chapter
§60 The relative or functional difference between matter and form. Pure acts of understanding, and those mixed with sense. Sensuous concepts and categories
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The relative, merely functional difference of matter and form hangs together with the possibility of making categorial intuitions the foundations for new categorial intuitions, and thereupon of expressing them in corresponding expressions and meanings. This difference was indicated above in passing (§42). In an absolute sense, a founding sensibility provides the matter for all acts of categorial form which are built upon it. In a relative sense, the objects of founding acts furnish this matter, relatively, that is, to the newly emergent forms of the founded acts. If we relate two objects already categorial, e.g. two states of affairs, these states of affairs are our matter relatively to the relation which brings them together. To this definite use of the concepts of matter and form the traditional distinction between the matter and form of statements corresponds exactly. The terms of a statement express the founding acts of the whole ‘relational presentation’, or, what is the same, they are names for its founding objects, and therefore represent the place in which alone contributions of sense may be sought. But founding objects may themselves be categorial in type. Plainly fulfilment is carried out in a chain of acts which take us down a whole ladder of ‘foundations’. Indirect presentations here play an essential part, whose exact investigation is an important task in a clarification of the complex forms of cognitive thought.