Vladimir Solov'ëv's "Virtue Epistemology" Author(s): Edward M. Swiderski Source: Studies in East European Thought, Vol. 51, No. 3 (Sep.

, 1999), pp. 199-218 Published by: Springer Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/20099705 . Accessed: 19/12/2013 04:26
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EDWARD M. SWIDERSKI

VLADIMIR

SOLOV'?V'S

"VIRTUE EPISTEMOLOGY"*

I attempt to clarify the connection between two late texts by ABSTRACT. VS. Solov'?v: Justification of the Good and Theoretical Philosophy. Solov'?v drew attention to the intrinsic connection between moral and intellectual virtues. Theoretical Philosophy is the initial - unfinished - sketch of the dynamism of mind seeking truth as a good. I sketch several parallels and analogies between experience set out in Justification and the account of the intellect's dynamism based on immediate certitude set out in Theoretical Philos in the current ophy. Solov'?v can thus be considered as a 'virtue epistemologist' to this I conclude that Solov'?v's posi meaning given description. by suggesting tion on these questions does not easily cohere with the 'impersonalism' he appears to defend in Theoretical Philosophy. the doctrine of moral KEY WORDS: consciousness, moral and intellectual virtues, virtue epistemology, 'self the person and the philosophical VS. Solov'?v,

Solov'?v's late unfinished text Theoretical Philosophy is difficult to understand, both on its own ground and within the wider scope
of Solov'?v's work. career Here I will not be concerned to examine Philosophy in Solov'?v's for the sake of situating Theoretical

the main line of his development. My interest is rather to interpret Theoretical Philosophy as the beginning of an argument concerning
matters which Solov'?v considered as being of central importance

at the time he composed Theoretical Philosophy. To this end, I will juxtapose Theoretical Philosophy with The Justification of the
Good, arguably Solov'?v's masterwork, completed earlier in the

same decade. Solov'?v himself provides the pretext and occasion for the juxtaposition when, in the concluding paragraphs of Justifi
cation, he assesses in the foregoing of the results at which he arrived the significance avers that without a examination of Solov'?v pages.

just those questions which he was to take up in Theoretical Philos
An earlier version of this text was presented at the International Conference on Vladimir Solov'?v, Nijmegen, The Netherlands, 15-18 September 1998. ^M Studies inEast European Thought 53: 199-218,1999. ? 1999 Kluwer Academic Publishers. Printed in theNetherlands. *

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she likewise must a question about the rela for her endeavors. unless practices forward conscientiousness and closely related virtues. I have - be only by chance toward that he will the truth.3 in cognitive undertakings. as far as I can see. autonomy as well religion. logical In the first. ("Pervoe nachalo teoreticheskoj filosofii") he is clear Philosophy that.not the doctrine which he assumed composed Justification of moral as from the attitude in taking up theoretical philosophy.1 Correspondingly. revealed philosophy In the second. prospect universally binding no more to than relative theoretical autonomy. thinker's commitment tiousness (dobrosovestnosf).200 EDWARD M. Solov'?v and fraud Solov'?v consistently invokes our feelings of repugnance in the face of deceit Truth suffers no compromises. put out of effect.15. are the virtues in question moral and submitted to scrutiny in Justification. of making Solov'?v claims.4 lays it down that certitude or validity in general must be ascertained even for moral as soon as it holds out the philosophy 'theoretically'. that virtues Nor. although the questions that belong to what he proposes to identify as theoretical philosophy are irreducible to those attrib uted to any other discipline. assessment the values In other words. to and in effect is saying the thinker subscribes that. on in carrying his Solov'?v's of the matter. In succeed short. the philosopher not only bears. however. rather it is taken for granted. he pleads for the from metaphysics. grants philosophy a circumstance evidenced by his insistence on the virtues which a thinker ought to inculcate. consistently requires as conscien of mind Bacon.5 However.2 Indeed. this insistence is not 'justified' in Theoretical Philosophy. they do Solov'?v's the nevertheless endeavor presuppose in Theoretical to such Citing moral Philosophy qualities Francis considerations. SWIDERSKI ophy the moral doctrine set out in Justification may be less than in the first essay of Theoretical well founded.14.6 there are qualities which without or inquiry of Solov'?v states becomes appears to take it for granted an empty intellectual which enterprise of mind cannot be neutralized.53 on Thu. 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . As it stands. responsibility in order to raise said this much tion between as he Solov'?v's philosophical and attitude . including therefore moral philosophy. This content downloaded from 129. view it will inquiries assume. among others. for the sake of a wholly 'impersonal' to cognition. a philosopher would ascribe in the theoretical if a philos attitude. he the theory of knowledge.

