I want to say at the outset of this introduction, that the choice I made concerning the style of presentation of this book was greatly influenced by Mel Levin’s book and method, ‘A Mind at a Time’. First of all, it helped me to overcome many of the inferiority complexes that I had developed since my early childhood, along with the depressions that I had developed, involved around the fact, that I thought that I was not allowed to think the things I was thinking about and was intuitively and intellectually or rationally thinking and dreaming and visioning and visualizing about, throughout my whole childhood, puberty and growing up adulthood. And it helped me to leave behind the prejudices and anger that had crippled my upbring, and learning processes and professional aspirations. I am also thankful to my Japanese wife Mayumi and my two lovely daughters Keiko and Reika, for leaving me alone in solitude to accomplish my difficult philosophic goals, the last 16 to 17 some years of my working life. And I thank all my friends and supporters from DIES for their encouragement to go on and not to give up in the accomplishment of my life dreams.
There is a conscious autobiographic element throughout this book, and I hope it does not offend the scientific as well as the general curious reader. I chose this way, because it reflects the individual-personal and also the collective cultural-historical aspects of my life, that moved me in the first, second and third place, to write this book. They were basic fundamental factors, as you will discover them in the process of reading this book.
Mel Levine says:
“Each of us is endowed with a highly complex, inborn circuitry – creating innumerable branching pathways of options and obstacles. While some of us have brains that are wired to handle a lot of information at once, others have brains that can absorb and process only a little information at a time (often with greater accuracy). While some of us have brains that store and retrieve from memory with precision and speed, other possess brains that access facts more slowly or with less precision. Some kinds of minds prefer to dream up their own original thoughts rather than drawing upon the ideas of others, and vice versa.
Although some of us have minds that are more comfortable and effective visualizing complex political or even religious ideas, others are apt to do much of their thinking in words and sentences. So it is that we all live with minds wired to excel in one area and crash in another. Hopefully, we discover and engage in good matches between our kind of mind and our pursuits in life.
Our abilities and inabilities are tested and challenged throughout our school years and in the course of every day of our careers. We all face the never-ending looming threat of failure to meet expectations – both the expectations that are imposed upon us and those we set for ourselves…
Some price, modest or substantial, must be paid any time a mind is forced or attempts to learn or perform something in a way for which it is not wired. This happens to all of us from time to time, but the outcome is tragic when the mismatching of a mind to a set of important tasks becomes a daily event and when that poor fit is not understood. This phenomenon takes place every day in schools everywhere.”1
“Higher thinking includes the ability to problem-solve and reason logically, to form and make use of concepts (such as mass in physics), to understand how and when rules apply, and to get the point of a complicated idea. Higher thinking also takes in critical and creative thinking.”2
“Another working memory challenge entails temporarily binding together different parts of memory. As mentioned, active working memory is the place where short-term memory and long-term memory work together. If a teacher asks.
- Fats, containing carbon, hydrogen and oxygen.
- Carbohydrates, containing carbon, hydrogen and oxygen, the hydrogen and oxygen being present in the proportions in which they form water. Ask a student a question, that inquiry enters active working memory via short-term memory. The student then needs to hold that question in place in active working memory while searching long-term memory and doing some reasoning to come up with a response. It would be frustrating if he forgot the question while looking for the answer. But we often see children who do forget the question when they are only partway through the task. They literally forget what they’re doing.”3
“Active working memory craves peace of mind. Anxiety infects it like a computer virus. If you’re feeling sad and preoccupied, there may not be room for much else in your mind’s working memory.”4
“Last but not least, information gets files in long-term memory in patterns and rules, which include a wide range of experiences, information patterns, and other sets of data that we repeatedly meet up with in life. A pattern might be the arrangement of letters in a word or the shape of a right triangle or a particular social scenario (such as a disagreement with a friend) that keeps recurring in our lives. Closely associated with these patterns are various rules that help us predict patterns.”5
“Brainstorming is a subsidiary of creativity, an activity that entails starting with little or nothing and generating a product or innovative collection of insights, often making liberal use of creative thinking. Creativity and brainstorming are such compatible brain allies that I link them tightly in discussions. Some students will grab any chance they get to engage in freewheeling brainstorming, while others stubbornly resist the challenge. They’d much rather have their teacher give them a topic to write about and tell them how wide the margins need to be than come up with their own ideas and formats.”6
On the basis of my former book ‘Afro-Egyptian Method and the History of Western Philosophy’, I have tried to expand in this book the boundaries, content, context, of both the historical meanings and development of the triadic methodology and how it has both reformed traditional philosophy, as well as how it has criticized and reformed the dualisms and shortcomings of metaphysics, causistics, formalistics and the scepticisms of Western philosophy, science, mathematics etc..
I try in this book to elaborate more on how Western, Eastern, and also the various sciences and arts have profited by this development. For example to eliminate the mythos of character, personality, individuality and sociality problems of originality, creativity and learning psychology. And all this not on the foundations of abstraction, but in the light of the genetic- biological and cultural, intercultural context analysis. Trying also to dispense of the mythos of remembering and forgetting, making all things more accessible to common understanding for all. As Mel Levine says, all people and their children have the potential ability to understand their own mind, in their own personal cultural potential way of doing and thinking.
Already at 5 years of age I had a conscious vision-intuition of becoming a renown thinker and mental discoverer. And when asked by my mother, at this age, I replied this is what I want to be, and nothing else. She replied this sounds something like Leonardo da Vinci and that I did not have such a capacity, being a poor dumb negro coming from an uneducated past. But irregardless of all the opposition I faced in my own culture and family and in the society I grew up in, I stuck to this vision.
And again at 18 years of age, only to mention a few penetrating experiences, my mother asked me again, and during this period I was starting to read lavishly everything that moved me at that time; like philosophy, psychology, the technology of airplanes, books about art, creativity, foundational genetics and other general subjects. My mother asked me again and I responded very naturally (my great aunt, the sister of my grandmother on my mothers side, whom I loved very much because she was the only one in the family that I could talk with about intellectual, anthropological, scientific and philosophical things. From her I received most all of my books), I very definitely wanted to become a systematic methodologist.
