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Thesis of Modern Ontology [183-184]

explicitly says, "this object-ego, the empirical ego, is a thing [Sache}." All psychology is therefore positive science of extant entities. In the essay On the Progress of Metaphysics, Kant says: "For human intelligence, psychology is nothing more and also can become nothing more than anthropology, knowledge of man, but restricted to this condition: so far as he knows himself as an object of inner sense. He is also, however, conscious of himself as an object of his external senses: he has a body, connected with which is the object of inner sense called man's soul."7 From this psychological ego Kant distinguishes the ego of apperception as the logical ego. The term "logical ego" needs a more detailed interpretation today because NeoKantianism has completely misunderstood this concept along with many other essentials in Kant. By the designation "logical ego" Kant does not intend to say, as Rickert thinks, that this ego is a logical abstraction, something universal, nameless, and unreal. 'The ego is a logical ego" does not mean for Kant, as it does for Rickert, an ego that is logically conceived. It means instead that the ego is subject of the logos, hence of thinking; the ego is the ego as the "I combine" which lies at the basis of all thinking. At the same place where he is speaking of the logical ego Kant says in full profusion: "it is, as it were, like the substance [that is, like the ὑποκείμενον] which remains over when I have abstracted all the accidents inhering in it. "8 This egohood is the same in all factual subjects. This cannot mean that the logical ego is something universal, nameless; it is precisely by its essential nature always mine. It pertains to egohood that the ego is always mine. A nameless ego is an absurdity. When I say "I think" or "I think myself," the first ego is not some other ego as though, say, a universal, unreal ego were speaking in the first ego. Rather it is quite the same as the ego being thought or, as Kant says, the determinable ego. The ego of apperception is identical with the determinable ego, the ego of apprehension, except that what I am as a determinate empirical ego does not necessarily have to be thought simultaneously in the concept of the determinant ego. Fichte applied these concepts of the determinant and determinable ego as fundamental for his Wissenschaftslehre. The determinant ego of apperception is. Kant says that we cannot assert anything more about this being and its being than that it is. Only because this ego is as this I myself, this ego itself, can it encounter itself as an empirical ego.

"'I am conscious of myself' is a thought that already contains a twofold ego, the ego as subject and the ego as object. Although it is an indubitable fact, it is simply impossible to explain how it is possible that I who am



7. Ibid., p. 294.

8. Ibid., p. 249.


Basic Problems of Phenomenology (GA 24) by Martin Heidegger