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Old 07-04-2013, 09:04 PM
 
Location: Cleveland
3,177 posts, read 3,826,999 times
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In Critique of Pure Reason Kant says, in his explanation of a priori truths, "If you remove from your empirical concept of any object, corporeal or incorporeal, all properties which experience has taught you, you cannot take away from it that property by which you conceive it as a substance, or inherent in a substance... you will have to admit that it has its seat in your faculty of knowledge a priori."

I'm not sure I quite understand. Is he saying that if I know a guy, Steve, and I take away all the sensory properties that I associate with Steve, I still have the concept of Steve, and therefore Steve is a priori knowledge? That doesn't make any sense to me, because I would first have to have experienced Steve in order to have knowledge of Steve. For all I know a priori, I could be the only person in the universe, and everything around me is an illusion. The concept of Steve only came to me because I had an experience of Steve. Can someone please explain what Kant means here?
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Old 07-05-2013, 03:28 AM
 
1,039 posts, read 906,978 times
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As I can understand, there is a seat for each thing and the idea of the universe in our minds, including for "Steve". Thus, "Steve" existed in your mind before you met him.

What can I say, it's amazing!
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Old 07-05-2013, 12:09 PM
 
Location: high plains
493 posts, read 701,866 times
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could he be arguing that duality is a fundamental aspect of human existence? there must be a "that" of some kind that is not me? once self is recognized, it implies a not-self? unity of existence for humans is an impossibility?
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Old 07-05-2013, 01:26 PM
 
Location: Lethbridge, AB
1,132 posts, read 1,649,304 times
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Oh lord... that book is a nightmare.

I'll do my best with this one.

In Kant's view, there are two ways of determining something -empirical (by observation and experience) and a priori (knowledge that can be reached without observation and experience).

To borrow an example:
"George V reigned from 1910 to 1936" is empirical. We cannot know whether it is true without having observed it.
"If George V reigned for at least four days, then he reigned for more than three days" is a priori. We can decide it's truth without any experience - all necessary information is contained in the argument itself.

There are also two types of arguments - analytical (which can be judged based on the argument itself) and synthetic (which must be judged based on the relationship of the subject to the world around it).

For example:
"All triangles have three sides" is an analytical judgement. We need no new information to declare its validity.
"All triangles are large" is a synthetic, because we must compare the triangles to other things that are not contained in the argument.

The prevailing view before Kant was that all a priori knowledge was, by definition analytical - at first glance, they appear to be the same thing.

Kant argued that some a priori knowledge is synthetic -he argues that our minds are built to understand things according to a certain model, that we have an innate understanding of space and time and can thus make some fundamental judgments on synthetic arguments without actually having any observations.

I'm not sure that actually answered the question, at all, but then Kant is confusing as all hell. Hopefully it helped some.
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Old 07-05-2013, 03:38 PM
 
Location: Cleveland
3,177 posts, read 3,826,999 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stubblejumper View Post
Oh lord... that book is a nightmare.

I'll do my best with this one.

In Kant's view, there are two ways of determining something -empirical (by observation and experience) and a priori (knowledge that can be reached without observation and experience).

To borrow an example:
"George V reigned from 1910 to 1936" is empirical. We cannot know whether it is true without having observed it.
"If George V reigned for at least four days, then he reigned for more than three days" is a priori. We can decide it's truth without any experience - all necessary information is contained in the argument itself.

There are also two types of arguments - analytical (which can be judged based on the argument itself) and synthetic (which must be judged based on the relationship of the subject to the world around it).

For example:
"All triangles have three sides" is an analytical judgement. We need no new information to declare its validity.
"All triangles are large" is a synthetic, because we must compare the triangles to other things that are not contained in the argument.

The prevailing view before Kant was that all a priori knowledge was, by definition analytical - at first glance, they appear to be the same thing.

Kant argued that some a priori knowledge is synthetic -he argues that our minds are built to understand things according to a certain model, that we have an innate understanding of space and time and can thus make some fundamental judgments on synthetic arguments without actually having any observations.

I'm not sure that actually answered the question, at all, but then Kant is confusing as all hell. Hopefully it helped some.
Thanks, that helps some, I'm just getting to the point where he talks about synthetic vs. analytic knowledge, so maybe it will make more sense after I read a little further.
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Old 07-07-2013, 04:26 AM
 
25 posts, read 12,631 times
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Piggybacking on SJ viz-a-viz your example of Steve. What Kant (I think) would say is that you're knowledge of Steve is a posteori. But, underlaying your knowledge of Steve is your a priori of substance, mass, physical cohesion, or something along those lines. Basically, before you ever knew Steve, you'd know he's one solid body, not some weird physically disconnected being.
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Old 07-09-2013, 04:30 PM
 
10,452 posts, read 15,438,866 times
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A priori knowledge or justification is independent of experience (for example "All bachelors are unmarried"). Galen Strawson wrote that an a priori argument is one in which "you can see that it is true just lying on your couch. You don't have to get up off your couch and go outside and examine the way things are in the physical world. You don't have to do any science.";

My understanding is:
1. Kant is not referring to a human being, but to an object, corporeal or not. It is my understanding, that you can not quite approach "Steve" as an "object" in this respect.
2. It is my understanding, that Kant refers to an "essence" every object has, that makes it knowledgeable(as in - recognizable by knowing what it is) without necessary proof to you. Or, a priory knowledge. Simple example. Matter is. Intelligence is. Consciousness is. We all have a priory knowledge of them.
I believe, he is simply proving that "bare substance" of an object is base of our knowledge on that object, and then we add our subjective perception to it and see object the way we see it, not as it truly is.
Did I make is as complicated as he did? Keep in mind, man came up with 4 proofs that there is no God, and then came up with the fifth one, that there is God.
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Old 07-31-2013, 05:28 PM
 
128 posts, read 356,778 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cleverfield View Post
In Critique of Pure Reason Kant says, in his explanation of a priori truths, "If you remove from your empirical concept of any object, corporeal or incorporeal, all properties which experience has taught you, you cannot take away from it that property by which you conceive it as a substance, or inherent in a substance... you will have to admit that it has its seat in your faculty of knowledge a priori."

I'm not sure I quite understand. Is he saying that if I know a guy, Steve, and I take away all the sensory properties that I associate with Steve, I still have the concept of Steve, and therefore Steve is a priori knowledge? That doesn't make any sense to me, because I would first have to have experienced Steve in order to have knowledge of Steve. For all I know a priori, I could be the only person in the universe, and everything around me is an illusion. The concept of Steve only came to me because I had an experience of Steve. Can someone please explain what Kant means here?
He is tolking about thought making proces. It show his lacking in tehnical skils.
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Old 08-02-2013, 12:47 PM
 
Location: Whittier
3,007 posts, read 5,083,823 times
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Kant is a lot easier to understand if you relate his ideas to Platonic forms.

There is the thing, then there's the idea of the thing.

The idea has always existed prior to you knowing about it.

---

It gets complicated when you assume no experience, assume no thinker and assume what is, is. A priori (IMO) suggests that there has to be a God to work at least the way Kant proposes; but it's been a long time since I've read Kant so I could be very wrong about that.
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Old 07-24-2016, 01:09 AM
 
6 posts, read 5,623 times
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You can take away all empirical concepts of a substance except the concept that it is a substance to be experienced empirically and all that follows from that. That knowledge of it as being a substance and being experienced empirically is a priori. That it is a substance to be experienced empirically was not learned through empiricism.
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