Leibniz - 300 years later

Valery Savrey
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-2.1-9-17

The article is devoted to the anniversary of the birth (370 years ago) and the date of death (300 years ago) of the outstanding German philosopher, mathematician, physicist, jurist, historian, linguist, and diplomat Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz. Leibniz undertake a creative synthesis of science, philosophy and theology, producing a unique philosophical system. The foundation of this system is constituted by the doctrine of preestablished harmony. In all areas in which he worked, Leibniz made great discoveries. It inherited the gift of synthesizing the disparate views of different thinkers on the basis of the original methodological principle based on the universality and rigor of philosophical arguments in their logical sequence. Leibnitz is also a great theologian and originator of the profound ethical system. Ethical optimism of Leibniz's teleology has Christian religious worldview as its basis.

Viktoria Lysenko
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-2.1-18-35

In this paper the author tries to look at Leibniz from the topos of Indian philosophy. François Jullien called such a strategy “dépayser la pensée” – to withdraw a thought from its habitat and to see it through the lens of different culture. She refers to Indian philosophy, especially to some Buddhists systems, and highlights – in a more general intercultural perspective – continualistic and atomistic approaches in Leibniz’s thought. The author argues that despite Leibniz’ consistent criticism, predominantly from the continualistic position, of the ancient and the contemporary atomism, Leibniz in his own metaphysics remained a convinced atomist - his monads are the only final causes of things, substances, or "true atoms of nature". In this paper, Leibniz’ mereological arguments are examined with the help of some principles and conceptualizations developed in Indian philosophy. In particular, the author compares the whole-parts models in monadology and in Nyāya, as well as the Buddhist schools of Abhidharma and Yogācāra. The article also shows that because of their atomistic approach both Leibniz and Buddhists confronted a problem of how to give an account for a complex substance, and proposed different strategies of dealing with its continuity. If we evaluate the position of Leibniz, for example, from a Buddhist point of view, its main drawback consists in theism, in an attempt to shift responsibility for the universe from human beings to God, and instead of investigating causal relations between things to recourse to the theistic principle of pre-established harmony.

Vadim Rozin
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-2.1-36-46

The article deals with the mathematization of thinking program proposed by Leibnitz, and the program of Mathematics foundations by Hilbert. The author argues that modern symbolic and mathematical logics were created on the basis of these programs. The article examines which aspects and meanings of thinking and reasoning had to be sacrificed, why modern symbolic logics are continuously reproducing, and what is the relationship of symbolic logics to the traditional Aristotelian one. Defending the pointed out statements, the author refers to the works of Aristotle and Schopenhauer, Ya. Lukasevich, A. Vasilyev, A. Karpenko, A. Anisov, S. Pavlov. The article states that the formation of symbolic logic required philosophical reflection of the conditions of conceivable solutions of symbolic logic creators and the need to distinguish between the two types of historical logics, to resolve the contradictions between the sense of autonomy of symbolic logic and the sense of its dependence on the traditional logic. According to the author’s opinion, Ludwig Wittgenstein, then Lukasevich, and the other Russian philosophers tried to respond to the mentioned above challenges in their works.

V.P. Goran
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-2.1-47-60

The author analyzes five aspects of ontological teachings of Leibniz and Spinoza and identifies commonalities and differences in the positions of these two philosophers. The first aspect is adherence to rationalism. The god is an essentially rational being, and so is the world. However for Leibniz the god is outside of the rational world he created, but for Spinoza the rational god is the world itself. The second aspect is acceptance by both philosophers of predeterminism of everything in the world. For Leibniz this is the result of the god’s choice to create the best out of the many possible worlds, but for Spinoza the world is not the result of the god’s choice. The third aspect is the answer to the question about the freedom of the god. They both accept this freedom, but for Leibniz this is freedom of the god as a subject making a conscious choice out of many possible choices, while for Spinoza freedom is self-determination of activity of impersonal substance. The fourth aspect is acceptance by both philosophers of objective necessity. For Spinoza the god and necessity is the same thing. For Leibniz absolute necessity is mightier than the god. The fifth aspect is acceptance by both philosophers of multiple components of the universe and their mutual isolation and consistency of elements at the same time. The god is the source and reason of this consistency for both philosophers, but for Leibniz the god is outside of the world of multiple monads, while for Spinoza it is the unity of multiple attributes of the god itself.