I will be satisfied to show that. In the second. it was a means to his main aim. and that this insight should determine the shape of any so-called theory of knowledge. as the attempt to restore to some degree a classical vision of philosophy inwhich the 'transcendental' (i.. the formal object of which is the truth. with regard to the Truth and the Good. the truth. the convertibility of being. viz. Iwill say something about the theme to which Solov'?v This content downloaded from 129. notwithstanding Solov'?v's talk of certitude and pure consciousness. in Theoretical Philosophy. whereas Justification is supposed to invite compar ison with the later value theory of Max Scheler. and that these do play a crucial role in belief formation and in the assessment of their validity. It has been contended that. then the truth is inseparable from the good. main part. a reading of Theoretical Philosophy which shows that Solov'?v had a purpose inmind which was but remotely related to the main themes of 'modern' European theory of knowledge with which he was familiar.e. states as we experience intrinsic them union in actu.EPISTEMOLOGY" VLADIMIR SOLOV'?V'S "VIRTUE 201 opher is conscious of her obligation to think well and thoroughly. then.15. I want to argue. to demonstrate that if there is 'pure' philosophical knowledge. she is ipso facto paying testimony to her commitment to such values as conscientiousness.. regulative and moral cognitive to the attuned Instead. In the first part.7 However. when juxtaposing the two texts. I will delineate some parallels between the theory of moral experience in Justification and the movement set out in Theoretical Philosophy starting with immediate givenness and continuing to the rational aspiration to truth.14. As I read it. three parts. of we our can bring to insight our union with the Truth and the Good. In a sketch of a third part. roughly. the good) are the primary concern. This fact and the fact that Solov'?v regards the investigation in Justification to be logically autonomous from any other suggests.53 on Thu. his procedure in Theoretical Philosophy consists in clearing a path to a 'virtue epistemology' able to demonstrate that. it is not implausible to interpret Solov'?v's ambitions.8 I will divide my remarks into. we do not need to invoke sheer metaphysical principles or ideas. 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Solov'?v was embarking on the path that Husserl was shortly to follow. Iwant to focus on the question of philosophical knowledge per se in Solov'?v in order to show briefly how value came to promi nence in his conception of a properly philosophical knowledge.

53 on Thu.202 returns time and again EDWARD M. grasp by mystical inclusive a-rational leap into the transcendent as rather as part of to calling this an not so much itself intellec a Schellingian tual intuition quantified. the Absolute. knowledge that is 'intrinsically' philosophical. but do not in the first place determine. directed formally to the Absolute as the all It is uncontroversial comes to grasp unity of being and thought.10 It would seem that this is the price to be paid for concluding that the goal of cognition is union with the Truth and the Good. As far as philosophy was concerned. to borrow a phrase..15.11 Solov'?v adverse a we are to which understand one. 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . The theme of the self in Solov'?v. Theological concepts such as Sophia and the God-Man buttress.God.however Solov'?v appears to be reticent in affirming that there is an immediate philosophical intuition of the Absolute. FROM THEMETAPHYSICS OF THE ABSOLUTE TO THE STANDPOINT IN JUSTIFICATION OF THEGOOD to say that the young Solov'?v championed a religious metaphysics of the Absolute. SWIDERSKI in Theoretical viz. this position. the Truth . over all possible contents of mind. the sophiological doctrine is missing altogether. is as complex as it is controversial. so to speak.14. Solov'?v at the time held a metaphysics of knowledge the gist of which may be captured by the phrase "philosophizing from the standpoint of the Absolute.9 On the basis of the pairing of Justifi I will suggest that Solov'?v cation and Theoretical Philosophy. that is. arrived at an epistemology without a knowing subject. This content downloaded from 129. especially as represented during his last phase. of the self m relation to the philosophical subject." The guiding inspiration is that the philosophizing mind. But is it coherent to argue in behalf of an epistemology which allies moral and intellectual virtues while jettisoning the virtuous subject? I. This Moreover. To be sure. This youthful project receded into the background and may in fact have been abandoned by the time Solov'?v undertook the tasks that were to occupy him throughout his last decade. including this very intuition. the Absolute in its several guises is still affirmed . the nature Philosophy. retreat or even disavowal could well stand behind the new emphasis. was not its object. the Good.

pity. for these experiences as well as their consequences to be possible?14 Solov'?v's concentration on the experience of value leads him to define issues which fall in part This content downloaded from 129. The argument includes on the world scene not at its apex! to the an at the moral justification a time when the human appearance was condition Much of what Solov'?v can be cast in the form says about the reality of themoral order argument" designed of a "transcendental answer the following question: given that humans do in fact experi ence shame. By "justifica tion" Solov'?v meant ensuring words. The experiences are identified by Solov'?v as shame. and a theory about the hierarchical structure and processes on the other.12 of the moral order nravstvennogo a on philosophical anthropology. 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . In the course of this argument. ground the "reality sympathy them Solov'?v of or pity. what must the world be like. and piety. if it can be called that. "foundations. and in particular how must humans be in the world. is the delineation of fundamental moral givens. The basic consideration. In what does Solov'?v's philosophical treatment of moral issues consist? As this is hardly the place to summarize the length and breadth of Justification. comprises porjadka13) one hand. Solov'?v ical for turns away from philosophical qua philosoph knowledge treatment of the issues he now the sake of an extensive regarded as central to the justification of the good. the foundations of moral discriminated. which Solov'?v nature elaborate accounts of freedom for knowledge within the moral of Christ's moral and as well as for rationality order. values let us call them. experience In other and behavior in the several dimensions to believe he that there is a properly philosophical treatment of moral issues which need not be preceded by a 'justification' of philosophy as such.53 on Thu. to which I shall return in the second part. In fact.VLADIMIR SOLOV'?V'S "VIRTUE EPISTEMOLOGY" 203 stated with full force in Justification.15.14. of the material world. works and out order" reverence a conception (dejstviteVnosf or to Seeking piety. and is therefore not concerned with the questions of truth in the 'theoretical sense'.. and experience them as profoundly moral." Solov'?v came viz. starting from the evidence provided by corresponding types of experience. on the discursive autonomy of distinct systematic considerations in moral philosophy. I will restrict myself to some superficial indications regarding Solov'?v's method.

