Monday, March 14, 2011

Phenomenology of Spirit, Preface, paragraph 37

The inequality which obtains in consciousness between the I and the substance constituting its object, is their distinction, the negative in general. We may regard it as the defect of both, but it is their soul, or what moves them, for which reason certain ancients conceived the void to be that which moves [das Bewegende], in that they comprehended that which moves indeed as the negative but not as the self. While this negative factor initially appears as the inequality of the I toward the object, it is just as much the inequality of the substance with itself. What seems to take place outside it, to be an activity directed against it, is its own doing, and it shows itself essentially to be subject. When it has brought this out completely, spirit has made its existence equal to its essence; it is object to itself just as it is, and the abstract element of immediacy, of the separation between knowing and the truth, is overcome. Being is absolutely mediated; it is substantial content, which is equally the immediate property of the I, has the character of self or is the concept. Hereby concludes the phenomenology of spirit. What is made ready in it is the element of knowledge. In this element the moments of mind now expand in the form of simplicity, which knows its object to be itself. They no longer diverge in the opposition between being and knowing; they remain within the simplicity of knowing, they are the truth in the form of truth, and their diversity is only diversity of content. Their movement, which in this element is organized into a whole, is logic or speculative philosophy.

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