The Quarterly Journal of Philosophical Investigations

نوع مقاله : مقاله علمی- پژوهشی

نویسندگان

1 دانشجوی دکتری، دانشگاه بین المللی امام خمینی (ره) قزوین

2 دانشیار گروه فلسفه، دانشگاه بین المللی امام خمینی (ره)، قزوین

3 دانشیار گروه فلسفه، دانشگاه بین‌المللی امام خمینی (ره)، قزوین

چکیده

فهم محتوای نقد عقل محض منوط به فهم معنای امر پیشین است و کانت نیز به­همین­دلیل، بخش عمده‌ای از این­کتاب را به تبیین شأن معرفتی، جست‌وجوی خاستگاه، تعیین محدوده‌ اعتبار و تشریح مصادیق آن اختصاص داده است. با­این­همه، حتی باآنکه وی در هر دو ویرایش نقد، کم‌وبیش، مشخصه‌هایی (مانند ضروری، اکیداً کلی، محض، واضح، قطعی و مستقل از تجربه) را برای امر پیشین معرفی کرده است ولی، چون این­مشخصه­ها در سنت­های پیشاکانتی و پساکانتی -در معنایی متفاوت با معنای مدنظر او- نیز به­کار گرفته شده­اند پس چندان بعید نیست اگر در فهم محتوای نقد دچار ابهام شویم. ما در بخش (1)، به برخی از این­ابهام­ها اشاره خواهیم کرد. سپس در بخش (2-1)، نشان خواهیم داد برای رهایی از ابهام­های مزبور ناگزیریم مشخصه ضروری را به «برخاسته از طبیعت ذهن انسان»، اکیداً کلی را به «صرفاً قابلِ اطلاق بر پدیدارها»، محض را به «معطوف­بودن به سهمِ خودِ ذهن در تشریک مساعی­اش با خودِ اشیاء برای شکل­گیری معرفت تجربی»، واضح را به «آنچه حیطه جست­وجو برای یافتن­اش، صرفاً محدود به درون خودمان است و نه بیرون از آن» و قطعی را نیز به «آنچه گستره­اش هم به­لحاظ خودِ مصادیق و هم به­لحاظ تعداد مصادیق تغییرناپذیر است» بازتعریف کنیم. در بخش (2-2) نیز با واکاوی مشخصه مستقل از تجربه، نشان خواهیم داد این­مشخصه، علاوه­بر دلالت بر صرفِ ساختار، می­تواند ناظر به نوعی معرفت در بن هر گونه تجربه ممکنی نیز باشد؛ افزون بر این، نسبتِ مشخصه مزبور را با سنت پیشاکانتی و پساکانتی نیز نمایان خواهیم ساخت.

تازه های تحقیق

Kantian Characteristics of a Priori

       Mahdi Soleimani Khormouji1, Ali Fath Taheri2, Seyyed Masoud Sayf3

1 Ph.D. Candidate in Philosophy, Department of Philosophy, Imam Khomeini International University, Qazvin. Email: Soleimani.um88@gmail.com

2 Associate Professor of Philosophy, Department of Philosophy, Imam Khomeini International University, Qazvin.Email: fathtaheri@hum.ikiu.ac.ir

3 Associate Professor of Philosophy, Department of Philosophy, Imam Khomeini International University, Qazvin. Email: dr_sayf2003@yahoo.com

Abstract

Undoubtedly, A Priori needs to be clarified if we are to understand the heart of Critique of Pure Reason; and Kant, precisely for this very reason, devoted a considerable part of Critique to explaining the epistemic status of A Priori, searching its origin, specifying its validity scope, and illustrating its instances. Although he, more or less, in both editions of Critique, put forward some characteristics intrinsic to A Priori (such as necessary, strictly universal, pure, clear, certain and independent of experience) since they have been also used in (pre)post-Kantian traditions, especially in a meaning different from what Kant meant, so they may simply bring about some confusions cause failing to appropriately grasp the heart of Critique. With reference to such confusions the authors make an attempt to shed light on this point in part (1). Then, in part (2-1), based on the text of Critique and its commentators’ views, authors proceed to show that to evade such confusions one should re-define necessary to “what is emerged from the nature of the human mind”, strictly universal to “applicable just in the realm of phenomenon”, pure to “merely focused on the contribution of mind itself in collaboration with the objects themselves to form empirical knowledge”, clear to “what the scope of searching for is limited to within ourselves not outside of it” and certain to “what its scope is immutable –either regarding to its instances themselves or to their numbers”. In part (2-2), by scrutinizing the other characteristic (i.e. independent of experience), we shall show that this characteristic, besides of referring to mere structure, can refer to some kind of knowledge on which every possible experience is based; moreover, we shall determine the relation of above characteristic to pre(post)-Kantian traditions.  