biology. scrapped our sense of ourselves as knowers to hinder moral order. as so many indeed abstractions. falls not outside but within the objective moral order and acquires its 'justification' therein. That this is (some part of) Solov'?v's message seems clear throughout in Justification those sections a substantive in which he defends notion of personal treatise freedom his of his insight into themanner very token empowered in which or enabled the will within is constrained. believing that seeking and attaining the truth are. Solov'?v's vision of the objective moral order does in fact foreclose on the range of answers that can be given to it. 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . on some plausible account. anthropology) and in part into general metaphysics (emergence of categorially specific strata of being).14. then no account of how we come to hold our beliefs about the world can be complete until it coheres with our theory about the objective possibility of our response to value.204 EDWARD M. The same should hold mutatis mutandis for a philosophical account of knowledge.15. but by that the moral order15 and.who acknowledges and.53 on Thu. in accounts structure. is to understand that philosophizing about knowledge. Although the question. what point would be served by imagining such bloodless. As it is axiomatic for a virtue epistemology intellectual and moral may One way be called Solov'?v's its that there be an intrinsic virtues. philosophy. But all are conducted in order to elucidate the ontic foundations of values and their conditions of realization. on This content downloaded from 129. if in all our cognitive endeavors we rightly seek truth. In general. 'ontological' of the moral order has what on theoretical philosophy of useful 'fictions' is in the degree to which of cognitional substantial it restricts the range example. vision connection between belongs a purchase For to statement the foregoing foundations. transcendental unity of apperception. they negative and agents values. it as a good for as a common good. Just to cite such virtues within objective herself as the conscientious ness of the inquirer seeking truth. and the like? If draws should likely the the picture Solov'?v and moral values. by virtue of her interaction in community. values in their own right. 'what is knowl is of the theoretical proper preserve edge?'. pure intellectual they of the ontic be cannot be shown to cohere with foundations of cognitive intuitions. SWIDERSKI into empirical investigations (among them psychology. morally neutered creatures as disembodied egos. too.

19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .16 II. to his Theoretical Philosophy. second the to and involvement and third the assent with recognition.15. Rather he knows in advance where to seek. attuned are able that is. Theoretical Philosophy moves in the opposite direction. the description of the chief types of moral exper iences as presented in Justification has demonstrated that underlying the emotionally moral objective driven order response the existence to value of which there is. PARALLELS BETWEEN JUSTIFICATION OF THEGOOD AND THEORETICAL PHILOSOPHY I turn now to what I called above Solov'?v's 'virtue epistemology'. would lose their sense. that she must be understanding in her endeavors. inquiry in general and philosophical inquiry in particular. moving from the qualities given in the experience to the objective order underlying them.53 on Thu. the intrinsic goodness of the world. Responding to her conscience. occa to the of any honesty. in order to elucidate the dynamism of mind drawn by the truth and increasingly pervaded by the intrinsic goodness of living in the truth. Solov'?v's to demonstrate attempt to the intrinsic union of our moral To reiterate. I read the text as that if we are properly states. To assent to this motivation about given the course beliefs. the philosopher at first conscientious experiences a once at motivation and incentive is from which moral hand. so to say. Theoretical Philosophy explores the dynamism inhabiting first the experience. This content downloaded from 129. as it were. because for him the way is prefigured in the intellectual virtues without which. whereas Justifi or objective cation side of value outward the.14. inwardly to the subject. This double movement suggests that in Theoretical Philos ophy Solov'?v does not work in the blind.VLADIMIR SOLOV'?V'S "VIRTUE EPISTEMOLOGY" this basis. and epistemic sions an attitude assessment in its implications. explored rational experience. In other words. as I suggested above. partici an requires pation in it on the part of human beings. and can bring to insight. within. inquiry it involves should take. an innate attraction to the Good. prior commitment. we and cognitive to experience. the amount argues of good that specific social and 205 institutions arrangements are best suited to the role humans in interaction play inmaximizing in the world. that is. In this light. or must active be.

Solov'?v did not mean his theoretical philosophy to be. he calls reason seeking or intending the Truth. to reflexive the human being's awareness. virtues EDWARD M.e. the over the exis i. in these texts. more exactly through philosophy. at least one differ ence is apparent in the late Solov'?v: lays emphasis some mystical in Theoretical Philosophy experience.53 on Thu. Theoretical Philosophy amounts to being Solov'?v's insight into the 'reflexivity' or self-reference of the objective order of values in human cognition. philosophizing from within the Abso lute. of value the argument dynamism for which of mind.. as the attempt that to identify in the end the conditions of possi bility of the experienced of course. These idealism-realism tence of problematic.15. saying. Theoretical Philosophy could well be interpreted along analogous without order lines. there had been It goes is but one Solov'?v's virtually overall task in Justification. I stated that. in the last of the three studies comprising Theoretical Philosophy. Earlier I suggested that from the perspective of his 'virtue epistemology' Solov'?v would not countenance the bloodless abstractions - substantial but disembodied egos and the like history of modern European philosophy abounds.206 perseverance. as he could plausible of knowledge have been familiar with it. Solov'?v in broaching issues that. Before suggesting several parallels between the Justification it will be instructive to see just what and Theoretical Philosophy. the philosophizing act coming to grasp its inherence in the totality which is its proper not on object." in one form which This content downloaded from 129. So just as Justification was designed to identify the condi tions of possibility of our basic moral experiences in an objective moral order.14. the "controversy to consciousness. Brought cognitive aspira to superior values tion and assent themselves comprise higher-order values which as such intimate the intrinsic worth of the entire moral order in which they are embedded. these abstractions suggests the moral depravity of In general. for one. in relation the world issues would include. but on he the exper ienced dynamism of intellect. on what. under primarily make the main line of up European theory some with which the (As if trading in their inventors!) is not interested construal. There is after all a strong echo here of the early Solov'?v. However. SWIDERSKI which Solov'?v will encapsulate in the norm enjoining the thinker to be conscientious. 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .

on virtually no subject which would plausibly figure on a list of themes associated with modern European theory of knowledge does Solov'?v have anything to say which advances understanding.53 on Thu. to the dynamic on evidence. for example. it is doubtful that what Solov'?v has to say about language and linguistic acts in Theoretical Philosophy19 is of greater importance in view of developments elsewhere at the time that were already then building up towhat was to become the 'linguistic turn' inmainstream twentieth century philosophy. from at least the Cartesian ego ipso facto discredit problematic is little concerned had been to the terms in which still to be much importance the idealism-realism Solov'?v Further. either because there is little sign that the themes interested him or because what he has to say is obsolete. 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . of remaining content In effect. that of contemporaries the Gestalt at the time Solov'?v of course Husserl who. There are intimations that Solov'?v had a sense of the intentional directedness of mental acts. Although he does stipulate that validity is a salient issue for theoretical philosophy. running to the increas states of sensory presentifications as later theorists were to say . It is This content downloaded from 129. regard about meaning. In short. Finally.VLADIMIR SOLOV'?V'S "VIRTUE EPISTEMOLOGY" 207 or another dominated somuch of European philosophy Descartes onwards. but Solov'?v short of giving such the motivating emphasize stops stress from Solov'?v immediate places a complete account.18 thought he does not pursue the idea in a direction work. The reader is given to understand that Solov'?v's discrimination of immediate certitude (the main argument of the first study) as well as the logical form of reason (the question taken up in the second study) enter into a complete account of knowledge.15.evidence 'founded' of cognitive acts (in Solov'?v's terms: myshlenie) is largely intended to ward off the threat of scepticism.17 he finally offers neither an account of the formation of beliefs nor an analysis of the concept of knowledge as. warranted or justified beliefs. was meditating the remnants about Theoretical Philosophy. in the first two ingly mediated studies. in a Kantian-style and was invest critique of knowledge designed to test the possibility of substantive metaphysical statements.14. truth-seeking. never which mind and could with Brentano's earlier suggest familiarity like Frege. psychologists. Solov'?v's broadsides against cast. with was just shedding to the question of psychologism.

EDWARD M.53 on Thu. There are good grounds for assuming that this is the more likely reading. The Crisis inWestern (1877-1880).208 another matter. of course.. self-perfection to self-transcendence ?> wisdom] experience (4) the 'ascent of man' (4) the stages of self-consciousness psychophysiological self-determining self-transcending -> "Good" individual psychological/empirical rational self self ?> self person spiritual self philosophical "Truth" This content downloaded from 129. a 'virtue to envisage of in light of the proximity between Justification of epistemology'. To my mind.. "Givenness" and "Perfectibility" . SWIDERSKI whether the text should be read as a rejec tion of this line of Western philosophical theory. 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . the Good and Theoretical Philosophy.) Epistemic sphere i (Theoretical.. the one However.20 As I have argued for the close connection between Justifica I will put my point about the tion and Theoretical Philosophy.. it identifies the constructive purpose behind Theoretical Philosophy.) (1) the indubitability of shame and the concomitant states (2) awareness of higher moral their to be attained (1) indubitability of immediate presenti fications and concomitant scope in reflection experience form of reason awareness of restricted (2) of immediate the universal as recognition in the sympathy/pity of spiritual of the universal quality brotherhood other (3) reverence/piety (3) aspiring rationally to Truth explicit motivating recognition aspiration [religious of superior (love) value experienced and as a reality. one.14. the determining The Critique of Abstract In that case.15. Principles and even his master's thesis. dubbed there is the other context I have Solov'?v's attempt interpretation. would have to be taken into account. if this context Solov'?v's of interpretation much earlier remains work. constructive purpose behind Theoretical Philosophy by exhibiting some salient parallels between the categories employed by Solov'?v in the latter and those he used in Justification. Philosophy: Against the Positivists (1874). Moral sphere (Justification .

Hence his emphasis. it is hardly disputable that Solov'?v means to refer to thewill of one and the same subject. in the epistemic sphere. as he avers in Justification. and.g. sense of its restricted is to say. Solov'?v aspire speaks of a will This content downloaded from 129. but the view from within living experience. with being passive to acknowledge contrary. which is the "integrity of man.14. from from stage to stage comes the passage from. In the terms of Justification. given in it an additional level carries within charge. and is to and moti to so to speak. at the 'primitive' that the aptness of the analogy of immediate sphere experience. experience A further consideration between ness so the spheres. the epistemic the basic the close registration of the facts.21 Awareness of this kind does not rest content. The motivation hand. determined .VLADIMIR SOLOV'?V'S "VIRTUE EPISTEMOLOGY" 209 The parallel numerals - signified in the columns by the corresponding what I would regard as an analogy. one might assume that Solov'?v means the premise see that the subject to pursue higher moral states is motivated to the truth.22 Accordingly.by a desire for ever perfectible states of being. on one on to higher. Thanks to this charge. both in Justification and in Theoretical Philosophy. as soon as the knower the dynamism of intellect recognizes for the operations of the logical form of reason thanks to which the understanding moves beyond the restricted sphere of immediacy and particularity.53 on Thu. Solov'?v makes it clear. In speaking of the person Solov'?v has in view the essence of morality. that the standpoint on givenness is not that of an external observer.indeed. this 'subject' is the person. 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . On the between the moral affinity of 'virtue epistemology' vated . is construed around applied to themoral (Theoretical sphere (Justification) and the epistemic between an internally motivated sphere move Philosophy). a concomitant In each reinforces to speak. the primitive state is reflexively surpassed for the sake of higher order states of personal moral being as well as the life of mind aspiring to truth. positive the response values the other hand. including those which belong within the cognitive sphere. ness and thus an intimation of a beyond. on indubitability (certi tude) matched in themoral sphere by the emotional impact of value (e. shame).15.23 Though he nowhere says so. ment from immediate to increasingly mediated givenness and a movement from lesser to greater (higher) states of perfection."24 Nominally..

