The place of the Critique of Judgment in Kant’s system of Philosophy is that of a mean between the two Critiques of the Pure and of the Practical Reason. A feeling of the lack of coherence between the other two critiques prompted him to the elaboration of this one, and the Doctrine of Method at the close of the [261] work is mainly a sketch of the way in which he conceived that the results of this Critique were to be made useful in the system of Philosophy to which he regarded all his critical work as preliminary. The outcome of Critique of the Practical Reason is the notion of freedom in the person; the outcome of the Critique of Pure Reason is the notion of strict determinism, according to natural law, in the world. It will hardly do to say that the two are contradictory, for they are so thoroughly disparate that, taken by themselves only and placed in juxtaposition, they do not even contradict each other. It is well known that it was on account of this disparity of the two notions that Kant was able to hold to the reality of personal freedom at the same time that he held to the doctrine of unavoidable determination according to natural law. But while he found the disparity of the two indispensable in order to the reality of freedom, he also found that, in order to free activity, a mediation between the two was likewise indispensable. The idea of freedom of moral action contains the requirement that the

concepts of morality are to be actualized in the sphere of natural law. Without the possibility of realizing the concepts of morality in the realm of nature – without ability to affect events in the course of nature – morality would be only a fiction, The free person must be only an absurdity; but, even if it be granted that the person can and does come into the course of events as an efficient cause, that is not enough. Thus far the conclusions of the Critique of Practical reach, but Kant was not satisfied with that. The action of the person must be capable of falling in with the activity of the causes among which it comes; otherwise it will act blindly to no purpose. The agent must know what will be the effect of this or that action, if his activity is not to be nugatory, or worse than nugatory. And, in order to such a knowledge of the results of a contemplated action, the knowledge furnished by simple experience is not sufficient. Simple experience, whether we accept Kant’s doctrine concerning the knowledge given by experience, as he has developed it in the

Critique of Pure Reason, or not, cannot forecast the future. Experience can, at the best, give what is or what has been, but cannot say what is to be. It gives data only, and data never go into the [262] future unaided and of their own accord. Data do not tell what the effect of action will be, except as we are able to judge the future by the help of the data given. Judgment must come in, if experience is to be any use, and morality anything more than a dream. The power of judgment, or of reasoning, must mediate between theoretical knowledge and moral action; and the kind of judgment that is required is inductive reasoning. All this is simple enough. It is so simple and is so obvious that it is difficult to see it until it has been pointed out, and after it has been pointed out it seems to have been unnecessary to speak of it. Though Kant, in giving his reasons for undertaking the Critique of Judgment, speaks mainly of the indispensableness of this power of inductive reasoning for the purposes of morality, it is evident that it is no less indispensable in every other part of practical life. To-day any attempt, in any science, which does not furnish us an induction, is counted good for nothing, and it is with this power of inductive reasoning that the most important part of the Critique of Judgment has to do. In Kant’s trichotomous scheme of the faculties and capacities of the intel-

lect, the Power of Judgment lies in the middle, between the Understanding and the Reason, just as the faculty of pleasure and pain lies between the faculties of cognition and of desire, and affords a connection and mediation between the two. The Understanding has to do with cognition, and is a priori legislative for empirical knowledge; the pure Reason has to do with desire, and is a priori legislative for action; by analogy we should be able to say, at least provisionally, that the Power of Judgment has to do with the capacity of pleasure and pain, and legislates a priori concerning the adequate or subservient, the commensurate, appropriate, or adapted (das Zweckmässige). The Power of Judgment is, in general, the power of thinking the particular

