This is a preprint version of the paper that appeared in definitive form as "From Empirical Psychology to Phenomenology: Husserl on the Brentano Puzzle", The Brentano Puzzle, R. Poli (ed.), Ashgate, Aldershot, 1998, 151-68. The published version should be consulted for all citations.


From Empirical Psychology to Phenomenology.

Edmund Husserl on the 'Brentano Puzzle'


Claire Ortiz Hill


Gustave Flaubert is known to have believed that writers should be like God in the universe, present in all parts of their creation but in none of them visible. In what follows I want to suggest that Flaubert's conviction may provide some insight into the puzzle of Brentano's invisibility. For the influence teachers exercise on their disciples is often one of invisible form, rather than of visible content, and this may be particularly so in the case of students who, like Edmund Husserl, become original thinkers in their own right.

When we in fact try to assess the influence Brentano obviously had on Husserl, the impression of intellectual kinship blurs and Brentano's imprint fades away. Brentano definitely gave Husserl the conviction that encouraged him to choose philosophy as his life's work and headed him in the direction he wanted to go. But once out of Brentano's sight, Husserl embarked upon independent path, transforming Brentano's basic intuitions to such an extent that Husserl almost might be said to have turned Brentano on his head.

Brentano's invisibility here can be seen in the following facts:


1) There is no doubt that Brentano imparted to Husserl the conviction that philosophy was a serious discipline which could and must be dealt with in the spirit of the strictest science. But for Brentano the ideal of a strict philosophic science was most nearly realized in the exact natural sciences. After a painful experience of the shortcomings of empirical psychology, though, Husserl eradicated this most distinctive feature of Brentano's teaching from phenomenology.

2) Husserl's search for answers he did not believe empirical psychology could provide led him to embrace metaphysical and epistemological views that Brentano considered odious and despicable. Husserl came to consider idealistic systems as being of the highest value and compatible with the goals of a strict scientific philosophy. He believed that the idea of a pure phenomenology as eidetic and resting on the transcendental reduction was entirely alien to descriptive psychology.

3) Though the pre-eminent role Husserl accorded to the theory of intentionality guaranteed Brentano's presence in all parts of phenomenology, Husserl believed he had utterly transformed Brentano's insight. Husserl considered Brentano to be so bound to the prejudices of the naturalistic tradition that the unique sense of intentional analysis and the proper method of intentional psychology remained foreign to him.

4) While Brentano's clear, rigorous, insightful, objective, and precise philosophical analyses and ability to transform unclear beginnings into clear thoughts and insights had a profound impact on the man in whom Karl Weierstrass had awakened an interest in seeking radical foundations for knowledge, Husserl believed that Brentano's methods left him in the lurch at the crucial turning point in his philosophical career.

In what follows, I take parts of Husserl's autobiographical and philosophical writings to piece together a picture of his relationship to the teacher he revered.




Initial enthusiasm


The good fortune of attending Brentano's lectures was mine for only two years... At that time I had just finished my university studies and was still a beginner in philosophy, which was the minor subject for my doctorate in mathematics" (Husserl 1919, p. 342).

"My great teacher Weierstrass was the one who... by his lectures on function theory awakened my interest in seeking radical foundations for mathematics. I came to understand the pains he was taking to transform analysis from the mixture of reason, and irrational instincts and knowhow it was at the time into a pure rational theory. His aim was to expose its original roots, its elementary concepts and axioms on the basis of which the whole system of analysis might be deduced in a completely rigorous, perspicuous way" (Schuhmann 1977, p. 7).

"At a time when my philosophical interests were increasing and I was uncertain whether to make my career in mathematics or to dedicate myself totally to philosophy, Brentano's lectures settled the matter" (Husserl 1919, p. 342). "Brentano's lectures gave me for the first time the conviction that encouraged me to choose philosophy as my life's work, the conviction that philosophy too was a serious discipline which also could be and must be dealt with in the spirit of the strictest science" (Husserl 1919, p. 343). "Brentano was entirely devoted to the austere ideal of a strict philosophic science, an ideal he saw in the exact natural sciences" (Husserl 1919, p. 344-45).

