Presentation on theme: "Lecturer Nela Mircic ă, PhD Spiru Haret University Phenomenological Attitude and Scientific Rationality at Edmund Husserl Iaşi, june 2012."— Presentation transcript:
Lecturer Nela Mircic ă, PhD Spiru Haret University Phenomenological Attitude and Scientific Rationality at Edmund Husserl Iaşi, june 2012
Phenomenological Attitude Phenomenology, an important current in the history of philosophy Phenomenology, an important current in the history of philosophy, continues nowadays to determine philosophical interrogations, controversies, opposition, but also interest, attention and, last but not least, admiration for the attitude of the thinkers in their endeavor for a complex approach of knowledge. Phenomenology constitutes an important step in the evolution of the interrelation between philosophy and science. Edmund Husserl elaborated this method of reasoning initiated by the paramount challenge of a scientific problem: he noticed that the formal logic of the time could not sustain the high level attained by mathematics. Searching for a solution for the problem, he arrived at the conclusion that the mathematical entities, irreducible to the knowledge obtained by the inductive-deductive method, are of a purely logical nature and part of the sphere of ideal essences, existing in themselves.
Husserl conceived a existence of the pure ideas Considering the lines of logical reasoning as species (idealities) in themselves, Husserl advances the idea of a independent existence of the logical in relation to the empiric. Thus, the empiric activities cannot influence in any way the logical contents; it is not the logical that is reduced to the empirical, but the empirical is reduced to the logical. Therefore, Husserl conceived a existence of the pure ideas, which are irreducible and found before any other spiritual entity. Hence, a new theoretical structure was born, named Phenomenology. Husserl was preoccupied with the process of knowledge.
the phenomenological philosophy opens a bridge before science The phenomenological philosophy opens a bridge before science, so that together they should unveil the foundation of knowledge. It casts out the preconceived ideas forming a shallow argument that might end with the invocation of divinity as it was the case so often in the history of philosophy. During this period science registered an unprecedented development and the scientific explanations, especially those coming from psychology could not be ignored. This was an aspect understood especially well by Brentano when he gave a special attention to the results of research in psychology. He went to the extent where he affirmed that ”the true method in philosophy is the method of the natural sciences”. He suggested a ”descriptive psychology” and he initiated the phenomenological critique of psychologism both in logic and in the theory of knowledge. ”The main theoretical accomplishment of Brentano is his descriptive psychology, not as much as psychology per se, but as new possibility for the understanding of the problematic of metaphysics and of the theory of knowledge”.
Brentano had the intuition of the possibility of a situation where consciousness is self observant. Husserl, his disciple, understood the depth of this affirmation and, in one of his studies, he expressed his conviction that phenomenology can be founded, as a rigorous science, only on its edification on the evidence of consciousness. Although Auguste Comte eliminated psychology from his outline for the classification of the sciences that he elaborated, arguing that it is not possible to divide consciousness to become simultaneously object of the observation and observing subject, Brentano had the intuition of the possibility of a situation where consciousness is self observant.
transcendental subiectivity „The return to consciousness searched by all the philosophies is thus extended again on the sheer domain of the psychic and up to the aria of subjectivity. This aria is the place where subjectivity and the being of everything that can be known by the subject in different manners are constituted. This sphere of the whole that can be known by the subject is the transcendent in its most wide apprehension, and it is named transcendental subiectivity”. The psychic represents a closed circle of inner phenomena accessible only to the introspection.
consciousness has certain analyzable levels as identified by Husserl Edmund Husserl thought that the introspection is which unveils for us a richness of nuances, as he was a declared adversary of the measure and of the practice of establishing standards. From a psychological standpoint, consciousness has certain analyzable levels as identified by Husserl: the level of the spirit (the most intimate level of the consciousness, identical to the absolute, ultimate reality of the universe – a cosmic consciousness); the transpersonal level (when man is not conscious of his or her identity to the universe, but is not identifying himself or herself with the individual organism; and here is the place of the archetypes); the level of the ego (man does not identify himself or herself with the organism totally, but with a more or less exact mental representation of his or her organism; the identification is in fact with the image entertained for the self); the level of the shadow (when we encounter a partial identification with the man ego, with the impoverished and inexact image of the self, when a sum of the psychic tendencies, considered undesirable, are left in a shadow).
