Danlanglois wrote:owleye wrote:Knowledge is the state one reaches when their propositional content is beyond being wrong.
So then, you're saying that you don't have any knowledge and neither does anybody else? That can't be right. But, you're not infallible, either. So what gives?
Danlanglois wrote:The relationship between truth, belief, knowledge, judgment, is just not, in my view, what you want it to be, here. This has nothing to do with my wanting to 'soften' Kant. It's not that I care about Kant. Let's back up, I ended w/asserting that nonEuclidean geometry is synthetic a priori judgement. You disagree.
Danlanglois"I note that you repeat the much repeated notion that Euclidean geometry is not 'true'.[/quote]
I said it's true for Kant and Newton (and, as far as I can tell, it was long held to be true by most folks until so-called non-Euclidean geometry was discovered). Note that I've consistently used the term 'Euclid's geometry' here, and not the term 'Euclidean Geometry". This is because Euclidean Geometry today is merely one of the geometries that mathematicians have developed and there are significant differences between Euclid's geometry and what we now call Euclidean geometry. In any case, by saying Kant held it to be true I meant that it is merely a reflection of the times he lived in. I'm not contending that he deliberated over alternatives. It was merely a presupposition that he may have been unaware of.
[quote="Danlanglois wrote: I'm saying that nonEuclidean geometry is synthetic a priori judgment. So, somebody has that opinion. What is wrong w/it? Ask yourself, what is your own opinion of nonEuclidean geometry? And remember, that Euclidean geometry is still as 'true' as it ever was, if not more so.
owleye wrote:Danlanglois wrote:owleye wrote:Knowledge is the state one reaches when their propositional content is beyond being wrong.
So then, you're saying that you don't have any knowledge and neither does anybody else? That can't be right. But, you're not infallible, either. So what gives?
Well, I suppose I feared you picking up on my meager attempt to make my case. However, Kant wouldn't dispute that we are fallible. We do make mistakes. But in order to make a mistake of the sort that is associated with knowledge, there is assumed to be right answers somewhere to judge them by. And Kant was not arguing that we look to authority, as we might do in school, but rather to the outcome of some deduction, as it occurs in mathematics, synthetically, or through logic based deductive arguments. I don't believe he was a Platonist regarding the existence of some realm in which one discovers the right answer, but he definitely portrays our capacity to reason as providing us with knowledge. And that our reasoning takes place over time (and space, as it is elaborated in our spatial intuition) could be understood as having a bearing on our making mistakes, though I haven't read anywhere where Kant thinks of logic and mathematics in that way (as error-prone devices.) In any case, the rightness or wrongness of judgements (as well as knowledge claims), important consideration though they may be, I think my portraying them in that way was not the key to the difference between judgment and knowledge. I should do further research on this, though for now, my thinking is that judgments are what lead to knowledge and beliefs (and positions, speculations, offerings, etc.).
owleye wrote:Danlanglois wrote:The relationship between truth, belief, knowledge, judgment, is just not, in my view, what you want it to be, here. This has nothing to do with my wanting to 'soften' Kant. It's not that I care about Kant. Let's back up, I ended w/asserting that nonEuclidean geometry is synthetic a priori judgement. You disagree.
Well, other than my poor argument, my claim has to do with an interpretation of Kant, not with your assertion. For Kant, space is that of Euclid's geometry, and corresponds to his form of intuition.
owleye wrote:If you are not advocating this position from a Kantian standpoint, then I'm afraid I don't know how to respond to you. For Kant, geometry is the geometry of space and there is only one space that makes geometry (Euclid's) possible.
owleye wrote:Danlanglois wrote:I note that you repeat the much repeated notion that Euclidean geometry is not 'true'.
I said it's true for Kant and Newton (and, as far as I can tell, it was long held to be true by most folks until so-called non-Euclidean geometry was discovered). Note that I've consistently used the term 'Euclid's geometry' here, and not the term 'Euclidean Geometry". This is because Euclidean Geometry today is merely one of the geometries that mathematicians have developed and there are significant differences between Euclid's geometry and what we now call Euclidean geometry.
owleye wrote: In any case, by saying Kant held it to be true I meant that it is merely a reflection of the times he lived in. I'm not contending that he deliberated over alternatives. It was merely a presupposition that he may have been unaware of.
owleye wrote:Danlanglois wrote: I'm saying that nonEuclidean geometry is synthetic a priori judgment. So, somebody has that opinion. What is wrong w/it? Ask yourself, what is your own opinion of nonEuclidean geometry? And remember, that Euclidean geometry is still as 'true' as it ever was, if not more so.
