The Reception of Kant's Critical Philosophy: Fichte, Schelling, and Hegel
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The period from Kant to Hegel is one of the most intense and rigorous in modern philosophy. The central problem at the heart of it was the development of a new standard of theoretical reflection and of the principle of rationality itself. The essays in this volume consider both the development of Kant's system of transcendental idealism in the three Critiques, the Metaphysical Foundations of Natural Science, and the Opus Postumum, as well as the reception and transformation of that idealism in the work of Fichte, Schelling, and Hegel.
himself.”2 Admittedly, Kant was less than delighted when certain of his own followers had the temerity to apply this same insight to his own writings and thus asserted that certain of his explicit claims —concerning, for example, the relationship between things in themselves and sensible intuition or the impossibility of “intellectual intuition” —would have to be rejected as incompatible with “the spirit of the Critical philosophy.” One of those who reached such a conclusion was Johann Gottlieb
execute, that is, act in accordance with, moral laws. Thus he writes: “The concept of God is the idea of a moral being, which, as such, is judging [and] universally commanding. The latter is not a hypothetical thing but pure practical reason itself in its personality, with reason’s moving forces in respect to world-beings and their forces” (OP, VII.X.l, 22:118; Forster, 201—2); and he defines the idea of God as “the idea of an omnipotent moral being, whose willing is a categorical imperative for
transcendental idealism of that of which our understanding is itself the author. Spinoza. —To intuit everything in God. (21:15.6—7) Reason leads the way with the projection of its forms (forma dat esse rei) because it alone conveys necessity. Spinoza. The elements of cognition and the moments of the determination of the subject through them. (To intuit everything in God.) (21:15.19—22) [Transcendental philosophy] is the intussusception of a system of Ideas (inventions [Dichtungen] of pure reason)
servitude, vanity, dishonesty, self-deception, and complacent despair over the power of reason (SW 1:434). People are drawn to dogmatism either because they benefit from the system of unfreedom or because they are victims deluded and intimidated by it who are afraid to throw off their chains. It is in this sense only that Fichte holds that dogmatists cannot be “refuted,” but can only be “cultivated,” “educated,” or “cured” (SW 1:136, GA 4/2:21). The fundamental change in Fichte’s method between
signifi cance beyond the confines of the realm of appearances. It is only through their (theoretical) cognition-geared application to the manifold of space and time that the categories become restricted to appearances. The categories as such (as a priori forms of thinking) are not affected by the conditions of sensibility.13 The strict dissociation of the term and concept of transcendental idealism from the core of Kant’s critique of understanding, reason and judgment points to a fundamental