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Re: Hegel and the Pure Idea

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  • Randall Preston Jackwak
    Dear Beat, dear list, In the section WITH WHAT MUST THE SCIENCE BEGIN? Hegel suggest that entering into philosophy requires beginning with a pure
    Message 1 of 30 , Aug 1, 2004
      Dear Beat, dear list,

      In the section WITH WHAT MUST THE SCIENCE BEGIN? Hegel suggest that
      entering into philosophy requires beginning with a pure
      indeterminacy. The achievment of "Pure Knowing" in the Phenomenolgy
      of Spirit allows us to make this proper beginning; i.e. it allows us
      to begin the Science of Logic with "simple immediacy." Figuring out
      how exactly Pure Knowing withdraws into pure being, allowing us to
      concieve the simple immediacy required to begin the SL is a
      difficult enough task in itself, but you have kindly (and correctly)
      added an additional complexity pointing out that Hegel also
      suggests we can begin the Logic without presupposing the PhG (para
      98,99). The question is how can we arrive at this required pure
      inderminacy without the PhG?

      [Hegel]
      "But if no presupposition is to be made and the beginning itself is
      taken immediately, then its only determination is that it is to be
      the beginning of logic, of thought as such. All that is present is
      simply the resolve, which can also be regarded as arbitrary, that we
      propose to consider thought as such.
      Thus the beginning must be an absolute, or what is synonymous here,
      an abstract beginning; and so it may not suppose anything, must not
      be mediated by anything nor have a ground; rather it is to be itself
      the ground of the entire science. Consequently, it must be purely
      and simply an immediacy, or rather merely immediacy itself. Just as
      it cannot possess any determination relatively to anything else, so
      too it cannot contain within itself any determination, any content;
      for any such would be a distinguishing and an inter-relationship of
      distinct moments, and consequently a mediation. The beginning
      therefore is pure being" (Hegel, SL, trans miller para 98, 99, p. 70)
      In the above paragraph, the conditions of an absolute beginning are
      quite clear:

      -the beginning must be taken immediately
      -the beginning must be absolute (or abstract)
      -it must not presuppose anything
      -it must not be mediated by anything or have a ground
      -it is to be itself the ground of the entire science
      -it cannot contain within itself any determination


      However, when I try to positively concieve pure being under these
      conditions I run into difficulty. The problem for me is without
      the Phenomenology of Spirit (and its achievement of pure knowledge),
      how can we properly concieve the required immediacy of pure being
      without collapsing into the seperation (knowing and object known)
      that is constitutive of knowledge?

      It seems that without the PhG we will naturally take immediate Being
      as an object or content that lies opposed to us (i.e. ..mere being
      per se, a being that is not of the Idea, is the sensible finite
      being of the world. see EnL para 70). Thus at least initially, it
      appears that we will be burdened with the exact same seperation when
      we examine "pure being", as when we examine God or some other
      representation or conception that is (already) loaded with
      determinations that take place prior to the commencement of
      philosophy.

      Strictly speaking is it possible to take pure being in its immediacy
      without the Phenomenology of Spirit? Let's see if we can solve this
      problem Beat. I carve up a couple different points of view, but I
      leave lots of unresolved issues open for discussion.

      --- In hegel@yahoogroups.com, Beat Greuter <greuterb@b...> wrote:

      > on the one side the Phenomenology is the derivation of the
      > Concept of pure science (Logic)

      First, how is the Phenomenology a derivation of the Concept of pure
      science? To answer this question let's take a look at para 51,52,53
      of the SL
      [HEGEL]

      § 51
      "The Notion of pure science and its deduction is therefore
      presupposed in the present work in so far as the Phenomenology of
      Spirit is nothing other than the deduction of it. Absolute knowing
      is the truth of every mode of consciousness because, as the course
      of the Phenomenology showed, it is only in absolute knowing that
      separation of the object from the certainty of itself is completely
      eliminated: truth is now equated with certainty and this certainty
      with truth.
      § 52
      Thus pure science presupposes liberation from the opposition of
      consciousness. It contains thought in so far as this is just as much
      the object in its own self, or the object in its own self in so far
      as it is equally pure thought. As science, truth is pure self-
      consciousness in its self-development and has the shape of the self,
      so that the absolute truth of being is the known Notion and the
      Notion as such is the absolute truth of being.
      § 53
      This objective thinking then, is the content of pure science.
      Consequently, far from it being formal, far from it standing in need
      of a matter to constitute an actual and true cognition, it is its
      content alone which has absolute truth, or, if one still wanted to
      employ the word matter, it is the veritable matter — but a matter
      which is not external to the form, since this matter is rather pure
      thought and hance the absolute form itself. Accordingly, logic is to
      be understood as the system of pure reason, as the realm of pure
      thought." (Hegel, SL, trans. Miller para 51,52,53, p.)