Of course this was a big shock for my mother, therefore my reply was that I was fully aware of the consequences and to acquire this goal, I needed and was willing to study at least 20 years to acquire this goal.
The concrete connection with the triadic method started when I was a soldier in the American Army in Berlin Germany (1956-1958). After my basic training, which lasted 6 weeks, I was sent to West-Berlin with the American Occupation Army. Shortly after being their, as usual, (as I have been doing my whole childhood and adulthood), I was looking for books to find my way in the maze of all the problems of learning, thinking, creativity, religion, science, logics, mathematical philosophy etc. And in the bookstore at the army base at Mac Nair in Berlin, I found the book ‘The Philosophy of Kant’, edited and introduced by Carl J. Friedrich, New York, 1949. I immediately bought this book and read it lavishly during every spare moment. What fascinated me the most, and I have held this fascination to this very day, was that it verified my foundational quest and vision of discovering a way to systematize and clarify the triad between analysis, synthesis and dialectics, and to develop this to a triadic method and eventually after many years of research, fieldwork, intellectual, introspective and historical training developed it to a systematic methodology for all the sciences, technology etc.7
Here are a few quotations out of this book to give the reader an insight into what I mean with the above.
“Transcendental philosophy is the idea of a science for which the critique of pure reason has to lay down the complete architectonic plan. That is to say, it has to guarantee, as following from principles, the completeness and certainty of the structure in all its parts. It is the system of all principles of pure reason. And if this critique is not itself to be entitled a transcendental philosophy, it is solely because, to be a complete system, it would also have to contain an exhaustive analysis of the whole of a priori human knowledge…
Transcendental philosophy is therefore a philosophy of pure and merely speculative reason. All that is practical, so far as it contains motives, relates to feelings, and these belong to the empirical sources of knowledge.”8
“First of all we must observe that while all judgments based on experience are empirical, (i.e., have their foundation in immediate sense perception) on the other hand empirical judgments are not judgments based solely on experience, but that beyond the empirical, and beyond the perception given by the senses generally, special concepts must come into play. These concepts have their origin entirely a priori in the pure intellect; every perception is first of all subsumed under them and can then be transformed into experience by means of these concepts.
Empirical judgments, in so far as they have objective validity, are JUDGMENTS BASED ON EXPERIENCES; but those which are merely subjectively valid I call judgments based on perception…..
All our judgments are at first mere judgments based on perception; they are valid simply for ourselves, as subject. Only subsequently do we give them a new reference, namely, to an object, and insist that they shall always be valid for ourselves as well as for everyone else. For, when a judgment agrees with an object, all judgments concerning the same object must agree with one another; hence the objective validity of a judgment based on experience means nothing more than its necessary general validity. Reversely, when we have to consider a judgment as necessarily and generally valid ( a judgment which never rests on the perception but on the pure intellectual concept under which the perception is subsumed), we have to regard the judgment as objective, i.e., as expressing not merely the regulation of the perception to a subject but a quality of the object. For there would be no reason why the judgments of other persons must necessarily agree with mine, if it were not for the unity of the object to which they all refer, with which they agree; consequently, they must all agree with one another.”9
“Although I do not have the slightest notion of the connection of things in themselves, or how they exist as substances, how they work as causes, or how they co-exist together as parts of a real whole, I can even less conceive of such properties in phenomena as phenomena because these concepts contain nothing that is inherent in the phenomena, but do contain something the intellect must conceive of by itself. But we do have a conception of how such a connection may exist between the images in our mind, in general judgments. [These general judgments may take the form of saying that] in one kind of judgment images appear as subjects in relation to predicates, in another kind as cause in relation of effect, and in a third as parts that together constitute a whole. Furthermore, we know a priori that without looking upon the images of an object as something definite with regard to one or another of these aspects, we could have no knowledge that could be valid of such an object. If we occupied ourselves with the object in itself there would be no single criterion by which I could know whether it was determined in respect of one or another of the above-mentioned aspects… But then our question is not how things in themselves, but how knowledge based on experience of things in regard to the aforementioned judgments is arrived at, that is, how things as objects of experience can and should be subsumes under the above intellectual concepts. Hence it is clear that I fully understand not only the possibility but also the necessity of subsuming all phenomena under these concepts, that is, of using them as principles of the possibility of experience.”10
“Philosophy contains the principles for rational knowledge that concepts afford us of things but not as Logic does,11 which contains merely the principles of the form of thought in general, irrespective of objects. Hence the usual course of dividing philosophy into the theoretical and the practical is perfectly sound. But then the concepts, which assign their object to the principles of this rational knowledge, must be different and specific because otherwise they fail to justify a classification. A classification always presupposes that the principles belonging to the rational knowledge of the several parts of a science are antithetical.
Now there are only two kinds of concepts and these yields a corresponding number of distinct principles for the possibility of their objects. These are the concepts of nature and the concepts of freedom.”12
This problem above was also the foundation of my doctorate thesis at the Free University of West-Berlin, where I studied from 1960 to 1972. My thesis intended to give a systematic study of the negative and also positive aspects of analysis, synthesis and dialectics. The mystery involved around the problem was how to transform the negative formalistic, axiomatic, casuistic, teleological, dualistic and metaphysical interpretations of the method [or methodology, which came years later, of the introspective-intuitive-creative, the rational- cognitive-interpretive-representative and the dialectic-historical-dynamic-active-developing and transformational].
Here in this coming quotation Kant is demonstrating, in a hidden way his positive interpretation of the analysis, synthesis and dialectic developmental method, which he says that it is very similar to the triadic method of chemistry, where elements of a chemical substance are separated analytically and also mixed synthetical to create a new substance dialectically which itself develops into that which it becomes dialectically a mixture of the two separate substances.