seeks accomplishment stage. integrative society essence to the of the person. Society therefore as 'integral' at its level as the person is 'integral' at her level. seems to be the unity in its conative. However. in the of the moral order.210 ordinary of mortal engaging vision. one can assume that personhood cognizant of comes into its own in just this middle its infinite task. this kind of formulation fails to scale the higher reaches Solov'?v's the person. of the 'moral essence' In Theoretical the analogue Philosophy.26 Analogy is at work here. starting from base human psychophysiological and arriving at the sublime form of Godmanhood. the Good so only an intrinsically answers and Truth. argued reality of value. and philosophical self (see (4) in the figure) are no more than formal. having correlated self and the logical immediate givenness with the psychological form of reason with the rational self Solov'?v goes on. EDWARD M. and Solov'?v ties this infinity to the universal he juxtaposes the human the will. rational. notwithstanding Solov'?v's insistence that the distinctions he introduces between a psychological. for self-integration. in to ground hierarchical. order. the person. person with society. For the argument. in the third inves tigation. he writes that according to the central axiom of moral philosophy the human person is "infinite. The moral order is a the human experience of the moral order. and that. as presented to I said.15.53 on Thu. in the This content downloaded from 129."25 Significantly. passing through the stratum of being which comprises sake of rational consciousness at the level of which presumably Justification and Theoretical Philos ophy are written. what he says in this regard acquires added meaning when juxtaposed with the thesis about Solov'?v order the reality has in Justification. in communion with still higher echelons of the Good. as if rehearsing in a preliminary reach of reason way what he was to write some four years later in Theoretical Philosophy. Quite of the social order in which the social should to the contrary. Likewise. too: just as the universality of reason and the will is matched by the infinite integrality of their respective 'objects'. voli of self-consciousness tional. be the outgrowth of the person is the "intimate achievement" in his sense of the term. Solov'?v works out a movement.14. Moreover. and purely cognitional strivings. 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . in speaking of While not incorrect. rejecting conceptions persons are reduced to atoms. emergentist states Justification. SWIDERSKI in the quest In Justification.

EPISTEMOLOGY" VLADIMIR SOLOV'?V'S "VIRTUE 211 third study of Theoretical Philosophy. in the third and last meditation. THE IDENTITY OF THE PHILOSOPHICAL SUBJECT (A SKETCHY INTERPRETATION) opinion. In Theoretical Philosophy.27 The position derives foundations sympathy. there fore. However. is historical. that. 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . and that. in the moral One's concern order for the other in large measure entails from the a salient pity or given. first. there are difficulties in this regard. contributing to its realization. truth is coeval with the Absolute Good. Solov'?v does not introduce history into his narrative about the passage from one stage of selfhood to the next. subjects self to the intrinsic extrapolations of these several consistent with the demands of the virtue epistemology I claim to discern in the parallels between Justification and Theoretical Philosophyl III. rational assent to this Truth entails a kind of ascetic renunciation of the psychological or empirical self. of egoism the defeat to mankind encom and thus (universal) solidarity. In fact. realizing the maximum of good in the world. second. its essen tial locus is in the community.53 on Thu. the (in the Husserlian description is by far more 'phenomenological' This content downloaded from 129. In the latter. but in no way being the end of moral perfectibility. In Justification. participating actively in it. Here there is a distinct disanalogy between Justification and Theoretical Philosophy. the analogy I have construed between Justification and Theoretical Philosophy appears to break down on this point. For present purposes it follows that for Solov'?v the individual as ordinarily understood is taken up into the wider compass of the moral order. consciousness in what he qualifies as collective humanity. thinking in its form aspires to Truth as universal. In turn themoral community under goes a development passing from the family passed by the universal Church. cosmic. Solov'?v affirms that the process of perfection. Solov'?v has moved far enough that he is able to affirm that. of ultimately moral incorporated in the Church. of Therefore. and that In my for this reason its meaning or the unity is supra-individual. emerges of the movement meaning Are Solov'?v's who as soon as the rational from lower to invoke a philosophical subject to higher assents states.15.14. lastly.

