In the Critique of the Power of Judgment, Kant introduces the notion of the
reflective judgment and the a priori principle of purposiveness or systematicity of nature.
He claims that the ability to judge objects by means of this principle underlies empirical
concept acquisition and it is therefore necessary for cognition in general. In addition, he
suggests that there is a connection between this principle and judgments of taste. Kant’s
account of this connection has been criticized by several commentators for the reason that
it leads to the ‘everythingisbeautiful’ problem. In this paper I argue, contrary to these
objections, that both finding an object beautiful and acquiring the concept represent the
satisfaction of the same principle of nature’s purposiveness, which refers to the same cognitive
need we have, that is, to systematize experience. I avoid the ‘everything is beautiful’
problem by arguing that aesthetic reflection refers to the synthesis of object’s individual
and distinctive properties, while logical reflection refers to the synthesis of object’s general
properties that it shares with other objects of its kind. Because aesthetic purposiveness is
different from logical purposiveness, this allows for the possibility that we can have an
object of cognition, without finding this object beautiful.