“The bodies of plants and animals are composed of complex chemical substances for the most part based on the remarkable element carbon, the atoms of which can combine with each other. For long it was thought that these substances could only be formed by vital action, but the preparation of urea form cyanic acid and ammonia by Wohler in 1828 showed that one such substance at all events could be partly made in the laboratory. Other artificial productions followed, and Emil Fischer in 1887 built up fructose (fruit sugar) and glucose (grape sugar) from their elements. The method of determining the percentage composition is due to Lavoisier, Berzelius, Liebig and others. The compound is burned in the oxygen from copper oxide and the products of combustion, such as water and carbon dioxide, weighted. In this way the composition of innumerable organic bodies has been determined. One surprising result was the discovery that certain compounds, quite different in physical and chemical properties, had the same percentage composition – for example, urea and ammonium cyanate. Berzelius (1779-1848) explained this isomerism as due to differences in the connexions between the atoms in the molecule. The same phenomenon is seen in charcoal and the diamond; they both consist of carbon…
The chemistry of coal-tar has developed into an enormous industry. Unverdorben and later Hofmann isolated form tar a substance to which the name of aniline was given, and in 1856 W.H.Perkin (Senior) obtained aniline purple of mauve, the aniline dye, soon followed by countless others, especially in Germany. In 1878 E. and O.Fischer studied their constitution, and found the basis of many of them in triphenylmethane. About 1897 indigotin made from phenyl glycine began to drive natural indigo off the market. Synthetic organic drugs appeared with antiphyrene (1883), phenacetic (1887) and acetylsalicylic acid or aspirin (1899). Then came Ehrlich’s salvarsan and other specific remedies described later….
Gradually an enormous number of organic compounds have been isolated, and many synthesized from their elements. Leibig grouped them as members or derivatives of one or other of three great classes:
- Proteins, containing carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, and sometimes sulphur and phosphorus.
- Fats, containing carbon, hydrogen and oxygen.
- Carbohydrates, containing carbon, hydrogen and oxygen, the hydrogen and oxygen being present in the proportions in which they form water.
Of these compounds the proteins are the most complex. They break down into constituents known as amino-acids. In 1883 Curtius built up a substance which gave a protein-like reaction. Fischer examined it, and devised several methods of combining amino- acids into bodies resembling the peptones which are formed by the action of digestive ferments on proteins. Thus, before the end of the century, progress had been made towards determining the nature and possible methods of synthesis of some constituents of living organisms. Moreover, the knowledge gained in rationalizing organic chemistry made clearer many problems in other branches of chemical science.”13
In this connection it gives me great pleasure to demonstrate this triadic view [analysis, synthesis, dialectics and intuitive-introspective, rational-cognitive-creative, historical, formative-transformational etc.], which also originally moved me to write my dissertation, and I finally had to give it up in this context, because Prof. Weischedle, who was my examining professor, and my former professor, Prof. Henrich, said that this viewpoint was only interesting because it was from me alone and it had nothing to do with Kant and traditional philosophy [Western philosophy of course because it was the only scientific philosophy]. They both said, and this seems still to be a German prejudice today, that Kant did systematically criticize transcendental philosophy, its metaphysically purely abstract and formal illusionary methodology, which he said was fully void of any scientific, rational, intuitive-sensual, empirical and valid historical transformational knowledge and wisdom. And despite of all this they still say that Kant fell totally short of a positive alternative to his own critique, which I thought then and still think is quite absurd and wrong, because it sidetracks what Kant really has to say and does say about the subject. But what Kant was finally looking for was to develop “a whole new science” as creating a new method of classification and systematisation of knowing and understanding all we can objectify about all our realities of the sciences, nature, man, his freedoms, moralities and the arts.14
“Now he adds that knowledge requires more than the mere intuition of a manifold in space and time. It also requires that this intuited manifold “be gone through in a certain way, taken up, and connected” (A77/ B102). The act of doing this, of “putting different representations together and of grasping what is manifold in them in one cognition” (A77/ B103), Kant labels “synthesis”. Synthesis plays an essential role in knowledge, he argues, for it is what provides our concepts with content. As far as content is concerned, “no concepts can first arise by way of analysis” (A77/ B103). On the contrary, synthesis is “that which first gathers the elements for cognition and unites them to form a certain content.” And hence it is “what first gives rise to cognition” (ibid.).
Having introduced the notion of synthesis, Kant proceeds to build his central contention around it. Again there is an important backdrop. Kant has said a few pages earlier that in every judgment “there is a concept which holds of many representations, and which among this many comprehends a given representation, which is then immediately related to an object” (A68/ B93). In the judgment that bodies are divisible, for instance, the concept of something divisible, which holds of many things, is “related in particular to the concept of body, and this again to certain appearances that present themselves to us” (A68-9/ B93). In judgment, accordingly, “a higher representation, which comprehends under itself this representation and others, is used for cognition of the object, and thereby many possible cognitions are drawn together in one” (A69/ B94). With this in mind Kant says that judgments are “functions of unity among our representations” (ibid.). As the Logic has it, judgment is “the representation of the unity of the consciousness of various representations, or the representation of their relation insofar as they constitute a concept” (Logic p.17,9:101).
Kant’s central contention, now, is that these functions of thought, through which we unify representations in a judgment, also give unity to the synthesis of the manifold of intuition. Besides being ways in which we bring representations under concepts, they are also ways in which we “bring concepts, not representations, but the pure synthesis of representations” (A78/ B104). They are concepts “which give unity to this pure synthesis, and which consist solely in the representation of this necessary synthetic unity” (A79/ B104).