under the universal. “If the universal (the rule, the principle, the law) is given, then the judgment which subsumes the particular under it is determinative [deductive reasoning]. But if only the particular is given, for which the judgment is to find a universal, then the judgment is only reflective” [inductive reasoning]. (Kritik der Urtheilskraft, ed. K. Kehrbach, 1878; Einl., IV.) Inasmuch as this Critique is a critique of the pure Power of Judgment only – i.e., of the Power of Judgment in so [263] far as none of the principles of its action are borrowed from elsewhere – it has to do only with the reflective judgment; for, in order that the judgment be determinative, the universal which is to serve it as a rule in the work of subsumption must be given, and so must be present as a premise, and will condition the action of the judgment working under it. The determinative judgment is simply the activity of the intellect in general in applying the laws given by Understanding and Reason, and, as such, its action has been analyzed in the two critiques which treat of those faculties. The determinative judgment, subsuming particular data under

general laws which are also data, is nothing but the activity of the Understanding in combining simple experience into a synthetic whole, under those laws of the understanding which are a necessary condition of experience. Therefore the discussion of the determinative judgment belongs in the critique of the theoretical Reason. The reflective judgment passes beyond the simple data of experience and seeks a universal which is not given in empirical cognition; therefore it must proceed according to a principle not given to it from without. It has a power of self-direction, and therefore calls for a critique of its own. This is the starting-point of the Critique of Judgment, and, if this had been

borne in mind, it might have saved many of Kant’s critics a good deal of mistaken criticism. As a rule, the criticisms offered on his doctrine of Teleology have gone to work as though his starting-point had been from the developed principle of Final Cause, and as though he had proceeded from that principle to the notions of adaptation, and thence to that of æsthetic appropriateness, which is precisely reversing the truth. They have taken up the Critique wrong end foremost, and it is no wonder that they have found fault with it. Kant’s doctrine of Final Cause is arrived at from a consideration of the ways in which the reflective judgment works; the nature of the reflective judgment is not deduced from a preconceived notion about finality. The office of the reflective judgment is to find unity in multiplicity, or to

give unity to multiplicity. Its action is not only synthetic, but it is to make a synthesis which shall reach beyond, and include more than what is given in simple experience. The problem of this Critique, as of the other two, is: How are synthetic judgments a priori possible? but, while the faculties under consideration [264] in the other two Critiques have to do with laws unavoidably given and unavoidably applied to given data, the reflective judgment is the faculty of search. It is the faculty of adding to our knowledge something which is not and cannot be given in experience. It is to reduce the manifold of nature, the various concepts we have of the things in the world, to a synthetic totality. It has to bring the facts given in experience under laws and principles, and to bring empirical concepts under higher concepts. Whatever is ascertained, and so becomes an item of knowledge, becomes therewith a point of departure for the reflective judgment. The reflective judgment is continually reaching over beyond the known, and grasping at that which cannot come within experience. Its object is a synthesis, a systematization of whatever is known; and, in order to the attainment of a system, its procedure must be governed by some principle. As the result aimed at lies beyond experience, the principle according to which it is to proceed cannot be given by experience. The principle is not taken from outside the power of judgment, for, if such were the case, the judgment working under that principle would be determinative and not reflective; therefore the principle according to which the reflective judgment proceeds must originate with the reflective judgment itself; or, in other words, it must be an a priori principle of the intellect, and must hold its place as a principle only in relation to the reflective judgment. It

cannot be the same principle, in the same form, as any of the principles governing the other faculties. The nature of this principle is to be found from a consideration of the

work it is to do. The reflective judgment is to generalize, to reduce our knowledge to a system under more general laws than any given by experience. Its office is to systematize, and to systematize is but another expression for reducing things to intelligent order; that is, to think things as though they had been made according to the laws of an understanding, to think them as though made by an intelligent cause. But to think things in a system as though they were made by an intelligent cause is not the same as to think that they are made by such a cause. So much is not required by the principle. All that is required is that the things be thought as falling under a system of law according [265] to which they adapt themselves to the laws of our understanding – that they are such in the manner of their being as they would be if they were made with a view to the exigencies of our capacity of knowing. The principle of the reflective judgment is, therefore, primarily the requirement of adaptation on the part of the object to the laws of the activity of our faculties of knowledge, or, briefly, adaptation to our faculties. Now, whenever the intellect finds the objects of its knowledge to be such as