      I want to underscore the following from the above paragraphs:

      1. " it is only in absolute knowing that separation of the object
      from the certainty of itself is completely eliminated."

      (a) " pure science presupposes liberation from the opposition of
      consciousness"

      2. "As science, truth is pure *self-consciousness* in its *self-
      development*"

      (a) "far from it being [merely] formal, far from it standing in
      need of a matter to constitute an actual and true cognition, it is
      its content alone which has absolute truth but a matter which is not
      external to the form, since this matter is rather pure thought and
      hance the absolute form itself"



      ---------------------------------------------------------------------
      ---------------------------------------------------------------------

      1. In Absolute knowing (the achievment of the Phenomenology of
      Spirit), the separation of the object from the certainty of itself
      is completely eliminated. But how is this seperation eliminated?

      First recall from the Introduction of the PhG that Hegel's project
      begins with the determinations of Phenomenal consciusness as they
      first present themselves (i.e. the PhG begins with a distinction
      between reference and referent)

      [Hegel]
      "82. This contradiction and the removal of it will become more
      definite if , to begin with, we call to mind the abstract
      determinations of knowledge and of truth as they are found in
      consciousness. Consciousness, we find, distinguishes from itself
      something, to which at the same time it relates itself; or, to use
      the current expression, there is something for consciousness; and
      the determinate form of this process of relating, or of there being
      something for a consciousness, is knowledge. But from this being for
      another we distinguish being in itself or per se; what is related to
      knowledge is likewise distinguished from it, and posited as also
      existing outside this relation; the aspect of being per se or in
      itself is called Truth. What really lies in these determinations
      does not further concern us here; for since the object of our
      inquiry is phenomenal knowledge., its determinations are also taken
      up, in the first instance, as they are immediately offered to us.
      And they are offered to us very much in the way we have just
      stated." (Hegel, PhG, translated by J B Baillie)

      (a) Pure science presupposes liberation from the opposition of
      consciousness.

      [Hegel]
      "it was remarked that the phenomenology of spirit is the science of
      consciousness, the exposition of it, and that consciousness has for
      result the *Notion* of science, i.e. *pure knowing*. Logic, then,
      has for its presupposition the science of manifested spirit, which
      contains and demonstrates the necessity, and so the truth, of the
      standpoint occupied by pure knowing and of its mediation. In this
      science of manifested spirit the beginning is made from empirical,
      sensuous consciousness and this is immediate knowledge in the strict
      sense of the word; in that work there is discussed the significance
      of this immediate knowledge... In the [Phenemenology of Spirit]
      immediate consciousness is also the first and that which is
      immediate in the science itself, and therefore the presupposition;
      but in logic, the presupposition is that which has proved itself to
      be the result of that phenomenological consideration — the Idea as
      pure knowledge." (Hegel, SL, trans Miller, para 93, p.69)

      (a) Notice first in the above para. 93, that the Notion of
      Science is identified with pure knowing. Also take note that Hegel
      suggests that it is the PhG that begins with an immediate
      consciousness, the SL on the contrary, begins with an "achieved"
      immediate or what Hegel will call a "simple immediacy". This is the
      same point I made back in December in my outline of Sense Certainty.

      > > The significance of the Phenomenology of Spirit is that its
      > > movement brings consciousness from the most elementary form of
      > > consciousness, the stipulated indeterminacy of Sense Certainty,
      > > to the the standpoint of true indeterminacy, "Being"(the
      > > beginning of the Science of Logic)

      [Hegel]
      "Logic is pure science, that is, pure knowledge in the entire range
      of its development. But in the said result, this Idea has determined
      itself to be the certainty which has become truth, the certainty
      which, on the one hand, *no longer has the object over against it*
      but has internalised it, *knows it as its own self* — and, on the
      other hand, has given up the knowledge of itself as of something
      confronting the object of which it is only the annihilation, has
      divested itself of this subjectivity and is at one with its self-
      alienation." (Ibid)

      (d)Here, Hegel first repeats the achievement of pure knowing, and
      from the point of departure of pure knowing we have now entered into
      pure thought, a movement that "no longer has the object over
      against it" this is, of course repeating the fact that the
      seperation constitutive of knowledge has been overcome. Hegel then
      uses intensly artistic terminolgy that allows us to envisage the
      immanent movement from pure knowledge to the content itself
      spontaneously developing itself.