Summing up, Kant therefore says that the same function that gives unity to the various representations in a judgment also gives unity to the mere synthesis of various representations in an intuition…. Thus the same understanding, through the same operations by which in concepts, by means of analytical unity, it produced the form of a judgment, also brings a transcendental content into its representations by means of the synthetic unity of the manifold in intuition in general…(A79/ B104-105)”15
This is Kant’s quotations in relationship to the above statement, where I mentioned Kant’s triadic hint to a triadic alternative to transcendental philosophy and metaphysics”
“To follow the same road in dealing with the moral qualities of our nature is suggested by that example which offers hope for a similar good result. We have at hand many examples of reason judging morally. To analyse these judgments [and break them down] into their elementary concepts, to employ, in repeated experiments with ordinary common sense, a method similar to that of chemistry, (as mathematics is not available for the purpose of separating the empirical from the rational which may be found in such judgments), should make known purely and with certainty both the empirical and the rational and ought to show what each can accomplish by itself. If true, such a procedure ought to be able to forestall the errors of a coarse, unskilled judging, as well as pretensions of genius which is even more necessary. For imaginary treasures are promised on these pretensions without any methodical inquiry or knowledge of nature, while real treasures are squandered, as happens with the adept of the stone of wisdom, if by such wisdom is understood not merely what one ought to do, but what ought to serve as a guide for teachers, in order to find well and clearly the paths to wisdom on which every man ought to tread, and to preserve others form dead alleys. This is true knowledge, of which philosophy must remain the guardian at all times. In its sophisticated analysis the general public cannot share, but they do share in the doctrines which clearly convince them after such an analysis.”16
“If we compare this [reasoning] with the analytical part of the critique of pure speculative reason, we shall discover a curious contrast. Not fundamental principles, but pure, sensible intuition or visualization (Anschauung) was the first datum that made a priori knowledge possible, though only of objects of the senses. Synthetic principles cannot be derived from mere concepts without visualizing something. They can only occur with reference to such visualizing and therefore with reference to objects of possible experience. For it is when intellectual concepts are united with this act of looking-at-something (Anschauung) that the kind of knowledge we call experience is made possible.”17
Kant’s fundamental triadic question in relationship to nature, rationality, understanding, learning, culture, history, morality, freedom, science, logical rationality, objectivity, scientific knowledge, the arts in general was: what can I (or we) Know (?), connected triadically with what I or we can Develop or Do actively (?) in order to be successful in Life, Work, Creativity or Whatever and Thirdly; How can I or we give Active Form to my or our Aging Process, our Moral Freedoms, our Social, Cultural and Creative Aspirations?
Indirectly with this triad of questions Kant tries to give positive answers to the dualisms between learning-rationalities, introspection or intuition-observation and our various realities in our cultural, social, physical, mental, economic, political, legal and spiritual worlds. And all this in relationship to our personal Self-Awareness, Self-Consciousness, all our Potentials and Abilities in our genetic and cultural character. In this sense our abilities and what we do with them is the same as what we call self, personality or character. What we do with these potentials is quite identical with what and who we are.
I mention this to make clear, why I always return, like William James, Ernst Cassierer, Wittgenstein, Max Weber and many others, to Immanuel Kant and his critique of pure reason, transcendental philosophy, metaphysics, formal logics and all the illusions of the idealistic, empiristic, rationalistic and other methods of abstract nature, plus his immanent reflections on a positive solution to the problems of freedom, creative-intuitive-introspective, the rational- original-understanding and historically-transformational forming-analytical differentiating, synthetically-unifying and dialectically developing of the individual, social, pictoral-visualizing and understanding of all the things that have and are moving us and others in this our worlds that we live, die and transform in. This is the world of our empirical, emotional, psychological, anthropological, genetic-biological, chemical, physical, social, cultural, political, economic, moral, aesthetic, sensual, intuitive-introspective, characteristic etc.18
Following Kant’s process of critique, against the illusions of metaphysics, formal and idealistic logics and his logical-rational-objective, historical processual transformational dialectical dynamics, his analytical-differentional developmental dynamics and his systematic emphasis on the continual uniting synthezising process-developmental of various manifold given differentiating materials of given objects and the dynamics of reality or the dynamic lines of various thoughts and patterns or the processing of all kinds of empirical, sensual, psychological, anthropological, intuitive and other kinds of processes under inquiry and examination, I think in this connection it is fair to say, that we are not in Kant’s case, talking about abstract lifeless, unnatural transcendental things beyond objective reality, or things beyond our comprehension, discovery or understanding, but about factual things happening around us everywhere in factual space and time situations.
Something that is not beyond our feelings, images, dreams, weaknesses, our aspirations and tested intuitions or our rational understanding. On the contrary, these are the things that characterize what we are thinking about, which is of course continually dynamically, changing, growing and developing in us trying to find expression and realization.
They are various processes moving continually in us which reflect all kinds of things, such as mind processes, or creativation or innovation processes, or aesthetic-artistic processes, or linguistic processes of writing, thinking and verbalization, or they are connected with all kind of physical processes of any kind of nature, walking, moving, sport etc., or things connected with our learning of a profession or skill of any kind, or any one or different combination of things. It may be a specific process of spiritualization or an understanding process of discovery, in every case we are talking if I understand Kant correctly about processes that are never final or complete, but things that are always in a process of changing triadically; differentiating, regrouping, reorganizing, transforming and continually developing. I call this dynamic triadic process, and its dynamic methodology an active-dynamic ‘triadalization’ process(es).
And for me, it goes without saying also for mathematization, rationalization, emotionalization, intuitivalization, semiotization (semiotic processes), symbolization, visualization, morphologization (form processes), biologization, and all other kinds of processes capable of our human imagination and realization. I agree with Kant that these processes are not limited to time sequences because as Kant says whether they are individual, collective, social, educational, scientific etc. they are like cultures or cultural reason itself ongoing historical developmental processes and include both past, present and future.
