Postcard from Edmund Husserl written 31.08.1923

Freiburg, 31.VIII.1923

Dear Friend,

            I am thinking of you with the same level of cordiality as before, and your letters delight me greatly. Has this much time passed since I last wrote you? It is difficult to write, there is a lot of trouble on my mind, though I cannot complain about my personal life. My daughter has been happily married since Christmas in Berlin, and my son will soon be married in G[öttingen], where we are just traveling. I also have the blessing of ph.*; I have always continued to do my fruitful research and have never been more productive than in the last couple of years. Moreover, from the outside, ph[enomenology] also appears to be in geometric progression. The seminar and lecture are attended by almost too many foreigners, but some of them are very valuable. Ph[enomenology] is beginning to shape the younger generation in America, Japan, and England. There is a lot of activity in Russia, etc. In Germany, the scale of the effect has surprisingly increased, and despite my being 64, I received a call to the University of Berlin as the successor to Troeltsch – which I declined. I want to remain faithful to my life’s task and I want to continue to teach and research with the two assistants I have been granted. Heidegger is leaving for Marburg to become Ordinarius; Geiger is leaving for Göttingen (my former position). (Ph[enomenologists] are in high demand everywhere these days.) Becker is now my teaching assistant. I did not have the London lectures printed. I extended them into a four-hour winter lecture, and next winter, I will expand them even more and prepare them for publication with the support of my research assistant.17 This is what I have in mind: A princip[al] draft of a system of philosophy in the sense of ph[enomenology] and in the form of medita[tiones] d[e] prima philosophia, which need to open the true philosophy (befitting its essence) as the “beginning”. You should come back soon again! Bell announced his visit for next summer. Hering and Koyré were unfortunately unable to visit this past summer. I read with interest what you wrote about the habilitation, your plans, and Polish philosophers. May God bless you with the strength and determination of a new kind of radical and selfless philosophy that our epoch so desperately needs. We must have the courage to live a new life, but first a new type of scientific life. The walk to the “mothers” is a step back and forward to an “original” life, which can represent originary clarity, its legitimacy, its meaning, its honesty and which can be completely comprehended. Humanity can only redeem itself, and it can only do that if we, each and everyone one of us, individually, complete the process of self-redemption; if we find the individual courage and great will to completely focus on self-declaration, self-awareness, and then self-cleaning. From there, we can prepare the idea of ​​a universally connected real humanity, a transnational humanity (only authentic national special units) as well as purity and legitimacy in a clear manner. This is your calling. Stay true to love and do not lose yourself to worldly matters. I count on you and think of you often.

Cordially yours,

E. Husserl



Will you be sending me something for the Yearbook?