The problem with contending that any geometry is a priori true (i.e., we know its true, a priori) is problematic when there are alternative geometries each of which could be true.
owleye wrote:Synthetic a priori knowledge claims about the world external to us have been abandoned completely and the project has been turned over to scientific investigation as an empirical (a posteriori) matter since at least relativity theory has been accepted, if not earlier when Gauss thought he could measure space.
owleye wrote:Now, you insist on using judgment rather than knowledge and so what I've just said wouldn't apply. But I'm not sure what you have in mind by doing this. What am I supposed to make of it? What is the significance of adding 'a priori' to a synthetically determined judgment? Does it have any bearing on knowledge of the world?
owleye wrote:Note that none of what I've presented here should be thought of as demoting Kant's importance in any way. His writings are a fertile ground for much of modern thought. For me, he is one of the giants in western thought, and I don't think I'm alone in this assessment.
owleye wrote:For one thing, most thinkers today reject the a priori claims to knowledge of space.
owleye wrote: Some of the early logical empiricists considered what Kant provided blah blah
owleye wrote:From my standpoint, I look at it from a biological perspective that the phenomenal and representative space of Kant (that part of our anatomy/physiology) derives from the environment we humans adapted to and makes our representation of it sufficiently accurate from the standpoint of evolutionary theory.
owleye wrote:But the universe in its vastness doesn't enter into that evolutionary history in any significant way, so we will need to extend our sensory apparatus to regions beyond that environment to capture what space is truly about. (Something similar could be said about the universe in the other direction as well, toward its smallest entities.) Measurement theory, it would seem, would have to take into consideration the information revealed in our representation of space at least in some way.
Kant wrote:Geometry is a science that determines the properties of space synthetically and yet a priori. What then must the representation of space be for such a cognition of it to be possible? It must originally be intuition;..
That's the standard view--I don't think Kant would insist on putting it that way. I note, that these are not terribly meaningful propositions, even. 'Space is that of Euclid's geometry', what does that even assert? Geometry is math. Postulates, theorems. You can close your eyes and picture space. You can open your eyes and look up at the sky. Space is clearly not math, eh? What does this assertion that 'space is that of Euclid's geometry' mean? In addition to your supposing that it means something, it's meaningful enough to you, furthermore, you disagree with it. Kant is the moron who made this assertion, with which you do not agree. We could focus this discussion up better, if you tell me what is your own opinion of space. You can figure this one out, right? Did Kant have some special mad skillz for figuring this stuff out? Clearly not, as you think he was wrong. Then puzzle it out, and give me your opinion. I think we can work with an opinion of your own. There is no knowledge here, about the nature of 'space', that is not available to you--so tell me, what is 'space', to you?
Owleye makes a good point. Do you think my last post should be placed as a new topic. I will be guided by your judgement.
owleye wrote:Based on the above, I'm getting the impression that you haven't even studied Kant. In any case, as the significance of my comments are related to his a priori stance on space and time and not on how he distinguished analytic and synthetic, I've digressed away from the topic, so I believe it's time to give it a rest.
owleye wrote:I want thank you for locating a Kantian reference that supports what is commonly understood as Kant's position on the matter (and there are others that I could have located where he distinguishes the geometry of space in its mathematical (pure) sense and geometry in its applied sense of dealing with empirical (phenomenal) space, somewhat different than how we distinguish pure and applied today), but I was too lazy and as I looked over the cited paragraph of Danlanglois, I couldn't believe he was interpreting Kant or even our own intuition so it should be obvious that our references to space demands that space exists in a noumenal sense (apart from our experience of it -- Kant's 'in itself' idea), the way objects of experience are supposed to reference, about which we can know nothing, if we are follow Kant.
owleye wrote:He seems to be missing the entire point of Kant's philosophical contribution. Kant recognizes that we are awash with stimuli but somehow we perceive objects in space over time and Kant is telling us how.
owleye wrote:It's not obvious how we can tell what's going behind the veil of phenomena,..
owleye wrote:..since everything that would inform us of it is embedded in the construction of our phenomenal experience. Moreover, you can't go from your image of space to external space the way you can with objects of experience.
owleye wrote:(There is a flaw in his systematic account, but it requires a different view of what is being represented than how Kant understood it. It is also helpful to recognize that we are evolved creatures subject to natural selection by a "noumenal" reality, i.e, our historically determined environment.)
owleye wrote:Space is considered an object insofar as geometry might treat it as such, and Kant in the Prolegomena does detail how this is to be understood, but it being an object of mathematics is quite different than it being an object of outer experience, despite Kant's intuitional foundation of both mathematics and experience.
Neri wrote:Could both geometric systems possess apodeictic truth when both are mutually contradictory? If so, how?
Lomax wrote:Well there are quite a few problems from Quine's perspective
Positor wrote:I don't quite understand why Quine ties analyticity to necessity; they seem to me to be two separate things. They may be co-extensive, but that is not self-evident..So Quine's idea that the term 'necessarily' is 'already wrapped up with a notion of analyticity' seems wrong..That being so, I don't see how the problem of distinguishing between necessities and contingencies hinders the task of distinguishing between analyticity and syntheticity.