Kant’s most fundamental triadic model is the triad between the ‘manifold’ (analytic (positive) differentiation, where all the individual elements or parts of any given system of any given object are represented. They are called therefore ‘diversity’, ‘variety’ which represents the differences in quality and quantity of the different parts and last the ‘unity’, synthesis of all the parts and this represents also the dynamics, changing, moving, developing, interactions, communications and connections of the whole in its dialectic, transformatics processes. (Here in the last concept, unity is both the synthetic and dialectic process all together, but as I will systematically later demonstrate they are definitely different aspects of the same triadic process). They belong together in one complete process, I call the ‘triadization’process: analysis, synthesis, dialectics.
Also in this connection the process of understanding, is also a triadic process characterized in his triad: sensibility-intuition, rational understanding and the ‘principle of reason’, which expresses for Kant the historical-cultural-scientific-mythical aspects of our communal knowledge throughout history.
What interests me here at this point in connection with Kant’s interpretation and my interpretation of the ‘triadization process’ is that the whole reflection of the problem, so complicated and complex as it may appear, is a very extremely complicated but understandable and humanly possible (process), which includes all mans experiences, intuitions, sensual- feelings, dreams, images, historical cultural and genetically biological historical knowledge, plus the whole reality of the natural world etc. And this process as such remains for every single individual, group, culture, a factual dynamics possibility, within the possibilities of every ones reach, which is different from person to person and from culture to culture.
The coming long quotation from Ernst Cassirer, also a leading Kantian, expresses this point of ‘Kant’s systematically verifying and clarifying my viewpoint on the subject.
“Highly developed theoretical thinking tends to consider time as an all-embracing form for all change; as a universal order in which every content of reality “is” and in which an unequivocal place is assigned to it. Time does not stand beside things as a physical being or force: it has no independent character of existence or action. But all combinations of things, all relations prevailing among them, go back ultimately to determination of the temporal process, to divisions of the earlier and later, the “now” and the “not now”. Only when thought succeeds in composing the multiplicity of events into a system within which the particular events are determined in respect to their “before” and “after”, do phenomena unite into the form of a totality of intuitive reality. The particularity of temporal schematism first makes possible the form of objective experience. Thus time, as Kant says, forms “the correlative of the determination of an object in general.” The transcendental schemata, which, according to Kant, guarantee the relationship between understanding and sensibility, are “nothing but a priori determinations of time according to rules,” and these relate to the series in time, the content in time, the order in time, and finally to the complex or totality in time in regard to all possible objects. But there is a sharp and basic difference between schema and image, for the “image is a product of the empirical faculty of the productive imagination – the schema of sensuous conceptions (of figures in space, for example) is a product and, as it were, a monogram of the pure imagination a priori, whereby and according to which images first become possible.”
In thus formulating the problem of time, Kant adds, to be sure, that this “schematism of our understanding in regard to phenomena and their mere form is an art in the depths of the human soul, whose true modes of action we shall only with difficulty discover and unveil.” Indeed, regardless of whether we approach this problem form the standpoint of metaphysics, psychology or epistemology, we seem here to encounter an unsurpassable “limit of human comprehension.” Augustine’s dictum still seems to retain its full force; time, which to the immediate consciousness is the most certain and most familiar of facts, shrouds itself in darkness the moment we seek to pass beyond this immediate givenness and draw it into the sphere of reflective inquiry. Any attempt at a definition or even of an objective characteristic of time threatens to involve us in inextricable antinomies, though, to be sure, a common source of all these antinomies and aporias seems to reside in the fact that neither metaphysics nor epistemology observed Kant’s strict division between image and schema. Instead of relating sensuous images to the “monogram of the pure imagination,” they have repeatedly succumbed to the temptation of “explaining” the imagination by purely sensuous determinations. What makes this temptation all the more dangerous is that it never ceases to be renewed and fostered by a positive and fundamental power of the human spirit, the power of language. In designating temporal determinations and relations, language is at first wholly dependent on the mediation of space; and from this involvement with the spatial world there results also a bond with the world of things, which are conceived as existing in space. Thus the form of time is here expressed only insofar as it can in some way be based on spatial and objective determinations.”19
“Any attempt to separate content and representation, existence and symbol, would, if successful, destroy the vital nerve of temporality.
And with this specific form of temporal consciousness the form of the ego- consciousness would also be destroyed. For the two condition each other: the ego finds and knows itself only in the threefold form of the temporal consciousness, while on the other hand the three phases of time compose themselves into a unity only in and through the ego. Time determinations, when taken in the abstract, seem to be at odds; but they actually go together in time, and this is something that can only be made comprehensible from the standpoint of the I and not from that of things. For on the one hand, as Kant put it, the “standing and enduring ego forms the correlate of all our representations, insofar as we can become conscious of them” – but on the other hand the ego can only assure itself of its identity and permanence through its own unbroken flow. It is constancy and change, permanence and transition in one.”20
“The “revolution in method” which Kant brought to theoretical philosophy rests on the fundamental idea that the relation between cognition and its object, generally accepted until then, must be radically modified. Instead of starting from the object as the known and given, we must begin with the law of cognition, which alone is truly accessible and certain in a primary sense; instead of defining the universal qualities of being, like ontological metaphysics, we must, by an analysis of reason, ascertain the fundamental form of judgement and define it in all its numerous ramifications; only if this is done, can objectivity become conceivable. According to Kant, only such an analysis can disclose the conditions on which all knowledge of being and the pure concept of being depend….
From the standpoint of this latter, the Copernican revolution with which Kant began, takes on a new and amplified meaning. It refers no longer solely to the function of logical judgment but extends with equal justification and right to every trend and every principle by which the human spirit gives form to reality.
The crucial question always remains whether we seek to understand the function by the structure or the structure by the function, which one we choose to “base” upon the other. This question forms the living bond connecting the most diverse realms of thought with one another: it constitutes their inner methodological unity, without ever letting them lapse into a factual sameness. For the fundamental principle of critical thinking, the principle of the “primacy” of the function over the object, assumes in each special field a new form and demands a new and dependent explanation. Along with the pure function of cognition we must seek to understand the function of linguistic thinking, the function of mythical and religious thinking, and the function of artistic perception, in such a way as to disclose how in all of them there is attained an entirely determinate formation, not exactly of the world, but rather making for the world, for an objective, meaningful context and an objective unity that can be apprehended as such.