to admit of the unhampered activity of the faculties employed about them, there results a gratification such as always felt on the attainment of an end striven for. The more nearly the concept of the object known approaches to what such a concept might have been if it had been constructed simply under the guidance of the laws of the mind’s own activity and without being in any way hindered or modified by external reality – that is, the more nearly the activity of the mind in thinking a given thought coincides with what would be the mind’s activity if that activity were guided by its own intrinsic laws alone and were not influenced or hampered by the environment – the more fully will the requirements of the mind’s activity be realized and the more intense will be the gratification felt in contemplating the object of thought which so employs the mind. A feeling of gratification, or the contrary, accordingly, goes along with the activity of the reflective judgment as a sanction and a test of its normality. What this feeling of gratification testifies to is, that the play of the faculties

of the intellect is free, or but little hampered by the empirical element in its knowledge. It therefore indicates that the objects contemplated are, in the form in which they are present in thought, adapted to the faculties. This adaptation of knowledge to our faculties may take place in two different ways, or rather it may take place at two different stages in the elaboration of the material gained by the experience. A simple datum may be given to the apprehension such as to conform to the normal action of our faculty of knowledge, and, by its so conforming, it shows adaptation to the faculties that are employed about it. In such a case, the concept which is contemplated and found adapted is not thereby an item of knowledge which goes to make up our conception of world-system, or to make a part of any systematic or

organized whole. As a datum of the apprehension, it is considered [266] singly by itself only in relation to the apprehending subject, no thought being given to its making or not making an integral part of our knowledge of reality. In so far as concerns the adaptation conceived to belong to the concept, it is no matter whether any external reality corresponds to the concept or not; and, therefore, it makes no difference, as to the adaptation, whether the concept is derived from experience or is a pure figment. The adaptation belonging to such a concept, which is only a datum of the apprehension, is, therefore, subjective only. It is only a question of the conformation or nonconformation of a simple concept (Vorstellung) to the norms of the apprehension. The question is, how far the concept given is suited to the normal activity of the faculty of cognition; whatever may be the objective validity of the concept, that does not enter into consideration at all. This being the case, the only way to judge of the adaptation of such a concept is to take cognizance of the way in which the faculties act on occasion of it, and the test can only be whether the faculties act unhampered and satisfactorily; and the only indication of the normal activity of the faculties, again, is the resulting feeling of gratification or dissatisfaction. If the concept, simply as such, pleases, it is normal or adapted; if it displeases, it is not. The object corresponding to such a concept, which pleases in its simple apprehension, is said to be beautiful, and the reflective judgment, in so far as it proceeds on the simple adaptation of the data of apprehension to the faculties of cognition, is æsthetic judgment. It is of a purely subjective character, and its action is not based on logical, but wholly on pathological grounds. The decision of the æsthetic judgment is made on the ground of the feeling called forth by the apprehension of the concept, and the feeling is, therefore, in this case, the only authority that has a voice in the matter. From these considerations it follows that there can be no objective principle

of æsthetic judgment. The principle which governs taste must accordingly exert its authority, not through the means of logical argument and proof, but by an appeal to the nature of men in respect to reflective judgment in general. “The principal of taste is the subjective principle of the judgment in general” (Kritik der Urtheilskraft, p. 148). The universal validity which a judgment in a matter of taste bespeaks can, therefore, rest only [267] on the assumption of an essential similarity of all men in respect to the feeling involved in such a judgment. On the other hand, the data of cognition may also be contemplated, with

reference to their adaptation, at the stage at which they are no longer simple data apprehension, but constitute a part of our knowledge of reality. That is, they (the concepts) may be considered as making a part of our knowledge of nature, and, consequently, as entering into a system in which they must stand in relation to other data. Their adaptation will consequently here be found, if at all, in the logical relations of concepts – items of empirical knowledge or laws of nature – to one another, and the conformity of these relations to the normal activity of the faculties; not in the immediate adaptation of particular