"At first I attended these lectures just out of curiosity, simply to hear the man who was then being talked about so much in Vienna" (Husserl 1919, p. 342). "The very first impression Brentano made upon me struck me quite a bit" (Husserl 1919, p. 342). "Brentano stood before his young students like a seer of eternal truths and a herald of a celestial world" (Husserl 1919, p. 343).

"Sometimes it was the subject matter which overcame me, other times the quite singular clearness and dialectical sharpness of his expositions, the cataleptic power as it were of his way of developing problems and of his theories" (Husserl 1919, p. 343). "He was completely certain of his method and he strove constantly to satisfy the highest claims of an almost mathematical rigor. Brentano believed that his sharply polished concepts, his strongly constructed and systematically ordered theories, and his all round aporetic refutation of alternative interpretations, captured final truths..." (Husserl 1919, p. 344).

"Although his intuitive analyses were deeply penetrating and often ingenious, Brentano relatively quickly moved from intuition to theory, to the delimitation of sharp concepts, to theoretical formulation of working problems" (Husserl 1919, p. 344). "Brentano was a master of Socratic maieutic. How well he knew how to use questions and objections to guide the unsure groping beginner, to encourage sincere efforts, and to transform the unclear beginnings of vaguely felt truths into clear thoughts and insights" (Husserl 1919, p. 343).

"What made me marvel and filled me with confidence was the completely impartial way Brentano attacked all problems, his way of dealing with problems in terms of aporiai, his finely dialectical measuring of various possible arguments, his clarifying of equivocations, and bringing back of all philosophical concepts to their original intuitive sources" (Husserl 1919, p. 343). "Brentano's preeminent and admirable strength was in logical theory. Yet the extraordinary and still lasting effect of Brentano's philosophy in the long run rests on his having drawn as an original thinker from original intuitive sources" (Husserl 1919, p. 345).

"In his university courses F. Brentano always placed the greatest emphasis on the difference between 'actual' presentations and 'symbolic' presentations" (Husserl 1891, p. 215). "Any content which is not given to us as what it is, but rather is given only indirectly by means of some sort of sign, is one that is symbolically presented" (Husserl 1890, p. 30).

"It is to him that I owe having a deep understanding of the immense importance symbolic presentations have for our entire psychical life, which before him, as far as I know, no one had fully grasped" (Husserl 1891, p. 215). "They begin to take hold on the earliest levels of psychic development, and accompany that development - ever expanding, and fulfilling ever more inclusive and more complicated functions - up to the highest levels of development. Indeed, we may claim still more: They do not merely accompany psychic development, but rather they essentially condition it, making it possible to begin with. Without the possibility of external, enduring marks of reference as support for our memory, without the possibility of symbolic presentations serving in place of actual presentations that are more abstract or too difficult to keep distinct and to operate with (or, indeed, serving in place of presentations that as actual are altogether denied to us), there would simply be no higher mental life - much less, then, science. Symbols are the great natural instrument by which the limits of our psychical life, originally so narrow, are broken through, and by which the essential imperfections of our intellect are, at least to a certain degree, rendered harmless. Through characteristic detours, sparing of higher thought, they enable the human mind to accomplish things which directly, in the workings of actual knowing, it could never bring about. Symbols serve the economy of mental achievement as tools and machines do the economy of mechanical achievement... Take the symbolic tools away from the greatest genius and he becomes less capable than the most limited of minds" (Husserl 1890, pp. 28-29).