Lomax wrote:This is one of the more common criticisms of Quine, actually, that he confuses the epistemological, metaphysical and logical concepts when it suits him. For Quine the problem is that "necessity" is no better-elucidated than "analyticity"; for him, these terms, along with a bunch of others, belong to the same family of suspect and philosophically artificial terms. I think he says they form a "dubious circle of language" or something like that..
Positor wrote:Can't we make two terms synonymous just by saying (or rather, implicitly agreeing through usage) that they are synonymous?..I don't see that a purely logical statement such as "Necessarily, every creature with a heart is a creature with a heart" has any metaphysical content. Such a statement is true regardless of any actual physical or metaphysical state of affairs..I think every analytic statement expresses a necessity.
Lomax wrote:Well, I think you get to the point here.. The proponent of analyticity needs synonymy to explain why two terms are interchangeable in logical propositions, but he also needs to explain the logical form itself in terms of meaning somehow. This is another part of the problem: at least one member of the logical vocabulary surely can't be explained purely in terms of definition.
Lomax wrote:Logic isn't the same as epistemology, anyway; it's the latter problem which concerns Quine here.
Lomax wrote:So here lies the pragmatic core of the dispute; do we or don’t we need a theory of analyticity and is there any evidence to persuade the skeptics of it? Quine thinks no to both, so he dismisses it as “an unemperical dogma of the empiricists; a metaphysical article of faith”..Okay, so now we have the Carnap line of argument, that analytic truths are true because of the form, rather than the content.
Lomax wrote:Okay, so now we have the Carnap line of argument, that analytic truths are true because of the form, rather than the content. First, I have to ask: what determines each of these things? Would you say that the logical vocabulary and the syntax, together, determine the “form”, while the non-logical vocabulary determines the content? In other words, a logical truth is one in which only the logical constants occur *essentially*?
Lomax wrote: It isn’t good enough to look at a statement and say “that is false simply because it is a contradiction”.
Lomax wrote:I think such probabilities are just intensional.
Lomax wrote:The problem is that you resisted the notion of a universe where it's neither raining nor not-raining, simply because of what "not" means. In other words, you said that "it is neither raining nor not raining" is false because it is analytically false..The problem for Quine is that not every logical expression can be explained in terms of definition..Carnap's tactic is to simply specify some sentences of language as true, and to give rules for deriving further sentences from these specified ones..
Positor wrote:I am quite happy with a generalised scepticism about certainty. It seems reasonable to say "we can't be absolutely certain about *anything*.
Positor wrote:Well, science is constrained by experience; logic has no equivalent constraint.
Lomax wrote:Okay, but of course, at least from Quine's perspective, you need to show this. Mill, Reichenbach, Quine, Goodman, and various others all claim that logic does have this constraint.
For purposes of the question I present, you may take “apodeictic” to mean certain. It does not matter whether Kant used that expression. Its meaning is germane to the issue. If the word bothers you, you may, substitute “certain truth” “unimpeachable truth,” “absolute truth,” “unquestionable truth,” “or any other expression that conveys your idea [which, by the way, was not Kant’s] that mathematics has certain truth everywhere and forever because it is synthetic a priori—but, please, no more quibbling.
Neri wrote:Further, your aversion to the use of the word, “truth” was apparently not shared by Kant.
Neri wrote:You will notice in the material I quoted that Kant speaks of the difference between truth and dreaming and of speaks of cognition taking illusion for truth.
Neri wrote:I dare say he has used the word hundreds of time in the Prolegomena and The Critique of Pure Reason.
Neri wrote:There is no reason why he would not do so. So, please do not attempt to evade the question on the false premise that truth played not part in Kant's thinking.
Neri wrote:You may assume that, although communication of a limited sort would be possible between humans and the other animated beings, neither side could explain their particular “representation of phenomena” with “reference to the receptivity of their sensibility” [using Kantian jargon so there is no misunderstanding]—any more than a sighted person can explain what it means to see to a person who was blind all his life.
Neri wrote:If you understand Kant, you will admit that the geometries of the two species would be synthetic a priori as to each even though one would be completely incomprehensible to the other.
Neri wrote:When I say that the two geometries are mutually inconsistent I mean just that—that they are completely irreconcilable. This would necessarily follow, according to Kant, because the “representation of phenomena” with “reference to the receptivity of the sensibilities” of the two species would rest upon “pure intuitions” of an entirely different sort.
Neri wrote:Therefore, the question remains: can both geometries be apodeictically true (in the sense I have used that expression) when they are mutually and irreconcilably contradictory? What is your answer?
Kant wrote:"That in which alone the sensations can be posited and ordered in a certain form, cannot itself be sensation; and therefore, while the matter of all appearance is given to us a posteriori only, its form must lie ready for the sensations a priori in the mind, and so must allow of being considered apart from all sensation."
Kant wrote:"The pure form of sensible intuitions in general, in which all the manifold of intuition is intuited in certain relations, must be found in the mind a priori. This pure form of sensibility may also itself be called pure intuition."