items or data of experience to be taken up by the faculties, as was the case in the æsthetic judgment. And since the faculties, dealing with the relations of concepts as making up our knowledge of reality, have to do with the relations of real objects as known to us, the relations of the concepts, in which the adaptation is supposed to lie, are here conceived to be real relations of objects; the adaptation of these concepts, as standing in logical relations to one another, to the normal activity of the mind, therefore comes to be looked on as a quality of the objects contemplated. The objects are conceived to stand in such relations of dependence and interaction as correspond to the logical relations of the concepts we have of them. Now, as a matter of fact, the connection or relation of our concepts which will be found adapted to our faculties, and which answers the requirements of their normal action, is one according to which they make a systematic, connected whole. The relations of objects which shall correspond in the world of reality to this logical relation of our concepts are such relations of interaction and interdependence as will bind the particular things in the world of reality together into a whole, in which the existence of one thing is dependent on that of another, and in which no one thing can exist without mutually conditioning and being conditioned by every other. That is, the adaptation found, or sought to be found, in concepts when contemplated in their logical aspect, is conceived to be an adaptation of things to one another in such a way that each is at the same time the means and the end of the existence of every other. [268] Such a conception of the world of reality, in which things are united into an

organized whole, can proceed only on the assumption that the particular things which go to make up the organic whole are subject to laws of a character similar to that of the logical laws according to which our mind subsumes the particular under the general, and holds together all the material gained by our cognition in a systematic totality of knowledge; which is the same as saying that in such a conception is contained the idea that the world is made according to laws similar to the laws of understanding, and therefore that it is made by an intelligent cause, and made with intention and purpose. To put the same thing in another way: To conceive the world in the way required by the reflective judgment is to conceive it as being made so as to harmonize with the laws of our understanding; that is, in being made, it is adapted to our faculties, and therefore made by a cause of working according to laws like those of our understanding, and with a view to the exigencies of our understanding in comprehending the world. The cause producing the world must therefore be conceived to have worked it out according to a preconceived notion of what it was to be, and the realization of the form in which the world so created actually exists, accordingly, has its ground in an idea conceived by the cause which created it. The idea of what the world was to be precedes and conditions the world as it actually comes into existence – which is precisely what we mean when we say that the world was created by final cause. All this argument for a final cause in the world rests on the action of the

reflective judgment and its validity therefore extends only so far as the

principle of the reflective judgment reaches. That principle is the requirement of adaptation, on the part of our knowledge, to the normal action of our faculties of knowing; it is therefore of subjective validity only, and can say nothing as to the nature of external reality. The finality which is attributed to external reality, on the ground of the adaptation found by the reflective judgment, is simply and only an imputed finality, and the imputation of it to reality is based on the same ground of feeling as every other act of the reflective judgment. Our imputation of finality to the things of the world, and our teleological arguments for an intelligent cause of the world, proceed on subjective grounds entirely, and give no knowledge of objective fact, and furnish no [269] proof that is available for establishing even a probability in favor of what is claimed. What is proved by the tenacity with which we cling to our teleological

conception of the world is, that the constitution of our intellect demands this conception – that our faculties, in their normal action, must arrive at this before they can find any halting-place. The mind is not satisfied with its knowledge of a thing, or of any event or fact, until it is able to say, not only how the thing or event has a purpose; the proposition may be put into this general form, and we may be obliged, oftentimes, to leave the matter in this state of generality; but we cannot believe, concerning anything, that there is not reason why it is, or why it is as it is. It is, of course, possible to give our attention to any item of knowledge – to employ ourselves about any object or any process or law in nature – without bringing in the notion of purpose; but our knowledge of it cannot be regarded as complete until we have asked the question why it is. But though this question of teleology is of extreme importance, yet a

