Bergson Essay Consciousness Writing Prompts For Essays
Now you give up this compromise without the least scruple when you study external things, since you then leave aside the forces themselves, assuming that they exist, and consider only their measurable and extended effects.
Why, then, do you keep to this hybrid concept when you analyse in its turn the state of consciousness ?
To sum up the foregoing discussion, we shall put aside for the present Kant's terminology and also his doctrine, to which we shall return later, and we shall take the point of view of common sense.
Modern psychology seems to us particularly concerned to prove that we perceive things through the medium of certain forms, borrowed from our own constitution.
Now just as, in order to ascertain the real rela- (224) -tions of physical phenomena to one another, we abstract whatever obviously clashes with them in our way of perceiving and thinking, so, in order to view the self in its original purity, psychology ought to eliminate or correct certain forms which bear the obvious mark of the external world. When isolated from one another and regarded as so many distinct units, psychic states seem to be more or less intense.
Next, looked at in their multiplicity, they unfold in time and constitute duration.
A Priori it seems fairly probable that this is what happens.
But this change does not involve succession unless the word is taken in a new meaning on this point we have noted the agreement of science and common sense.
space, in which terms distinct from one another could be set out in line, and, secondly, a process of permeation and organization by which these units are dynamically added together and form what we called a qualitative multiplicity.
It is owing to this dynamic process that the units get added, but it is because of their presence in space that they remain distinct.
We observe outside us at a given moment a whole system of simultaneous positions ; of the simultaneities which have preceded them nothing remains.
To put duration in space is really to contradict oneself and place succession within simultaneity.