Kant wrote:"The apodeictic certainty of all geometrical propositions, and the possibility of their a priori construction, is grounded in this a priori necessity of space. Were this representation of space a concept acquired a posteriori, and derived from outer experience in general, the first principles of mathematical determination would be nothing but perceptions. They would therefore all share in the contingent character of perception; that there should be only one straight line between two points would not be necessary, but only what experience always teaches."
Kant wrote:"Space is a necessary a priori representation, which underlies all outer intuitions. We can never represent to ourselves the absence of space, though we can quite well think it as empty of objects. It must therefore be regarded as the condition of the possibility of appearances, and not as a determination dependent on them."
Danlanglois wrote:I read this as your response to my asking you for your own opinion, you refuse. Kind of interesting. There is a point, about digressing away from the topic, I suppose. Quine's Two Dogmas of Empiricism, then.
Danlanglois wrote:I posted a fair amount about Kant, and some quotes of my own. I'm pleased with these additional Kant quotes, and of course already familiar with them.
Danlanglois wrote:This is the stuff that I find interesting. Space does not exist in a noumenal sense, and that's not Kant.
Danlanglois wrote:Your notion that Kant distinguishes the geometry of space in its mathematical (pure) sense and geometry in its applied sense of dealing with empirical (phenomenal) space sounds like Carnap.
Danlanglois wrote:I don't really disagree with this point--we are awash with stimuli but somehow etc. There is a Schopenhauer quote--'objects are objects of perception not of sensation'. Why would it seem that I disagree?
Danlanglois wrote:There is nothing going on behind the veil of phenomena. You're thinking of the things themselves? This is rather more Platonic than Kantian.
Danlanglois wrote:I'm surprised that this is so difficult. I've asked what is space to you? You use these phrases like 'external space'. What do you know of external space, and how do you know it, and how was Kant wrong?
Danlanglois wrote:'quite different'--I think it's worth looking closer at this.
owleye wrote:As it happens it was the topic of my thesis in grad school, but I wasn't even thinking that you needed to have even that depth of understanding of Kant; I was only assuming that you were well read and had good reasons for thinking that Kant should be interpreted in ways other than the commonly understood reading. I'm not a Kant scholar, and though what I've learned about it is from reading almost everything he wrote (in translation) and much of the secondary literature, I would readily bow to those who are smarter and more knowledgeable than I on the subject. I'm very much an amateur and am willing to be wrong. My frustration was based on my not seeing that your Kantian interpretation was based on your having derived it from a careful reading.
owleye wrote:Danlanglois wrote:This is the stuff that I find interesting. Space does not exist in a noumenal sense, and that's not Kant.
What's not Kant? To me it is exactly what Kant is saying.
owleye wrote:Space is a form of intuition and synthetically injected into our phenomenal experience.
owleye wrote:It's truth is a priori on that basis, according to Kant.
owleye wrote:The representation of space respecting its use -- the space of our observations -- is how objects in space are experienced.
Kant wrote:Now an a priori concept (a non-empirical concept) either already contains a pure intuition in itself, in which case it can be constructed; or else it contains nothing but the synthesis of possible intuitions, which are not given a priori, in which case one can well judge synthetically and a priori by its means but only discursively, in accordance with concepts, and never intuitively through the construction of the concept.
owleye wrote:The representation of space respecting its use -- the space of our observations -- is how objects in space are experienced. Objects in space refer to those objects in themselves as they are apart from our experience of them.
owleye wrote:Well, I'm a representationalist..
owleye wrote:.., and it's the position of representationalists that what our mind represents in perceptual (outer) experience represents that which it is a representation of. Kant is a representationist, like Shopenhauer.
Kant wrote:Our exposition therefore establishes the reality, that is, the objective validity, of space in respect of whatever can be presented to us outwardly as object,..We assert, then, the empirical reality of space, as regards all possible outer experience;..With the sole exception of space there is no subjective representation, referring to something outer, which could be entitled [at once] objective [and]
a priori..space is not a form of things inhering in themselves as their intrinsic property
Schopenhauer wrote:This ideality of Time and Space is the key to every true system of metaphysics; because it provides for quite another order of things than is to be met with in the domain of nature. This is why Kant is so great.
Schopenhauer wrote:No truth therefore is more certain,..that all that exists for knowledge, and therefore this whole world, is only object in relation to subject/perception of a perceiver,..it is true of time and space themselves,..
Schopenhauer wrote:not time only but also space, and the whole content of both of them, i.e., all that proceeds from causes and motives, has a merely relative existence..
Schopenhauer wrote:I shall call time and space the principium individuationis, borrowing an expression from the old schoolmen, and I beg to draw attention to this, once for all.
Schopenhauer wrote:the demand for the existence of the object outside the representation of the subject, and also for a real being of the actual thing distinct from its action, has no meaning at all, and is a contradiction.
owleye wrote:The objects in perception (as phenomenal objects) represent objects in themselves (as noumenal objects),..
owleye wrote:The objects in perception (as phenomenal objects) represent objects in themselves (as noumenal objects),..about which, for Kant, we can know nothing.
