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reason

Philosophy DictionaryDictionary of Kants Technical Terms
in the first Critique, the highest faculty of the human subject, to which all other faculties are subordinated. It abstracts completely from the conditions of sensibility. The second Critique examines the form of our desires in order to construct a system based on the faculty of reason (= the practical standpoint). Reason's primary function is practical; its theoretical function, though often believed to be more important, should be viewed as having a secondary importance. (Cf. judgment.)
Philosophy DictionaryKant Dictionary
[A298/B355] "All our knowledge starts with the senses, proceeds from thence to the understanding, and ends with reason, beyond which there is no higher faculty". [Avii] Famously, Kant begins the Preface to A by asserting that human reason in general "has the peculiar fate that in one species of its knowledge it is burdened by questions which, as prescribed by the very nature of reason itself, it is not able to ignore, but which, as transcending all its powers, it is also not able to answer". Speculative reason should not be employed beyond the bounds of possible experience, yet we feel a need to employ it beyond these bounds, in order to grasp the "unconditioned". [Bx] In the Preface to B, Kant distinguishes two ways which "knowledge may be related to its object", namely, knowledge through theoretical (or speculative) reason (knowledge "merely determining [the object] and its concept, which must be supplied from elsewhere") and knowledge through practical reason (knowledge of the object "making it actual") [Bxxi] The critique of speculative reason "at least makes room for...an extension" of practical reason. [Bxxiii] Pure speculative reason, were it possible, would "trace the complete outline of a system of metaphysics" unless critiqued, this pure reason actually "narrows...the employment of reason" because it "threatens to destroy" practical reason, by "supplanting reason in its pure practical employment", namely by "threatening to make the bounds of sensibility coextensive with the real". Speculative reason has no correct employment beyond possible experience and the bounds of sensibility; pure practical reason can reach conclusions about "the moral...which inevitably does beyond the limits of sensibility", but by ignoring pure practical reason for pure speculative reason (1) we are inevitably lead into error after error and (2) face skepticism about the employment of (pure practical) reason threatens as the confusions of the false metaphysics of pure speculative reason becomes intolerable. [A130/B169] Kant also speaks of reason as one of "the higher faculties of knowledge", the other two being understanding and judgment. Understanding is the source of concepts, judgment the source of judgments, reason the source of inferences. [A302/B359] As a faculty, reason acts on the understanding, "to give the manifold knowledge of the latter an a priori unity by means of concepts." "Understanding may be regarded as a faculty which secures the unity of appearances by means of rules [i.e., empirical concepts], and reason as being the faculty which secures the unity of the rules under principles [i.e., principles of pure practical reason?]."
[A310/B367] The idea seems to be that knowledge requires all three faculties (and sensibility as well): by providing intuitions and concepts, sensibility and understanding provide "the material required" for experience, judgment unifies this material in a certain way, and then reason provides further unity, "an a priori unity by means of concepts" which is associated with the act of inference. This additional unity is peculiar, because Kant's analysis of empirical knowledge and sensible experience seems complete after
the act of judgment. Reason's "a priori unity" which further unifies the unity provided by judgment seems to be some kind of unity of practical reason, some sort of teleological or regulative unity of "purpose in nature", required by man's need to go beyond the empirical sphere and grasp the "unconditioned".
Philosophy DictionaryTheological and Philosophical Dictionary

 

Philosophy Dictionary INDEX:

List of Terms: Terms beginning with "A", Page 1

Starts With:      A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Page Number:      1 2

A: Page 1 of 2.

A posteriori know...A priori knowledge
A priori, analyti...
A priori, theory ...A priori,presuppo...ABSOLUTE
ABSTRACTION
ABSURDITY
AFFINITY
ALTERATION (CHANGE)
AMPHIBOLY
ANALOGY OF EXPERI...
ANALYTIC
ANALYTIC METHOD
ANALYTIC UNITY OF...
ANTECEDENT PROPOS...ANTHROPOLOGY
ANTICIPATION OF P...
ANTINOMY
APOAGOGIC
APPEARANCE
APPREHENSION
APRIORI
ARCHETYPE
ARCHITECTONIC
ATTENTION
ATTRIBUTE
AUTHENTICITY
AXIOMS OF INTUITION
Abbott, Lyman
Abdera
Abelard, Peter
Abelson, Robert
Abernathy, John
Absolute
Absolute idealism
Absolute theism
Absolutes
Absolutism
Abstract ideas
Acquaintance
Act agapism
Act deontology
Act teleology
Act utilitarianism
Action
Action theory
Adams
Adams, Jay E
Adams, Thomas
Aenesidemus
Aesthetic hedonism
Aesthetic humanism
Aesthetic stage
Aesthetics
Aeterni Patris
Agapism
Agapistic ethics
Agnostic
Agnosticism
Albertus Magnus
Albigensians
Albright, Jacob
Alesius, Alexander
Alexander, Archib...Alexander, James W.
Alexander, Samuel
Alleine, Joseph
Allon, Henry
Altizer, Thomas J...Altruism
Altruistic
Altruistic hedonism
Ambrose
Ambrose, Isaac
Amish
Ammann, Jacob
Anabaptist
Analogical predic...Analysis
Analytic philosophy
Analytical
Analytical philos...Analytical statem...
Anamnesis
Anarchism
Anaxagoras
Anaximander
Anaximenes
Anderson, James
Anderson, John R.
Andrewes, Lancelot
Angier, John
Animal faith
Anselm
Anthony of Padua
Anthropology
Anthropomorphism
Antifallibilism

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