Kantian Idealism and Phenomenology – Mind / Body Problem

The mind/body problem brought about by the different ideologies adopted by empiricists and the rationalists have met some attempts of solution (Macionis, 2012). To mention but a number are the Kantian idealism and phenomenology.

To begin with, Kantian avows that experience of things is more alike to the way we picture them visually. It therefore renders an explanation that endorses subject-based components with no causal link. Consequently, this epistemological view tries to illustrate against empiricist theories that create causal linkages between the “mind” and “matter”.

Kantian idealism holds that the mind is an entity that models and shapes the world into the way we picture it in form of space-and –time. In Kant’s view, a priori concepts and intuitions are the parents of a priori knowledge (Solomon, 2001). A priori knowledge in turn create a framework for which a posteriori knowledge is erected upon. The causal concept is taken as conceptual organizing principle which is imposed on nature. Nature however is grasped as a collection and unification of appearances that are amalgamated in accordance to a priori concepts. More broadly, it means that space and time are forms of perceptions. Causality is in its own is taken as a form of knowing. As a result, space and time are held to be conceptual principles and progressions pre-arrangement involvement.

Space and time are forms of intuition from the argument that experience is structured by the mind and experience is the reason to something becoming an object of knowledge. Intuition here is taken to mean the act of sensing or perception and finally amalgamating the concepts involved (Angeles, 1992). Such concepts then consequently turn things in themselves into a world of involvement. As such, passive observation and knowledge does not exist and hence the coining of the term “a thing-in-itself”.

On another dimension, phenomenology goes against the arguments put forth by Kantian idealism. Phenomenology generally features studies of structures of both experience and consciousness seeking to disapprove Cartesian method of analysis and uphold empiricism (Orbe, 2009). It rather focuses on the systematic reflection on the structural studies of consciousness and phenomena, precisely the one that acts in the acts of consciousness.

At the outset, certain assumptions underlie the theory of phenomenology in an attempt to give explanations to its basics. The first one is in its inconsistency with the concept of objective research. Secondly, phenomenology goes with the idea that analysis of daily human comportment can aid in giving a stronger understanding of nature. Thirdly, phenomenology prefers the exploration of persons rather than individuals. Such is for the notion that persons’ reflection towards the society can be uniquely tracked. Fourthly and lastly, phenomenologists capture conscious experience rather than traditional data and collection of data is based on orientation to discovery (Natanson, 1973).

The most important and the defining element of phenomenology is intentionality. Usually termed as “aboutness”, it is the idea that consciousness can only be attributed to the intentions of something. Such object (the intentional object) is sally allocated various aspects of consciousness, for example, retention and protection, perception, memory and signification among others (Husserl, 1970).

The main and the central configuration of involvement is its intentionality. An experience is concentrated on a certain object by meaning and virtue of its content altogether with the supportive conditions. Phenomenology and its roots in intentionality creates a linkage between the mind and the body, bringing out the general idea of empiricism.

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