Comments on TI

Let me put these thoughts in terms of remarks

I. Kant accepts necessary causation. Which Hume and many philosophers today deny.
II. Kant puts a LOT of emphasis on the mind (too much) – well the book was named the ‘examination of the mind’ (Critique of Pure Reason) the question is – what is the cart and what is the horse? what forces experience into us – the mind (,or language?)?
III. Like I have said before, Kant is not an empiricist. Kant denies Humean constant conjunction because it leads to an uncertain world (philosophers of science constantly deal with the problem of induction that comes from Hume). Kant has his rationalist tendencies in putting the mind in the forefront.
IV. What are the objects of noumena? Well basically they are the objects of phenomena but how they really are, they also include concepts which seem queer to a phenomenal/empiricist ontology, such as the existence of the soul, God, or freewill (before you counter with Hume’s compatibilism, I don’t consider that proper freewill)
V. You say I dismiss Kantian ethics. That’s possibly because I don’t know enough about it as I do about his epistemology and metaphysics. Yes, ethics does come from his foundation. I find something very queer about his ethics, after reading Nietzsche’s critique. I think Kant’s influence of Pietism led him to conventional morality, he was a moral dogmatist even though he was epistemologically critical. I don’t want to talk about Kant’s ethics (in this thread), because while his ethics is grounded in his epistemology, the reverse is not true. I do find some aspects of Kant’s ethics very interesting (notion of moral worth, denigration of happiness, Categorical imperative: formula of humanity)

Some thoughts on Transcendental Idealism

Two issues:

I. Was Kant a solipsist? Probably NOT. One could easily become a solipsist (according to Kant), if one advocated Idealism (problematic and dogmatic). That is why when Kant refutes the Idealist, he refutes the possibility of solipsism. I don’t think Kant saw solipsism as a problem, his objects of attack were Humean/british empiricism and continental rationalism/idealism.

II. This point follows from the first. Kant is NOT an IDEALIST in the classical sense of the term, how ironic it is then, that he is known as the father of german idealism (inspiring people like Ficte, Schopenhauer and Hegel). Kant is only an idealist in the sense that he is not a realist(1) of objects such as time and the categories. Kant was infuriated that people thought he was an ‘idealist’ (rather than Transcendental Idealist), so he made a second edition of the CPureR and put in a section called ‘The Refutation of Idealism’. It’s funny how history remembers you as the thing you try to refute: Descartes’ legacy is his scepticism and Spinoza is associated with atheism.

(1) Realism is the notion that claims are genuinely assertoric, either in terms of semantics (meaning/reference), epistemology and ontology.

Here is a question, was Kant a global realist? If not, what local domains were he anti-realist about?