Study Course Steps .1 - .12

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0. The Goal Of Knowledge
Part 2 Striving For Inner Truth

CHAPTER Part II THEME: Inner Truth - Inner truth is more useful than outer truth.

Theme: Inner Truth
topic .1: Conviction Of Inner Truth
topic .2: Empowered By Truth
topic .3: Inner Knowing
topic .4: Advance In Knowledge
topic .5: Recognition Of Truth
topic .6: Apply Freedom Principles
topic .7: Practice Pure Thinking
topic .8: Self-Governing Knowledge (empowered ideas)
topic .9: Science Of Freedom
topic .10: All-Around Human Development
topic .11: Ideas Serve Human Goals
topic .12: Master Of Ideas

0.0 Inner Truth
From path of outer truth To path of inner truth

As with individual life, truth will be sought in our age only in the depths of human nature. Of the following two well-known paths described by Schiller, it is the second that will today be found most useful:

We both seek truth; you in outer life,
I in the heart within. Each of us are sure to find it.
The healthy eye can track the Creator in the outer world;
The healthy heart reflects the world within. TPOF 0.1

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Outer Truth
The observer seeks truth in outer life. Observation is a source of knowledge that can find truth in the outer world.

  

Inner Truth
The thinker seeks truth within. In our age truth is sought in the depths of human nature. This is the path most useful today.

 
STEP .1 Conviction Of Inner Truth
From uncertain truth To conviction of inner truth
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Uncertainty Of Outer Truth
Outer Truth: Truth that comes to us from the outside always brings with it uncertainty.

  

Conviction Of Inner Truth
Inner Truth: We are only convinced by what appears to each of us inwardly as truth.

     

STEP .2 Empowered By Truth
From weakened by doubt To empowered by truth

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Weakened By Doubt
Outer Truth: Whoever is tormented by doubts finds his powers weakened. If baffled by a world full of riddles he can not find a goal for his creative activity.

 

Empowered By Truth
Inner Truth: Only truth can give us assurance in developing our individual powers.

     

STEP .3 Inner Knowing
From vague belief To inner knowing

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Vague Belief
Outer Truth: Belief demands the acceptance of truths without having the insight to wholly comprehend. What is not clearly understood goes against our individuality that wants to experience everything in the depths of its inner core.

 

Inner Knowing
Inner Truth: We no longer want to believe; we want to know. The only knowing that satisfies us is the kind that submits to no external norm, but springs from the inner life of the personality.

     

STEP .4 Advance In Knowledge
From academic knowledge To advance in knowledge (in own way)

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Rigid Academic Knowledge
Outer Truth: Nor do we want the kind of knowledge that has been encased in rigid academic rules, and stored away as valid for all time.

 

Advance In Knowledge
Inner Truth: Each of us claims the right to start from the facts we know, from our own direct experience, and from there advance to knowledge of the whole universe. We strive for certainty in knowledge, but each in his own way.

     
STEP .5 Recognition Of Truth
From compelled to understand To recognition of truth
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Compelled To Understand
Outer Truth: Nor should the teachings of science be presented in a way to imply that its acceptance is compulsory. Today, no one should be compelled to understand. We do not want to cram facts of knowledge into even an immature person, a child.

  Recognition Of Truth
Inner Truth: We expect neither recognition or agreement from anyone unless through his own insight he recognizes the truth of what is proposed. We try to develop the child's capacities in such a way that his understanding arises from within and compulsion becomes unnecessary.
     

STEP .6 Apply Freedom Principles
From cultural trends To apply freedom principles To life

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Flaunt Cultural Trends
Outer Truth: I have no illusions as to the characteristics of the present time. I know how much a stereotypical attitude, lacking all individuality, is prevalent everywhere. Many flaunt a way of life that follows only the current cultural trends.

  Apply Freedom Principles To Life
Inner Truth: But I also know that many of my contemporaries strive to conduct their lives in the direction of the principles I have suggested. To them I dedicate this book. It does not claim to offer the only possible way to truth, but is meant to describe the path taken by one for whom truth is central.
     

STEP .7 Practice Pure Thinking
From piety training To practice pure thinking

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Piety Training
Outer Truth: The oriental sage requires his disciples to live a life of resignation and asceticism for years before he shares with them his knowledge. The West no longer demands pious exercises and ascetic practices to attain knowledge.

  Practice Pure Thinking
Inner Truth: I am fully convinced that to experience life in all its aspects, one must soar into the realm of concepts. Whoever is limited to the pleasures of the senses misses the sweetest joys of life. Preparation for science does require a sincere willingness to prepare for science by withdrawing oneself awhile from the immediate impressions of life, and entering the realm of pure thought.
     