Thus the critique of reason becomes the critique of culture. It seeks to understand and to show how every content of culture, in so far as it is more than a mere isolated content, in so far as it is grounded in a universal principle of form, presupposes an original act of the human spirit.”21
“We have acquired a new foundation for such an investigation. We must go back to “natural” symbolism, to that representation of consciousness as a whole which is necessarily contained or at least projected in every single moment and fragment of consciousness, if we wish to understand the artificial symbols, the “arbitrary” signs which consciousness creates in language, art, the myth…
Since every particular content of consciousness is situated in a network of diverse relations, by virtue of which its simple existence and self-representation contain reference to other and still other contents, there can and must be certain formations of consciousness in which the pure form of reference is, as it were, sensuously embodied….
Thus the “natural” symbolism which we have found embedded as a fundamental characteristic of consciousness is on the one hand utilized and retained, while on the other hand it is surpassed and refined. For in this “natural” symbolism, a certain partial content of consciousness, though distinct from the whole, retained the power to represent this whole and in so doing to reconstitute it in a sense. A present content possessed the power of evoking another content, which was not immediately given but merely conveyed by it…..
And yet, on closer scrutiny, the content itself takes on a different “character” for consciousness through the creation of the linguistic sign: it becomes more definite. Its sharp and clear intellectual “reproduction” proves to be inseparable from the act of linguistic “production”. For the function of language is not merely to repeat definitions and distinctions which are already present in the mind, but to formulate them and make them intelligible as such…..
Myth and art, language and science, are in this sense configurations towards being: they are not simple copies of an existing reality but represent the main directions of the spiritual movement, of the ideal process by which reality is constituted for us as one and many – as a diversity of forms which are ultimately held together by a unity of meaning.”22
Concerning the mathematical organization of the Triadization of material, cultural, scientific, linguistic and other objects, Cassirer says:
“In general, the development from the feeling to the concept of time reveals three different stages, which are also of crucial importance for the linguistic reflection of the consciousness of time. At the first stage the consciousness is dominated by the opposition of “now” and “not-now”, which has undergone no further differentiations; at the second, certain temporal “forms” – completed and uncompleted, continued and momentary action – begin to be distinguished so that a definite distinction of temporal modes is developed; the final stage is characterized by the pure concept of time as an abstract concept or order, and the various stages of time stand out in their contrast and inter-determination.
For it is even more true of temporal than of spatial relations that they do not come to consciousness at once at relations, but that their purely relational character is always mingled with and concealed by other specifications, particularly those of things and qualities…”23
“We encounter a common characteristic of linguistic thinking which is highly significant for the critique of knowledge. For Kant the concepts of the pure understanding can be applied to sensory intuitions only through the mediation of a third term, in which the two, although totally dissimilar, must come together – and he finds this mediation in the “transcendental schema”, which is both intellectual and sensory. In this respect he distinguishes the schema form the mere image: “The image is a product of the empirical faculty of the productive imagination – the schema of sensuous conceptions (of figures in space, for example) is a product, and, as it were, a monogram of the pure imagination a priori, whereby and according to which image first become possible, which, however, can be connected with the conception only mediately by means of the schema which they indicate, and are in themselves never fully adequate to it.
Language possesses such a “schema” – to which it must refer all intellectual – in its terms for spatial contents and relations. It would seem as though logical and ideal relations became accessible to the linguistic consciousness only when projected into space and there analogically “reproduced.” The relations of “together,” “side by side,” “separate” provide it with a means of representing the most diverse qualitative relations, dependencies and oppositions.
This relationship can be recognized and clarified by an inquiry into the formation of the most elementary spatial terms known to language. They are still entirely rooted in immediate sensory impression; but, on the other hand, they contain the first germ from which the terms of pure relation will grow. They are oriented both toward the “sensuous” and the “intellectual.” For though they are entirely material in their beginnings, it is they that open up the characteristic form world of language.”24
For a systematic analysis of Kant’s concept of “empirical realism”and his revolutionary method of rational judgments or representational systematics of objectiverealisty correalisties, in relationship to objective reality, humanism and freedom of individuals and human character in general, in science, in philosophy, in psychology, in logics, in mathematical as well as in methodological’s systematics, see Paul Abela’s book ‘Kant’s Empirical Realism, Oxford, 2002.
“Transcendental idealism is Kant’s general theory. The general theory frames a vast amount of material, spanning twenty years’ work and all three Critiques. Like a grand mansion, it includes many rooms, housing Kant’s treatment of knowledge, morality, and aesthetics. Empirical realism is one room in that mansion. This room contains Kant’s analysis of the conditions necessary for knowledge of the familiar world of empirical objects.
Empirical realism is seldom a topic of conversation even among Kant scholars.
There are, no doubt, many reasons for this omission; a reluctance to stake too much on the realist designation; a desire to highlight the negative lessons of the Critique of Pure Reason by focusing on the boundary conditions for knowledge; or simply the routine of thinking about Kant’s account of knowledge; or simply the routine of thinking about transcendental idealism.
