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Hegel’s philosophy

The culmination of the Classical German philosophy was the philosophy of George Willhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770 ─ 1831). His philosophy concerns the same problems as all other German Classical philosophy and beforehand the problem of subject-object interaction. However unlike Fichte or Schelling Hegel didn’t put up it directly but always implied it. His philosophizing begins from the directly not declared but implicitly meant initial subject-object identity. I.e. the primal is the whole (the Universe on the whole or the World Spirit) which for providing further development is disintegrated into many components which interact and communicate with each other. The World Spirit isn’t material but ideal and the nature is its other being. Therefore the process of the nature development (being other side of the World Spirit’s self- becoming) has mental character and is subordinated to the laws of logic. It is not however usual formal logic of Aristotle but a special dialectic one. It’s called so because of the development process being a process of intercommunication (a dialogue) of different components the whole has been disintegrated into. The term ‘dialectics’ so acquires a new meaning becoming a theory of the most general laws and peculiarities of thinking, human, society or nature development. The dialectic logic as it was said differs from the usual formal one. Its three main laws are:

1)the law of the unity and struggle of opposites (opposites do not exclude but supplement and can not exist without each other; e.g. light and darkness, good and evil, positive and negative charges etc.);

2)the law of the transformation of quantity into quality (Will a man become bald if one single hair is pulled out from his head? No, he won’t. Will he if two are? No, he won’t. If three, four, ten? He won’t. But the proceeding of pulling out sooner or later will make him bald. In other words little quantity changes gradually result in a new quality the baldness. This is an evident illustration on this law);

3)the law of double negation[13] (it differs from its analogue in the usual logic and has the form: Thesis[14] + Antithesis[15] = Synthesis, where the latter equals to the double negation unlike in the formal logic where the double negation is identical with the initial thesis).

With the help of these and some other methods Hegel tried to solve any problem of metaphysics, natural science, history and so forth. Thus the first question raised by him in his metaphysics is what the something omnipresent and contained in anything (i. e. the most general outset of all) is. The answer is it’s nothing. Namely the nothing is the thing that is present everywhere, the absolute being existing on its own. This absolute being contains a contradiction within (because as a being it is and as nothing it is not), which is put off with introducing such a category as quality. Being restricted with a quality the nothing becomes something. From something through categories of quantity, number and measure all the variety of existing things arise[16]. The world of the things isn’t an end but develops and finishes in the so-called Absolute Idea in which the World Spirit returns to its own. Therein all the process is over and a new circle begins.

The metaphysics (Hegel himself didn’t use this term calling his system dialectics, science of logic and so on and opposing it to any other metaphysical system[17]) is a general frame or common foundation, acquaintance with which gives possibility to solve any problem of natural or humanitarian science. So using methods of this metaphysics-dialectics he tried to predict new then unknown laws of nature (dedicating to it his book “Dialectics of Nature”). His attempt however was complete failure: all his prognoses had been refuted in nearest few years after publishing this book.

Hegel applied also dialectic methods to the philosophy of history. History according to him develops from the less to the greater and greater freedom: from the ancient despotism (where the only one man the despot himself was free and all other were his slaves) to feudalism (when some men the feudal lords are free and some others are their serfs) and to the society in which all people would enjoy the most freedom. According to Hegel it’s possible under a monarchy, especially under the monarchy of the natal to him Prussia (the latter was appreciated by contemporaries as a purely cop state which for Hegel was nevertheless an ideal of state and a specimen of the most possible freedom). For explaining it should be noted that the freedom was defined by Hegel as the right to obey the law i. e. was turned into a synonym of legality. The latter really existed at that time Prussia and from this point the idea of Hegel doesn’t seem such strange as before [1, p. 191 – 196].



Date: 2014-12-21; view: 729

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