Download Gabriel Markus Transcendental Ontology Essays German Idealism PDF

TitleGabriel Markus Transcendental Ontology Essays German Idealism
File Size1.1 MB
Total Pages207
Table of Contents
                            Contents
Acknowledgments
Introduction
Chapter 1: The Ontology of Knowledge
	I: Schelling, Hegel, and the Metaphysical Truth of Skepticism
	II: Absolute Identity and Reflection: Kant, Hegel, McDowell
	III: The Pathological Structure of Representation As Such: Hegel’s Anthropology
Chapter 2: Schelling’s Ontology of Freedom
	I: Unprethinkable Being and the Event: The Concept of Being in Late Schelling and Late Heidegger
	II: Belated Necessity: God, Man, and Judgment in Schelling’s Late Philosophy
Chapter 3: Contingency or Necessity? Schelling versus Hegel
	I: The Dialectic of the Absolute: Hegel’s Critique of Transcendent Metaphysics
	II: The Spielraum of Contingency: Schelling and Hegel on the Modal Status of Logical Space
Notes
Bibliography
Index
	A
	B
	C
	D
	E
	F
	G
	H
	I
	J
	K
	L
	M
	N
	O
	P
	Q
	R
	S
	T
	W
                        
Document Text Contents
Page 2

Transcendental Ontology

Page 103

70 Transcendental Ontology

Against this Being which, no matter how early we come on the scene, is
already there, I have often heard the following objection: such a reality,
which precedes all possibility, is unthinkable. And indeed it is unthink-
able for a thinking, which precedes Being and therefore for the kind of
thinking to which we are accustomed. Thinking posits this Being as its
point of departure in order to attain that which it deems as most worthy to
and for knowing and thereby as the most desirable thing in knowledge, in
order to attain it as a reality. And actual thinking only comes to pass when
departing from this point—but just as the terminus a quo of a movement, in
which, actually, the movement itself does not already exist, still belongs to
the movement, so every Being through its progress, by its setting off from
itself, becomes a moment of thinking [sc. namely the fi rst potency!].34

That being, which no matter “how early we come on the scene, is already
there,” is unprethinkable being: that which thinking cannot get behind
or before, that which cannot be anticipated or anteceded by any thought
whatsoever. Unprethinkable being is therefore to be understood literally,
in the sense that it is precisely that about which no thought whatsoever can
be presupposed. This means that this being cannot be presented in any
thought, since all thought is always already predicatively mediated sense,
in the sense determined by the logical concept of being. Yet that there is
a logical space that is opened by and through the fundamental structure
of judgments and the potencies cannot be explained or understood with
recourse to judgment. The existence of logical space is therefore contin-
gent, because no ground can be given to account for the fact that it exists.
Unprethinkable being can therefore not be understood as the ground of log-
ical space, because the very concept of ground already presupposes the suc-
cessful constitution of logical space. Unprethinkable being is consequently
the paradoxical “ground of ground” in the full-blooded Heideggerian
sense, what Heidegger also speaks of as the “abyss.”35 Schelling himself had
suggested the expression “non-ground”36 in his Freedom Essay, a term which
in his later philosophy is replaced by unprethinkable being.

Unprethinkable being should thus be understood as the actuality of all
possibility, that is, all determinability prior to its becoming anything deter-
minate as such. This means that it takes place prior to any and all “as.”37 It
cannot exclude the possibility of being otherwise, and thus the possibility
of the potencies, as it cannot take place in a setting where relations of inclu-
sion and exclusion are at play, that is, it is antecedent to the logical concept
of being and all relationality as such. Thus, the belatedly diagnosed imme-
diacy of the beginning is not related in any way to mediation.

Page 104

Schelling’s Ontology of Freedom 71

It is with this insight into belatedness that we can, with Schelling, assert
the ineradicable contingency of all existence. For everything that exists is
something and is therefore determinate. That anything whatsoever exists
cannot be justifi ed with reference to a determinate ground and therefore
cannot be grounded in any manner whatsoever. Thus there is no ratio deter-
minans for the existence of logical space: that a predicative ambience exists
in which we can acquire knowledge is a fact that can neither be grounded
in nor excluded from unprethinkable being. Logical space could have not
come to be: it is sensu stricto contingent, because its other, that which it
would be were it otherwise, that is, the eternally indeterminate, cannot be
a priori ruled out.

While negative philosophy examines only the constitution of logical
space, and thus in all of its claims assumes the logical concept of being,
positive philosophy sets out from the insight into the contingency of logical
space as such. In this way, Schelling opens onto a novel possibility for philo-
sophical refl ection, viz. thinking the transition from actuality to possibi-
lity, what Schelling calls “potentialization”38 as the essential act of freedom:
that is, as an activity that can be understood as taking place without any
suffi cient reason, as absolute spontaneity, or as that which, in contradis-
tinction to the Kantian identifi cation of freedom and autonomy, cannot
be brought under any rule.

This groundless, excessive freedom is, according to Schelling, nothing
more than the specifi c ontological status and role of personality. Who we
ultimately are at any given time depends on our freedom, since we are
only what we make of ourselves (which includes what others make of us),
what we take ourselves to be. We are held accountable for our personal-
ity, for the way in which we see the world and our position in it, because
we are the very open region in which fi elds of sense appear as such. Thus
Schelling anticipates the foundational thought of existentialism, in par-
ticular Sartre’s concept of freedom, with, however, the following important
difference: Schelling develops a concept of being that is a limine logically
and ontologically compatible with our groundless freedom. While Sartre
owes us an answer to the question of how the en-soi and the pour-soi are
ontologically compatible with one another, Schelling attempts precisely to
understand freedom as the coming-to-be and coming-to-itself of unprethink-
able being (of the en-soi). In order to understand how being and freedom,
that is, personality, can be compatible with one another, Schelling needed
to give voice to an alternative concept of being.

