Rationality and Empiricism

Rationality without empiricism is impossible. A child born without experience is not considered “alive” for a reason. (This may sound circular but) we necessarily start with reality, then experience, then thought (reason). What ends in death is experience and thought but not reality, for the body remains.

This may be a common sense view, a conventional view, a “reductive” point-of-view but there is nothing that I should apologise for … except for being boring perhaps.

The nature of this or that thing – will and representation

I rather like Schopenhauer for the one thing he said about will and representation. Will being our volitions and being an object that we can know. Schopenhauer believed Kant missed the point when he said that we can never know the things-in-themselves. Schopenhauer believed so because what Kant had seemed to forget is that we are also objects within the reality. Thus we can know us as the thing-in-itself.

I kind of agree with Schopenhauer but also feel we cannot truly know ourselves. The example I can give is when we fall ill. If we are fully aware of the health of our body this would not have happened. In other words, we are not fully aware of the condition of this body-will. It is as unknown as the object-representations. The body-will is in reality just another representation in the Kantian sense.

At every turn, then, we have only representations. But also, we have will in the form of the nature of our being, to believe that will is possible. Our characteristic is to believe we can reach will or perfection. That is what we should embrace, not lofty unreachable ideals as though they are separate and not part of, or else greater than us, worthy to be aimed at.