The Integration of Knowledge explores a theory of human knowledge through a model of rationality combined with some fundamental logical, mathematical, physical and neuroscientific considerations. Its ultimate goal is to present a philosophical system of integrated knowledge, in which the different domains of human understanding are unified by common conceptual structures, such that traditional metaphysical and epistemological questions may be addressed in light of these categories. Philosophy thus becomes a "synthesizer" of human knowledge, through the imaginative construction of categories and questions that may reproduce and even expand the conceptual chain followed by nature and thought, in an effort to organize the results of the different branches of knowledge by inserting them in a broader framework.
1. The Nature of Rationality, Knowledge and Thinking
1 The Nature of Rationality, Knowledge and Thinking
1.1 The General Concept of Rationality
What is rationality, and what does it mean to say that actions or explanations are rational?
The project of integrating knowledge can be conceived as the design of a philosophical system in which all parts are bounded by a common pattern of rationality. It is therefore an attempt at fully “rationalizing” our view of the universe, in connection with the greatest developments in logic, mathematics and the natural sciences. Thus, the question about the meaning of rationality stands as a preeminent challenge for this endeavor.
Indeed, rationally acquired knowledge is perhaps the most distinctive feature of the human species, although its nature and scope still pose fundamental scientific and philosophical problems. Depending on the discipline in which one works, an economic decision is supposed to be rational if it satisfies the interests of the agent, and a product of the intellect is held to be rational if it fulfils certain patterns and rules that preserve a set of logical properties. For an economist, rationality therefore seems to be connected with the maximization of one’s own interests, whereas from a more epistemological perspective it bears relation to the formal structure of a proposition and the organization of a body of information. ←3 | 4→But in both cases, we are dealing with how the human mind is capable of treating information in the most efficient manner.
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