Analyzing the concepts of mathematics


"For a long time I worked on philosophical investigations into the principles of general mathematics" (Schuhmann 1977, p. 13). "From Antiquity... people have repeatedly attempted the analysis of the concepts upon which mathematics is based, of the elementary truths from which it is built up, and of the methods owing to which it has always stood as the model of rigorously scientific deduction" (Husserl 1887, p. 92). "A series of new and very far-reaching instruments of investigation has been found, and an almost boundless profusion of important pieces of knowledge won. It was an exhilaratingly creative period... It is easy to understand... how reflections concerning the logical nature of all the puzzling, auxiliary concepts... would have been postponed in favor of the quest for results, for discoveries, and for the utilization of all those admirable tools. Only later... when errors which arose in consequence of obscurity about the nature of the auxiliary means used, and about the limits of the reliability of the operations involved, became more and more numerous... arose the need for (i) logically clarifying, surveying and securing what had been attained, (ii) an exact analysis of the primitive and of the derived concepts, (iii) logical insight into the interdependency of the various mathematical disciplines... and finally (iv) rigorously deductive development of the whole of mathematics out of the smallest possible number of self-evident principles" (Husserl 1887, p. 93).

"Weierstrass was in the habit of beginning his memorable course on function theory with the statement that pure arithmetic (or pure analysis) is a science solely based on the concept of number... in the sense of integer" (1891, p. 5). "Therefore," I believed in my youth, "it is with the analysis of the concept of number that any philosophy of mathematics must begin... The means which it employs," I wrote, "belong to psychology, and they must do so if such an investigation is to attain solid results" (Husserl 1887, p. 95). "Not only is psychology indispensable for the analysis of the concept of number, but rather this even belongs within psychology" (Husserl 1887, p. 95). I thought that: "In general, analysis of elementary concepts may... be counted among the more essential tasks of psychology. For how otherwise could it attain insight into the internal structure of the fantastically interwoven tissue of thoughts which constitutes the substance of our thought-life? The understanding of the first and most simple modes of composition of presentations is the key to the understanding of those higher levels of complication with which our consciousness constantly operates as with seamless and fixed formations" (Husserl 1887, p. 95).




Doubts arise


"There were connections, however, in which such a psychological foundation never came to satisfy me" (Husserl 1900-01, p. 42). "Much as I saw in my analyses helpful and new beginnings, they still left me deeply dissatisfied" (Husserl 1913b, p. 34). "Where one was concerned with questions as to the origin of mathematical presentations, or with the elaboration of those practical methods which are indeed psychologically determined, psychological analyses seemed to me to promote clearness and instruction. But once one has passed from the psychological connections of thinking, to the logical unity of the thought-content (the unity of theory), no true continuity and unity could be established" (Husserl 1900-01, p. 42).

"The presentation of 'set' was supposed to arise out of the collective combination (out of unifying consciousness of being intended together, in being conceived as one) and certainly, there was some truth in that. The collective is no substantial unity grounded in the content of the collected items... It could not be physical: hence the concept of collection arises... through psychological reflection in Brentano's sense, through 'reflection' upon the concept of collecting... But then is the concept of number not something basically different from the concept of collecting which is all that can result from the reflection on acts? Such doubts unsettled - even tormented - me already in the very beginning and then extended to all categorial concepts... and finally... to all concepts of objectivities of any sort whatsoever. The customary appeal in the Brentano school to symbolic presentation... could not help. That was only a phrase in the place of a solution" (Husserl 1913b, pp. 34-35).

"I became more and more disquieted by doubts of principle as to how to reconcile the objectivity of mathematics, and of all science in general, with a psychological foundation for logic... My whole method that sought to illuminate the given science through psychological analyses, became shaken, and I felt myself more and more pushed towards general critical reflections on the essence of logic, and on the relationship, in particular, between the subjectivity of knowing and the objectivity of the content known (Husserl 1900-01, p. 42).

"And while laboring over projects concerning the logic of mathematical thought, and of the mathematical calculus in particular, I was tormented by those incredibly strange realms: the world of the purely logical and the world of actual consciousness - or as I would say now, that of the phenomenological and also the psychological. I had no idea how to unite them; and yet they had to interrelate and form an intrinsic unity" (Husserl 1906, pp. 490-91). "I was gripped by deep, and by the deepest problems" (Husserl 1906, pp. 492-93).

