Thursday, March 3, 2011

Phenomenology of Spirit, Preface, paragraph 21

This horrified rejection of mediation, however, in fact arises from a lack of familiarity with its nature and with absolute cognition itself. For mediation is nothing but self-moving self-identity [sichselbstgleichheit], or reflection into self, the moment of the I being for itself, pure negativity or, reduced to its pure abstraction, simple becoming. The I, or becoming in general, this mediation, is, because of its simplicity, precisely nascent immediacy and the immediate itself. It therefore is a failure to understand reason if reflection is excluded from the true, and is not grasped as a positive moment of the absolute. It is reflection which makes truth into the result, but which likewise cancels this opposition with its becoming, for this becoming is likewise simple and therefore not to be distinguished from the form of the true, which is to show itself as simple in the result; rather, reflection is precisely this returned-ness to simplicity. While the embryo certainly is a human being in principle [an sich], it is not so for itself [für sich]; only as developed [gebildete] reason, having made itself into that which it is in principle, is it for itself. Only this is its reality. But this result is itself simple immediacy; for it is self-conscious freedom, which is at rest with itself and which has not set the opposition aside and left it there, but has been reconciled with it.

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