Kant’s analysis of the soul: correlation with the body, and the problem of existence

THE YEAR OF IMMANUEL KANT

Authors

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.15407/fd2024.01.022

Keywords:

Kant, Kant’s lectures, critical philosophy, metaphysics, psychology, God, soul, material principle of the soul, location of the soul, agnosticism, ontological argument, existence, predicate, real existence

Abstract

The article highlights the conceptual issues related to Kant’s analysis of the soul, a concept of utmost importance for the metaphysics and psychology of German academic philosophy (Schulphilosophie) of the Enlightenment was significantly dependent on the developed and systematically presented philosophical and scientific ideas and concepts of Christian Wolff. Kantian philosophy, its themes, and conceptual language were formed in the crucible of Wolfean discourse, and from the early 1770s in the struggle against it, which led to the emergence of a new, critical philosophy – transcendental idealism, in which the problem of the soul, consciousness, and self-awareness became fundamental. It is this issue that was thoroughly covered in the «Critique of Pure Reason» and other works that were published later, after the first Critique. The article draws attention to Kant’s Lectures, which, on the one hand, demonstrate his critical attitude towards the so-called Wolfians, their metaphysics, and psychology, and, on the other hand, the lecture materials illustrate Kant's new conceptual position, and, what is important, develop, supplement and clarify it. The sources of Kant’s lectures are highlighted, taking into account the fact that we have at our disposal lecture notes, the authors of which are either unknown or, if known, their authorship is still somewhat doubtful, since they are notes that different people have rewritten. The article analyses lecture notes on psychology, the authors of which are more or less well-known, and experts recognize these notes as quite valid. The conceptual content of these lectures allows us to look at Kant’s understanding of the problem of the soul in a somewhat broader context compared to the «Critique of Pure Reason», where this problem is analyzed in connection with the paralogisms of reason and the transcendental deduction of categories. In his lectures on psychology, Kant draws attention to the problem of the interaction of the soul with the human body, the «location of the soul», linking it not so much to the organs of the human body (for example, the head) as to the location of a person as a bodily being in the world makes all acts of consciousness, self-awareness, and sense perception possible. Kant emphasizes the basic importance of such a spatial location of a person for the soul, as something that belongs to a person with a certain integrity, and not a separate organ, to act properly, to perform its cognitive functions. The article analyses the problem of existence, which is important for critical philosophy, its various modalities, and predication, with a special emphasis on the problem of the existence of metaphysical objects - the soul, God, and the world as a whole.

Author Biography

Viktor KOZLOVSKYI

PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, National University of “Kyiv-Mohyla Academy” 2, Skovorody St., Kyiv, 04070

References

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Published

2024-04-01

How to Cite

KOZLOVSKYI, V. (2024). Kant’s analysis of the soul: correlation with the body, and the problem of existence: THE YEAR OF IMMANUEL KANT. Filosofska Dumka, (1), 22–42. https://doi.org/10.15407/fd2024.01.022

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