19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . the tasks in question are no less than to pay witness at least not on to universal. form 'concrete' any admonitions Solov'?v's there is no ego. agents is no set of there terms.29 human Had Solov'?v abided cognitive endeavors. no of as well. has convinced him the Good and the True are mutually that the reflexive appropriation of the dynamism of intellect toward the Truth and the Good can only be achieved by what he calls the philosophical subject. They combine moral and intellectual virtues in due measure (phronesis). His argu ment could be construed as follows.53 on Thu.30 What we find in Solov'?v is a persistent step by step removal from his field of consideration. means by cognitive acquiring. This content downloaded from 129. SWIDERSKI consistent emphasis on the vital evidence of immediate presentification. any theory which natural Logically. all acts? His my theory of the accompanies objective moral order. Or to put predicates endeavor that at and in different what picks Solov'?v out consistent the same individuals consolidating. and grow in wisdom. so often the agent the dynamic the self that. that is.31 And as for the latter. have imagined. The properties that a subject has must be adequate to the tasks assigned to it (1). ence the of personal ourselves as properties. In this case. The movement of perfectibility is therefore restricted in this sphere to the dynamism of intellect.28 given the EDWARD M. to countenance self-consciousness. as intellect. self-same any view of the human person conclusion with time that is consistent with our ordinary experi and knowers(3). or none As for the show. to situate the resulting the seat of situation Where of is Solov'?v has consciousness.14. growing into the truth (his expression is "the emerging reason of truth") only by leaving behind lesser states of mind. But for Solov'?v what the dynamism signals is not so much having as rather being in. the properties of the subject cannot be I-centered.212 meaning). by a more have he might account "pedestrian" settled for an account of of truth relating it to the formation of true and justified beliefs. then. standard cosmic truth (2). first. attribute significance to cognitive integration. been said. Men who develop the disposition to acquire their beliefs carefully and responsibly form their characters in a distinctive way. he is of the other substantial abstractions philosophers Solov'?v's izes and is unwilling 'personalizes' is unsettling. For that reason. that former.15. sure. in which convertible. of any form of 'abstract' subject and. subject to respect the evidence the self.

is a fundamental are and how I have we the thinker's For commitment a virtue are to conscientious what our datum. a rational belief system. that is.32 On one hand. He might in this way have stumbled across a kind of Popperian epistemology without a knowing subject. the empirical subject. Logically. that is to say. say. tion of an apersonal.53 on Thu. can Solov'?v adopt a concep even a transpersonal philosophical subject and still insist on the intrinsic unity of moral and epistemic values? If I philosophize conscientiously. We saw that there Solov'?v uses the expression to seeking. doing as if to lighten the burden thus placed on the person's Solov'?v incorporates and therefore the shoulders. earthly forms. accept. this conclusion is consistent with the depiction of the human individual in Justification. to mean and a capacity for 'infinity' with the good. in the historical process of mankind's ongoing perfectibility. move. interdependent arrived at an aperson to sustain his concept of the philosophical subject superseding the ordinary human person. 'infinity' of which he speaks. matters. Is the conclusion consistent with the demands of a virtue epistemology. But Theoretical Philosophy Cartesian conclusion forecloses on any such possible from as it were. 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .14. CONCLUSION I have interpreted Solov'?v as having held that our knowledge of the Truth and the Good may best be generated from within a reflexive grasp of the dynamism of intellect. do I not by that very fact not only This content downloaded from 129.EPISTEMOLOGY" VLADIMIR SOLOV'?V S "VIRTUE 213 over time identifying themselves as he subjects of their experiences and beliefs. the person. it would have been open to him here to work out a view resembling of which a communitarian theory of knowl edge for which all the members the proper subject is. knowing that or accepting that conscientiousness is a value. and that among the signs to follow ness beliefs However.33 However. the scientific community share. alist in this regard.15. The ahistor ical approach buttressed by the arguments against abstractions like any compensation egos without that Solov'?v deconstructs. arrive epistemology at them just concluded that Solov'?v seemingly account of consciousness. elsewhere the yields the subject in any of its prosaic IV. respect 'person' manifesting.

F. If I am not. 4 Cf... So can I conscientiously admit all these things and still believe that my choice to philosophize brings about a personal change in me. 2 "In the domain of moral ideas philosophy.. which strives for the good and requires from reason a clear and complete explanation as to the nature of authentic good as distinct from everything which seems or is considered to be the good ." Theoretical Philosophy. necessary them. when rational faith based on . internal religious experience takes the form of universal 5 This content downloaded from 129. a doubt which cannot be resolved within the limits of moral or practical philosophy. although it is by no means of such a kind as to undermine the obligatory character of the rules of the Good for men of good will.15. including my beliefs about how to go about forming. 759.. 3 "." p.. among other things. and having come to the conclusion he seems to have decided that 'philosophizing' is in fact no longer a self-directed the existence of and.53 on Thu. we are only parts of it and had better supersede ourselves for the sake of the bigger picture. t. NOTES are Passages cited from Justification of the Good and Theoretical Philosophy taken from Sochinenija v dvukh tomakh. the Introduction to Justification "Nravstvennaja filosofija kak nauka. exert if necessary. as if I thereby cease to be the person I took myself to be prior to this choice? Solov'?v apparently thought so. the moral order. put my beliefs in question.l. and it is a fault thatmay impact my 'objective' beliefs. I form my I am at fault. assessing. despite The truth is too awesome enterprise. "But. a theoretical doubt remains possible.. whether my reflections are conducted in isolation or in the company of others? But then Imust be conscientious also about the beliefs I hold about myself. despite its formal autonomy. a harmful modifying influence on my beliefs. 760. SWIDERSKI responsibility where for what I say correct and do when I philosophize? And if so. Gulyga.. 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .14.. is essentially subordinated to the vital interests of the pure will.V. 1990. that the way beliefs. is. it may and. ". p.. edited and introduced by A. Losev and A. 2-e izd. the greatest conscientiousness in thinking and cognition [which] is unques a determination_what draws us close to the truth likewise draws moral tionably us close to the good. 547. p." Theoretical Philosophy. 1 Solov'?v states this requirement succinctly at the end of Justification..." Justification. so long as the justice of the Good has not become evident in everything and for everyone.. M. then am I not ready to.214 bear but also assume EDWARD M. 98 ff.

