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This is a major and comprehensive study of the philosophy of Hegel, his place in the history of ideas, and his continuing relevance and importance. Professor Taylor relates Hegel to the earlier history of philosophy and, more particularly, to the central intellectual and spiritual issues of his own time. He engages with Hegel sympathetically, on Hegel's own terms and, as the subject demands, in detail. This important book is now reissued with a fresh new cover.
and its property relations. The germ of this is present in the insight that a community founded integrally on mutual love cannot find a place for private property. And now, most important of all, he sees that the demands of Kantian autonomous morality and those of expressive unity are opposed. Thus as he came to realize that separation was unavoidable, that men could not help falling away from the beautiful unity of the Greeks, he was also coming to see that this separation was essential, that
itself is thus the identity of identity and non-identity; opposition and unity are both in it.2 1 Weil das Giittliche reines Leben ist, so muG notwending, wenn von ihm und was von ihm gesprochen wird, nichts Entgegengesetzes in sich enthalten. 2 Das Absolute selbst aber ist darum die Identitat der Identitat und der Nichtidentitat; Entgegen setzen und Einssein ist zugleich in ihm. Already in the ' System Fragment ', a MS of 1 800, Hegel talked of the sought for synthesis, life, as ' die
universe is the embodiment of the totality of the ' life-functions ' of God, that is, the condi tions of his existence. And it also is throughout an expression of God, that is, something posited by God in order to manifest what he is. The universe must therefore both be grasped as something analogous to a life-form, hence understood by the Aristotelian-derived category of ' internal teleology '; and be read as something analogous to a text in which God says what he is. This perfect coincidence
contradictory fashion. And this is what Geistcan be said to do, in that it cannot help but posit external finite reality, and yet this negates it and has to be in turn negated. But the relation becomes even closer when the purpose itself is seen as one of self-knowledge; for in this case the purpose is one which cannot be properly stated without the use of ' logical ' language of assertion and denial. If spirit is striving to express itself, then all the partial forms which exist as stages in its
of nature to practical reason. For Kant, for instance, the promptings of nature stood in contrast to the demands of freedom. While for the mainstream of the Enlightenment, nature as the whole interlocking system of objective reality, in which all beings, including man, had a natural mode of existence which dovetailed with that of all others, provided rather the basic model to man as a natural, desiring being, the blueprint of reason for happiness and hence good. But in spite of tensions the