The volume contains the articles intitially held as talk at the conference "Is this real? Phenomenologies of the imaginary" at the Central-European Institute of Philosophy" (19-22.11.2013) as result of the research projects “Philosophical Investigations of the Body Experiences: Transdisciplinary Perspectives” (GAP 401/0/1164) and “Relevance of Subjectivity” (M300091201) in the Department of the Contemporary Continental Philosophy of the Institute of Philosophy of the Academy of Sciences, Prague.
The development of children's imagination and fantasy as a source of human creativity, in many respects, occurs in childhood. One of the key spaces for the development of children’s creativity at preschool age is formed by the directorial and plot-role-playing games. It is considered that the learning activities are sources for the development at the early school age. But forms of their organization at school often suppress the imagination and fantasy of children. In child psychology and in ethnography of childhood the phenomenon of fantasy games in utopia countries and imaginary worlds played by younger schoolchildren (sometimes for several years) is known but poorly explored. The article analyzes this phenomenon on the basis of various sources of information about the game (adult autobiographical memories of their own children's game and the materials of the game). In the summer of 2018, during the expedition to the village of Lyadiny (Kargopol District of the Arkhangelsk Region) it was possible to record (including video recording) the living existence of the Peremekha fantasy game. In this game children have been creating imaginary world for several years, mixing information from different sources (movies, anime, video games, experiences of school life, etc.). The author describes the content of the game and ways of its existence. In this particular form of life of the children's community the imagination and the creative beginning of its participants is maintained and developed.
I discuss the ontological nature and heuristic value of psychedelic experience. I argue that psychedelic phenomena may manifest the activity of certain mental formations and brain mechanisms that otherwise remain hidden. Thus, psychedelic phenomena can be heuristic tools and intriguing objects of the scientific study. I consider two types of psychedelic phenomena in particular. The first is the moral cleansing that may accompany a psychedelic trip. The second is the appearance of visual and auditory hallucinations. I establish a unified explanatory ground for the phenomena that are commonly viewed as distinct in their genesis. I explain both types of phenomena as products of the amplified imaginative ability of the brain under a substance’s influence. I suggest that the activation of imagination causes an increased empathy and thus accentuates moral feelings. I propose the hypothesis that hallucinations are mental objects of a quantum nature. I argue that no ontologically separate reality stands behind psychedelic visions.
Imagination as a problem of evolutionary epistemology is in the focus of attention of the authors of the book. Achievements of the modern cognitive science, life sciences, and neuroscience are involved in the analysis of this traditional epistemological problem, i.e. the problem is under discussion here in the interdisciplinary prospects. The ability of productive imagination is considered in the connection with the newest studies in creativity, the human creative capabilities. The consideration of imagination is placed in the context of the modern discussions of mental imagery, of perceptive thinking, of the role of visualization in mind's games, in the mental processes which take place in different states of consciousness. Imagination is studied in connection with the problems of individual, bodily and spiritual, cultural and social components of the cognitive processes.