Wittgenstein on the Nature of the Self and Solipsism from his Tractatus Rev. Randolph Thompson Dible II, U. L. . !

"# $%# $& Wittgenstein 'as heavil( influenced b( a number of )erman thin*ers from philosoph( and the arts from the generations +ust before his era, and of them a huge influence influence, as 'ell as a direct influence on Wittgenstein, is ,rthur Schopenhauer, 'hose thesis is states as the title of his opus -The World as Will and Representation.. In /oo* ! of 0olume ! of that 'or*, he starts the 'or* 'ith the follo'ing proposition1 -The 'orld is m( representation 2vorstellung3.. ,nd that chapter he concludes 'ith the proposition -,nd the 'orld is m( Will.. There is an obvious influent in Wittgenstein4s Tractatus4s proposition 5.%"% -The 'orld is independent of m( 'ill.. 6et, at first glance, it seems that Wittgenstein is antithetical to Schopenhauer. /oth thin*ers clarif( 'hat the( mean b( these propositions in their discussions of the substitutabilit( of the notions of 'ill and sub+ect. In Schopenhauer 'e find a discussion of the -pure sub+ect of *no'ing. in the chapter of 0olume !, of that title. 7ere, as else'here throughout that 'or* 'e find a careful distinction bet'een the sub+ect as the thing8in8itself and the sub+ect as the ps(chological phenomenon 'hich is thereb( ob+ectified or represented. This echoes the trouble some readers of Schopenhauer have 'ith the idea of the self as the origin and limit 2source and telos3 of the 'orld as representation. This confusion is resolved b( once again reminding such readers that the self referred to is none other than the transcendental base of reference, the pure self8reference of the self itself, not the sub+ective forms 2Whitehead4s 'ord as 'ell as Schopenhauer4s 2from the aforementioned chapter33 or individual self 2the +iva or +ivatman distinct from the true self or atman in the 7indu 'or*s Schopenhauer reads before going to bed.3 Such a distinction is necessar( to *eep in mind to understand m(stical 'or*. Such a distinction *eeps the limit of the finitude of the 'ord clear, and thus the 'orld and all its constituents in chec*. 9no'ing the limit is *no'ing the true nature of the self, and is the m(stical *e( to placing non8 ultimate realit( in the conte:t of ultimate realit(. The similar sounding propositions of Schopenhauer and Wittgensetin4s 5.%"% resound of antipodal nodes in a harmonium, of m(stical tal* about the self, but in fact there is no such sphere of an( dimensions, it is rather a metaphor of the dimensionless point Wittgenstein describes in ;roposition <.5=1 -7ere 'e see that solipsism strictl( carried out coincides 'ith pure realism. The I is solipsism shrin*s to an e:tensionless point and there remains the realit( coordinated 'ith it. <.5=!1 There is therefore reall( a sense in 'hich in philosoph( 'e can tal* of a non8ps(chological I. The I occurs in philosoph( through the fact that the -'orld is m( 'orld.. The I is not the man, not the human bod( or the human soul of 'hich ps(cholog( treats, but the metaph(sical sub+ect, the limit > not a part of the 'orld.. ertainl( Schopenhauer4s t'o statements do not conflict 'ith on another, so 'e must understand the sense in 'hich he emplo(s these motions of self, 'ill and 'orld. With that sense, 'e can ma*e sense of Schopenhauer and his critics, and it is helpful to empirical scientistic critics of m(sticism, such as the logical positivists of the 0ienna ircle 'ho 'ere so attracted to 'hat Wittgenstein did sa( in his opus, to the form of his brilliant 'or* 2formosus means beautiful.3 /ut of course, the m(stical side of things is

indeed. If there is a value 'hich is of value. In the 'orld ever(thing is as it is and happens as it does happen. . is the picture painted b( Wittgenstein4s Tractatus. it must lie outside all happening and being8so. the ver( structure that is the case. So again. ..5% -I am m( 'orld. <. 'hich is li*e Schopenhauer4s characteriBation of the 'orld as representation. ?or all happening and being so is accidental. It must lie outside the 'orld. The 'orld as Wittgenstein understands it is the logical construct.. the self8a'are self is a'are of no ob+ectification of the self. for it is the ver( presence 'hich sees 'hat is sho'n and *no'n.5@4s -Dthe limits of m( languageD mean the limits of m( 'orldD.54 s state of the same 2-The limits of m( language are the limits of m( 'orld.5. and -the metaph(sical sub+ect. Ta*e these t'o propositions for Wittgenstein to illustrate the point1 5.5=! he clarifies the terminolog( using -the philosophical sub+ect.5%! clarifies the nature of the aforementioned distinction bet'een the true self and the non8self sub+ective form. In <. Wittgenstein4s logicism goes further than Schopenhauer on this point in describing the 'orld as logicall( complete. although it is invisible and cannot be sensed. Statements such as <. and <. it is ever8 present. starting 'ith -The thin*ing. In it there is no value88 and if there 'ere. but the side 'hich is ever8present. The non8ps(chological I and the e:tensionless point are other names he gives the self. it 'ould be of no value.3..<@@ -There is indeed the ine:pressible. rather..5@! -The 'orld and life are one. there is nothing more necessar(. are clarifications of such states as <.3 and <. not ultimate realit(. 5. Can( propositions in the propositions < and the propositions 5 clarif( the more m(stical points Wittgenstein has about the self. but the self in an( 'a( is never absent.. The 'orld felt as limited 'hole. 2The microcosm.nd the follo'ing propositions in this area continue 'ith the sub+ect. rather. This sho's itselfA it is the m(stical. The sub+ect cannot be seen na*ed. the limit.=!1 -The sense of the 'orld must lie outside the 'orld. the sub+ect and the place of solipsism in his understanding. presenting sub+ectA there is no such thingD. precisel( defined b( the scaffold of the logical hierarch( 'hich runs from the parallel structures of ob+ects and atomic facts named through situations or states of affairs to the 'orld 'hich is the case. predicates necessar( onl( because of the normal usage of our colloEuial language 'hich has different senses. the in8side.. /ut this hierarch( is simpl( 'hat can be stated.not the side 'e are presented 'ith.