ideality of meaning

All thinking and knowing is subjective, a mental act that comes
and goes, begins and ends. Every mental act has, on the other hand,
30 its meaning, its meaning content, and this must be, as we remarked,
ideal and supra-subjective, something that does not come and go, for

^7 Problems of meanings in themselves.

——————–

140 NOETICS AS THEORY OF JUSTIFICATION

which beginning and ending, temporal existence in general, are not
applicable categories. Someone states the theory of the sum of the
angles of a triangle, thinks, judges, and knows it. This thinking and
knowing is that person’s mental experience. What the person thinks 142 5
and knows must, however, be a truth. Now, does this mean, however, and
this makes good sense, that a truth is what it is whether anyone
whosoever thinks, states, knows it? We started with this distinction as
something preestablished. It is given to us beforehand. Everyone knows
it and makes use of it. In all scientific discourse, propositions 10 and
truths are spoken of in this ideal, supratemporal sense. No one believes
that the proposition of the sum of the angles of a triangle, or any
other truth began with a subjective act of thinking and ends with it.
People say that the truth is discovered. People take it as an
objectivity in itself that must be found. And, formal logic then simply
15 accepts these objectifications, the true and false propositions, the
non-contradictory and consistent concepts, takes them in the sense
prevailing in all actual sciences. It investigates the forms of these
ideal meanings and the laws to which the truth is subject purely on the
basis of form. However, is not a big problem hiding here? A prop-20
osition, especially, for example, a truth, is something
suprasubjective, supratemporal, ideal, an act of thinking, something
subjective, temporal, and psychologically real. How does the ideal come
into the real, the suprasubjective into the subjective act? The judgment
judges that /S /is /P/, that the sum of the angles <is equal> to the sum
of two 25 right <angles>, etc. The what of the judgment is the judgment
content. Is that a moment, an isolated feature of the judgment, as green
is an isolated feature in the appearance of green leaves? But, with the
real whole, its real parts, its real moments also come into being and
pass away. If the green leaf passes away, then that moment of colora-30
tion has passed away. If the judgment passes away, then everything that
constituted the judgment in terms of parts or isolated features has
passed away. /The proposition is, however, what it is, whether it is
thought or not/.^8 This same truth is acknowledged and seen by many
individuals in many judgments. It is one. The acts and individuals are

^8 Proposition in itself.

——————–

NOETICS OF THEORY OF JUSTIFICATION

141

many. And, yet, the latter did not grow together, as if they truly had a
piece in common.

The objectivity of the validity of science hinges on the ideality of 143
the meanings^9 of these logical units, on their forms and laws of form.
5 Scientific theory is suprasubjective. It is valid. It is known
subjectively, but is not the subjective knowledge of scholars or pupils.
Its validity with respect to all its theoretically well-grounded results
reaches beyond all subjective thinking and all thinking individuals
precisely in that it is a body of ideal, legitimately connected mean-10
ing units. The ideality of the meaning unit obviously first makes the
ideality of all scientific theories possible. But, how is that to be
understood then? If the meaning in the authentic sense is in the
judgment, in the act of thinking, then it is just a part of it and then
something real. It is not that, though. And, on the other hand, what 15
is the fact that the judgment has meaning, believes one proposition or
another, sees one truth or another supposed to mean? How are the
contrast and relationship between ideal and real objectivities in
general conceivable?^10

^9 Ideal in itself as meaning.

^10 That is all rather generally expressed. To be distinguished within
the problem, though, then is: (1) the ideality of the mathematical, the
purely logical, the geometrical, the purely conceptual proposition;
hence, corresponding classes of judgments and their ideal contents; (2)
the suprasubjectivity of empirical, occasional propositions having
temporary validity. The bird is flying: now, just as long as it is
flying. The paper is white: now, as long as it is not colored, not
burned, etc. Scientific judgments of selenology, botany, geography, even
physics. Meanings of occasional judgments! In contrast to the meanings
of non-occasional judgments.

Edmund Husserl, INTRODUCTION TO LOGIC AND THEORY OF KNOWLEDGE

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