"The immense importance that 'purely symbolical thinking' has for consciousness could, after all sorts of difficulties, theoretically be comprehended by external logic, as it were, in the case of mathematics. But how symbolic thinking is 'possible', how the objective, mathematical and logical relations constitute themselves in subjectivity, how the insight into this is to be understood, and how the mathematical in itself, is given in the medium of the psychical, could be valid, this all remained mystery" (Husserl 1913b, p. 35).

"Here lie great, unsolved puzzles. We stand close to the most obscure parts of the theory of knowledge... Scientific knowledge... is totally based upon the possibility of our being able to abandon ourselves completely to thought that is merely symbolic or is otherwise most removed from intuition, or of our being able purposively to prefer such thinking, with certain precautions, over thought more fully adequated to intuition. But how, then, is rational insight possible in science? And how with such a style of thought does one even come to mere empirically correct results?" (Husserl 1894, p. 167) "We proceed without any justification; we are guided, not by a motive of knowledge, but rather by a psychological mechanism. But this does not settle the second or objective aspect of the question, the one about truth. Indeed, a logically unjustified procedure can quite well lead to true results" (Husserl 1890, p. 37).

"One will search logical works in vain for light on what really makes such mechanical operations, with mere written characters, capable of vastly expanding our actual knowledge concerning the number concepts --making possible for us accomplishments which were unconceivable to the greatest thinkers of antiquity" (Husserl 1890, p. 50). "Vainly we turn, for the resolution of such doubts, to the old logic or the new. They leave us totally in the lurch. Logic, the 'theory of science', must concede... that all science is a mystery to it... Now I certainly will not deny that one can considerably advance logical understanding of the soundness of symbolic (and above all, of course, mathematical thought) without a more penetrating insight into the essence of those elementary processes of intuition and the Representation which everywhere make that thought possible. But without such insight one surely cannot obtain a full and truly satisfactory understanding of symbolic thought or of any logical process" (Husserl 1894, pp. 168-69).




Entering the realm of the ideal


"I was eventually compelled to lay aside my philosophical mathematical investigations, until I had succeeded in reaching a certain clearness on the basic questions of epistemology and in the critical understanding of logic as a science" (Husserl 1900-01, p. 43). "In the decade of solitary, arduous labor... I still saw all around me only undeveloped, ambiguously shimmering problems, and deep but unclear theories. Weary of the confusions and fearing lest I sink into the ocean of endless criticism, I felt myself compelled... for the sake of philosophical self-preservation, to risk attempting to start some place on my own... from which I could perhaps eventually work my way up step by step" (Husserl 1913b, pp. 16-17).

"The course of my development... led to my drawing apart as regards basic logical convictions from men and writings to whom I owe most of my intellectual training, and to my drawing rather closer to a group of thinkers whose writings I was not able to estimate rightly, and whom I consulted all too little in the course of my labors" (Husserl 1900-01, p. 43). "Completely under Brentano's influence in my beginnings, I developed rather late the conviction which is shared today by so many scholars intent on a strict scientific philosophy, namely that the Idealistic systems... must be seen rather as immature and yet of the highest value... Entirely new and totally radical dimensions of philosophical problems are illuminated in the Idealist systems. Moreover the ultimate and highest goals of philosophy are opened up only when the philosophical method which these particular systems require is clarified and developed" (Husserl 1919, p. 345).

"The transformation was prepared by the study of Leibniz and by the considerations occupying me ever anew of the sense both of the distinction between vérités de raison and vérités de fait and also at the same time of Hume's expositions concerning knowledge about 'relations of ideas' and 'matters of fact'. I became keenly aware of the contrast between this latter distinction and Kant's distinction between analytic and synthetic judgments, and this became important for the later positions I took" (Husserl 1913b, p. 36).

