Kant's Critique of Pure Reason
BOOK II: ANALYTIC OF PRINCIPLES
Chapter 2: SYSTEM OF ALL PRINCIPLES OF PURE UNDERSTANDING
Section 3B) Second Analogy: Principle of Succession in Time in Accordance
with the Laws of Causality (p. 218)
All alterations take place in conformity with the law of the connection of
cause and effect.
THEREFORE: The relation of cause to effect is the condition of the objective validity of our empirical judgments.
- The preceding principle shows that all appearances of succession in time are alterations, not coming-to-be.
- I perceive that appearances follow one another.
- Thus I am connecting two perceptions.
- This is a synthetic faculty of imagination.
- The objective relation of appearance of succession is not determined through perception.
- In order that this relation be known as determined, it must be so thought that it is thereby determined as necessary which came first.
- Necessity can only come from a pure concept of understanding.
- In this case it is cause and effect.
- The apprehension of the manifold of appearance is always successive.
- Appearances, simply in virtue of being representations, are not in any way distinct from their apprehension.
- We do not know if the parts of the object follow one another.
- Subjective Succession: example of looking at a house top to bottom or left to right. This is arbitrary succession.
- Objective Succession: That order in the manifold of appearance according to which, in conformity with a rule, that which happens follows that which precedes. Applies to events.
- Appearance never goes backwards to some preceding time, but it does stand in relation to some preceding time.
- There must lie in that which precedes an event, the condition of a rule according to which this event necessarily follows.
- The event, as conditioned, thus affords reliable evidence of some condition. This condition is what determines the event.
- We have to show that we never ascribe succession to the object.
- When I perceive that something happens this representation contains the consciousness that there is something preceding. Only by reference to what preceded does the appearance acquire its time relation.
- The rule is that the condition under which an event necessarily follows lies in what precedes the event.
- Called the Principle of Sufficient Reason.
- It is the ground of possible experience.
Back to the First Analogy: Principle of Permanence of Substance
- If it were not for cause and effect we could not perceive anything as an event, only unrelated perceptions. It is the condition of all experience.
- The cause and effect may be simultaneous. It is the order of time, not the lapse of time that is important.
- Empirical Criterion of Substance:
- Wherever there is action there is substance.
- Action is a sufficient empirical criterion to establish the
substantiality of a subject because the substratum of everything that changes
is the permanent.
- Coming to be:
- Always alteration, never regarding substance.
- How anything can be altered is an empirical question.
- The form of alteration, i.e. the condition under which alteration can take place, can be considered a priori according to the law of causality and the condition of time.
- The Law of Continuity of all Alterations: all alteration is only possible through a continuous action of the causality which, in so far as it is uniform, is entitled a moment.
- The alteration does not consist of these moments, but
is generated by them as their effect.
- How can this principle be known a priori?
- Every transition in perception is a determination of time through the generation of this perception.
- Since time is always a magnitude, the generation of a perception is always a magnitude.
- This reveals the possibility of knowing a priori a law of alterations, in respect to their form.
Forward to the Third Analogy: Principle of Coexistence, in Accordance with the Law of Reciprocity or Community
Table of Contents