Pure Reason Underscores the Theory Essay

Pages: 8 (2205 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 0  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Black Studies - Philosophy


[. . .] As such, the categories would be part of a process that would justify beliefs or infer new beliefs. The fallacy of accident and generalization would represent such processes.

Further enumerating lacking elements of Kant's categories are the processes of comparison and change. The business of classifying and distinguishing involves the process of comparison. Within the second class of category, Of Quality, the process of comparison might find its way among the subcategories of Reality, Negation and Limitation. Or perhaps in the fourth category, which Kant treats with cursory short-shrift, among the subcategories of Possibility -- Impossibility, Existence -- Non- existence, and Necessity -- Contingence. Furthermore, the process of change also does not find a happy home in Kant's system of categories.

The notion of space and time occupy an interesting place in Kant's system of categories. Kant's pure forms of intuition, for example, are not contingent on sensible appearances, yet space and time cannot be perceived if sensible appearances are not perceived in them. However, space and time constitute ideal forms of representation and intuitions and cannot be in space and time considering that it is impossible to know their spatial components, according to Kant. Yet it is logical to assume that if an object occupies space and time then it must necessarily be spatially defined, given the inherent character of space and time.

It is conundrums such as this that Kant solves in a flash with his categories. Non-sensible conditions for the possibility of knowledge of spatial -- and temporal -- determination are served with sensible logic by means of the categories.

Kant imbues his categories with great power when he insists that the categories determine all objects, "in the logical or judgmental sense" concerning all types of "complex" judgments and that the categories equally regard the "unity of a manifold of intuitions."

Kant's categories embrace and inform cognition, which can be defined, according to Kant, as the capacity to form rules for the entire operation of spatial and temporal construction and thus, empirical reaction. The categories, Kant says, "contain the necessary unity of the synthesis of imagination in respect of all possible appearances." In other words, the categories are required to bring about the total scope of spatial and temporal construction. Hence, the categories apply to all possible appearances and proper reactions.

The array of functions of the categories constitutes the "pure" foundation of all thought that gets interwoven with other thoughts. The resulting body of knowledge is the extent of the mind that views and makes sense of everything. Maybe the specific terms of the categories and the various subcategories are not impacted by specific terms. Perhaps Kant found himself straddling the fence of philosophical tradition while embarking on a new frontier of understanding reality. For the significance of the categories in Kant's seminal work, The Critique of Pure Reason, it is a monumental challenge to truly understand them. Where do they reside? And given Kant's aloof attitude at defining the categories, is he truly convinced that he figure them all out? Could there be more categories, more subcategories of categories. Maybe Kant was following tradition when he arrived at four classes, each with three categories. The words do not speak for themselves.

The words, or terms, cannot be derived empirically from any external perception or experience and constitute the innate a priori pre-linguistic structure from which all vocabularies and sentence syntax are derived. This is, really, a manifestation of universal processes of the brain and human neurophysiology.

Kant seems to most accomplish through his categories pivots on what he calls Copernican revolution in philosophy. He does this by means of reconfiguring the locus of philosophy from metaphysical speculation about the nature of reality to a critical examination of the nature of thinking and perceiving mind. In short, Kant explains realty of humans as a creation of external reality. Yet it is only the human mind that can acquire definitive knowledge. The mind goes way beyond passively receiving information. It… [END OF PREVIEW]

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