knowledge of the teleological end of a given thing, or the purpose of an action or event as considered from the standpoint of the economy of the universe, is not absolutely necessary in order to human life, not even in order to a high degree of development in moral life. In truth, a knowledge of ultimate particular ends and purposes is of no use whatever in the affairs of everyday life; and, therefore, the principle of teleology, as being the principle of conscious purpose in the world, is not indispensable in order to such knowledge of things as is required by the exigencies of life. The knowledge we need and use can be got, and got in sufficient completeness for all purposes of utility, without any appeal to, or any aid from, the developed principle of finality; and, if the exercise of the reflective judgment, in its logical application, consisted in the decision of teleological questions alone, its value would be small enough. Such, however, is not the case. The principle of the logical use of the reflective judgment was found to be

the general principle of adaptation; and since, in its logical use, the judgment has to do with reality the principle [270] which shall govern the reflective judgment here will be that of objective adaptation; that is, adaptation which is conceived to belong to things objectively. The motive which leads to the application of this principle to our knowledge of things was found to be a

feeling of dissatisfaction with our knowledge so long as it consists only in a chaotic manifold of concepts. We are dissatisfied with a conception of reality which makes it only a congeries of things, without connection, system, or order, beyond juxtaposition in space and succession and duration in time. Yet such a congeries is all that unaided experience can give; and the determinative (deductive) judgment can do little to bring further order into this chaos. It is true, we have the general law of cause and effect given, and it looks as though we ought to be able to establish some system by the aid of it, when the experience gives us the data to which the law applies; but further thought will show that we should be as helpless with that law as without it if no further principle came in to guide us in the application of it. We should have the law which says: “Every change has a cause and an effect”: and all that the data of experience would enable us to say further would be, that this law in general applies to these data. The abstract law and the data, simply under the action of the determinative judgment, could never get so far as to afford us ground for asserting that a given effect has a given cause; still less, that a given cause will produce a given effect. The truth of this is shown by the nature of our knowledge of particular causes. We can never designate, with that certainty which belongs to every deliverance of the deductive judgment, what is the cause of any given effect. We may have no doubt as to what is the cause of a given effect; but still, if it should turn out that the effect under consideration has some other cause than the one we counted on, we should not, therefore, conclude than the world is out of joint. It is possible that we may be mistaken in our opinion as to particular cases of cause and effect – even the most certain of them – which would not be the case if we arrived at our knowledge of them by simple deductive reasoning from data of experience and an a priori law. There is always an element of probability, however slight, in our knowledge of particular causes; but simple experience – cognition – never has anything to say about probability; it only says what is, and leaves no room for doubt or probability. [271] In order to find what is the cause of a given effect, and, still more, what will

be the effect of a given cause, we need a guiding principle beyond anything that experience gives. We have to go beyond what is given us, and so we need a principle of search. That is what is afforded by this principle of adaptation. The mind is unsatisfied with things until it can see how they belong together. The principle of adaptation says that the particular things do belong together, and sets the mind hunting to find out how. The principle of adaptation says that, in order to the normal action of the faculties, things must be conceived as adapted to one another so as to form a systematic totality – that things must be conceived to be so co-ordinated in their action as to make up an organized whole – and the mind goes to work to make its knowledge of reality conform to its own normal activity; or, in other words, to find what particular case of interaction under the law of cause and effect will stand the test of the principle of adaptation. What the principle of adaptation does for us is, therefore, in the first place, that it makes us guess, and that it guides our

guessing. If it were not that we are dissatisfied with our knowledge so long as it remains in the shape of a mere manifold, we should never seek to get beyond a congeries of things in time and space; and, if it were not that the principle of adaptation shows us what we are to seek further, we should never find anything further in our knowledge. But the principle of adaptation cannot give us any new data, nor can it tell