"The empirical sciences - natural sciences - are sciences of 'matters of fact'... Pure Mathematics, the whole sphere of the genuine Apriori in general, is free of all matter of fact suppositions... We stand not within the realm of nature, but within that of Ideas, not within the realm of empirical... generalities, but within that of the ideal, apodictic, general system of laws, not within the realm of causality, but within that of rationality... Pure logical, mathematical laws are laws of essence..." (Husserl 1994a, p. 37). "Thus no psychologistic empiricism... can change the fact that pure mathematics is a strictly self-contained system of doctrines which is to be cultivated using methods that are essentially different from those of natural science" (Husserl 1913b, p. 29).

"For the fully conscious and radical turn and for the accompanying 'Platonism', I must credit the study of Lotze's logic" (Husserl 1913b, p. 36). "My concepts of the 'Ideal' significations, and 'Ideal' contents of representations and judgments... originally derive... - as the term 'Ideal' all by itself indicates - from Lotze. In particular, Lotze's reflections about the interpretation of Plato's theory of ideas had a profound effect on me" (Husserl 1903, p. 201). "Little as Lotze himself had gone beyond... psychologism, still his brilliant interpretation of Plato's doctrine of Ideas gave me my first big insight and was a determining factor in all further studies. Lotze already spoke of truths in themselves, and so the idea suggested itself to transfer all of the mathematical and a major part of the traditionally logical in to the realm of the ideal" (Husserl 1913b, p. 36).

"Only by thinking out these thoughts from Lotze - and in my opinion he failed to get completely clear on them - did I find the key to the curious conceptions of Bolzano, which in all their phenomenological naiveté were at first unintelligible, and to the treasures of his Wissenschaftslehre" (Husserl 1903, p. 201).

"Bolzano as a mathematician was brought to my attention (I was a student of Weierstrass at the time) through an article by Stolz... and above all through Brentano's critical discussion (in his lectures) of the 'paradoxes of infinity' and through G. Cantor... However, his original thoughts about ideas, propositions and truths 'in themselves', I misinterpreted as metaphysical abstrusities" (Husserl 1913b, p. 37). "Then it suddenly occurred to me... that the first two volumes of Bolzano's Wissenschaftslehre (entitled "A Theory of Ideas in Themselves" and "A Theory of Propositions in Themselves") were to be looked upon as a first attempt at a unified presentation of the area of pure ideal doctrines - in other words, that here a complete plan of a 'pure' logic was already available. Understandably, this insight offered me an immense benefit: step by step using Bolzano's account, I could verify the "Platonic" interpretation..." (Husserl 1913b, p. 37).

"If... his 'propositions in themselves' previously appeared to me as mythical entities, suspended between being and non-being, it then became clear to me... that here we basically have a quite obvious conception... I saw that under 'proposition in itself' is to be understood what is designated in ordinary discourse - which always hypostasizes the Ideal - as the "sense" of a statement. It is that which is explained as one and the same where, for example, different persons are said to have asserted the same thing. Or, again, it is what, in science, is simply called a theorem, e.g., the theorem about the sum of the angles in a triangle, which no one would think of taking to be someone's lived experience of judging. And it further became clear to me that this identical sense could be nothing other than the universal, the species, which belongs to a certain Moment present in all actual assertions with the same sense, and which makes possible the identification just mentioned, even where the descriptive content of the individual lived experiences of asserting varies considerably in other respects... Now with this view of things... Bolzano's theory, that propositions are objects which nonetheless have no 'existence', comes to have the following quite intelligible signification: - They have the 'Ideal' being or validity of objects which are universals - and, thus, that being which is established, for example, in the 'existence proofs' of mathematics" (Husserl 1903, pp. 201-02).