This book begins with the presumption that we should take Kant’s “empirical- realist”designation seriously. This does not mean departing from the revealing theory of transcendental idealism. On the contrary, it means exploring why transcendental idealism yields realism at the empirical level.”25
The existence of empirical objects is not materially dependent on acts of human perception(s). As Kant suggests, empirical objects correspond ‘to and [are] therefore also distinct from the cognition [of them]’ (A104). The presence and properties of objects, Kant maintains, must be treated as grounded ‘in the object, i.e., regardless of any difference in the condition of the subject…’(B142). The Refutation of Idealism is added to the second edition with the express purpose of highlighting Kant’s proof of the existence of independent objects as a condition for determinate mental content. Inner sense demands the immediate experience of objects outside us, inner experience being ‘possible only through a thing outside me and not through the mere representation of a thing outside me’(B275).26
“Rational unity does not anticipate the content of experience. It does anticipate the structure in which content is assimilated. Rational unity therefore prescribes a whole that is prior to the determinate knowledge of the parts – accomplishing this task by means of an a priori structure that has room for every part and its relation to all other parts. Empirical knowledge thus presupposes, in the deployment of its concepts, the rational unity of comprehension: a unity of nature (systematicity) extends the range of genuine comprehension beyond the scope of experientially grounded warranted assertability. Comprehension (reflective judgment) is more expansive than what experience (spontaneous judgment) can deliver.”27
Kant says himself to the above:
“We find therefore in the history of human reason also that, before the moral concepts were sufficiently purified and refined, and before the systematical unity of the ends was clearly understood, according to such concepts and in accordance with necessary principles, the then existing knowledge of nature and even a considerable amount of the culture of reason in many other branches of science could only produce crude and vague conceptions of the Deity, or allow of an astonishing indifference with regard to that question.”28
“Thus we see that all external perception proves immediately something real in space, or rather is that real itself. Empirical realism is therefore perfectly true, that is, something real in space always corresponds to our external intuitions. Space itself, it is true, with all its phenomena, as representations, exists within me only, but the real or the material of all objects of intuition is nevertheless given in that space, independent of all fancy or imagination; nay, it is impossible that in that space anything outside us (in a transcendental sense) could be given, because space itself is nothing outside our sensibility. The strictest idealist, therefore, can never require that we should prove that the object without us (in its true meaning) corresponds to our perception. For granted there are such objects, they could never be represented and seen, as outside us, because this presupposes space, and the reality in space, as a mere representation, is nothing but the perception itself. It thus follows, that what is real in external phenomena, is real in perception only, and cannot be given in any other way.”29
“All our knowledge begins with the senses, proceeds thence to the understanding, and ends with reason. There is nothing higher than reason, for working up the material of intuition, and comprehending it under the highest unity of thought.”30
Where I totally agree with Abela’s interpretation of Kant’s theory of the objective empirical world, is that Abela believes and uses Kant’s critique of transcendental philosophy to falsify it because he says that it does not try to accomplish comprehensive knowledge of empirical reality by developing a positive (contra his negative) theory as correlation between transcendental idealism or transcendental realism and empirical reality, which Kant as I will later demonstrate throughout this book, says and justifies as an impossible task because the theoretical and methodological conditions of transcendental realism (Hume, Locke etc; English Empiricism) and transcendental idealism (Descasrtes, Leibniz; continental philosophy), plus the classical idealism and the abstract a priori formal logical so called truth theories and causalistic-hypothetical-law-like theories of Aristotles and associates are also fallacious because they empirically, rationally, intuitively and experimentally do not help us to accomplish this goal of accomplishing a systematic relationship between empirical-experimental-objective reality and rational understanding of the same. On the contrary Kant tries to systematically prove that this theory cannot and does not aspire to accomplish this goal.
This is as I, the archaics, the scientific Egyptian hieroglyphic method, those of F. Bacon, Kant, the Pragmatists (James, Dewey and Putman), Wittgenstein and others, see it the goal of objective rational knowledge and understanding of the objective-empirical world and all the other worlds of human experience. This seems to be totally different form Abela’s world.
Abela says about Kant, this is his false assumption of course:
“In both the Critique of Pure Reason and the Critique of Judgment, Kant insists that our ability to unify diverse phenomena under particular causal laws, and to deploy hierarchical systems of laws, depends on the empirical employment of the transcendental principle. This transcendental principle instructs us to treat nature as a systematically structured whole. Although merely regulative in function, adding nothing to the constitution of objects, Kant intimates that the assumption unity is more than a piece of good methodological advice. He argues that the unity attributed to nature is not something reason requests. Systematicity is a transcendental requirement for the possibility of the operation of reflective judgment itself (B681).”31
Abela says himself which is totally a false conception of the Kantian position, but it does demonstrate his own metaphysical realism as a immanent critique of the Kantian and Bacon, James, Dewey, Ernst Cassierer, Putman, Wittgenstein and many other standpoints.
“The realist interpretation urges that the transcendental requirement of systematicity be added to the other transcendental requirements necessary for the possibility of empirical knowledge. The objective significance of the principle is secured on the firm foundation of a necessary condition for the possibility of determinate representation. It is, therefore, legitimate to regard nature as unified according to an immanent principle of organization, despite the fact that, form the empirical perspective, this unity remains recognition transcendent.”32
This standpoint as I and others see it, is a total retreat; back into a fully idealized metaphysical but dualistic conception of realism, that has little or nothing to do with concrete reality in all of its physical, biological, cultural, social etc. forms.33
“Anti-realism and pragmatism both support the view that it is rational to believe a proposition has a truth-value if, and only if, in principle, we have a capacity to recognize what would count as a positive or negative outcome. The assertion-condition approach if (i) and (ii) rests on the idea that “in principle”can be explicated in terms of effective, human procedures that serve rationally to justify our beliefs. Empirical truth dies not transcend use. The divine idealized model relaxes the constraint possible experience imposes in order to accommodate otherwise recognition-transcendental propositions. But, in doing so, divine idealization effectively severs the link anti-realism and pragmatism forge between inquiry and an earthbound conception of truth. As Misak suggests, by changing inquiry into something it is not, Jardine abandons the epistemological motivation for an assertion- condition account of truth – that the truth predicate should be informed by the real nature of human inquiry.