Kant wrote:..when the understanding calls an object in a certain relationship a mere phenomenon, as well as this relationship, it also forms a representation of an object in itself’.
owleye wrote:The moon as a phenomenal object exists but in its representation, represents the moon as it exists in itself and as such exists apart from our experience of it. It is what is referenced when we point to the moon in the sky.
owleye wrote:We are referring to the object as it exists independent of our pointing to it -- which is to say while we are pointing to the image that is our shared experience of it, what we are referring to by pointing to it is its reality apart from its appearance. (I should add that the correspondence aspect of this (though elaborated in great detail by Kant in the CPR) is of the image of the object to the real object.
Kant wrote:..but in doing so it also sets limits to itself, since it cannot know noumena through the categories, and so it can think them only by calling them an ‘unknown something’’
owleye wrote:I have a different sort of correspondence in mind,..
owleye wrote:I have a different sort of correspondence in mind, one that is probably accepted by most representationalists today -- namely the correspondence has to do with the information content that produced the representation of the phenomena with that of the information content associated in some way with the real object. Also see next section.)
I'm getting the impression that you are not a representationalist.
owleye wrote:My interpretation of Kant is that he was blocked into thinking that we can't know anything about the noumenal world, the world apart from our experience of it, and the reason was not just because it didn't fit with his overall project, but because he didn't have an understanding of the modern interpretation of 'information'.
owleye wrote:His bottom line is sensation, which, as I see it, is something already formed after our brain synthesizes what our sense organs are stimulated by and process.
owleye wrote:They are the end product of a process which takes stimuli as potential information carriers which the brain makes use of in forming representations of the world in conscious experience. Kant is right to say the basic entity of experience is sensation, but that's as far as he goes with it.
owleye wrote:He isn't aware that the stimuli that eventually become the sensation derive from the information about the world carried by it.
owleye wrote:Our representations of that world are based on information about it somehow being mediated by information carriers to our sense organs.
owleye wrote:In Kant's a priori world, the mind is solely responsible, essentially out of whole cloth,
owleye wrote:..in delivering that world to us in the form of phenomenal experience. Once Darwin's theory comes along, suddenly the a priori world disappears in favor of one based on its evolutionary history. The correspondence is contained within that history.
owleye wrote:You're right that Kant's world is from the rationalist side of the fence, unlike, say in England, where naturalists seem to be born. Nevertheless it was Gauss, the German, who got the ball rolling on the possibility of a non-Euclidean geometry, and even telling us that he had a proof of it, and perhaps he was leaning on his own intuitional genius as he never got around to writing it down.
owleye wrote: In any case, he believed he could measure the earth in some way (using some sort of triangulation) to determine the geometry of space, which I'm pretty sure was faulty in his presentation of it, but I suppose the principle might be adequate. The main implication of measuring it though was Gauss's way of showing disapproval with Kant's a priori conclusions. In any case, the discovery of non-Euclidean geometry itself doesn't take us to Einstein's theory of space-time. There's much more to the story as it is contained all throughout the 19th century.
owleye wrote:Danlanglois wrote:
'quite different'--I think it's worth looking closer at this.
I've probably overstated it by the use of 'quite'..It's probably subtle, as Kant himself is, in the way he makes his various distinctions. I suspect a google or two would help me refresh my memory more than I've made use of above, but it was gratuitous anyway, so I'll let that pass.
owleye wrote:My interpretation of Kant is that he was blocked into thinking that we can't know anything about the noumenal world, the world apart from our experience of it, and the reason was not just because it didn't fit with his overall project, but because he didn't have an understanding of the modern interpretation of 'information'. His bottom line is sensation, which, as I see it, is something already formed after our brain synthesizes what our sense organs are stimulated by and process. They are the end product of a process which takes stimuli as potential information carriers which the brain makes use of in forming representations of the world in conscious experience. Kant is right to say the basic entity of experience is sensation, but that's as far as he goes with it. He isn't aware that the stimuli that eventually become the sensation derive from the information about the world carried by it. Our representations of that world are based on information about it somehow being mediated by information carriers to our sense organs. In Kant's a priori world, the mind is solely responsible, essentially out of whole cloth, in delivering that world to us in the form of phenomenal experience.
owleye wrote:Once Darwin's theory comes along, suddenly the a priori world disappears in favor of one based on its evolutionary history. The correspondence is contained within that history.
Neri wrote:The problem I presented was not a so-called thought experiment.
Neri wrote:My inquiry was designed to explicate the basic anti-realism of Kant’s philosophy--something which has apparently escaped you.
