As Kant has asserted there is no thing-in-itself but only there are things-by-ourselves including an emergent World and whatever there is.
Prothero wrote:Some would say that is a misreading of Kant. Kant was a realist (there is a noumena) i.e. an independent external world, but our knowledge of it is only through categories of mind (space and time for example) and experienced phenomena. How well phenomena represent or correlate with the noumena we can never be certain of.
I had spent 3+ years researching Kant on a full time basis [some years ago] so I am reasonably familiar with this point.
Kant was an empirical realist and transcendental idealist. Kant introduced the concept of 'noumenon' to contrast with phenomenon.
Kant inferred the noumena exists for practical reason to deal with the concept of phenomena so that we do not get carried away too far beyond the phenomena.
Kant wrote:The Concept of a Noumenon is thus a merely limiting Concept, the Function of which is to curb the pretensions of Sensibility; and it is therefore only of negative employment.
At the same time it [Noumenon] is no arbitrary invention; it is Bound up with the Limitation of Sensibility, though it [Noumenon] cannot affirm anything Positive beyond the Field of Sensibility. A255 A311
One can read Kant's words literally above and there is no room for a misleading reading.
The concept of the noumena limits the extreme of the phenomena [sensibility].
The thing-in-itself is also the same as the noumena, i.e. a limiting concept but it is conceptualize to limit one from going beyond the transcendental, into something like a reified God or soul. It is like putting a stop to infinite regression otherwise it will be 'till the cow comes home'.
So there is no such things as a real noumena nor thing-in-itself. They are only limiting concepts as Kant asserted above.
So humans in the higher levels of self understanding and development are all Idealists? Or at least transcendental idealists? Idealism is a decidedly minority view even among professional philosophers.
Idealism was a minority views because the majority do not understand the what reality really is.
As I had claimed those who claimed to be philosophical realists are actually 'idealists' i.e. they are empirical idealists. What they claim to be real can only be in their mind and there is no way they can actualize and realize the 'real' reality they speculate and yearn for.
Kant's OTOH is he is a empirical realist [in one perspective] because to Kant there is no space and time gap between him, his perception and reality.
In another perspective Kant is a transcendental idealist where space, time and reality are all in one 'soup' where the self and reality emerges spontaneously
Note the spontaneous emergence of empirical reality or a transcendental reality in contrast to the philosophical realist external world which is already there awaiting to be perceived by humans.
I am part of the world. I have arisen from the world, I am dependent on the world. I am not the entire world, nor am I separated from the world (because of this belief) in the way you would imply. I am thrown into the world as Heidegger would say.
You are conflating the two views and perspectives in this case.
You have to deliberate as an empirical realist [external world exists] but at the same time it is part and parcel of the transcendental idealist world.
Heidegger's "thrown" is misleading as in imply dualism, an independent subject is thrown into an independent object [the World]. What is most appropriate is 'spontaneous emergence' i.e. a togetherness. Example under certain temperature snow flakes emerge from the air. It is not a case of snow flakes were not thrown into the air from somewhere.
That would in fact, seem to be the case considering the remarkable efficacy of the scientific method and mathematical representations and empirical predictive value of science.
It is only a case as a condition for the Scientific Framework for it to work. We do not have to accept such a condition outside the Scientific Framework, e.g. within a realistic reality.
When we shift from the realist framework to deny an absolute independent external world, we resolve its dilemma [of nano space and time] of not being able to get in touch with real reality.
There was a time when I did not exist. There was a time when no humans existed. Other creatures exist and they "see" the world differently than I do (other humans " see the world differently than I do). We are all (humans and other creatures) limited by our minds and our sensory apparatus. So one could say we all construct different "realities" or "representations" of the world but that is far different than saying the only "reality" is the one my mind constructs.
There is a real independent external world. There was a world before I was born, there will be a world after I am dead. True (my knowledge of that world is limited) by my mind (conceptions) and limited to experienced phenomena.
Note 'before' and 'after' are time element. According to Kant, time is an intuition within transcendental idealism which is part and parcel of the human-reality system.
Therefore your "There was a world before
I was born, there will be a world after
I am dead" itself is not absolutely independent of the human system. This cannot be an absolutely independent conclusion.
Without humans there cannot be such a conclusion.
So? That does not negate the fact of an independent external world which is independent of our perceptions and conceptions. It does not mean that there was not a time when the sun did not exist, or when dinosaurs walked and experienced the earth without human presence.
'Before' and 'after' are human conceptions [intuitions].
Sun existed before human.
Sun existed is a human conception.
That the Sun existed before human beings is therefore a human conception.
Without humans there cannot be such a conclusion.
As I had stated there is an eternal time and space GAP between the perceiver and the perceived even with what is real in the empirical present. It would be worst with dinosaurs which existed in time so long ago.
Not-a-theist. Religion is a critical necessity for humanity now, but not the FUTURE.