Keywords: Necessary, Universal, Pure, Clear, Certain, Independent of Experience

1. Introduction

Inquiring about a priori has a long history. Perhaps, the paradox of knowledge in Meno was the first stimulus has been persuading philosophers to emphasize on the vital role of a priori; thereby the experience of sensible things becomes possible. To answer this paradox, Plato came to believe that, the possibility of any knowledge is depend on an epistemic bedrock that one acquired before (s)he came to this world, and now, through recollection, gets access to it. Aristotle also believed that “all teaching and all intellectual learning come about from already existing knowledge” [1]. Apart from why Plato and Aristotle emphasized on the inevitability of the a priori, there still exist some ambiguities and hence disagreements about (a) what they exactly meant by a priori (b) how far our intellectual teaching and learning are depend on “already existing knowledge” (c) what does this knowledge consist of? [2, 3, 4] In modern philosophy, discussion of how to interpret pre-existing knowledge and of its domain turns into another phase. Contrary to Descartes’ predecessors who usually leave us confused about the origin of our access to pre-exiting knowledge, he intensively urges that it would be quite enough to confine ourselves to inquiry just within the self, if we are to find any proper answer. At that time, being innate was so vague for philosophers that made them raise several objections; therefore, he had no choice but to give further explanations. Despite Descartes’ supplemental explanations, Locke’s objections shows that Descartes’ (and Leibniz’s) concept of innate ideas invalidates the necessity of prior knowledge in structure of our every knowledge. Nevertheless, Hume rejects the theory of innate ideas and says they “draw out their disputes to a tedious length, without ever touching the point in question”. Kant reconstructs the necessity of a priori in structure of human knowledge. Nevertheless, as much as he elaborates the meaning and domain of a priori, simultaneously makes it too complicated and ambiguous. In this study, we, at first, point out some of these ambiguities, then offer some suggestions to solve the problem.

 2. The results

We summarize the results of our study into two following tables (a) & (b).

 

Table (a)

 

 

The alternative definition

the troublesome definition

 

 

What raises out from the nature of human mind

What is true in all possible worlds

Necessary

 

What is applicable to all (and only all) phenomena

What is applicable to all instances of a type/genus

Universal

 

What refers to the portion of mind itself in its cooperation with objects themselves to make possible experiential knowledge

What is totally separate from experience

Pure

 

What if we are to find it, we must confine our inquiry just within our own self not out of it

What, in an epistemic stand, is entirely accessible

Clear

 

What its realm is unchangeable, both in terms of number of its instantiations and in terms of what it consists of

What is unquestionable

Certain

         

 Table (b)

 

independent from experience

If it refers to mere form/structure

If it refers to form/structure whose origin is dependent from experience

representational  innatism

Kant rejects it

faculties  innatism

Kant embraces it

If it refers to form/structure on which we can justifiably extend our knowledge

Formal extention of knowledge

if language has a social nature

Kant rejects it

if language has a private/individualistic nature

Kant embraces it

Mateial extension of knowledge

İt is Kant’s main proposal in Critique

If it refers to some sort of knowledge

There are, at least, several statements in Critique that refers to this meaning

 

References

1-      Aristotle (1975). Posterior Analytics, translated with a commentary by J. Barnes, 2nd edition, Clarendon Press, Oxford.

2-      Barnes, J. (1975). Commentary, in J. Barnes (trans.) Posterior Analytics, 2nd edition, Clarendon Press, 81-271, Oxford.

3-      Scott, D. (2005). Plato’s Meno, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

4-      Silverman, A. (2014). Plato’s Middle Period Metaphysics and Epistemology, in Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. (http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/plato-metaphysics/).

5-      Kant, I. (2002c) “Metaphysical Foundations of Natural Science”, trans. M. Friedman, In Theoretical Philosophy after 1781, H. Allison & P. Heath (eds.), Cambridge University Press, 171-270.

6-      Silverman, A. (2014) “Plato’s Middle Period Metaphysics and Epistemology”, Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. (http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/plato-metaphysics/).

7-      Strawson, P. F. (1966) The Bounds of Sense: An Essay on Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason, London and New York: Routledge (Taylor & Francis Group).

کلیدواژه‌ها

عنوان مقاله [English]

Kantian Characteristics of A Priori

نویسندگان [English]

  • Mahdi Soleimani Khormuji 1
  • Ali Fath Taheri 2
  • Seyyed Masoud Seif 3

1 PhD Candidate, Imam Khomeini International University of Qazvin

2 Associate Professor at Department of Philosophy, Imam Khomeini International University, Qazvin.

3 Associate Professor, Imam Khomeini International University of Qazvin

چکیده [English]

Undoubtedly, A Priori needs to be clarified if we are to understand the heart of Critique of Pure Reason; and Kant, precisely for this very reason, devoted a considerable part of Critique to explaining the epistemic status of A Priori, searching its origin, specifying its validity scope, and illustrating its instances. Although he, more or less, in both editions of Critique, put forward some characteristics intrinsic to A Priori (such as necessary, strictly universal, pure, clear, certain and independent of experience) since they have been also used in (pre)post-Kantian traditions, especially in a meaning different from what Kant meant, so they may simply bring about some confusions cause failing to appropriately grasp the heart of Critique. With reference to such confusions the authors make an attempt to shed light on this point in part (1). Then, in part (2-1), based on the text of Critique and its commentators’ views, authors proceed to show that to evade such confusions one should re-define necessary to “what is emerged from the nature of the human mind”, strictly universal to “applicable just in the realm of phenomenon”, pure to “merely focused on the contribution of mind itself in collaboration with the objects themselves to form empirical knowledge”, clear to “what the scope of searching for is limited to within ourselves not outside of it” and certain to “what its scope is immutable –either regarding to its instances themselves or to their numbers”. In part (2-2), by scrutinizing the other characteristic (i.e. independent of experience), we shall show that this characteristic, besides of referring to mere structure, can refer to some kind of knowledge on which every possible experience is based; moreover, we shall determine the relation of above characteristic to pre(post)-Kantian traditions.

کلیدواژه‌ها [English]

  • necessary
  • universal
  • pure
  • clear
  • certain
  • independent of experience
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-      Allison, H. (1973) The Kant-Eberhard Controversy, Baltimore and London: The John Hopkins University Press.
-      Barnes, J. (1975) “Commentary”, In Posterior Analytics, trans. J. Barnes, 2nd edition, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 81-271.
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-      Silverman, A. (2014) “Plato’s Middle Period Metaphysics and Epistemology”, Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. (http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/plato-metaphysics/).
-      Strawson, P. F. (1966) The Bounds of Sense: An Essay on Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason, London and New York: Routledge (Taylor & Francis Group).
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