Neri wrote:Kant would answer my question in the following manner:
Because it is the differing pure intuitions (differences in things as they appear) that give rise to the irreconcilable contradictions between human geometry and that of the other animate creatures, each geometry is true TO each species, provided that it is internally coherent with the objects of sense as experienced by them, but neither is true IN ITSELF [in the sense that neither refers to things in themselves). Thus, although each geometry cannot be conceived as being false by the species that developed it, neither geometry actually corresponds to things in themselves. ”We only cognize in things a priori that which we ourselves place in them.” [Critique, ibid., p.xxx]. The same reasoning would apply to other fields of mathematics and to science as well.
Neri wrote:Kant makes it quite clear that of 1+1=2 is true only to us and not in itself.
Neri wrote:Kant admits of a truth corresponding to noumenal reality
Neri wrote:..but says that it is unattainable by us.
Neri wrote:He tries to defend his epistemology from the charge of mere illusion,
Neri wrote:..by saying that our ideas have truth value by reason of their internal coherence—something, for example, not possessed in dreams.
Neri wrote:The absolute (noumenal) truth of science was denied by Kant in a single observation:
“The objects [of sense] must conform to our cognition.” (Critique, ibid, p.xxix).
Neri wrote:The truth of science rests upon verification by observation and experimentation;
Neri wrote:..but these are themselves only objects of sense arising from pure intuition and as such contain only “that which we ourselves place in them.”
Neri wrote:However, we do not create predicted effects willy-nilly but only when they arise with sufficient coherence from the representations arising out our peculiarly human intuitions.
Neri wrote:Again, I do not say that I agree with this anti-realist position, but what Kant said is what he said.
Neri wrote:What does this mean, so far as Kant is concerned, with respect to humans versus the other animated creatures we posited? If the latter have developed scientific principles as extensive as ours based upon representations arising out of their own particular intuitions, there science will predict certain results which will be evident to them but not to us.
Neri wrote:Conversely, they will not experience that the things predicted by our science actually happen.
Neri wrote:They will experience things that we do not, and we will experience things that they do not.
Neri wrote:Indeed, one species may well experience that a given thing happened, when the other, in the same circumstances, would experience that something entirely different has happened.
Neri wrote:Kant would say that this curious state of affairs is due to the fact that neither species experiences the world as it is in itself.
Neri wrote:All of this raises another question:
What would be the result if the senses of animated creatures from another distant planet were so constituted as to represent objects as they are in themselves?
Neri wrote:For the purpose of furthering the understanding of Kant, I would be interested in hearing answers from any member of this forum.
Kant wrote:“In natural theology, in thinking an object [God], who not only can never be an object of intuition to us but cannot be an object of sensible intuition even to himself, we are careful to remove the conditions of time and space from his intuition–for all his knowledge must be intuition, and not thought, which always involves limitations”
Danlanglois wrote:I'm not interested in playing quien es macho Kant scholar--I'm perfectly willing to stipulate your credentials as a Kant scholar, esp. if it's the topic of your thesis in grad school, I'm simply pleased that you do find this interesting, great. It's not unusual to encounter posturing about who knows most, I once had a conversation with a college professor (my professor), where I asked him if he was familiar with Schopenhauer, and he replied 'I've read Schopenhauer *in German*.' Which, I didn't doubt his credentials, he had me at hello, I was paying for the privilege of being in that academic environment, but his comment, actually comments, like this, did raise doubts in my mind. I don't think the question here, is who is the smartest bear in the room, you're being quite wordy here, about the scholarly legitimacy of our discussion--does somebody, then, have to be, in the end, labeled an imposter? Not for my sake.
Danlanglois wrote:I note how this is not Kantian terminology, precisely, to my ears. Though, the theory may seem plausible enough to you. Synthetically injected into our phenomenal experience. I'm not absolutely certain how to understand this, it sounds like one possible Kant interpretation among others. It sounds a bit preoccupied with empiricism. I'm not precisely disagreeing, just wondering if I can take this as straight Kant exegesis.
Danlanglois wrote:Into our phenomenal experience. Do I take it, that our phenomenal experience has a formal and a material component. You're musing on space, as a formal component of our experience. I suppose that I get that, I do hesitate over new jargon like 'synthetically injected'--maybe I can get used to it, I'm just hesitant over what is at stake here? Would that be the only way to put it, when Kant didn't put it that way?
Danlanglois wrote:owleye wrote:It's truth is a priori on that basis, according to Kant.
Would there be any point, to my red-flagging your use of the word truth, in this context? I'm at the point of thinking I need to choose my battles, but still, I choose this one. Can we have a moratorium on informal usages of the word truth? Kant is not simply a realist. Space is empirically real, it's an 'appearance'. These points have, at least, a different emphasis, that 'its truth is a priori'. Consider, as a thought experiment, that God might see things differently. As you are not God, though you may or may not be a theist, so you are not a dogmatic realist, in the same sense that an omniscient god has the alternative of being.
Danlanglois wrote:There is no apt Kant quote here, making this assertion? The representation of space respecting its use. Here is a Kant quote: '‘the original representation of space is an a priori intuition, not a concept.'