pure self By his conception, Husserl succeeded a return to the transcendental subjectivism; he considered that self is the fundamental component on which philosophy and any „rigorous science” should rely on. It is about the pure self, deprived of any psychical or even logical attributes, although it is considered to think. Husserl brought into attention, as method in philosophy, the phenomenological reduction, understood as an operation through which the pure self is obtained, a self freed of any determinations. Husserl uses this method he names phänomenologische Reduktion to allow the emergence of all that is manifest within the consciousness to be able to register its presence and exclude the hypothesis of the existence of exterior objects. What remains is the transcendental "ego", opposed to the empiric one.
pure consciousness Thus, The Transcendental Phenomenology represents the study of the essential structures that emerge, revealed to the pure consciousness. To sustain this affirmation Husserl’s writings come to explain the fact that this new region of existence, the pure consciousness, is characterized by the fact that it aims intentionally an object belonging to the real world, the world of concreteness. But this object becomes immanent to the pure consciousness, oriented toward her or him; as a consequence, it is not the real object which is of interest for Phenomenology, but its constitution within the ideality of the pure consciousness. This real object has become ideal, due to the fact that it is aimed by the pure consciousness, which is intentional.
Scientific Rationality at Edmund Husserl This is why Husserl speaks of „philosophy as a rigorous science”. He realized that, in an independent manner, the two fields of knowledge cannot reach the ultimate data of knowledge. He says that we can count on science, but we need nonetheless the force of philosophy. He affirms that a philosophical science represents an incontestable necessity: the scientific research and the philosophical reflection have become interdependent; the power and the force of the truth come from these two directions The phenomenological philosophy is that „with a configuration within an endless work field for science” and offers scientific rigor to all the pieces of knowledge.
Husserl, through his philosophy, determined a fundamental change of the attitudes of the researchers This perspective of the phenomenological conception was embraced by numerous philosophers and scientists, who begun to examine both existence and knowledge with this view. Husserl, through his philosophy, determined a fundamental change of the attitudes of the researchers towards their object of study. Following the apparition of the Husserl’s Phenomenology the very manner to set, describe and approach the problems suffered essential modifications. One can say that the phenomenological philosophy proliferated within contemporary thought and culture. The phenomenology created by Husserl is a transcendental one. We can say that his philosophical system had a significant influence on contemporary philosophy comparable with the influence of the philosophy of Kant at its time.
Husserl and „crisis of the European humanity” The philosophy of Husserl had goal to solve certain problems that science and philosophy of the time could not resolve. Husserl emphasized the special role of science, of the positivist attitude regarding the resolution of the „crisis of the European humanity”, which was manifest at the beginning of the 20 th century in moral and culture, generated by the economic and moral limits of the society dominated by the liberal ideology and doctrine. The skepticism, which is characteristic for the liberal ideology, gains the most part of society and had as a consequence the dramatic decrease of the trust in the possibilities of knowledge. Revolted, Husserl adopted a radical attitude and attempted to mobilize as well science, as philosophy to discover a sure and absolute fundament for knowledge. This is why he insists on „philosophy as a rigorous science”. He understood that, independently, the two fields of knowledge cannot but attain the ultimate data of knowledge. The force of philosophy is necessary despite the fact that people and societies can count on science, or, supplementary, as an addition to science. He notices that a philosophical science is an undisputable requirement for the scientific knowledge: scientific research and the philosophical reflection have become interdependent in his perspective, where the ultimate truth has elements from both directions.
The work of Husserl represented a veritable ‘threshold’ in the evolution of philosophy (Andrei Marga) Husserl’s philosophical system was appreciated in its totality by the thinkers who followed him. He succeeded to give a new meaning to science and especially to its role for humanity. He established the bases for modern science, able to overcome the „crisis of sciences” and the „crisis of the European humanity”, both important for the cultural and spiritual environment of Europe at the beginning of the 20 th century. His system of thinking represents a landmark of great scientific and moral quality to which related, and still relate, the scientists, philosophers, artists, etc. We conclude that the philosophical system of this thinker holds the rational explanations of various important scientific problems.
Rigorous science the one identified by Husserl, as the perfect philosophy, is in fact a psychological explanation at the level of pure conscience This proves that this philosophical system is configured around the problems that science confronts, and supports science in consolidating its arguments. Rigorous science the one identified by Husserl, as the perfect philosophy, is in fact a psychological explanation (more exactly, an explanation of the cognitive psychology) at the level of pure conscience. Husserl covers a trajectory going from the concrete to the abstract and again back to the concrete, using the reasoning tools of psychology. The methodology of the establishing the phenomenological truth implies the phenomenological reduction, developed in stages, involving also the abilities of the human psychic to make abstraction of diverse elements and emphasize what is essential for a phenomenon. He started from the functions of reasoning, emphasized by psychology, to create a philosophical system able to explain the problems of science.