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As 'n Akrasia [Akrasia is the state of mind in which someone acts against their better judgment through weakness of will.
Akrasia and the Problem of the Unity of Reason, DEREK BAKER
THE THESIS THAT WHATEVER WE PURSUE we pursue sub specie boni seems incompatible with the obvious facts that desires persist after we have judged their objects worthless, and that akrasia is real.
Akrasia in Greek Philosophy: From Socrates to Plotinus, Brill, 2007, 119-38), sets out to analyze Plato's notion of enkrateia, and to explain why enkrateia does not feature in Plato's early dialogues but becomes prominent in Gorgias and the Republic.
It is a world where performance is all, and weariness, the weariness of the self, has long set in; where a Beckettian akrasia is now a circuit-disconnect between wiring and neurotransmission in the brain and wiring and neurotransmission to the muscles of the body.
My aim in reconstructing this argument has been to defend the internal coherency of (at least) that precise aspect of Epictetus' conception of human agency, as well as call attention to the idea of the different degrees of 'availability' of our beliefs or opinions, an idea that has not been carefully analyzed so far and which can become an important element in our understanding of other aspects of Epictetus' psychology, mainly of his conception of akrasia.
Three that are quite salient in the New Testament are the concept of forgiveness as directed by one human being (the victim of an offense) to another (the perpetrator of the offense) and the correlate of repenting and asking forgiveness; the Pauline conception of the divided self (the new anthropos and the old anthropos in struggle for supremacy); and the Pauline-Augustinian conception of weakness of will, which is similar to but quite distinct from the Aristotelian notion of akrasia.
In her essay "Shakespeare and Prudential Psychology: Ambition and Akrasia in Macbeth," Unhae Langis brings out the classical sense of virtue as activity and self-command.
First, Aristotle rejects out of hand the Socratic view that akrasia (incontinence, weakness of will) is impossible (at NE VII.
28) This would occur for example in cases of akrasia where the individual accepts a criterion of correctness even though his or her decisions do not satisfy it.
Sometimes we fail because of the external conditions are not right, but sometimes we fail because of internal factors, as in cases of akrasia or weakness of will.
As the innumerable cases of so-called "weakness of the will," or akrasia, demonstrate, I see that it is perfectly reasonable (or dutiful, or desirable) to do this determinate thing, yet I do not decide myself to do it.
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