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Immanuel Kant

Kant (1724-1804) is responsible for our contemporary understanding of the limits of knowledge, successfully mediating Rationalism and Empiricism. In Critique of Pure Reason, Kant distinguishes between the world as it is in itself and as it appears to us. The great realization being, our conception of the world is a distortion based on sense and laws of thought. Insofar as we have a human brain, we have a human way of thinking, and this defines the shape and limits of knowledge. We can only understand knowledge relative to humans, not in any absolute sense of the word.