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Husserl - The Idea of a Philosophical Culture.

Husserl - The Idea of a Philosophical Culture.

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Published by Philip Reynor Jr.

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Published by: Philip Reynor Jr. on Aug 31, 2011
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TheIdeaofaPhilosophicalCulture:ItsFirstGerminationinGreekPhilosophy
EdmundHusserl
ThefundamentalcharacterofGreekscience
as
itoriginatedwithThales
[45]
is
"philosophy,"thesystematicconsequence
of
atheoreticalinterestthat
is
free
of
all
otheraims,aninterestin
truth
purelyforthesakeoftruth.Purescienceinthissense,however,does
not
simplydenoteanewculturalforma-tion,onethatmerelytakesitsplacealongsidetheotherculturalformations.Itpreparesa
turn
inthedevelopmentoftheentireculture,
it
turnthatleadstheculture,initsentirety,
on
toahigherdestiny.Giventhetendencyto
sys-
tematicuniversalitythat
is,
sotospeak,inborninthepurelytheoreticalinter-est,philosophycould
not
stopwithitsinitial,easilyunderstandableprefer-enceforcosmologicalproblems.Howevermuchtheworld
is
giveninnatu-ralouterobservation
as
thetotalityof
all
realitieswhichincludeshumanity
[Menschheit]
as
agroup
of
subordinateparticulars,inactivelifeit
is
nevenhe-
less
giventotheactingandinpaniculartotheinquiringmaninthenecessaryorientationalform
'I
and
my
environingworld','weand
our
(common)envi-roningworld'.This"principalcoordination"alsohad
to
haveaneffect
on
thetheoreticallyinquiringinterest.Subjectivity
as
cognizingandeminently
as
theoreticallycognizing;funhermore,subjectivity
as
affectedinitswealandwoebytheenvironingworld;andfmallysubjectivity
as
freelyactingfromwithin
on
theenvironingworldandalteringitpurposively-allthathadto
...
Translated
by
MarcusBrainard.Thisessayfirstappearedunderthetitle"DieIdeeeinerphilosophischenKultur.
Ihr
erstesAufkeimenindergriechischenPhilosophie"in
]apa
nisch-Deutsche
Zeitschrift
fur
Wissenschaft
und
Technik
1(1923),45-51.Aslightlydifferentversion
of
thistexthasbeenpublishedinEdmundHusserl,
Erste
Philosophie
(1923/24).Erster
Teil:
Kritische
ldeengeschichte,
ed.RudolfBoehm,Husserliana
vn
(The
Hague:Nijhoff,1956),203-7,
as
well
as
8.23-10.31and11.31-17.7;
Boehmnotes
thattherearedifferencesbetweenthe
two
texts,
but
does
not
listthem.
In
themargins
of
thepresenttranslation,thepagenumbers
of
theoriginalpublicationareprovided.
-The
editorswishto
thank
Dr.ElmarBund,executor
ofEdmund
Husserl'sliteraryestate,forhiskindpermissiontopublishthepresenttranslationhere.
The
translatorextendshisthanks
to
SteveCrowellforhishelpfulsuggestionsregardingthistranslation.
The
New
Yearbook
for
PhenornernJlog;y
and
PhenomenologicalPhilosophy
ill
(2003):
285-93
ISSN
1533-7472ISBN
0-9701679-3-8
 
286
EDMUND
HUSSERL
become
to
aneverhigherdegree
the
focus
of
theoreticalinquiry.
And
inquiry
intotheworld
naively
turnedoutward
andinquiryintothespiritreflectively
turnedinward
had
to
intertwine
with
andconditiononeanother.As
soon
as
inquirymovedin
the
direction
of
thinkingandotherwiseactivesubjectivity,it
had
to
come
upon
questions
of
anultimatelypossiblefulfillmentand,inconnectiontherewith,those
of
thegenuinenessandrightness
of
thegoalsandpaths
to
bechosen.
Inquiry
had
to
come
upon
them
alreadyin
the
domain
of
scienceitself,since
the
devisedtheories,
which
wereimmediatelydrawn
into
theconflict
of
systems,had
to
defend
their
right.
Thus,in
order
to
beable
to
becomea
truly
rationalscience,intelligible
to
itselfanddefinitivelylegitimatingitself,thebeginningscience
had
to
overcometheoriginalform
of
becoming
properto
naivetheoreticalinquiry;
as
self-reflecting
theo-
ry
o/science,
ithad
to
inquire
into
the
norms
of
adefinitivelyself-legitimatingscienceand
then
strivefInally
to
achieveanessentially.reformedconfiguration,andinfact
with
anexplicitlysetgoal,namely
that
of
ascienceledandlegitimated
by
thetheory
of
science.Similarnormativeproblems,however,concerned
not
only
thecognitive
ly
activeman
but
theactive
man
ingeneral.
Thus
theentirecomplex
of
thehighestandultimatequestionshad
to
enterintothefIeld
of
theoreticalwork,aimingatthetotality
of
absolute,normativeideas,whichintheirincontestable[46]andunconditionalvalidityareprincipially
to
determine
human
actionineverysphere.Regardless
of
whethertheseideasalso
function-as
it
were,
as
hiddenentelechies-already
priorto
theirbeingseenpurelyandformedtheo-retically
as
forcesdeterminative
of
development:
only
as
consciouslyworked
out
andapodicticallyseenforms
of
possiblelegitimacywereandare
they
able
to
bringabout"genuine
Humanity
[echte
Humanitat]."
For
what
is
that
but
a
truly
responsiblehumanity,which
as
suchstrives
to
liveinself-responsibilitythat
is
wakefulatalltimes;that
is
determinedatalltimes
to
follow"reason,"
to
governitself,and
only
inaccordance
with
normsthatithasthoughtitselfandintowhichititselfhashadinsight;andthat
is
ableandreadyatalltimes
to
defendtheabsolute,normativelyjustifiedcharacter
of
itsactionswith
ref-
erence
to
ultimatesources
of
finality.
In
thisway,
the
taskthushad
to
fall
to
philosophy-universal
science-of
helpinghumanity,strivingblindlytowardsthatgoal,
to
achievethemostprofoundself-awareness,that
of
thetrueandgen-uinesense
of
itslife.Ithad
to
becomeitsgreatestobligation
to
givethissenseaboveall
the
ultimatelyrationalform,
thatof
a
theory
that
is
clarifIedandgrasped
on
allsides,
is
ultimatelyjustifIedineveryrespect.
Onceit
hadbeensystematicallydevelopedintosciences
of
principles,this
theory
had
to
bring
out
andjustify
the
entiresystem
of
normsthatany
humanity
mustsatisfyifit
is
to
becomea
true
andgenuinehumanity,ahumanityimbuedwithpureprac-ticalreason.Asphilosophyinthepregnantsense
of
ascience
of
universalprin-ciples,ititselfhad
toshow
inassociationwithitsultimatelyrationalreflections
 
