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Theos-World RE: theos-l digest: November 14, 1999

Nov 15, 1999 04:57 PM
by W. Dallas TenBroeck

Nov 15th 1999

Dear Kym:

Many thanks for review of Kant-ism  I found him most interesting,
and perhaps read more into his writing than he meant ?  -- but
then, I also think he made some good and some (partially good)
points -- but don't we all?  I think that exchanges of this
nature make us all more generous to each other.


Some NOTES below



-----Original Message-----
From: []
Sent: Sunday, November 14, 1999 10:44 PM
To: Theosophy Study List
Subject: Re: theos-l digest: November 14, 1999

Dallas wrote:

>Pure thinking (Kant) is what is wanted.  All factors out in
>of us.

Interesting, since I always viewed the core of Kant as being
"anti-theosophical."  Kant argues that we must assume that nature
ordered in such a way that is purposeful, which thereby
constrains, or
forces someone, to approach the study of nature as being formed
by an
intelligent creator.  Such mental "lock-down" seems unacceptable
to the
mega-exploratory mind.

DTB	Agreed -- let's look at him without the "creator" concept (if

Also, his famous categorical imperative, which he claims is based
on pure
reason, has been proven over and over again to fail Kant's
criteria.  So
much for reason as the sole standard for moral knowledge.

And, for you, Dallas, in your pursuit of knowledge of noumena -
Kant says
these things can be pondered upon, but never really known.  So,
in essence,
it is a subtle suggestion that our questions of "what is human"
are merely
an exercise in chasing our tails.

DTB	Possibly, as to the real source of all things -- I mean the
non-manifest ABSOLUTENESS (to use a Theosophical idea)  but, what
have we got that is an absolutely sure thing?  To me, we have 3:

1.  - I know I exist.
2. -  You and the rest of the universe  "out there" also exist.
3. -  We have on-going relationships of many kinds.  Consequently
we are able to investigate those relationships.

Putting it metaphysically (if allowed), Spirit has for opposition
Matter.  All wisdom vs. ignorance and inexperience. Potential vs.
limits of form.

The 3rd factor:  Perception -- Mind.  Intermediate between Spirit
& Matter -- and in its purity would be unaffected by either,
hence capable of "perceiving" them and all their many kinds of
[ Example:  mental attitude of a Scientist in his lab, seeking in
some aspect of Nature, for the laws that rule its being.]

Side note: The philosopher P.F. Strawson, in his book
intriguingly makes Kant into an empiricist - Kant would not be
pleased - but
Strawson does an admirable job.

DTB	I haven't read him.  My loss I guess. so far.

Basically, in my opinion, there is no evidence that Kant really
"pure thinking."

On a more personal level, Kant's approach to thinking so carried
over into
his personal life that he ended up needing such a rigidity to his
routine, that it interfered with his ability to truly connect
with those
around him.  He began to treat people like objects.  Another
example of how
the dominance of "reason" in one's life can distort what it means
to be a
caring individual.

DTB	Probably an exaggeration -- which is unable to bend with the
current of other aspects of life and living.  All should be
balanced.  But any over-emphasis leads to some exaggeration and
that ought to be identified so that the one who is in an
exaggerated mode (if they are willing to listen to another's
view) may readjust themselves.

What I ken is that we are all multifaceted, and we need to be
able to apprehend and use all those faculties so that the real
human being is generous (my term) to others.

OK ?

Best wishes,



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