Our Common Extended Consciousness and the Readability of Things

Two Theses of Hermeneutic Realism

  • Anton Friedrich Koch


The article consists of a general introduction and two main parts, the first relating to sensory, qualitative consciousness and the second to discursive, intentional consciousness. The general thesis of the first part can be formulated like this: Humans literally overlap in their infinite spatiotemporal field of consciousness, which is one and the same for all and is only oriented differently by each individual, namely egocentrically in each case. On the basis of this common extended consciousness we can talk to each other about things. In the second part, the thesis – inspired by the divergent picture theories of elementary sentences developed by the early Wittgenstein and then by Wilfrid Sellars – is argued that when we talk about things, we read them and translate them into verbal language. We read them as world-sided primordial tokens (1) of their names, (2) of phenomenal “this-such” representations of them, and (3) of various elementary sentences about them, thus treating them as objects, as Kantian intuitions and as token facts respectively. Incidentally, this result can serve to illuminate Heideg­ger’s thesis in his 1950 lecture on language that it is originally language that speaks – as the “ringing of silence” or “chiming of stillness” (“Geläut der Stille”) – and that humans have the call to speak back to language in talking to each other, i.e. to respond to the chiming of stillness.


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How to Cite
Koch, A. (2023). Our Common Extended Consciousness and the Readability of Things. Critical Hermeneutics, 6(2), 35-59. https://doi.org/10.13125/CH/5434