Where do we come from? Are we merely a cluster of elementary particles in a gigantic world receptacle? And what does it all mean? In this highly original new book, the philosopher Markus Gabriel challenges our notion of what exists and what it means to exist. He questions the idea that there is a world that encompasses everything like a container life, the universe, and everything else. This all-inclusive being does not exist and cannot exist. For the world itself is (...) not found in the world. And even when we think about the world, the world about which we think is obviously not identical with the world in which we think. For, as we are thinking about the world, this is only a very small event in the world. Besides this, there are still innumerable other objects and events: rain showers, toothaches and the World Cup. Drawing on the recent history of philosophy, Gabriel asserts that the world cannot exist at all, because it is not found in the world. Yet with the exception of the world, everything else exists; even unicorns on the far side of the moon wearing police uniforms. Revelling in witty thought experiments, word play, and the courage of provocation, Markus Gabriel demonstrates the necessity of a questioning mind and the role that humour can play in coming to terms with the abyss of human existence. (shrink)
ABSTRACTWhilst agreeing with Robert Pippin that Hegel undertakes his philosophical enterprise in light of Kant's insights into the failings of pre-critical metaphysics, this paper outlines the shortcomings of Pippin's Hegel interpretation by contrasting what I call 'apperceptive idealism' on the one hand with 'transcendental ontology' on the other. By privileging subject over substance, Pippin commits Hegel to an ontologically modest form of Kantianism that, in missing how reality as a whole is the main topic of Hegel’s philosophy, leaves no room (...) for a crucial Hegelian task, namely accounting for the presence of self-conscious thinking in nature. Appreciating the nature of Hegel's true ambitions whilst remaining aware of how his Logic maps a 'realm of shadows', opens up the possibility of understanding his philosophy as forging a middle path: Hegel is neither the subjective idealist of Pippin's interpretation nor the advocate of a revival of first-order metaphysical theorising depicted by so many of Pippin's critics. (shrink)
Speech given by Markus Gabriel within the international meeting “Presente del idealismo alemán” organized by the Philosophy Department of the Universidad Nacional de Colombia. This conference was held on October 9, 2009.
Palabras pronunciadas por Markus Gabriel en el marco del encuentro internacional "Presente del idealismo alemán" organizado por el Departamento de Filosofía de la Universidad Nacional de Colombia. Conferencia que tuvo lugar el 9 de octubre de 2009.
The paper reconstructs Hegel’s repudiation of any kind of transcendent metaphysics. Hegel argues that transcendent metaphysics is dialectically incoherent because it mistakes its own reflection for an absolute independent of reflection. Hence, it is subject to a reification of philosophical thought. This entails that the relation between logic and philosophy of nature in Hegel must not be interpreted as any kind of emanation. Otherwise, Hegel would himself be subject to his effective critique of transcendent metaphysics.
Resumen: El artículo presenta una reconstrucción sistemática del esquema de El destino del hombre, de Fichte, a la luz de algunos desarrollos recientes en la metafísica de la intencionalidad. Me propongo mostrar cómo Fichte descubre una doble "verdad del escepticismo". En primer lugar, el escepticis..
Miles Burnyeat famously argued that there could, in principle, be no idealism in Greek philosophy, because it was not yet prepared to regard the existence of an external world beyond our veil of perception as a serious philosophical problem. I believe that this thesis is historically and systematically false. Burnyeat's claim is backed up by a short sketch of the most important philosophical systems in Greek philosophy that might seem to contradict his no-idealism view, viz. ancient skepticism and Neo-Platonism. In (...) this paper, I argue against Burnyeat's view on the basis of a reconstruction of Sextus Empiricus' epistemological skepticism regarding the external world. Then, I try to show that Plotinus' idealism and his theory of νος are built on the assumption that metaphysical realism entails the problem of the external world and is, therefore, potentially inconsistent because of its skeptical results. Plotinus shows how skepticism about the external world can be avoided by idealism which can, thus, be seen as an explicit overcoming of epistemological skepticism. This whole train of thought explicitly refers to the problem of an external world. Therefore, Plotinus can be seen as answering the skeptical challenge with an idealistic metaphysic of experience. (shrink)