I.V. Berestov
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-2.1-61-74

The author analyzes the Leibniz’s idea of “uniqueness of objects”, i.e. his conclusion that every possible object is present in one and only one possible world. The article reveals the role of the principle of indistinguishability of identity in this conclusion, referring to the discussions in modern philosophy, which are generated by similar conclusions. Leibniz treats any possible world as a holistic system. This places his reasoning in the context of disputes about the validity of various holistic approaches. Leibniz accepts the “Holistic Assumption”, according to which all objects of one possible world are determined through each other. The article also shows how Leibniz’s “uniqueness of objects” logically connects his teaching with certain statement of the problem of intentional identity, as well as with ongoing discussions about mental holism. The author demonstrates that Leibniz did something more than the developing of the theory of metaphysical possible worlds – which, thanks to the works of S. Kripke, became the “canonical” semantics for modal logic. In addition, Leibniz stood at the beginning of understanding the possible worlds as corresponding to the subject of cognition’s perceptions. Thus, Leibniz also made a step towards the development of the semantics of epistemic logic that was proposed by J. Hintikka. The interpretation of the problem of intentional identity in E. Saarinen’s works is based on the accepting of the “uniqueness of objects” for many worlds, which are open to certain subject, and not for one and only one possible world, as in Leibniz’s works. The author concludes that the ways of generating the problem of intentional identity for Leibniz’s semantics and the ones for Saarinen’s semantics are similar. All this shows that the problems stated by Leibniz’s possible worlds semantics have been still discussed.

Problems of ethics

Vladislav Cheshev
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-2.1-75-91

The problem of moral principles in the life of an individual and society has become rather acute in the context of the global spread of consumerism as the installation of modern civilized behavior of the individual. Traditionally, moral foundations are investigated as moral principles of individual behavior. The article draws attention to the problem of moral foundations of social life, which was first identified by the Russian philosopher V. Solovyov. The author considers two issues. The first one is the problem of moral foundations: whether morality has a religious origin or its roots are hidden in sociogenesis, in establishing principles of behavior in cultural communities. The second problem concerns the existence of issues of morality in public life and its impact on social relations. The article shows that the moral principles express solidarity relations among people. They arise in the course of new programs formation of symbolic behavior in communities following the way of active sociogenesis. New behavior, which is programmed by culture, requires establishing solidarity relations among members of the society, because deprived of such relationships, socio genetic development becomes impossible. Cooperation, based on the feeling of inner unity, is essential to the society. For this reason, moral foundations turn out to be the system principles of social organization, including economic life and economic relations in the society. Moral progress in the history of society is manifested in the development of solidarity principles up to the level of universal human morality, which defines the principles of behavior for societies and individuals.

Culture through the prism of language

Tatyana Savina,  Andrey Savin,  V. Doenninghaus
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-2.1-92-102

The article analyzes the stylistic and linguistic features of the so-called “Brezhnev’s diaries”. Within the framework of the “linguistic turn in the history” methodology, it attempts to identify the relationship between the specificity of Brezhnev’s writing and his personality. The authors pay special attention to the verification of the Brezhnev’s records genre which is defined as a "log book". The article analyzes the nature of the records in comparison with Brezhnev’s speaking. Brezhnev was known as a skillful, spontaneous storyteller, he had a quick reaction, a multiple choice of epithets – features, alien to the standardized, public-political vocabulary of Soviet newspapers and public speeches of party and state leaders. It was the other way round with written speech. It was totally different. There was no place for jokes and improvisation. Even in his personal diaries he used the standardized, stilted language, which he used to speak working as a party leader, commissar. The authors come to the conclusion that Brezhnev acquired the “Soviet newspeak”, which actually became his second nature. The absence of any signs of deliberate design of the text in Brezhnev’s personal records indicates that the text is really a reflection of the personality of the General Secretary.  

Investigate Modern Society

Irina Zhezhko-Braun
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-2.1-103-131

Hillary Rodham Clinton, оne of the candidates in the presidential elections of 2016, received her first lessons in political philosophy and practice from the founder of a new direction in social engineering – social organizing – Saul Alinsky (1909-1972).  Despite Clinon’s defeat in the recent presidential elections and the real threat of destruction of Obama’s political legacy, the philosophy of permanent revolution started by Alinsky and his package of social technologies are very much alive in American political culture. The article analyzes the lessons learned by Hilary from Alinsky during and after college that helped to form her political personality. Among these lessons were social technologies which help circumvent existing laws, democratic institutions and procedures as well as instruction in the principles and rules guiding radical activists. The article also analyzes the reasons why social technologies which helped Obama win the presidency and be reelected did not work for Clinton. The goal of the article is to look into the Clinton’s early focus on Alynsky and communications with him crucial to her political development, and to explain how Alinsky’s techniques combined with modern electronic technologies were used in her presidential campaign.


