I can inform the readers of my blog this month that the first version, i.e. more precisely the typoscript of my book announced in December last year (cf. here) is finished. The book is entitled „Disappointing Thinking. Philosophical Sketches I“ (the numbering indicates that more volumes, at least two, will follow).
The book will contain a number of texts that I first presented to the public here in my blog years ago, but also a number of new texts that will be dedicated to the title-giving theme of „disappointment / disillusionment“.
What does the word „disappointment / disillusionment“ mean in a context that is not psychological but philosophical? Philosophically, it means the ongoing process of questioning deceptions / illusions, i.e. that of dis-appointment / dis-illusionment.
In my understanding, however, such a process is not an anonymous one, not even an objective one. Its result may be objective, even if it is always uncertain, but it is not objective itself. It is always an individual and subjective process, carried by a subject struggling for it and in it.
Therefore, the disappointment it brings is not only philosophical in the narrower sense, but also psychological: Disappointing thinking is not only the thinking that uncovers illusions and in this sense disappoints, but also the thinking that suffers a disappointment and in this sense is disappointed.
Philosophical action and psychological suffering, philosophical action and psychological passion – both are connected in the title „Disappointing Thinking“ and only together make up what I – in the broader sense – understand by „philosophy“.
For me, „philosophy“ is therefore committed not only to truth, but also to truthfulness, not only to cognitive experience in the objective sense, that is to say, to knowledge, but also to life experience in the subjective sense, that is to say, to certainty.
An important sentence, in which the principal arrangement of the book, but also the claim just explained in the term „philosophy“ becomes clear and which is also explicitly formulated in the book, is: „Philosophers who do not also speak of themselves are not“.
In this respect, in this philosophical book – and I attach importance to calling it that way – I do not speak only, but always also of myself. This may surprise you at first, since today „philosophy“ is more of a scientific discipline.
However, this understanding of philosophy as a scientific discipline is for me – I’ve made it clear again and again in this blog up to the point of overtaxing myself – an extreme shortening. In my opinion, this can neither be justified historically nor systematically.
Historically, it cannot be justified because philosophy has, since its beginnings in the so-called „pre-socratic“ philosophy, but especially in modernity with Descartes and Kant, Husserl and Heidegger, Foucault and Derrida, formulated and tried to assert a comprehensive claim to knowledge, which can never be brought into full agreement with the specialized claim to knowledge of the sciences, such as biology and physics, but also, for example, the historical sciences and ethnology.
And systematically the shortening of philosophy to a scientific discipline cannot be justified, because there is at least one conceptual pole at which science and philosophy must necessarily separate from each other: at which philosophers, e.g. in existential philosophy for existential philosophy or in ethics for ethics, can justifiably question and doubt the meaning of science.
For there is no scientific philosophy of existence, and there is also no scientific ethics. It is especially difficult for philosophers to understand the latter in our scientific age.
The publisher of my book has therefore recently suggested that I give the following title to the series of books I have planned: Critique of philosophy.
After some hesitation, I was not averse to accepting this proposal.