Danlanglois wrote:Objects in space refer to those objects in themselves. At this point, I lack patience, for your accusations that I haven't read Kant. Shall I continue, even? Objects in space refer to those objects in themselves? As they are? Apart from our experience of them? What does 'refer' mean, here? You are interpreting Kant, here. This is a stubborn refusal to take him on board, in my view. Objects are emperical objects. There is (spatial) experience of empirical objects. There are no objects in themselves. You're thinking of 'things in themselves'? I can just about bite my tongue here, until I see that your next sentence is 'This is the common understanding of Kant's position on the matter'.
Danlanglois wrote:Look, if my interpretation of Kant is that far out of the mainstream, then I don't know, I guess I've got hold of something even more interesting than I had thought.
Danlanglois wrote:There are not objects in themselves. Are we truly grappling, with Kant’s distinctive account of our cognition of space. You are making much less of this, than is there, I suspect, w/apologies. Why is Kant famous, why is he a big deal? Can you distinguish his view from, say, Locke's view? One of Locke’s philosophical claims to fame, of course, is his development of the distinction between primary and secondary qualities of objects. The issue involves a distinction between qualities of objects that actually belong to the object itself, and qualities of objects that we impose on them. In contrast with primary qualities, there are also secondary qualities that are spectator-dependent: we impose the attributes onto objects, and these include colors, sounds, and tastes.
Danlanglois wrote:If you like, tell me, do you take Kant's transcendental idealism to be a species of representative realism? How can they be distinguished?
DanLanglois wrote:Kant wrote:Our exposition therefore establishes the reality, that is, the objective validity, of space in respect of whatever can be presented to us outwardly as object,..We assert, then, the empirical reality of space, as regards all possible outer experience;..With the sole exception of space there is no subjective representation, referring to something outer, which could be entitled [at once] objective [and]
a priori..space is not a form of things inhering in themselves as their intrinsic property
I'm going to some trouble here, is that not just the quote? Kant was not a representationalist, then? I'm hitting that idea pretty hard? How invested in this were you?
Danlanglois wrote:Then, do you still find it possible to assert this:owleye wrote:The objects in perception (as phenomenal objects) represent objects in themselves (as noumenal objects),..
You might want to assert this, but it's not Schopenhauer. What about Kant?
Danlanglois wrote:Noumenal objects, is not a term that Kant ever used, is it? Rhetorical question. You challenge my scholarship, google up then, it's all in the public domain. Take 30 seconds, where did Kant ever use the term noumenal objects. Perhaps I am being a bit persnickety. What I mean is, noumena are ‘intellectual’ beings not because they are *objects* of intellectual intuition (they cannot be such since human beings can only intuit objects on a sensory basis).
Danlanglois wrote:Kant wrote:..when the understanding calls an object in a certain relationship a mere phenomenon, as well as this relationship, it also forms a representation of an object in itself’.
That is to say, the understanding involuntarily constructs a concept of a thing-in-itself, as that which is behind the appearance, whenever we experience an object. That is, it is an experience of an appearance. It is a phenomenal experience of an appearance. Kant sees, or if you like, I see it this way, that this concept of noumenon as a necessary bi-product of our understanding in relation to a phenomenal object. Put it this way, for Kant, as I understand it, noumena can never be objects because by their very nature they are inaccessible for the senses.
Danlanglois wrote:owleye wrote:The moon as a phenomenal object exists but in its representation, represents the moon as it exists in itself and as such exists apart from our experience of it. It is what is referenced when we point to the moon in the sky.
Are you familiar with this assertion: 'the concept of a noumenon is merely a limiting concept to curb the pretensions of sensibility, and it is therefore only of negative use'. What I take to be elaborated in great detail, is that the fact that the concept of noumenon can only be taken in a negative sense limits the application of the categories exclusively to objects of experience, thereby restricting the domain of that which can be known in the positive sense.
Danlanglois wrote:I'm getting the impression that you are not a representationalist.
Danlanglois wrote:quote="owleye"]My interpretation of Kant is that he was blocked into thinking that we can't know anything about the noumenal world, the world apart from our experience of it, and the reason was not just because it didn't fit with his overall project, but because he didn't have an understanding of the modern interpretation of 'information'.
Danlanglois wrote:owleye wrote:His bottom line is sensation, which, as I see it, is something already formed after our brain synthesizes what our sense organs are stimulated by and process.
Kant's bottom line is sensation? I'm not sure what you are getting into, here. My bottom line is not sensation, I suppose that part of my real bottom line, in Kant interpretation, is that there are stages to 'constructing' experience, and different mental abilities involved. That's very general. On the specifics, I'm quite impressed with Kant himself.