Zagzebski outlines the argument that follows in terms thatwould have been congenial to Solov'?v: ". 7 in considerable is the line of interpretation developed This detail by in Vladimir Solov'?v und Max Helmut Dahm Scheler. Virtues of theMind. not moral xv. Karl Popper. 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .. xiv of of cognitive activity.. Intellectual virtues are.. Solov'?v is not so clear. which are similar to those which we are aware of in our own spiritual being. in its turn. Sovi?tica 34. Co. M?nchen/Salzburg.VLADIMIR SOLOV'?V S "VIRTUE EPISTEMOLOGY" 215 theoretical statements. but to extend the range pp.. "Of Clouds and Cuckoo Clocks." 10 The phrase is taken from Karl Popper's celebrated proposal for a theory of knowledge without a knowing subject. Peter Ehlen.. 6 Chapter 5 of Part I of Justification is devoted to the virtues (O dobrodeteljakh). Reidel Publ.: Attempt at a Comparative Interpretation. 1996. 1971. 1974. It follows that intellectual virtue is properly the object of study of moral philosophy. Dordrecht. as the question of the source of evil is purely intellectual it can be resolved only by an authentic metaphysics which. and because the specificity of that which expresses itself is determined by the specificity of the expression." p. Wahrheit in Solov'?vs Sp?tphilosophie." und die "werdende Vernunft der Cf. is accessible to us by way of internal and external experience. and the means of know ledge and the truth. presupposes an answer to questions regarding the nature. a theoretical justification is required. ""Impersonalismus" in this issue of SEET. forms of moral virtue. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. in fact. then in accordance with this similarity to our own being we would acquire an indeed 9 This content downloaded from 129. In the introduction to her study. Cf.." In the same vein.14. the certitude. as I will argue below. Oxford: Clarendon. 1974. 547. 11 "The highest duty of philosophy consists in determining the absolute primor idal ground or themetaphysical being in its veritable significance. This claim is intended. 8 I use the term in the meaning given to it by Linda 'virtue epistemology' Trinkaus Zagzebski.15. he goes on.53 on Thu. as the expression of themetaphysical being. An Inquiry into the Nature of Virtue and the Ethical Foundations of Knowledge. Iwill argue that the relationship between the evaluation of cognitive activity and the evaluation of acts in the overt sense usually reserved to ethics is more than an analogous one_the intellectual virtues are so similar to the moral virtues in Aristotle's sense of the latter that they ought not to be treated as two different kinds of virtue. Popper is clear about what he means when he speaks about knowledge. And if it should prove that the relations of the actual universe neces sitate the assumption of determinations of its metaphysical primordial ground." Objective Knowledge: An Evolu tionary Approach. Translation: Vladimir Solovyev and Max Scheler. Ein Beitrag zur im Versuch einer vergleichenden Geschichte der Ph?nomenologie Interpreta tion. to reduce concepts to moral concepts concepsts epistemic to include dimension the normative . An analysis will no doubt show a strong correspondence between Solov'?v's more sense of virtue in his 'virtue epistemology' and the general consideration of virtue in the earlier treatise on morality. This determina tion is possible because the actual universe. ".

13 Chapter three of the part II. 111] In the second study devoted to reasoning in its 'formal' dimension. Dahm. "The Good Originates in God.e. As for the historical sources." Opyt sinteticheskoj filosofii. society. 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . one is best served by looking at the ancients. much of what Solov'?v says brings to mind the notion of 'categorial intuition' put forward by Husserl in his Logical Investigations. 16 Solov'?v investigates this theme in the third part of Justification.. feelings. that is. The account of language and redolent of a private-language Solov'?v puts forward is psychologistic argu ment. . for all three cases.216 EDWARD M. Cf.. in particular. as quoted in not only extraordinarily universal but also positive knowledge being (Wesen) of the universe. ".15. 15 The argument for this kind of "moral necessity. "The Good as chuvstva. Chicago: Quadrangle Books. 4. 20 It should not be thought that contemporary virtue epistemology forsakes the more recent of and classical panoply epistemological questions. i. are not Kantian (though they do not exclude Kantian considerations). emotions. vol. Solov'?v can be considered as a 'moral realist' in the current sense of the term... the proper content of which (the thought about the universal validity of direct consciousness) goes beyond the confines of every presentation . there exists the presented psychic fact. p. 12 p. Ill. to the Throughout economic and juridical arrangements within the state defined as the minimum degree of constraint conducive to the greatest good for the greatest number.53 on Thu. in fact of slovo (the word).." The corresponding experiential forms are identi fied. .' 14 Transcendental arguments. 18 Solov'?v writes of "." Theoretical Philosophy." as Solov'?v terms it.the fact that it [immediate consciousness EMS] does not antecendently 17 distinguish the appearance of an object from its reality. SWIDERSKI of themetaphysical 1877..14. and moral realists do in fact develop a species of transcendental argument akin to arguments of scientific realists regarding so called 'theoretical entities'." [the passage is cited after the translation of the first article of Theoretical Philos ophy by Viada Tolley and James Scanlan inRussian Philosophy. in the fifth subsection of the Introduction to Justification. being occupied solely by the presentation itself in its actual immediacy." entitled "The Primordial Givens of Morality. in this sense. occurs in the seventh section of the second article in Theoretical Philosophy. This content downloaded from 129. the History of Humanity.the initial directedness of immediate consciousness. For instance. 801. "The Good in Human Nature. he is silent on the Solov'?v broaches the question of validity (dostovernosf) in section IV of the first study of Theoretical Philosophy. in the sense thatWittgenstein was to criticize. However. which is identical in both cases. One would have thought that Solov'?v may have had some reflections about the role and impact of the scientific enterprise within question. Zagzebski's book cited above is eloquent testimony to the contrary. comes earlier." paying attention. 19 The discussion of language. 1965. p. perhaps Aristotle above all.a fact is given signifying something more than any [given EMS] fact. the first chapter of part I.