Georgy Antipov
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-2.1-132-146

What is Marxist philosophy? About thirty or forty years ago the answer could be found in any textbook of philosophy. Philosophy is "the science of universal laws of motion and evolution in nature, human society and thought." The inseparable connection between philosophy and "various branches of positive science" was postulated as well as its status as a universal method of all sciences, and so on. But here is the casus – there are no works of Marx himself, where his philosophy of Marxism as such would be stated. Kant has three of his "Critiques", Hegel has "The Science of Logic." So N. Mikhailovsky once asked: "In what work did Marx expound his materialistic understanding of history? ... Where is such work of Marx? – There isn’t any." Lenin, at the beginning of his revolutionary career, sarcastically giggling, replied to Mikhailovsky that the philosophy of Marx is "dissolved" in his numerous works on economics, politics, history, etc., and it is, so to say, their "dry residue". Indeed there is little reason to fully trust the quality of the analysis of the leader of the world proletariat and his conclusions.

History of the scientific life in USSR-Russia in the memoirs of contemporaries

Grigory Khanin
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-2.1-147-161

The article is devoted to the author’s teaching and research activities in 2002-2015. The author was teaching simultaneously at Novosibirsk State Technical University (NSTU) and the Siberian Academy for Public Administration (SAPA, now – the Siberian Institute of Management – the branch of RANEPA). The most effective teaching took place at NSTU, due to better preparation and motivation of students. Unfortunately, the most gifted students didn’t actualize themselves in science because of low prestige of science in Russia. It was less interesting for him to teach at SAPA because students and postgraduates were less interested and less prepared. At that time he started reading a new course "National Economy". Developing the course helped him understand better the basic features of economic development of Russia, at least since the 18th century: economy development went by jerks. He found the explanation of the Russian historical process and it stimulated his research activities. He focused his scientific work on "The Economic History of Russia in Modern Times." In the given article the author reveals the problems, which appeared while writing the first volume as well as the problems of the Soviet economic system since the early 60's until the collapse of the Soviet system in the early 90s. The author stresses the fact of his acquaintance and subsequent cooperation with the economist Dmitry Aleksandrovich Fomin. Many articles based on precise calculations were written with him. On the basis of these studies, he concluded that the recovery growth of the Russian economy would prolong to 2007, the process similar to the NEP. He also predicted that such a growth should result in stagnation and decline in GDP with the exhaustion of available resources and the absence of real modernization and the lack of human capital. The forecast of the author came true in many respects: the cessation of economic growth in 2008, and the world oil prices in 2015.


O.V. Vyugin
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-2.1-162-169

In the interview, the following issues are discussed: the specifics of interaction of economic and political processes, in particular, about the opportunities and limitations of political interference in the economy, the role of advanced technologies in the redistribution of social wealth and the corresponding economic structures. The issue of economics as a science and the dependence of the development of the country's economy on the level of economic education in the country are discussed. The author shares his opinion about the role of the humanitarian component of education in the university course, highlighting the decisive importance of the teacher's personality in the formation of a common worldview. Education should focus on the ability to think, work with information and draw logical conclusions. The question of the too pragmatic attitude towards fundamental science is discussed, as well as the importance of the world reserve currency for the stable operation of financial markets.


Vadim Rozin

Vadim Rosin’s way to philosophy was not quite usual. He did not come out of the faculty of philosophy, yet he acquired philosophical education in the process of self-education and participation in the seminars of the Moscow methodological circle (MMC), headed by G.P. Shchedrovitsky. One of the first students of G.P. Shchedrovitsky and an active member of the MMC, V. M. Rozin, since the mid 70-ies, is developing his particular way of the methodology based on the ideas and principles of humanitarian approach, semiotics and cultural studies. The second book presents a dialogue about the way in which people are making their decisions, how the moral choice is made. Is the middle way possible, or the division of strategy is necessary between building personal life trajectory and social action in relation to others? A new books by Vadim Rozin are presented by famous methodologist, who studied directly from Georgy Petrovich Shchedrovitsky, Vera Danilova, and Academician, Doctor of Sc. (philosophy), Professor, Institute of Philosophy RAS Vladislav Lectorskii.