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The Second Paradigm Of Homo Religiosus: Kant

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Chapter Summary

A discussion about Kant is essential for the understanding of the personality structure of homo religious and of his separation from Halakhic Man. Kant is a cognitive man uninterested in what is beyond cognition, namely, beyond the forms of sensibility and the categories. Kant scholars are divided on these questions: (1) Is the thing in itself a borderline concept marking the limits of reason, or does it refer to actual but unknowable entities? (2) Is there any difference between the thing in itself and the noumenon or are they the same? Kant is completely indifferent to the realm beyond sensory perception and its organization within knowledge, namely, to the absolute. Rabbi Joseph Baer Soloveitchik strives to draw a distinction between Maimonides and Kant. He argues that the Kantian thing in itself is deleterious to the purity of reason and is an expression of homo religious thought.

Keywords: Halakhic Man; homo religious; Kant; Maimonides; Rabbi Joseph Baer Soloveitchik; sensory perception



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