In summary, I agree that divine idealization does in fact capture the liberalized notion of warrant that Kant’s unconstrained conception of “experience in general” enforces. Divine idealization, at the same time, reveals why an entirely unconstrained account of evidential-conditions is truth-condition realism in all but name.”34
Justifying and defending Kant’s kind of empirical realism against this kind of “metaphysical realism” of Abela and many other philosophers, logicians, mathematicians and scientists of contemporary times, Putman says:
“In response to this predicament, the predicament of being asked to choose between a metaphysical position on the one hand and a group of reductionist positions on the other, I was led to follow Kant in distinguishing between two sorts of realism (whether Saul Kripke, whose work I alluded to earlier, would follow me in this move I rather doubt). The two sorts I called “metaphysical realist insists that a mysterious relation of “correspondence”is what makes reference and truth possible; the internal realist, by contrast, is willing to think of reference as internal to “text.” “Better” and “worse” may themselves depend on our historical situation and our purposes; there is no notion of a God’s-Eye View of Truth here. But the notion of a right (or at least a “better”) answer to a question is subject to two constraints: (1) Rightness is not subjective. What is better and what is worse to say about most questions of real human concern is not just a matter of opinion. Recognizing that is so is the essential price of admission to the community of sanity….
If assertability conditions are not surveyable, how do we learn them? We learn them by acquiring a practice. What philosophers in the grip of reductionist picture miss is that what we acquire is not a knowledge that can be applied as if it were an algorithm. The impossibility of formalizing the assertability conditions for arbitrary sentences is just the impossibility of formalizing human rationality itself.”35
To the other aspects of Kant’s theory and method (there is also a third aspect which I thoroughly develop in the course of this book, which completes the third aspect of his triadic method as mentioned above, and that is intuition or introspection), we can only react to practical, objective and empirical worlds, by developing acceptable rationality, acceptable empirically verifiable judgments (intuition- introspections) that give us valuable, of course not absolute, a priori, formal or purely abstract theories, judgments or laws which have nothing to do with empirical reality. This second dimension of our experiences, perceptions and of course our intuitions and introspections are grounded in rational-theoretical-cognitive understandings of the various aspects of empirical reality. These conceptions changes of course from time to time, from discipline to discipline, from individual to individual and from culture to culture.
To this other dialectical aspect of Kant’s theory Putnam says:
“But there is another side to Kant’s thoughts, a side that connects immediately with pragmatism: the side that we might call the primary of practical reason. It is clear to students of Kant’s work that a great deal of that work had directly political inspiration, as well as a political application. Even the central notion of “self-legislation” that Kant uses in the second Critique and in the Foundation of the Metaphysics of Morals was, after all, directly inspired by Rousseau; and in the age of Kant, the idea that a society should be a free union of self-legislating citizens was a revolutionary idea. But I want to mention a different aspect of the primary of practical reason in Kant, and this is Kant’s famous claim (in Doctrine of Method section of the Critique of Pure Reason) that theoretical understanding would not by itself have given us the idea of science as a unified system of laws (by which I take it that Kant means we would not even have arrived at Newtonian physics, let alone the regulative ideal of an eventual science that would subsume physics, biology, etc.), that it would not have taken us beyond knowledge of individual inductive generalizations by itself.
To get the kind of knowledge represented by Newton’s system of the world (or we might say today, Einstein’s system of the world, or by quantum mechanics) one needs what Kant called the regulative idea of Nature. That is, you need the vision of nature as governed not just by individual laws, but by a system of laws. That vision, Kant tells us, does not come from theoretical reason, but from pure practical reason. Kant was saying that the norms which guide theoretical science in its greatest achievements are norms which derive from a certain notion we have of what the perfection of human inquiry would be, from a certain image of human flourishing in the theoretical realm. (this is something that I myself have argued in Reason, Truth and History; that is to say, that our cognitive ideals only make sense considered as part of our idea of human flourishing.)
This idea of the primacy of practical reason, extends, for Kant, to philosophy itself.
We cannot, Kant thinks, construct a moral image of the world by seeking to prove a priori that there are true value judgments…
But I want to close by arguing that Wittgenstein’s philosophy too has a moral purpose, and that it exhibits in a different way the same theme, the primacy of practical reason, that Kant’s philosophy does, although in a characteristically deflationary fashion.”36
Kant’s theory and triadic model, as I see it, covers a more positive and definite alternative systematic, because it brings rational and cognitive developed (but changeable developing) theories in the sphere of understanding or better understanding, as Cassierer said above, of empirical objects, experiments, models or schemes of objective empirical reality. As William James said, and this would as I see it include also Kant’s theory of empirical reality, it is the empirical facts that determine how we experience, experiment and understand reality and nothing else. And for this we need our objective intuitions and introspections to accomplish this goal. And this is the main goal of this book to make aspects of this triadic methodology more plausible and assessable to all the sciences, humanity, languages, logical rationalities against the skepticism, dualisms, absurdities and illusions of contemporary philosophical shortcomings.
This study of Kant and company came totally together in the course of my research and especially in the present book, with my studies of archaic cultures their triadic methods and those of the Egyptian triadic introspective, rational and transformational-historic hieroglyphic-pictoral methodology and that of the sciences, post modern philosophies, that have sceptically given up believing in the progressive and positive ways and methods of solving the various problems of methodology, rational, intuitive and historical logics, mathematical philosophies of the same sort, along with the problem solving of the social, natural, ethical, cultural, the arts, creativity etc.37
And in this connection I am reviewing systematically many of the new discoveries, reflections and historical documentary informations collected over the years to consolidate my contributions to an international movement, that has been with us for the last 200.000 years or so. And in this connection I want to express my latest contributions to a clarification of such a movement.
This book is divided into mainly two parts. Part I and part II. And the 2nd part is mainly documentary, pictoral, informational and illustrative: trying to give the readers and observers a general overall comprehensive view of the international and intercultural value of such a life undertaking adventure.
Prof. M.C. Burkett archaeologist and anthropologist of the University of Cambridge said in the preface “The Old Stone Age”: “It is becoming clear that prehistorians are finding, and will in the future, that their subject is more complicated than they have hitherto subjected: that cultures in early times were already far more differentiated than has hitherto been thought: that even in such a small area as Europe more than one different race existed together side by side as early as lower palaeolithic times.”38