us anything new about the data we have. All it can do is to guide us in guessing about the given data, and then leave it to experience to credit or discredit our guesses. That is, it is a regulative, not a constitutive principle of knowledge, according to the distinction which Kant makes in his classification of a priori principles of the mind. Now, as has already been pointed out, the direction in which this principle will lead us is that of generalization, since no such principle is needed in order to deductive reasoning. In order to analyze the content of our empirical knowledge, there is no guessing necessary; all that is then required is that we take a more complete inventory of what we already know. The guessing, under the principle of adaptation, is in the direction of a higher systematization of what we know. The principle suggests that, in order to conform to the norms of [272] our faculties, things should fall into a system under laws of such or such a character; that they should stand in such or such relations of interaction and co-ordination; and that the laws which are given a priori as applying to things should apply to them in such or such a way; and so it leads to an hypothesis as to the nature of particular things and the laws of their connection. The principle guides us to an hypothesis in the world of reality. It proceeds on the basis of a feeling, and so it can decide whether the hypothesis suits the minds, but not at all whether it applies to reality. Experience alone can say whether the hypothesis fits the thing it is intended for; or, rather, it can say whether it appears to fit them, since, inasmuch as an hypothesis never can become an object of experience in the sense as things are objects of experience, it can also not have the empirical certainty which belongs to our knowledge of individual things. The testimony of experience as to the validity of the hypothesis can only be of a cumulative character, and all it can do is to give it a greater or less degree of probability. It is of the nature of circumstantial evidence. The principle of adaptation, in its logical use, is accordingly the principle of

inductive reasoning. The need felt by the mind of bringing order and systematic coherence into the knowledge it acquires, and therefore of conceiving the things about which it is engaged as adapted to one another, affords, at the same time, the motive and the guiding principle for induction. The unrest felt on account of the inharmonious and forced activity of the faculties, when engaged about a mere manifold or a discordant miscellany, drives the mind to seek a concord for its own activities, and, consequently, a reconciliation of the conflicting elements of its knowledge. The reason for the unrest felt in contemplating external things simply as individual and unconnected things lies in the fact that the mind is adapted to conceive the subject-matter of its knowledge in the form of a connected whole. If the mind had not an inherent

capacity for thinking things as connected into a totality, or at least as being connected in a systematic way and under definite laws, it could not feel the lack of totality in contemplating things under the mere form of juxtaposition in time and space. It would not be dissatisfied with things as mere data if it knew of nothing better; and it would not seek anything [273] different if the conception of things, as a mere congeries, satisfied the requirements of its normal activity. But, the requirement of totality, of adaptation of part to part, being present, the mind has no alternative but to reflect and reflect on the material given it, and make the most it can out of it in the way of a systematic whole; and the requirement of adaptation points out the direction which its search must take. One consequence of this is that the search is never ended, as, from the nature of the case, the requirement can never be fulfilled. As soon as a result is obtained by the process of induction, that result becomes, for the purposes of the question in hand, a fact of empirical knowledge, and therefore acquires the character, not of a completed whole, but of an isolated and disconnected datum. As fast as one step of induction is completed it becomes a means to another step, which must inevitably follow it. According to what has just been said, the motive and guiding principle of

inductive reasoning, and, with it, of the teleological judgment, is the requirement of adaptation or totality in our knowledge. When we find this requirement answered, in greater or less degree, the consequence is more or less of a feeling of gratification, just as there is always a feeling of gratification on the successful completion of an undertaking, or the attainment of a desired end. This feeling of gratification may therefore be regarded as a sanction to the principles of the reflective judgment, and, in the last resort, it is this feeling of gratification alone which can decide whether the principle has been applied successfully in any given case. Therefore, so far as concerns the distinctive characteristics of the reflective

judgment – and, therefore, of inductive reasoning – it proceeds on subjective ground entirely. Its motive is subjective, and, though the evidence by which it seeks to establish the results aimed at is of empirical origin, yet the criterion, to which the result must conform in order to answer the purposes for which it is sought to be established, is subjective. The consequence of this subjectivity of the principle of induction is that the results it arrives at are only more or less probable. Yet, singular as it might seem, hardly any part of our knowledge except that got by induction is of any immediate use for practical purposes. For by induction alone can we reduce things to system and connection, [274] and so bring particular things and events under definite laws of interaction; therefore by induction alone can we get such knowledge as will enable us to forecast the future; and knowledge which shall help us to forecast the future – to tell what will take place under given circumstances and as the result of given actions – is the only knowledge which can serve as a guide in practical life, whether moral or otherwise.