a foolish undertaking that doesn’t even care to ask whether one actually thinks these “opposing pairs” as simply and easily as such lists make it seem: real and ideal, sensible and non-sensible, being and validity, historical and transhistorical, temporal and timeless. Nonetheless, this foolishness gets the semblance of a justification as follows. First you invent these two regions, then you put a gap between them, and then you go looking for the bridge. “Take the gap and build the bridge”—that’s about as clever as the old instruction: “To make a gun barrel, you take an empty space and put some steel around it.” Intelligent psychologism has yet to concede that it has been refuted, and perhaps the reason for that lies in this meaningless way of stating the problem. For psychologism can rightly appeal to the fact that this almost chemical separation of thinking from knowledge has provided nothing essential toward understanding what is the most actual of all: lived thinking itself, lived life as knowing.
I will say further that this position, which thinks itself so philosophical in contrast to psychologism, and which believes itself to have surpassed naturalism, in fact harbors an even grosser and more basic form of naturalism, one that is much harder to get a grip on. Basically we are in a situation where we have to see these two separate orders or fields or spheres or regions as coming together in unity: that which has being and that which has validity, the sensible and the non-sensible, the real and the ideal, the historical and the transhistorical. We have not yet apprehended an original kind of being in terms of which we could understand these two fields as possible and as belonging to that of being.  Philosophers don’t even ask about such being. Instead they flaunt the “fundamental uniqueness” of this separation and see themselves as constrained to bridge or link the two together so that they can adhere to each other and become a whole. Even contemporary physics does not present the structure of the atom in such a primitively atomistic and mechanistic way. Such patching together might make sense as regards atoms, as material beings—but no, not even there! So obviously it’s absurd to use such a linking-up of opposites when it comes to beings like the mental and the ideal, which have absolutely no character of material thingness.
But what about the entity that does not, as it were, cast a bridge over the gap between these two regions, but instead (if one has to understand it in this way) renders possible these two regions of being in their original unity? Husserl has not asked the question. Rather, within the framework of psychologism and in a manner that derives from psychologism, he asks what the mental as such must be if it is able to stand as the real in relation to the ideal.74 From the beginning, therefore, Hus-
74.[With help from Moser, p. 195.15–17.]