KANT • Apperception

German Philosopher | 1724 – 1804  | Central Enlightenment Thinker

“Synthesis is the mere effect of the power of imagination, the blind but indispensable function of the soul.”   

Apperception is the act of synthesizing everything you learn— it is the process of taking your new experiences and assimilating them into the “residuum” of your past experiences, in order to be transformed to form a new whole.

Drawing connections, 

joining the dots, 

creating unity from disparity. 

Immanuel Kant called this idea the “unity of apperception”; and it is your self-consciousness that is the fabric pulling all your thoughts together.  Kant taught that this self-consciousness, the “I think,” is the necessary condition for synthesizing thought.  The tool for constantly weaving your thoughts into a more cohesive patchwork is to think about your thinking.

To practice apperception, we must first begin with recognizing the power of self-consciousness.  This means acknowledging that everything you learn occupies a place in your mind.  But far too often, like a disorganized room, our life lessons, experiences, and information we absorb remain scattered and disconnected.  But when you pull them together, the whole is without a doubt far more powerful than in parts.    

When we assimilate all our unique and different experiences and draw connections, we begin to formulate new knowledge and new skills that otherwise would lay dormant.