I went to Rorty to try and figure out why he believed that knowing objects as independent perceptual systems was impossible. As far as I can tell it is because we constantly make mistakes in our judgments of what is and isn't the case. If that's his argument then he has once again taken up the same age old argument that has always been presented against realism. This is the same as the Hindu example of someone seeing a snake in the grass and then discovering it was a rope. A realist has to account for how we make mistakes in our perception. Only one answer has been given by realists and it's the answer I adhere to. One must give ontological status to that illusion of a snake. i am here with Alexis Meinong. "Non-existent things" exist. We experience them so they are there. i imagined that this soup I just made was going to be good. It isn't. That imagined object exists as the object of my imagining, but not as something actual in my world. Now, the objects of our imagination are not IN the imagination. They are not IN the mind. They exist external to thought, just as much as this chair I am sitting on and that rope. And once again you are going to wonder where this "external" world of imagined, merely potential, not actual, objects is. Well, they are not in space. I have already spoken about that. And the nexus that connects them to thought isn't either. Rorty made the mistake of thinking that "non-existent" things have to be in the mind and dependent on it. Also go back at look at T. P. Nunn that I sent you early on. Secondary sense data aren't in the mind either. Once again I lean on the Doctrine of External Relations.
You raise so many issues it is hard to know where to step in. You sound like a qualified phenomenologist. here is what Nunn said (that you sent me):
Nunn’s reply is uncompromising. The contrast between ‘sensa’ and ‘actual properties’ is, he argues, an untenable one. All the shades of colour which the buttercup presents to an observer are actual properties of the buttercup; and all the hotnesses of the water are properties of the water. The plain man and the scientist ascribe a standard temperature and a standard colour to a thing and limit it to a certain region of space, because its complexity would otherwise defeat them. The fact remains, Nunn argues, that a thing has not one hotness, for example, but many, and that these hotnesses are not in a limited region of space but in various places around about the standard object. A thing is hotter an inch away than a foot away and hotter on a cold hand than on a warm one, just as it is a paler yellow in one light than it is in another light. To imagine otherwise is to confuse between the arbitrary ‘thing’ of everyday life and the ‘thing’ as experience shows it of be.
Herein is Kant, implicitly. And OUT OF Kant, came many variations, but this is phenomenology, though that language is more traditional. Talk about secondary and primary qualities was replaced by Husserl and Heidegger, though analytic philosophers talk like this at times; I don't read them much, which brings me to Rorty. Rorty is not far from this, but he speaks the language of a pragmatist. He is the language philosopher of guys like Dewey, Peirce, and he looks at an experiential event as a problem solving event, and knowledge is what works, and language is how knowledge works; it's a utility.
When Nunn rejects the "contrast between sensa and actual properties" and puts the actual color of the buttercup and the object we call buttercup on the same ontological footing, rejecting the traditional analysis of qualities subjective and objective, that makes him a phenomenologist. The question then turns to how one proceeds from there. This business about the a thing having not one hotness, but many, echoes Sartre's aspectivalism. And the scientist and the "plain man" (this is Husserl's talk, and Heidgger's) with their standards of universality that belie the actual object, well, this is a resistance to Kant's synthetic concepts, certainly, but how this is argued is where the matter takes shape, for you have take on the simple and intuitive idea that when you try to remove quanitfiers from a theory about what actuality is, you are using quantifiers (univerals, all x's are y; and existentials, this x is y) to do this. It is a famliliar argument: what Kant was talking about is THINKING, and it is impossible to remove thought from actuality because such a thing is apriori unthinkable.
Of course, the Atman is the Brahman, but how far this goes to making sense lies exactly where Fink begins his meditation. There it IS, this conditioned, and well established world, and there we are eidetically constructing this world, enworlding. This is the threshold of the other, metaphysics.
Where your resistance to this lies is, I think, in what is called apophatic theology, which is, as I recall, where philosophers like Shankara placed the inquiring mind: neti neti, not this, not that, and when the observing consciousness determines the self to be mysteriously elusive in this effort to discover it the enterprise is dropped and the effort to grasp what the self is is abandoned for a more revelatory approach. If illusion is conceptual, whereby concepts are always already there to IMPOSE structure of the structureless world, that is, to apprehend an object AS the concept, and we wish to escape illusion, then what we wish for is the annihilation of the identifiable self.
This is very close to Kierkegaard (though, you'd have to read his Fear and Trembling account of the knight of faith, which embraces the two). His is the philosophy of the eternal present, and I think he's right.
But this antipathy you have for Kant I think is justified, I know I'm not a Kantian, but THROUGH him, we find existential thought that can explain this above in, on occasion, very clear terms. Fink is Kantian in his point of departure only. He goes where Kant made no attempt.