• Joshs
    Science is more fundamental than scientific paradigms, but science is also secondary in itself. It presupposes things like sense data, an intelligible world, etc. It is a reorganization of what is pre-given in order to arrive at abstract knowledgeLeontiskos

    Heidegger made a similar argument, claiming that science ‘doesn’t think’. What he meant was that it rests on metaphysical presuppositions that it can’t examine. Husserl praised the human sciences for abandoning the causality of the natural sciences in favor of intentional analysis, but argues that this intentional methodology remained grounded in unexamined naturalist assumptions.

    .. perhaps it will turn out later that all externality, even that of the entire inductive nature, physical and even psychophysical, is only an externality constituted in the unity of communicative personal experience, is thus only something secondary, and that it therefore requires a reduction to a truly essential internality.” (Phenomenological Psychology)

    the most fundamental and essential realities are always indivisible or irreducible. The Atomists say that nothing makes sense without atoms, but they do not complain that atoms cannot be further analyzed; they recognize it as an irresistible conclusion. The spat between the idealists and the materialists is a spat premised upon the search for a unified theory, where there is only one irreducible reality.Leontiskos

    The most fundamental and essential reality for Husserl was transcendental subjectivity, but the essence of this ‘internal’ subjectivity was an irreducible interaction between subjective and objective poles of an intentional act, continually remaking the nature of self and world in their reciprocal dance. For Husserl, the pure ego functions as nothing but an empty zero point or center of activity. Heidegger’s position is more radical. The interaction between self and world is not the function of a reflective consciousness being affected by a world, but a self continually reinvented by a world which transcends it. In both Husserl and Heidegger, the most fundamental and irreducible reality is relational becoming.The freedom in this becoming is to be found neither in a solipsist ‘inside’ nor in an empirical ‘outside’ but in the way that a self is continually exposed to and changed by an irreducible outside , a radical alterity that cannot be dominated by a pre-defined will.

    Lee Braver speaks about this outside in terms of

    a reality unformed by human concepts, when a true beyond touches us, sending shivers through our conceptual schemes, shaking us out of any complacent feeling-at-home.”

    Building a bridge, or making a sculpture out of clay, involves a fine-grained sensitivity to context such that one’s desires, intentions and perceptions adjust themselves to the way that what is at stake and at issue is responsive to the world that talks back to
    us from beyond our own resources. A common criticism of Idealist notions of that will is that while it gives us the freedom to think what we want , it sees wanting and desiring as already within the control of the willing subject rather than it being the case that we can’t choose to want what we want but find ourselves desiring. My question to you is what, if any, substative properties and attributes do you see as irreducibly associated with the will, properties unaffected by exposure to an outside?
  • Leontiskos
    - Yes, interesting points. :up:

    I don't really disagree with any of that, but I think it often gets taken in problematic directions. I have been reading John Deely's book on Heidegger, which has been helping to refresh me on his ideas.

    For me the dangers of Heidegger are similar to the dangers of mysticism (and I don't use that word pejoratively). It constitutes something powerful but unstable and even destabilizing, and therefore it can move in really any direction at all (including, for example, Nazism). Heidegger would no doubt take this as a compliment, but it's not all to the good. I'd say religious or tradition contexts have a better chance at harnessing that mystical nucleus and creating safeguards to its instability. The common person is not well served by that kind of thinking or that level of instability, and therefore there needs to be a complex mechanism of mediation. To take an example: the hermitage is in the monastery, and the monastery is in the unpopulated rural area. The common person lives in the city. They visit the monastery but then go back home. They may never see the hermitage. Both are necessary and there is a symbiotic relationship, but to take the city-dweller and place them in the hermitage for any extended period of time would literally overwhelm them, as would the city for the monk. Heidegger's thought is in many ways eremitical, simultaneously life-giving, dangerous, foreign, and dependent for stabilization (and meaning/contextualization) upon the common life.
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