Thomas michaud, author of secondary reflection and marcelian anthropology and many other studies on marcel, states that secondary reflection is a reflection on an intuitive encounter with mystery (michaud, 1990, p. Primary & secondary reflection - free download as word doc (doc), pdf file (pdf), text file (txt) or read online for free.
The distinction between two kinds of questions—problem and mystery—brings to light two different kinds of thinking or reflection the problematic is addressed with thinking that is detached and technical, while the mysterious is encountered in reflection that is involved, participatory and decidedly non-technical marcel calls these two kinds of thinking “primary” and “secondary.
To provide a rough and inaccurate summary, primary reflection is the initial attempt to mentally apprehend an external reality as something foreign and separate, whereas secondary reflection is considers the subject as part of the larger whole within which the observer and the observed are neither separate nor separable. Secondary reflection is best understood as an act of critical reflection on primary reflection, and as a process of recovery of the “mysteries of being” it begins as the act of critical reflection (a “second” reflection) on ordinary conceptual thinking (primary reflection. Primary reflection examines its object by abstraction, by analytically breaking it down into its constituent parts it is concerned with definitions, essences and technical solutions to problems in contrast, secondary reflection is synthetic it unifies rather than divides. Primary and secondary reflections reflection is the attention we give to something different things require different kinds of reflection primary reflection is directed at that which is outside us while secondary reflection is directed.
A summary of marcel’s primary and secondary reflection: the existential fulcrum marcel shows us the turning point of our experiences from mere occurrences to part of our being.
Secondary reflection is reuniting the ideas se apart by primary reflection and that is to unite the body back with the center 29 there is difficulty in proceeding to secondary reflection without contradicting what was proposed in the primary reflection that both body and soul are distinct.
Marcel contrasted secondary reflection with abstract, scientific-technical primary reflection which he associated with the activity of the abstract cartesian ego for marcel, philosophy was a concrete activity undertaken by a sensing, feeling human being incarnate — embodied — in a concrete world. From primary and secondary reflection by: gabriel marcel the distinctive note of philosophic thought, at least according to my conception of it and i have many authorities for that conception, is that not only does it move towards the object whose nature it seeks to discover, but at the same time it is alert for a certain music that arises from its own inner nature if it is succeeding in.