I Kant

I Kant

I was thinking about the space/time thing, and couldn’t really get my mind around the problem. But then I started thinking about the leap of intuition, in the media stone age that McLuhan wrote in, that it took to come up with the idea that space and time would be changed by the way that we communicate. Is communication an inevitability, or is it determined by the process of cognition itself? I’m not a fan of either option, predestination or reason. Especially if thinking is exclusively the process of logic, or if you’re asking me to believe in an invisible man who pulls the strings.

I tend to be ruled by impulses. Of course I think about my impulses, but what form does that thought take? I ended up reading more on Kant. When I was doing some research on the sublime, we crossed paths. The power of strong experience, the stretching quality of confrontation with the unknown, was proof that “practical reason” extended past fears for personal safety, and deeper into a sort of intuition which is not derived from logic alone. Kant saw it as a sort of synthesis, particularly with regard to our sense of beauty. Beauty, for Kant was a thing without antecedent, determined when our imagination and our understanding are in harmony. So, where does this magic come from? How do you tell a good intuition from a bad one? Kant was quick to point out that our concepts of the sublime and the beautiful operate outside morality.

Intuition is formed from an immediate relation to an object, according to Kant, and he further postulates that there is a substratum, something that underlies individuals which persists even as they pass away which is not deducible through any sort of categorical, logical judgment. So, are primary judgements— things based more on feeling and intuition, more valid than judgments based on comparisons of logical alternatives? It’s hard to say. I’ve made some mistakes in that regard, but for the most part, I believe that they are.

For Kant, time and space were a priori and outside the consideration of judgment. But I think that the “substratum,” the place where intuition must come from, is subject to time. This is not too contradictory with the idea of the substratum as soul, because it implies that there is a flux, a changing quality to it, perhaps almost in a karmic sense. So, are those flashes of insight based on some sort of proximity to soul?

I’m getting muddled in all this, but it sort of relates to the connections that are forged thorough communication. It seems like there is a need to touch “the concerns of all other men,” as McLuhan put it. I don’t think these communications are logically driven. It’s about touching souls. We want to reach into that substratum, and it does seem to be almost by design. I think it only crosses in brief moments, in flashes, but it’s there.

The words I used to live by as a photographer were “chance favors the prepared mind.” I had to get myself psychically prepared to accept, and trust my intuition as to when to press the button. I suppose that’s why I favor intuition, over logic.