Friday, March 11, 2011

Phenomenology of Spirit, Preface, paragraph 36

The immediate existence of spirit, consciousness, has the two aspects – knowledge, and the knowledge of negative objectivity. Since it is in this element that spirit develops and constructs [auslegt] its moments, this opposition is found in those moments, and they manifest themselves as shapes of consciousness. The science of this path is the science of experience gained by consciousness; substance is considered in the manner in which it and its movement are the object of consciousness. Consciousness knows and comprehends nothing but what falls within its experience; for what is found in experience is merely spiritual substance, and, moreover, object of itself. But spirit becomes object, for it is this movement: becoming something else, i.e., an object for its own self, and cancelling this otherness. And experience is the name for this movement by which the immediate, unexperienced, i.e., abstract – whether sensorial being or the only cogitated simple – is estranged from itself, and then returns from this estrangement to itself, in so doing finally being set forth in its reality and truth, and becoming the property of consciousness.

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