STEP .8 Self-Governing Knowledge (empowered ideas)
From how things work To self-governing knowledge (empowered ideas)

Ideas Of How Things Work
It is essential to have a supreme science that seeks in the separate sciences the principles for leading man back to the fullness of life. The aim of the scientific specialist's research is to become aware of the world and gain insight into how it works. The aim of this book is philosophical: science itself is to become a living whole. The various branches of science are preparatory stages on the way to the all-inclusive science intended here.

  Self-Governing Knowledge
All genuine philosophers have been artists in the conceptual realm. For them human Ideas become their artistic material and the method of science becomes their artistic technique. Abstract thinking takes on an individual life of its own. Ideas become powerful forces in life. We no longer merely know about things, but have made knowing into a real self-governing organism, ruled by its own laws. Our actual working consciousness has lifted itself above a mere passive reception of truths.
     
STEP .9 Science Of Freedom
From freedom questions To science of freedom

Questions Of Freedom
Outer Truth: The main theme of my book concerns these questions: How philosophy, as an art, relates to freedom; what freedom is; and whether we do, or can, participate in it.

  Science Of Freedom
Inner Truth: Scientific explanations are included because in the end they provide clarification about those questions that are, in my opinion, most important to people.
     
STEP .10 All-Around Human Development
From science of idle curiosity To all-around human development
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Science Of Idle Curiosity
Outer Truth: All science would be nothing but the satisfaction of idle curiosity if it did not raise the value of existence for the human personality.

 

All-Around Human Development
Inner Truth: The true value of the sciences is seen only when we are shown the importance of their results for humanity. The ultimate aim of the individuality cannot be the cultivation of only a single capacity. Rather, it must be the development of all the potential that slumbers within us. Knowledge has value only by contributing to the all-around development of the whole of human nature.

     

STEP .11 Ideas Serve Human Goals
From humans serve ideas To ideas serve human goals

Human Serves Ideas
Outer Truth: This book does not regard the relationship of science to life in such a way that the human being must bow down before the world of Ideas and devote his powers to its service.

  Ideas Serve Human Goals
Inner Truth: On the contrary, it shows that he should take possession of the world of Ideas to use them for his human goals. These extend beyond those of mere science.
     
STEP .12 Master Of Ideas 

From slave of ideas To master of ideas

Slave Of Ideas
Outer Truth: One must confront an Idea as master, or else become its slave.

  Confront Ideas As Master
Inner Truth: One must confront an Idea as master, or else become its slave.

Next Chapter Conscious Human Action
Do we confront our ideas as master or do unconscious ideas control us by compelling our behavior? This leads us into the next chapter entitled, Conscious Human Action, where we compare free action with the necessity of compelled action.

     

 

BOOK TEXT

0. THE GOAL OF KNOWLEDGE

0.0 Cult Of Individuality
[1] I believe I am right in pointing out one of the fundamental characteristics of our age when I say that, at the present day, all human interests tend to center in the cult of individuality. An energetic effort is being made to shake off every kind of authority. Nothing is accepted as valid, unless it springs from the roots of individuality. Everything that hinders the individual from fully developing his powers is thrust aside. The saying “Each one of us must choose his hero in whose footsteps he toils up to Mount Olympus” no longer holds true for us. We allow no ideals to be forced upon us. We are convinced that in each of us, if only we probe deep enough into the very heart of our being, there dwells something noble, something worthy of development. We no longer believe there is a norm of human life to which we must all strive to conform. We regard the perfection of the whole as depending on the unique perfection of each single individual. We do not want to do what anyone else can do equally well. No, our contribution to the development of the world, however trifling, must be something that, by reason of the uniqueness of our nature, we alone can offer. Never have artists been less concerned about rules and norms in art than today. Each one asserts the right to express in the creations of his art what is unique in him, just as there are playwrights who write in dialect rather than conform to the standard diction grammar demands

[2] No better expression for these phenomena can be found than this, they result from the individual’s striving for freedom, developed to its highest pitch. We do not want to be dependent in any respect, and where dependence must be, we tolerate it only on condition it coincides with a vital interest of our individuality.

0.1 Path Of Inner Truth
[3] Truth, too, will be sought in our age only in the depths of human nature. Of the following two well-known paths described by Schiller, it is the second that will today be found most useful:

We both seek truth; you in outer life,
I in the heart within. Each of us are sure to find it.
The healthy eye can track the Creator in the outer world;
The healthy heart mirrors the world within.

Truth that comes to us from the outside always brings with it uncertainty. We are only convinced by what appears to each of us inwardly as truth.

