Tuesday, March 1, 2011
Phenomenology of Spirit, Preface, paragraph 6
When the true form of truth is placed in its scientific character – or, what amounts to the same thing, when it is maintained that truth has the element of its existence only in concepts – I know that this seems to contradict a notion, with all its consequences, which makes great pretensions and has gained widespread acceptance in the conviction of the times. A word of explanation concerning this contradiction seems, therefore, not out of place, even though at this stage it can amount to no more than a dogmatic assurance, exactly like the view we are opposing. If, that is to say, truth exists merely in what, or rather as what, is called at one time contemplation, at another immediate knowledge of the absolute, religion, being – not being in the center of divine love, but the very being of this itself – from that point of view it is rather the opposite of the conceptual form which would be required for the exposition of philosophy. The absolute is not to be conceived, but felt and contemplated; it is not its concept but its feeling and contemplation that are to have the floor and find expression.