The project of positive philosophy, which Schelling simply takes to be the
philosophy of a “person seeking person,”39 crucially corresponds to and

Page 206

Index 173

Kripke, Saul 131

Lacan 91, 130
Leibniz 120
Lewis, David 119–20
logical space 35, 41, 44, 69–71, 80, 83,

87, 99, 100, 105, 110, 115–17, 119,
120–1, 123–4, 126–8, 130, 132–3,
136

historical evolution of
logical space 94

Meillassoux 2, 124
metaphysics 3–7, 10–14, 16, 18–21, 23,

26–9, 32–4, 37, 43, 48–9, 54, 61,
74–5, 78–9, 81–2, 84, 97–8, 104–5,
107–8, 110, 113, 116, 120–1

antimetaphysical quietism 20
clash of metaphysical systems 13
defl ationary metaphysics 135
immanent metaphysics 104, 108,

111–12
metaphysical background assump-

tions 120
metaphysical contingency 85
metaphysical error of dogmatism 20
metaphysical judgment 18
metaphysical knowledge 7, 10–11, 13,

18–19, 21–2, 28–9, 31
metaphysical necessity 85, 87
metaphysical refl ection 10, 107, 113,

116, 118
metaphysical theory of totality 19–20
metaphysical truth of skepticism

1–2, 7
metaphysics of judgment 43
metaphysics of the One 44
substance-metaphysics 27
transcendent metaphysics 104, 108,

110–1
metatheory 12–13, 18, 21, 34

metatheoretical refl ection 21, 26
metatheoretical standpoint 6
speculative metatheory 21

Mulhall, Stephan 9
myth of the given 2, 41, 49–50,

54, 58

naturalism 2, 20
ancient naturalism 13
liberal naturalism 3–4, 6–7, 16, 20,

29, 33–4

reductive naturalism 2–6, 20–1, 28,
32–3, 81

Neoplatonism 37, 44, 108, 114, 116, 118
Nietzsche 61, 125
Novalis 135

omnitudo realitatis 8
ontology 1, 4, 17, 19, 34, 37, 60, 74, 79,

82, 91, 93, 95, 103, 115, 122, 125
modal ontology 121
ontology of freedom 60
ontology of knowledge 17
ontology of the subject 2, 42
transcendental ontology 1, 103

onto-theology 37, 61, 65, 73–4, 79, 104

Parmenides 62–4, 78–9
Pippin, Robert 35–6, 42, 44
Platonism 3, 27, 33, 51, 52, 58, 61–4,

66, 72–4, 80, 107, 117, 121–2, 129
potency 60, 66, 68–70, 82, 85–90,

94–5, 98, 100, 126
Putnam 105
Pyrrhonism 4, 7, 11–12, 15, 22–3, 25,

28–32

quietism 4–7, 20–1, 23, 29–33
Quine 1

realism 7, 23–4, 26, 120, 129
refl ection 2, 10–11, 21–2, 26, 30–1,

34, 36–7, 39–40, 42, 45, 47, 71–2,
81–3, 98, 101, 107–16, 118–21,
127–9, 132–6

absolute refl ection 119, 132
epistemological refl ection 81
higher-order refl ection 17, 19, 21
logic of refl ection 121
metaphysical refl ection 10, 107, 113,

116, 118
metatheoretical refl ection 21, 26
philosophy of refl ection 36–7,

46, 48
refl ection of refl ection 108
system-theoretical refl ection 16, 18
transcendental refl ection 39, 43, 45

representationalism 25–6, 57
antirepresentationalism 115

Russell 129

Scotus 121
Sellars, Wilfrid 34–6, 130

Page 207

174 Index

Sextus 12, 15–16, 22, 24–5, 29
Spinoza 25, 61, 64, 93, 108, 111–12.

116, 131
spirit 13, 32, 36, 42, 47–51, 57–8, 69,

104, 113–20, 131
absolute spirit 53, 72, 94, 106,

113–19
objective spirit 46, 48, 114–15
subjective spirit 48–9, 53–5, 58

Strawson, Peter 12
Sturma, Dieter 45
subjectivity 2, 4, 28, 37, 40, 42, 52–3,

61, 68, 83, 92–3, 96
summum ens 9

therapy 5, 32, 46
totality 2, 3, 5, 8–11, 13, 16, 19–20,

25, 32, 34, 42–3, 54–8, 62–4, 75,
97–100, 104, 107–14, 117–21, 124,
130, 132

transcendence 4, 6, 11, 14, 26,
32–4, 74, 76–7, 80, 89, 93–4,
99, 104, 107, 110, 112,
116, 128

absolute transcendence 107–8, 110
immanent transcendence 25

transcendental 4, 40–1, 44, 106
transcendental consciousness 22
transcendental epistemology 1
transcendental ideal 15, 64, 105
transcendental idealism 39–40
transcendental ontology 1, 103
transcendental philosophy 41
transcendental refl ection 39,

43, 45
transcendental synthesis of

apperception 36, 38, 41, 106

Wittgenstein 8–9, 15, 36, 47, 56, 57, 93,
124, 129, 130

Similer Documents