0.2 Empowered By Truth
[4] Only truth can give us assurance in developing our individual powers. Whoever is tormented by doubts finds his powers weakened. If baffled by a world full of riddles he can not find a goal for his creative activity.

0.3 Inner Knowing
[5] We no longer want to believe; we want to know. Belief demands the acceptance of truths without having the insight to wholly comprehend. What is not clearly understood goes against our individuality that wants to experience everything in the depths of its inner core. The only knowing that satisfies us is the kind that submits to no external norm, but springs from the inner life of the personality.

0.4 Advance In Knowledge
[6] Nor do we want the kind of knowledge that has been encased in rigid academic rules, and stored away as valid for all time. Each of us claims the right to start from the facts we know, from our own direct experience, and from there advance to knowledge of the whole universe. We strive for certainty in knowledge, but each in his own way.

0.5 Recognition Of Truth
[7] Nor should the teachings of science be presented in a way to imply that its acceptance is compulsory. None of us would give a scientific work a title like Fichte once did: “A Crystal Clear Report to the General Public on the Actual Nature of the Latest Philosophy, An Attempt to Compel the Reader to Understand.” Today, no one should be compelled to understand. We expect neither recognition or agreement from anyone unless through his own insight he recognizes the truth of what is proposed. We do not want to cram facts of knowledge into even an immature person, a child. We try to develop the child's capacities in such a way that his understanding arises from within and compulsion becomes unnecessary.

0.6 Apply Freedom Principles
[8] I have no illusions as to the characteristics of the present time. I know how much a stereotypical attitude, lacking all individuality, is prevalent everywhere. Many flaunt a way of life that follows only the current cultural trends. But I also know that many of my contemporaries strive to conduct their lives in the direction of the principles I have suggested. To them I dedicate this book. It does not claim to offer the only possible way to truth, but is meant to describe the path taken by one for whom truth is central.

0.7 Practice Pure Thinking
[9] At first the reader is lead into abstract regions, where thought must draw sharp outlines to reach clearly defined positions. But the reader is also led from arid concepts into concrete life. I am fully convinced that to experience life in all its aspects, one must soar into the realm of concepts. Whoever is limited to the pleasures of the senses misses the sweetest joys of life.

The oriental sage requires his disciples to live a life of resignation and asceticism for years before he shares with them his knowledge. The West no longer demands pious exercises and ascetic practices to attain knowledge. It does require, however, a sincere willingness to prepare for science by withdrawing oneself awhile from the immediate impressions of life, and entering the realm of pure thought.

0.8 Self-Governing Knowledge (empowered ideas)
[10] There are many regions of life. A specific field of science develops for each one. But life itself is a unity, and the more the sciences immerse themselves in separate fields, the more they move away from seeing the world as a living whole. It is essential to have a supreme science that seeks in the separate sciences the principles for leading man back to the fullness of life. The aim of the scientific specialist's research is to become aware of the world and gain insight into how it works. The aim of this book is philosophical: science itself is to become a living whole. The various branches of science are preparatory stages on the way to the all-inclusive science intended here.

A similar relationship governs the arts. A composer works on the basis of the theory of composition. This theory is an accumulation of principles of what one needs to know in order to compose music. In composing, the rules of theory serve life, that is, theory serves actual reality.

In the same way philosophy is an art. All genuine philosophers have been artists in the conceptual realm. For them human Ideas become their artistic material and the method of science becomes their artistic technique. Abstract thinking takes on an individual life of its own. Ideas become powerful forces in life. We no longer  merely know about things, but have made knowing into a real self-governing organism, ruled by its own laws. Our actual working consciousness has lifted itself above a mere passive reception of truths.

0.9 Science Of Freedom
[11] The main theme of my book concerns these questions: How philosophy, as an art, relates to freedom; what freedom is; and whether we do, or can, participate in it. Scientific explanations are included because in the end they provide clarification about those questions that are, in my opinion, most important to people. These pages offer a 'Philosophy of Freedom.'

0.10 All-Around Human Development
[12] All science would be nothing but the satisfaction of idle curiosity if it did not elevate the existential value of human personality. The true value of the sciences is seen only when we are shown the importance of their results for humanity. The ultimate aim of the individuality cannot be the cultivation of only a single capacity. Rather, it must be the development of all the potential that slumbers within us. Knowledge has value only by contributing to the all-around development of the whole of human nature.

0.11 Ideas Serve Human Goals
[13] This book does not regard the relationship of science to life in such a way that the human being must bow down before the world of Ideas and devote his powers to its service. On the contrary, it shows that he should take possession of the world of Ideas to use them for his human goals. These extend beyond those of mere science.

0.12 Master Of Ideas
[14] One must confront an Idea as master, or else become its slave.