liverpool Hope University, 3-5 July 2020

Call for Proposals: Deadline 30th November 2019

How and why is 'nothing' such a central concern for the mystical? What meaning, if any, derives from negation, un-knowing, un-saying; or from evoking the Absolute in terms of absence, silence, darkness, void, abyss, desert, and no-thing-ness? Why do mystics across different religious traditions return continually to images and ideas of negativity? And how might these interfaces between 'nothingness' and 'the mystical' illuminate our contemporary concerns with these two elusive notions?

This interdisciplinary conference brings together theologians, philosophers, historians, literary scholars, linguists, psychologists, artists, art historians, poets, musicians, and contemplative practitioners to examine interfaces between themes of 'nothingness', 'negativity', and the mystical . We also welcome proposals for creative responses from visual arts, performance, music and sound, poetry and literature.

Keynote speakers include Professor George Pattison, Professor Melissa Raphael, Dr. Rik Van Nieuwenhove, & Dr. Kate Kirkpatrick.

All proposals should include:

1. Full name; 2. E-mail; 3. Current institution and/or academic affiliation 4. Title of the paper or project; 6. Any technical needs; 7. Proposal (up to 350 words).

* Paper proposal: An abstract proposal for a short (20 minute) original paper

* Project proposal: for a presentation, event, exhibition, performance or screening.

Please send proposals and enquiries to: Dr Simon Podmore (podmors@hope.ac.uk), Dr Duane Williams (williad3@hope.ac.uk), or Dr Deborah Casewell (casewed@hope.ac.uk)

Further information on the Mystical Theology Network website


Dr. Deborah Casewell, MA (Hons), MSt, PhD
Lecturer in the Philosophy of Religion
Theology, Philosophy, and Religious Studies
Liverpool Hope University

[Pathways] 'The Philosophy of Football' by Steffen Borge

Professor Steffen Borge's new book, The Philosophy of Football, is now available.





Human beings are the only creatures known to engage in sport. We are sporting animals, and our favourite pastime of football is the biggest sport spectacle on earth. The Philosophy of Football presents the first sustained, in-depth philosophical investigation of the phenomenon of football.

In explaining the complex nature of football, the book draws on literature in sociology, history, psychology and beyond, offering real-life examples of footballing actions alongside illuminating thought experiments. The book is organized around four main themes considering the character, nature, analysis and aesthetics of football. It discusses football as an extra-ordinary, unnecessary, rule-based, competitive, skill-based physical activity, articulated as a social (as opposed to natural) kind that is fictional in character, and where fairness or fair play -- contrary to much sport ethical discussion -- is not centre stage. Football, it is argued, is a constructive-destructive contact sport and, in comparison to other sports, is lower scoring and more affected by chance. The latter presents to its spectators a more unpredictable game and a darker, more complex and denser drama to enjoy.

The Philosophy of Football deepens our understanding of the familiar features of the game, offering novel interpretations on what football is, how and why we play it, and what the game offers its followers that makes us so eagerly await match day. This is essential reading for anybody with an interest in the world's most popular game or in the philosophical or social study of sport.


"There are striking, fundamental similarities between sports and the arts and equally striking and fundamental differences. Some of them are surprising; few have been explored as thoroughly and perceptively as Borge does. The Philosophy of Football will certainly fascinate lovers of "the beautiful game," but reflective aficionados of theatre or baseball, fiction or footraces, ritual, wrestling, chimpanzees, chess, dance, Duchamp, hockey and cockfights will find much of interest here as well." -- Prof Kendall L Walton, University of Michigan, USA

About the Author

Steffen Borge is Professor of Philosophy at UiT The Arctic University of Norway, Tromso.

[Pathways] Call for Papers: Leonard Cohen -- An Interdisciplinary Conference

Maynooth University, Ireland, 12-13 June 2020

Maynooth University, Ireland, is organizing a major international and interdisciplinary conference on the work of Leonard Cohen (June 12-13, 2020).

Religion, teachers, women, drugs, the road, fame, money... nothing gets me high and offers relief from the suffering like blackening pages, writing.

-- Leonard Cohen

Leonard Cohen's body of work challenges and bridges many oppositions. A poet and novelist of significant talent, he chose a career as a songwriter and musical performer in order to reach a larger audience. Jewish, Cohen from an early stage in his career also explored the Christian faith. Eager to transcend the boundaries of Western religion, he then immersed himself in Buddhism and Hinduism. Yet, despite his profound religiosity, Cohen spoke to the difficulties of having any faith at all in a world full of pain and suffering. Writing -- music, lyrics, poetry, letters, notes--was perhaps Cohen's first and last true faith [...]

Further information:


[Pathways] 'Thought experiments' by Geoffrey Klempner

Andrew asked:

Are thought experiments a legitimate philosophical method?

Answer by Geoffrey Klempner

I wonder, Andrew, whether you are responding to the previous question from Val, and the answer given by Hubertus Fremerey?

The question concerned the statement, "If X might exist but we have no reason to suppose that it actually does exist, then as metaphysicians we should not concern ourselves with X." I can't fault Fremerey's answer but there is an issue which he did not touch, concerning hypothetical questions about contingent non-existents, popularly known as 'thought experiments' — or in Daniel Dennett's words 'intuition pumps' [...]

Read more:



Pathways School of Philosophy

International Society for Philosophers

Books by Geoffrey Klempner

YouTube channel


DR Geoffrey Klempner.

          RIP. Dr Geoffrey Klempner (1951-2022).           Absolute pleasure to have known and work with you since 2003. ...