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Immanuel Kant was born in Konigsberg which is now Kaliningrad Russia on April 22 1722 He was the son of a saddler Copleston 1960 Kant received his education at the Colleguim Fredericianum and the University of Konigsberg While attending the college he studied mostly the classics and at the university he studied physics and mathematics After his father died he had to quit his university career and earn his living as a private tutor In 1755 he was helped by a friend and resumed his studies and earned his doctorate Encarta 2000 For 15 years after completing his doctorate he taught at the university where he lectured on science and math but eventually he expanded his field to cover almost all branches of philosophy Even though his lectures and writings during this period established his reputation as an original philosopher he did not receive a chair at the university until 1770 when he was made professor of logic and metaphysics He continued to teach and attract large numbers of students to Konigsberg for the next 27 years Encarta 2000 His students felt he was a very good lecturer His main goal in philosophical courses was to stimulate his listeners to stand on their own feet as he put it Copleston 1960 Kants unorthodox religious teachings were based on rationalism rather than revelation and this brought him into conflict with the government of Prussia In 1792 he was forbidden by Frederick William II king of Prussia to teach or write on religious subjects He obeyed this order for five years until the death of the king After the kings death he no longer felt the need to obey this order He retired from the university in 1797 In 1798 he published a summary of his religious views Encarta 2000 From 1796 to 1803 Kant was working on preparing material for a book dealing with the transition from the metaphysics of Nature to physics He felt
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