I argue that Kant’s four Paralogistic conclusions concerning substantiality; unity and immortality, in the famous “Achillesargument”; personal identity; and metaphysical idealism, in the first edition Critique of Pure Reason, are all connectedby being grounded in a common underlying rational principle, an a priori presupposition, namely, that boththe mind and its essential attribute of thinking are immaterial and unextended, i.e., simple. Consequently, despite Kant’s predilectionfor architectonic divisions and separations, I show that in fact the simplicity assumption grounds all four Paralogisms and (...) reinforcesKant’s corresponding commitments to the principles of continuity and coherence. Further, I maintain that Kant, under the influence ofhis earlier Leibnizian and subjective idealist leanings, continued to be guided in the first edition Critique, not only in the Paralogismsbut also in certain sections of the Analytic, by emphasizing unconscious activities, which once more reinforced his commitments to aparadigm of the simplicity, unity, and identity of self-consciousness or apperception. (shrink)
Current research claims loneliness is passively _caused_ by external conditions: environmental, cultural, situational, and even chemical imbalances in the brain and hence avoidable. In this book, the author argues that loneliness is actively _constituted_ by acts of reflexive self-consciousness and transcendent intentionality and therefore unavoidable.
The article offers a brief set of definitions of metaphysical and epistemological principles underlying three distinct theories of consciousness and then relates these paradigms to a triad of contemporary therapeutic modalities. Accordingly, it connects materialism, empiricism, determinism and a passive interpretation of the “mind”=brain to medication interventions and behavioral and cognitive treatments. In this context, the paper proceeds to argue that these treatment approaches are theoretically incapable of addressing the dominant issue of man’s loneliness, and his struggle to escape from (...) it, as the most basic universal drivein human beings. Next, it discusses the dualist, idealist, and rationalist assumptions of an active reflexive, self-consciousness, which has dominated insight-oriented treatment methodologies since Freud. And, finally, it treats the Hesperian and Sartre an phenomenological andexistential descriptions of awareness as grounded in the transcendent principle of intentionality emphasizing the aspects of the freedom of consciousness. Lastly, it claims that the first view stresses the temporal present; the second the past; and the third the future. (shrink)
In previous publications, I have historically traced the prevalence and the influence of an argument—an argument which Kant calls the Achilles, the most powerful, of all rationalist demonstrations in the history of ideas. This proof, which ultimately derives from Plato has been repeatedly used and has had a major influence in shaping philosophic discussions since the Hellenic Age. The form of the argument is fairly straightforward: the essential nature of the soul consists in its power of thinking; thought, being immaterial, (...) is unextended, i.e., simple, having no parts; and what is simple is indestructible; a unity; and an identity. I have attempted to map the incidence and force of this demonstration in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries—from the Cambridge Platonists to Kant —a time when it becomes crucial in questions concerning the immortality of the soul; the “transcendental” condition necessary for the unity of consciousness ; the necessary and sufficient criteria for the establishment of personal or moral identity; and its use as a sometimes hidden or unconscious premise, but often explicit “principle,” of certain metaphysical and epistemological idealist doctrines. Thus, if thought and soul are essentially unextended, it at once becomes problematic how an immaterial soul can know a material, extended, “external” world. (shrink)