This book attempts to reconcile the analytic philosophy of Ludwig Wittgenstein with those issues that consumed his personal life and which lay outside the confines of analytic philosophy: his "religious disposition," his ascetic lifestyle, and his concern with the mystical. Sontag reveals the influence of the mystical on Wittgenstein's life and philosophy, his respect for Augustine, Kierkegaard, and William James, and the profound effect of Tolstoy's religious writings on the development of his philosophy.
We can, If the subject matter of psychology is just like the subject matter of the physical sciences, Or if the application of a common methodology is in itself sufficient to render universal results. The basic assumptions of any era hardly seem like assumptions at the time but more like basic facts. In addition, The conceit of the modern age was to think that they, At last, Stood face to face with truth as it is. Today we see how many (...) assumptions are involved in the project to build a scientific psychology. Like most assumptions from an earlier age, We now share few of them. (shrink)
IN ADDITION TO SENSORY PERCEPTION AND POSSIBLE SPECIAL INSIGHT, FEUERBACH RAISES THE QUESTION OF THE ’NATURE’ OF MAN. THAT IS, DO WE HAVE ONLY ONE FIXED NATURE, OR IS IT POSSIBLE THAT MAN HAS NO ONE NATURE WHICH CAN BE DEFINED AND FIXED IN A UNIVERSAL MANNER AS THE ATOM CAN BE? IF SO, SOCIAL SCIENTISTS ARE DEALING WITH A MORE FLUID COMMODITY THAN THEY HAD HOPED FOR. IF THERE IS NO HUMAN NATURE, SOCIAL SCIENTISTS WILL REACH A FIXED DECISION (...) AND CONCLUSION ONLY TO HAVE IT OUTMODED BY A SHIFT IN HUMAN BEHAVIOUR. THUS, IF MEN LACK DEFINITIVENESS, THERE IS NO RIGID OPPOSITION OF NATURE VERSUS SUPERNATURE. SOME ’NATURES’ COULD OVERLAP AND INTERPENETRATE INTO SUPERNATURE. MY OWN RESPONSE TO THESE ISSUES IS TO SAY THAT WE MUST NOT BEG THE QUESTION BY ASSUMING CERTAIN MODES OF PERCEPTION AS ALONE VALID, OR RULE OUT THE POSSIBILITY THAT SOME HUMAN BEINGS ARE PERCEPTIVE WHERE OTHERS ARE NOT. (shrink)