Danlanglois wrote:Summed up, my view is this: Mathematics is synthetic a priori judgment, very much as Kant asserted. Including nonEuclidean Geometry. Everybody who sticks their neck out with an opinion about philosophy of mathematics for the last 300 years, has distinguish his position from Kant's--Kant is always taken as the inadequate starting point. But the business about math being synthetic a priori judgment, he was dead right, I think. Again, there's much to be expounded, about what that means, especially the synthetic part. But he wins.
Positor wrote:What role, then, according to Kant, do stimuli play? Why did he think sense organs are necessary at all? What did he think was their function, if not to receive raw "information" about the world?
Positor wrote:See the sentences I have bolded above. They seem to be saying either (a) that Kant believed sensations are entirely arbitrary, or (b) that he believed they are a synthesis of stimuli which are themselves entirely arbitrary. But that cannot be right, since Kant was an empirical realist. In Kant's view, what provided the interface between our experience and the world?
Positor wrote:Why should evolutionary history be considered uniquely effective in confirming the existence of noumena? Why should it be any more effective in this respect than any other theory of life (e.g. creationism), or any cosmological theory?
Kant wrote:If we have a proposition 'which in being thought is *thought as necessary*, it is an a priori judgment'
Neri wrote:This is the meaning of Kant’s statements: 1) “We only cognize in things a priori that which we ourselves place in them.” and (2) “Objects must conform to our cognition.” Supra.
Neri wrote:Kant makes it clear that these same principles apply to science:
“All synthetic principles a priori are nothing more than principles of possible experience and can never be referred to things in themselves, but to appearances as objects of experience. And hence pure mathematics as well as a pure science of nature can never be referred to anything more than mere appearances, and can only represent either that which makes appearance in general possible, or else that which, as it is derived from these principles, must always be capable of being represented in some possible experience.”
Prolegomena, ibid., p. 60.
Neri wrote:None of this says that a blind, deaf mute such as Helen Keller, must have had different pure intuitions from the rest of humanity. The same pure intuitions were built into her cognition regardless of her sensory deficits, because she was human. That is, she had the same pure intuitions of time and space as the rest of us.
Neri wrote:As Kant put it:
“We know nothing more than our own of perceiving them, which is peculiar to us, and which, though not of necessity pertaining to every animated being, is so to the whole human race.” (supra)
[I think we may all agree that a dog is not a member of the human race.]
Neri wrote:Again, my explanation is of Kant’s views, not mine.
Neri wrote:Therefore, this explication is not to be taken as an argument in support of Kantianism.
Neri wrote:Regarding the second question I presented, the following language of Kant should be informative:
“It would be quite otherwise if the senses were so constituted as to represent objects as they are in themselves. For then it would not by any means follow from the representation of space, with all it properties, serves to the geometer as an a priori foundation, that this foundation and everything which is thence inferred must be so in nature. The space of the geometer would be considered a mere fiction, and it would not be credited with objective validity...” Prolegomena, ibid., pp. 34,35
Neri wrote:Thus, if there were a species of animated creatures that experienced objects as they are in themselves, such creatures would know that objective reality does not contain such a thing as space.
Neri wrote:According to Kant, motion and change are phenomena (in the sense of appearances) derived from the pure intuitions of time and space. That is, motion and change are discursive and not a priori but rather depend upon time and space to be experienced.
Neri wrote:As he put it:
“Motion, for example, presupposes the perception of something movable. But space considered in itself contains nothing movable, consequently motion must be something which is found in space only through experience—in other words, is an empirical datum. In like manner, Transcendental Aesthetic cannot number the conception of change among its data a priori; for time itself does not change, but only something in time. To acquire the conception of change, therefore the perception of some existing object and of the succession of its determinations, in one word, experience, is necessary.” Critique, ibid., p.13.
Neri wrote:As this concerns the animated creatures presently under consideration-- because they are able to sense the world as it is in itself
Neri wrote:.., they would not only regard time and space as mere fictions..
Neri wrote:..but motion and change as well; for they would occupy the “really real” world—a world without time and space where nothing ever moves or changes, indeed, a world where absolutely nothing ever happens.
Neri wrote:The above necessarily follows from what Kant is saying. I do not personally believe it, but we are here discussing Kant’s philosophy, not mine. If you are interested in my views, they are contained in several hundred posts which you may access under my name in this forum. It is not possible to explain them all in a single post...if you now have a clearer understanding of Kant’s anti-realism, I invite you to reread the post in the instant topic containing my critique of Kantianism--with a view to comprehending it, instead of dismissing it out of hand.
Neri wrote:My general views may be described as Process Realism.
Neri wrote:All of these questions resolve themselves into two more basic ones:
1) Does truth have value independent of any judgment of it usefulness?
2) Are adults entitled to know the truth, or is truth only the province of the select few who think they know what is best for the many?
I would submit that only a scoundrel or a fraud would answer these last questions in the negative. When we grow up, we must put away the things of children and have the courage to accept the world as it really is. We must seek the truth and settle for nothing less, even though it may shatter our most cherished beliefs; for the desire for truth is at the core of what we are.
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