Thursday, April 7, 2011

Phenomenology of Spirit, Preface, paragraph 61

Formally, what has been said can be so expressed that the nature of judgment [Urteils] or of the proposition in general, which contains the distinction of subject and predicate, is destroyed by the speculative proposition; and the proposition of identity [der identische Satz], which the former becomes, contains the counter-thrust to that relation. This conflict of the form of a proposition in general and the unity of the concept which destroys that form is similar to what we find between meter and accent in the case of rhythm. Rhythm results from the floating center and union of the two. So likewise with the philosophical proposition, the identity of subject and predicate is not intended to destroy their distinction, as expressed in the form of the proposition; rather, their unity is to arise as a harmony. The form of the proposition is the manifestation of the determinate sense, or the accent which differentiates its realization [Erf├╝llung]; but that the predicate expresses the substance while the subject itself drops into the universal is the unity wherein that accent fades away.

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