"I must say besides that I am far from any mystico-metaphysical exploitation of 'Ideas', ideal possibilities and such. Likewise, Bolzano did not hypostasize his 'presentations' and propositions 'in themselves'. These conceptions of Bolzano's have had a powerful effect on me just as Lotze's new interpretation of Plato's theory of Ideas... What I set forth are fragments of a theory of knowledge and of a phenomenology of knowledge. Both are foreign to Bolzano. He was an eminent mathematical and logical mind, but with him precise conceptual analyses and formal-logical theories go hand in hand with a plainly naive theory of knowledge. There is no trace in his work (as in Lotze's) of any thought of a pure phenomenological elucidation of knowledge" (Husserl 1994a, p. 39).




Brentano and the science of intentionality


"The whole approach whereby the overcoming of psychologism is phenomenologically accomplished shows that what... was given as analyses of immanent consciousness must be considered as a pure a priori analysis of essence. In this way were opened up for the first time, and in far-reaching analyses actually carried out, the immense fields of the givens of consciousness as fields for "ontological" investigations" (Husserl 1913b, p. 42).

"This is the place to recall the extraordinary debt we owe to Brentano for the fact that he began his attempt to reform psychology with an investigation of the peculiar characteristics of the psychic (in contrast to the physical) and showed intentionality to be one of these characteristics" (Husserl 1954, § 68). "Brentano conducts his enquiry in the form of a two-edged separation of the two main classes of 'phenomena'... the psychical and the physical... Of his two principal differentiations, one directly reveals the essence of psychical phenomena or acts... In perception something is perceived, in imagination, something imagined, in a statement, something stated, in love, something loved, in hate hated. Brentano looks to what is graspably common to such instances, and says that 'every mental phenomenon is characterized by what the mediaeval schoolmen called the intentional (or mental) inexistence of an object, and by what we... call the relation to a content, the direction to an object... or an immanent objectivity. Each mental phenomenon contains something as object in itself, though not all in the same manner" (Husserl 1900-01, p. 554).

"Brentano's separation of the 'psychical' from 'physical phenomena'... is particularly important, since it blazed a fresh trail for the development of phenomenology - although Brentano himself remained a stranger to phenomenological ground, and although with his sharp distinction he failed to reach that for which he sought, namely, the separation of the empirical domains of psychology and the physical natural sciences... Brentano... took no account of the separation on grounds of principle of the 'physical phenomena' as material phases (sensory data) from 'physical phenomena' as the objective phases that appear in the noetic apprehension of the former (the color of a thing, the shape of a thing, and the like); but as against this he marked off on the other side the concept of 'psychical phenomenon'... through the unique feature of Intentionality" (Husserl 1913a, p. 229).

"Among the demarcations of classes in descriptive psychology, there is none more remarkable nor more important philosophically than the one offered by Brentano under his title of 'psychical phenomena'... (1900-01, p. 552). "A sharply defined class of experiences is here brought before us, comprising all that enjoys mental, conscious experience... Turning aside from psychology, and entering the field of the philosophical disciplines proper, we perceive the fundamental importance of our class of experiences, since only its members are relevant in the highest ranks of the normative sciences. They alone, seized in their phenomenological purity, furnish concrete bases for abstracting the fundamental notions that function systematically in logic, ethics and aesthetics, and that enter into the ideal laws of these sciences" (Husserl 1900-01, p. 554).

"It was Franz Brentano who first opened up the trail here - but only through his formal indicating of the general descriptive uniqueness of 'mental phenomena'. He had never overcome the naturalistic prejudice in his psychology, and precisely because of this the unique sense of intentional analysis and the proper method of an intentional psychology remained inaccessible to him. The idea of a pure phenomenology however was completely beyond his reach" (Husserl 1913b, p. 61).

"It is not enough to say that all consciousness is consciousness-of and go on to distinguish by type the various modes of consciousness, in the manner of... Brentano's classification (with which I cannot agree)... On the contrary, what must be undertaken is an inquiry into the various categories of 'objects' - but purely as objects of possible consciousness - and a questioning back to the essential forms of possible 'manifolds', ones that are to be joined together synthetically and through whose synthesis, itself something to be described, there arises the consciousness of the identity of the present object of the respective category. One and the same 'object in general', as meant object, traverses these manifolds" (Husserl 1989, p. 424-25).

