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The truth and Anamgol UBF 
17th-Jul-2006 11:49 pm
I found a Sunday message on the website of Anamgol UBF which is considered most elite UBF chapter in the UBF world. Anamgol UBF focuses on recruiting students in Korea University, one of the top five universities in Korea. Mark Yang used to be the director. I don’t know who the current director is and who wrote the message. I wanted to discuss problems of this message because it is based on John 8:31-32 and they happen to be my favorite key verses in the Bible. I want to discuss them in the comment section with the following topics:

I. Some comments on my English translation
II. Issues related to the author’s presentation of Kant and Critique of Pure Reason
III. Issues on the author’s interpretation of ‘truth’ in John 8:32
IV. Concluding remarks
Comments 
18th-Jul-2006 09:43 pm (UTC) - II. Issues related to the author’s presentation of Kant
II. Issues related to the author’s presentation of Kant and Critique of Pure Reason

2.

I think that what comes closet to what the Anamgol message talks about in regard to Pastor Kim’s quoting Kant and his book is found in Section III of The Transcendental Logic, the second part of The Transcendental Doctrine of Element. In this section Kant talks about the question: What is truth? He then says that “The nominal definition of truth, namely that it is the agreement of cognition with its object, is here granted and presupposed.” He says that the definition is “granted and presupposed”. He doesn’t go into the details to qualify this definition since it is not his main objective here.

In this section Kant talks about two types of criteria of truth: one is criterion of truth in regard to the agreement of cognition with its object; the other is criterion of truth in terms of the rules of logic. One can find these two criteria of truth in the following excerpt of Section III. Kant clearly states in Section III that “it is equally clear that a logic, so far as it expounds the general and necessary rules of understanding, must present criteria of truth in these very rules. For that which contradicts these is false, since the understanding thereby contradicts its general rules of thinking and thus contradicts itself.” He says that the logical criterion of truth is “the agreement of a cognition with the general and formal laws of understanding and reason”.

But the author of Anamgol UBF takes only one criterion of truth presented in Critique by Kant that is the agreement of cognition with its object. But that is not all that Kant considers in Section III. According to him, a cognition must agree with rules of logic to be true. Otherwise one might come to a false conclusion with cognitions that agree with their objects. For example, many Korean people say that an ear-ring attached to nose is a nose-ring. Even though it is true that the object is an ear-ring and that it is now attached to nose, one cannot say that it is true that the ear-ring is now a nose-ring unless one gives further qualification that the essence of an object is determined by where it is attached. But Kant also says that “For although a cognition may be in complete accord with logical form, i.e., not contradict itself, yet it can still always contradict the object.” So according to Kant both criteria of truth should be taken into consideration. However the author of Anamgol UBF doesn’t seem to understand what Kant says in his Critique of Pure Reason.


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Exceprt from Critique

III.(p197-199)
On the division of general logic into analytic and dialectic.

...The old and famous question with which the logicians were to be driven into a corner and brought to such a pass that they must either fall into a miserable circle” or else confess their ignorance, hence the vanity of their entire art, is this: What is truth? The nominal definition of truth, namely that it is the agreement of cognition with its object, is here granted and presupposed; but one demands to know what is the general and certain criterion of the truth of any cognition...

...But concerning the mere form of cognition (setting aside all content), it is equally clear that a logic, so far as it expounds the general and necessary rules of understanding, must present criteria of truth in these very rules. For that which contradicts these is false, since the understanding thereby contradicts its general rules of thinking and thus contradicts itself. But these criteria concern only the form of truth, i.e., of thinking in general, and are to that extent entirely correct but not sufficient. For although a cognition may be in complete accord with logical form, i.e., not contradict itself, yet it can still always contradict the object. The merely logical criterion of truth, namely the agreement of a cognition with the general and formal laws of understanding and reason, is therefore certainly the conditio sine qua non and thus the negative condition of all truth; further, however, logic cannot go, and the error that concerns not form but content cannot be discovered by any touchstone of logic...
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