largely modelled on Kant's moral doctrine. finds its expression in the following law: "you must subscribe in all respects to the norm of human exis tence. 234. to an outside observor. that human reason is unbounded in its capacity to know the truth. 282: "The human personality and. there is nothing arbitrary in it.53 on Thu." This means. 22 "In order for the idea of the good." 24 The essence." Justification. cit. presents the possibility of realizing a plentitude of being or. 27 Part III is titled "The Good Throughout of Justification the History of a and the successive for of moral theory Humanity. 283-84. 30 Linda Zagzebski. its necessity is absolute. consequently. or negatively: you must not let pass anything opposed to this norm. 25 Justification. 26 Justification. and that the will is similarly unbounded in its capacity to do good in the world. any violation of this integrality. jashchisja razum istiny [the emerging p. especially Philosophy 'negativity' which drives Hegelian phenomenology from one form of consciousness to the 29 "In the immediately certain. in Justification (p.15." Theoretical Philosophy. 28 in Nothing suggests that Solov'?v may have had a Hegelian phenomenology as no is in there of the hint Theoretical mind. detaches and separates man from the rest of the animal world: by shame a man in reality separates himself from the whole of material nature." Analogously. Given the significance Solov'?v ascribes to shame . This choice is thus infinitely deter mined.VLADIMIR SOLOV'?V'S "VIRTUE EPISTEMOLOGY" and throughout theMedieval among others. in the form of duty. part subject. next. to preserve the integrity of the human being. A man's experience of shame for his own natural tendencies and the functions of his own organism shows that he not merely this material entity. to acquire the force of a sufficient reason or of amotive for action. in other words. 820. but that he is also something more and superior.as a kind of "root" out of which grows the morally mature human individual . 'higher' form. he continues." chapters argue 'progress' in the main spheres of civilized insitutional life." 123. 819) Solov'?v writes that the intention (zamysel) to come to know the truth itself is a "vital act of decision" (zhivoj akt reshenija) which becomes a "principle of movement. self-evident fact of dissatisfaction with formal rationality (razumnostju) the philosophical subject shows itself to be stanov reason of truth). 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . 275): "A person who is cognitively inte This content downloaded from 129. p. sensitivity 23 In Theoretical Philosophy (p. op. [she] is a particular form of an infinite content. 217 period. writes (p." Justification.. 22) Solov'?v affirms that "[t]he good determines my choice in its favor by the entire infinity of its positive content and its reality. Justification^. from that which surrounds him and from that which is proper to him. "The sense of shame is not merely a distinctive characteristic which. pp.itwill be useful to quote one passage to illustrate the point made in the main text. p. two factors have to come together: a and a sufficient moral clarity and adequate fullness of this idea in consciousness on the of the 116. Zagzebski recites passages from Acquinas.14. each human 21 individual.

to perform an act [of intellectual virtue .ch This content downloaded from 129. SWIDERSKI grated has positive higher-order attitudes toward her own intellectual character and the quality of her epistemic states. The emergence of truth itself is the emergence of its universality (vsecel'nosti). that of a noumenal self within the realm of pure intelligibility. not in but in that. That is. 31 Cf. p.Swiderski@unifr.. Institut interfacultaire de VEurope orientale et centrale Universit? de Fribourg Portes de Fribourg CH-1763 E-mail: Granges-Paccot. an emerging (v zarodyshe) form. in short... intellectual courage one have the entrenched habit that courage requires." Cf. Zagzebski does not need to add that the agent in question is just the human person in search of truth within the community to which he and she belong. This is important because intellectual virtue probably requires some time to develop and mature in an agent. 549-580. 1.. but she is in a position to know that she knows. her belief structure is coherent. say. she has a sense of the relative value of the different truths or aspects of reality to which she is related. it can in no way be something partial. for his empty Ego a new and thus far better..53 on Thu. 32 "Whoever thinks about the truth itself.15." in this issue of SEET. a good intellectual character. Further. intimated.14. originally intended as a part of Critique of Abstract Principles. "Formal'nyj princip nravstvennosti . restricted and abstracted. Switzerland Edward. unconditional truth possesses its distinctive quality. Not only does she know.izlozhenie i ocenka s kriticheskimi (Kanta) zamechanijami ob empiricheskoj etike. and the inner growth of this emerging [truth] can only be the development of universal truth." For Zagzebski ". vol." Theoretical Philosophy. Peter und die "werdende Vernunft der Ehlen. he acquires the sense that he loses self-consciousness. 33 No doubt in Justification Solov'?v conception of the person is Kantian.) Acts of virtue V require the component of V and that one act the way a person possession of the motivational with V would or might act in the same circumstances. He himself provides confirmation of this given that the Russian edition of Opravdanie contains an appendix consisting of a text written twenty years earlier. though initially only as intended. ""Impersonalismus" Wahrheit in Solov'?vs Sp?tphilosophie. pp.. on the contrary. unconditional content. 822. Sochinenija. does not think about his Ego.218 EDWARD M. and yet it is likely that such an agents can have knowledge long before they are fully virtuous" (276). She has. as it were. and she is aware of its coherence. it is not necessary that to perform an act of. but the agent need not actually possess V. But even in its emerging cognizability.EMS] it is not necessary that one actually possess the virtue in question. Already in the act of deciding to know the truth the thinking ego becomes the form of truth. In addition. (. 19 Dec 2013 04:26:37 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .

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