[113,114] There is some overlap here that I want to try to draw out. In 113, Wittgenstein appears to say that when the ordinary and the ideal diverge we philosophers are left blaming ourselves. It is as if we fail to perceive ideally because of an internal or personal defect. "I feel as though, if only I could fix my gaze absolutely sharply on this fact, get it in focus, I must grasp the essence of the matter." That is I must achieve that static perfection implied in the claim or assertion, "This is how things are ...."
This thought is pursued in 114 where Wittgenstein seeks to reveal the idealism in realism. (I reflect on the rhetorical strategy of calling yourself a realist. It reduces your opponents to mere idealists.) Open with the realist's phrase, "This is how things are." Wittgenstein is engaged in self-criticism because the logical form of this proposition is generalized, idealized, and reified in his Tractatus. But he manages to sound like Lenin in Materialism and Empirio-Criticism where, in the midst of the Russian Revolution, he engaged in an intellectual attack on the underlying idealism of Ernst Mach's empiricism. Wittgenstein writes, "One thinks that one is tracing the outline of the thing's nature over and over again, and one is merely tracing round the frame through which we look at it." We cannot escape or peer around the edges of our theory of reality.


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