Nov 25, 2012

BEHAVIORIST EMPIRICAL PSYCHOLOGY




BEHAVIORIST EMPIRICAL PSYCHOLOGY
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By Marsigit, Yogyakarta State University, Indonesia

Email: marsigitina@yahoo.com
It was elaborated  that epistemological Kantianism included such different attitudes as empirical Kantianism, rooted in  psychological inquiries. Serendip, 1996, insisted that Kant's defining the prerequisites that would need to be met for psychology to become an empirical science by analyzing the nature of the cognitive powers, feelings of pleasure and displeasure, affects, passions, and character in the context of a denial of the possibility of an empirical science of conscious process. Kant, 1790, stated that an ability to communicate one's mental state, might easily be demonstrated from the natural propensity of mankind to social life that is empirically and psychologically. In the first Critique, Kant said that all the actions of a human being are determined in accord with the order of nature; if we could investigate all the appearances, there would be no human action we could not predict with certainty. Further Kant  said, in Grounding, that everything which takes place is determined without exception in accordance with laws of nature. Kant  claim that  if we knew the relevant preconditions, we could calculate a human being’s conduct for the future with as much certainty as a lunar or solar eclipse. At the same time, Kant insists that human beings are transcendentally free, uncaused causes of their actions; a rational being can say of every unlawful action he performed that he could have omitted it. Ziniewicz, G.L., 1996 noted that Kant’s subjective experience includes both the passing psychological states of the subject as empirical ego that is the self as it appears in time as well as the changing states or motions of external objects.

Kant, 1781, claimed that the productive imagination contributes nothing to the explanation of the possibility of a priori cognition, and for this reason belongs not to transcendental philosophy, but to psychology. To explain how the sense represents us to our own consciousness, we intuit ourselves only as we are inwardly affected. Kant  said that the thinking subject is the object-matter of Psychology; the sum total of all phenomena is the object-matter of Cosmology; and the thing which contains the highest condition of the possibility of all that is cogitable is the object-matter of all Theology. Therefore, the expression, "I," as a thinking being, designates the object-matter of psychology, which may be called "the rational doctrine of the soul," inasmuch as in this science I desire to know nothing of thesoul but what, independently of all experience , may be concluded from this conception "I," in so far as it appears in all thought. According to Kant,    "I think" is therefore the only text of rational psychology, from which it must develop its whole system. Kant  claimed that if at the foundation of our pure rational cognition of thinking beings there lay more than the mere Cogito that is if we could likewise call in aid observations on the play of our thoughts, and the then derived natural laws of the thinking self, there would arise an empirical psychology which would be a kind of physiology of the internal sense and might possibly be capable of explaining the phenomena of that sense.

Kant, 1781, claimed that if some of the moderns have thought to enlarge its domain by introducing psychological discussions on the mental faculties, such as imagination and wit, metaphysical, discussions on the origin of knowledge and the different kinds of certitude, according to the difference of the objects, they only shows their ignorance of the peculiar nature of logical science. Kant  said that as pure logic has no empirical principles, and consequently draws nothing from psychology, which therefore has no influence on the canon of the understanding; it is a demonstrated doctrine, and everything in it must be certain completely a priori; however, applied logic requires empirical and psychological principles for its treats of attention, its impediments and consequences, of the origin of error, of the state of doubt, hesitation, conviction, etc., and to it is related pure general logic in the same way that pure morality, which contains only the necessary moral laws of a free will, is related to practical ethics, which considers these laws under all the impediments of feelings,  inclinations, and passions to which men are more or less subjected, and which never can furnish us with a true and demonstrated science. In the Critic, Kant, in his attempting a psychological explanation, elaborated that it is of note that the imagination is able to recall the signs for concepts and to reproduce the image and shape of an object out of a countless number of others of a different, or even of the very same, kind.

Kant, 1781, argued that if the mind is engaged upon comparisons, we may well suppose that it can superimpose as it were one image upon another, and from the coincidence of a number of the same kind arrive at a mean contour which serves as a common standard for all. Kant claimed that the power of imagination does all things by means of a dynamical effect upon the organ of internal sense, arising from the frequent apprehension of such forms. According to Kant,  it is not by beauty that its presentation pleases, but merely because it does not contradict any of the conditions under which alone a thing belonging to this genus can be beautiful; and thus the presentation is merely academically correct. Kant  insisted that the correctness of such an ideal of beauty is evidenced by its not permitting any sensuous charm to mingle with the delight in its object, in which it still allows us to take a great interest. Kant  then concluded that this fact in turn shows that an estimate formed according to such a standard can never be purely aesthetic, and that one formed according to an ideal of beauty cannot be a simple judgment of taste. Kant,  claimed that the task of explaining the community of the soul with the body does not properly belong to the psychology of which we are here speaking; because it proposes to prove the personality of the soul apart from this communion and is therefore transcendent in the proper sense of the word. Kant  insisted that we should also become aware that in the consciousness of our existence there was an a priori content, which would serve to determine our own existence that is an existence only sensuously determinable relatively, however, to a certain internal faculty in relation to an intelligible world; however, this would not give the least help to the attempts of rational psychology.