"Thus Brentano set up a psychology of intentionality as a task only formally, but had no way of attacking it. The same is true of his whole school, which also, like Brentano himself, consistently refused to accept what was decisively new in my Logical Investigations (even though his demand for psychology of intentional phenomena was put into effect here). What is new in my Logical Investigations is found not at all in the merely ontological investigations..., but rather in the subjectively directed investigations... in which for the first time the cogitata qua cogitata, as essential moments of each conscious experience as it is given in genuine inner experience, come into their own and immediately come to dominate the whole method of intentional analysis" (Husserl 1954, § 68).

"However great is the veneration and gratitude with which I remember my teacher and his genius, and as much as I consider his transformation of the scholastic concept of intentionality into a descriptive foundational concept of psychology to be a great discovery, without which phenomenology would never have been possible, nevertheless an essential distinction has to be drawn between pure psychology in my sense, a psychology contained implicitly in transcendental phenomenology, and Brentano's psychology" (Husserl 1989, p. 422). "Descriptive psychology offers a genuine and natural point of departure for the working out of the idea of phenomenology. This was in fact the way which led me to phenomenology. On the other hand, it is to be fully established in a deeper investigation that phenomenology, the way we understand it - as eidetic, but, at the same time, as resting on the transcendental reduction - is in no way descriptive psychology and has, in strict truth, not even one part in common with it" (Husserl 1989, p. 326).

The basic error of Psychologism consists, according to my view, in its obliteration of this fundamental distinction between pure and empirical generality, and in its misinterpretation of the pure laws of logic as empirical laws of psychology" (Husserl 1903, p. 204). "What is essentially new, broken open in transcendentally oriented phenomenology and at the same time a breakthrough for descriptive psychology, transforming completely the face of this psychology, its entire method and its concrete aims, is the insight that a concrete description of the sphere of consciousness as a self-enclosed sphere of intentionality... has a totally different sense than descriptions of nature, thus than the exemplary descriptions in the descriptive natural sciences" (Husserl 1989, p. 424).




Final meeting


"I did not see him again until 1908 in Florence" (Husserl 1919 p. 347). "He let me report cohesively on the sense of the phenomenological way of investigation and my past struggle against psychologism. But we did not understand each other... I was hindered by the inner conviction that... Brentano was no longer adaptable enough to be able to understand the necessity which had forced me to transform his basic intuitions" (Husserl 1919, p. 347).

"Brentano was sure of his philosophy... His inner certainty of being on the right path and of founding a purely scientific philosophy never wavered... I would like to stress this pure doubt free conviction as being plainly the basic fact of Brentano's life" (Husserl 1919, p. 345). "Brentano was sensitive about any deviation from his fixed convictions" (Husserl 1919, p. 345). "I knew... how much it bothered him when someone took another path even though it emanated from his own" (Husserl 1919, p. 346). "No one surpassed him in educating students to think independently, yet no one took it harder when such thinking was directed against his own entrenched convictions" (Husserl 1919, p. 345).

"There was a kind of radiance about him, as if he belonged no longer to this world, as if he lived half here and half already in that higher world... This last image I have of him from that time in Florence has impressed itself most profoundly in my spirit. This is the way Brentano lives now always in my memory, an image from a higher world" (Husserl 1919, p. 348).

"Initially I was his enthusiastic student... But I could not remain a member of his school" (Husserl 1919, p. 346). "That was not easy for me. Nothing runs deeper in my nature than to revere... But... there unfortunately dwells within me an intractably critical sense unmindful of my natural inclinations... By nature bound, intellectually free, so I go... my way... I am... still a poor beginner ... As always, I work, and often with despairing doggedness, as if to rid myself of some of the endless shame of my dullness, unclarity, and ignorance" (Husserl 1994a, pp. 20-21).






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