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Showing posts from July, 2011

Running Free

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This is the second post by longtime friend and guest blogger, Zach V. I'm always excited to have different voices and perspectives speak out on philosophy and running. Thanks, Zach!
As soon as the division of labor comes into being, each man has a particular, exclusive sphere of activity, which is forced upon him and from which he cannot escape. He is a hunter, a fisherman, a herdsman, or a critical critic, and must remain so if he does not want to lose his means of livelihood; while in communist society, where nobody has one exclusive sphere of activity but each can become accomplished in any branch he wishes, society regulates the general production and thus makes it possible for me to do one thing today and another tomorrow, to hunt in the morning, fish in the afternoon, rear cattle in the evening, criticise after dinner, just as I have a mind, without ever becoming hunter, fisherman, herdsman or critic. -- Karl Marx
If you’re a runner, you’re probably a Marxist. That’s because--…

Understanding the Body, Becoming a Body

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In the Critique of Pure Reason, Kant writes of what he calls the "transcendental object," and he refers to it sometimes as the "= x." Das ding an sich--the thing in itself. Kant's point when writing about the transcendental object is that objects are somewhat slippery to the human mind. Kant believes that we never truly apprehend things as they are. We see, instead, a kind of messy blend of sense-impressions and mental concepts. His ultimate point: the thing in itself is unknowable.

Though this sounds a bit like skepticism, Kant's view is different from common-sense skepticism which essentially denies any capacity for knowledge. Though Kant believed we could never apprehend the world as it is, he thought we could apprehend it better. We could refine our mental concepts so that they better mapped onto the world. We could also improve our capacity for sensation--we could learn to sense the world better so that our intuitions of objects become riper and fuller.