THEIDEAOFAPHILOSOPHICALCULTURE
287
thatatrulyhumanedevelopmentofhumanitywillneveragainbepossibleinthemanner
of
amerelyorganic,blindlypassivegrowth;rather,thatitwillbepossibleonlyifitarises
out
ofautonomousfreedom,andfirstandforemostoutofatrulyautonomous
science;
yeteminently
out
ofauniversalphilosophythathasgivenitselfinitsprincipialdisciplinesitsabsolutesystem
of
laws,theuniversallawfor
all
possible,genuinelaws.Philosophyitselfhas
to
showwithultimatelycompellingrationalitythathistoricalculturethathasgrownnaturallycanachievethedevelopmentalform
of
agenuinelyhumanecultureonlyintheformofascientificallyfoundedandmethodizedculture,
and-put
ide-
ally-in
theform
of
aphilosophicalculturethatunderstandsitselfultimately,thatlegitimatesandpracticallyformsitselfwithultimaterationality,thusinaccordancewithinsightintoabsoluteprinciples.Thefirstgerminationandworking
out
ofthisconviction,which
is
so
sig
nificantforthehistory
of
humanity,canbeshowninthecourseofthedevelopmenttaken
by
Greekphilosophy.Generally,thehistoryofphilosophy(which,just
as
itoriginallyarose
as
universalscience,had
to
remainuniversalscienceinaccordancewithitsessentialsense)canbeconsideredfromtheperspective
of
itsgreatestfunctionfor
humanity-from
theperspectiveofitsnecessarydestiny
to
createauniversalandultimatelyrationalself-awareness
of
humanity
by
whichitwas
to
beset
on
thecourse
of
agenuinehumanity.Weshalloutlineafragmentofsuchamodeofconsiderationinwhatfollows,more
as
aninvitationtootherstoimplementitactuallyinathoroughmannerthan
as
aclaim
to
havecarrieditoutourselves.Thefirstphilosophythatwasnaivelydirected
to
theouterworldunder-
[47]
wentabreakinitsdevelopmentdue
to
sophisticskepticism.Theideasof
rea-
sonin
all
theirfundamentalformsappeared
to
be
devalued
by
thesophisticarguments;theseargumentshaddescribedwhat
is
initselftrueinevery
sense-
being,thebeautiful,thegoodinitself-asadeceptivedelusion.Philosophytherebylostitstargetsense.Withregard
to
somethingthat
is
inprincipleonlysubjective-relativelybeing,beautiful,
or
good,therewerenoprinciplesandtheoriesthatweretrueinthemselves.However,itwas
not
onlyphilosophythatwasaffected.Activelifeinitsentiretywasrobbedofitsfirm,normativegoals;theideaofalife
of
practicalreasonlostitsvalidity.Socrateswasthefirsttorecognizethattheproblemsthatwerethoughtlesslydismissedinthesophis-ticparadoxeswerefatefulproblemsforahumanity
on
itswaytobecomingagenuineHumanity.
He
reacted
to
sophistry
as
apracticalreformer.Platotransferstheemphasis
of
thisreaction
to
science,becomesitsreformerinkeep-ingwiththetheoryofscience,andsteersthecourse
of
thedevelopment
of
anautonomoushumanityfirstof
all
to
andalongthepath
of
ascientificculture.
As
regardsSocratesfirstofall,hisethicalreform
of
lifeconsistsin
his
interpretation
of
thetrulysatisfyinglife
as
alifeofpurereason,that
is,
as
alife

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