Kant, 1781,  persisted that the paralogisms of pure reason laid the foundation for a dialectical psychology and the antinomy of pure reason will present us with the transcendental principles of a pretended pure (rational) cosmology and  not to declare it valid and to appropriate it, but to present it as an idea which cannot be reconciled with phenomena and experience. Further, Kant,  maintained that, however, if we proceed analytically- the "I think" as a proposition containing in itself an existence as given, consequently modality being the principle- and dissect this proposition, in order to ascertain its content, and discover whether and how this Ego-determines its existence in time and space without the aid of anything external; the propositions of rationalistic psychology would not begin with the conception of a thinking being, but with a reality, and the properties of a thinking being in general would be deduced from the mode in which this reality is cogitated, after everything empirical had been abstracted. Further Kant  argued that there does not then exist any rational psychology as a doctrine furnishing any addition to our knowledge of ourselves; it is nothing more than a discipline, which sets impassable limits to speculative reason in this region of thought, to prevent it, on the one hand, from throwing itself into the arms of a soulless materialism, and, on the other, from losing itself in the mazes of a baseless spiritualism. Kant, ultimately concluded that from all the evidences, it indicates that rational psychology has its origin in a mere misunderstanding. However, Kant, 1781, warned that what makes an a priori principle apparent, lifts them out of the sphere of empirical psychology, in which otherwise they would remain buried amid the feelings of gratification and pain, so as to place them, and, thanks to them, to place the faculty of judgment itself, in the class of judgments of which the basis of an a priori principle is the distinguishing feature, and, thus distinguished, to introduce them into transcendental philosophy.

Kant, 1781, further claimed that the transcendental idea of freedom is far from constituting the entire content of the psychological conception so termed, which is for the most part empirical; it merely presents us with the conception of spontaneity of action, as the proper ground for imputing freedom to the cause of a certain class of objects; it is, however, the true stumbling-stone to philosophy, which meets with unconquerable difficulties in the way of its admitting this kind of unconditioned causality. According to Kant,  the psychological and theological ideas are not antinomial and contain no contradiction; because when we wish to admit the existence of a thing, it is not sufficient to convince ourselves that there is no positive obstacle in the way; for it cannot be allowable to regard mere creations of thought, which transcend, though they do not contradict, all our conceptions, as real and determinate objects, solely upon the authority of a speculative reason striving to compass its own aims. Kant  concluded  that the psychological idea is, therefore, meaningless and inapplicable, except as the schema of a regulative conception; thus the psychological idea of the ego, for instances,  when employed as a constitutive principle for the explanation of the phenomena of the soul, and for the extension of our knowledge regarding this subject beyond the limits of experience, is convenient enough for the purposes of pure reason, but detrimental and even ruinous to its interests in the sphere of nature and experience.

Kant, 1781, summed up that empirical psychology has always been considered a part of metaphysics, and from which in our time such important philosophical results have been expected, after the hope of constructing an a priori system of knowledge had been abandoned; therefore, Kant suggested that it must be placed by the side of empirical physics or physics proper; that is, must be regarded as forming a part of applied philosophy, the a priori principles of which are contained in pure philosophy, which is therefore connected, although it must not be confounded, with psychology. Kant  concluded, therefore, that  Empirical psychology must be banished from the sphere of metaphysics, and is indeed excluded by the very idea of that science.

Note:

  --------, 1994-2000, Immanuel Kant and Kantianism, Encyclop√¶dia Britannica, Inc, Britannica Online, http://www.eb.com:180/cgi-bin/g?DocF=macro/5003/49/toc.html
  Kant, I., 1790, The Critic of Judgment, translated by James Creed Meredith
  Ibid.
  Kant, I., 1781, Critic of Pure Reason, Translatedby J.M.D. Meiklejohn
  Ibid.
  Ibid.
  Ibid.
  Ibid.
  Ibid.
  Ibid.
  Ibid.
  Ibid.
  Ibid.
  Ibid.
  Ibid.
  Ibid.
  Ibid.

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