      After having "divested itself of this subjectivity"....[it] "is at
      one with its self-aleination."

      Question:
      (1) But first how does the Phenomenolgy of Spirit achieve
      this "liberation from the opposition of consciousness?"
      (2) And why does this Pure Knowing withdraw into a unity with Pure
      Being that begins the SL?

      Answer :
      (1)The separation is removed when consciousness takes itself as its
      object, or when consciousness attains a pure *self-consciousness*.
      Of course to understand how consciousness attains self-consciousness
      is the story of the PhG. But for the purpose of this discussion, we
      can examine the consequences of the achievement of Pure knowledge.

      (2) The answer to the second question involves the crucial
      transition from the Subjective Idea to being (this is the same topic
      of a hundred sovereigns, and it asserts that there is an *idea* that
      is immediately and inseperately bound up with the certainty of its
      *actual existence*).

      2. Pure Self-consciousness, the notion of Science or Pure Knowledge

      (a) In the Phenomenology of Spirit consciousness becomes aware of
      the self-relation that necessarily constitutes every phenomenal
      represention. This self-consciousness results in an identity
      between reference and referent, thus this self-consciousness
      eliminates any seperation between reference and referent, and so it
      is said to be immediate or pure knowledge.

      Or saying the same thing, but differently, the taking of "thought
      in so far as this is just as much the object in its own self, or the
      object in its own self in so far as it is equally pure thought"
      amounts to an abolishment of intermediation, and so it is said to be
      immediate or pure knowledge.

      [Hegel]
      "Pure knowing as concentrated into this unity has sublated all
      reference to an other and to mediation; it is without any
      distinction and as thus distinctionless, ceases itself to be
      knowledge; what is present is only simple immediacy."(Hegel, SL,
      trans Miller, para 95 p.69)

      (b) "PURE KNOWING" CEASES ITSELF TO BE KNOWLEDGE what is present is
      only SIMPLE IMMEDIACY. Hegel suggests that Pure knowing is
      simply "knowing as such", meaning that it has achieved an identity
      of knowing and object known. Pure knowing's identity with its
      object signifies that true knowing is indistinquishable from its
      object. The distinction of reference and referent , knowing and
      object known is constitutive of knowledge, without this distinction
      it ceases itself to be knowledge.

      (b) But what about the transition from pure knowledge and
      its "simple immediacy" to being? Hegel gives us a clue to this
      question in the quote below from the EL when he suggests
      interogatively, "and what is that reference to self, but being?"

      [Hegel]
      "For the notion, whatever other determination it may receive, is at
      least reference back on itself, which results by abolishing the
      intermediation, and thus is immediate. And what is that reference to
      self, but being? Certainly it would be strange if the notion, the
      very inmost of mind, if even the `Ego', or above all the concrete
      totality we call God, were not rich enough to include so poor a
      category as being, the very poorest and most abstract of all. For,
      if we look at the thought it holds, nothing can be more
      insignificant than being. And yet there may be something still more
      insignificant than being that which at first sight is perhaps
      supposed to be, an external and sensible existence, like that of the
      paper lying before me" (Hegel, EL, trans Wallace, para 51, p.85)


      Hegel suggest that the only thing more insignificant than being is
      appearances ("that which...is ..supposed to be, an external sensible
      existence). Here is a good comparison between the beginning of the
      SL and the beginning of the PhG.


      Now, what I am trying to do is make the conection between the
      general endeavour of philosophy to demonstrate a thought that is
      inseperable from being (or actuality) and Hegel's achievement of
      pure knowledge in the PhG and its transition to pure being.

      We learn from the above that pure knowledge (or the notion), the
      identity of knowing and object known, is really nothing more than an
      abstract reference to self (without determinate quality). And thus
      this grand achievement of the endeavour of philosophy, the identity
      of thought and being, only ammounts to a pure indeterminacy. But as
      we will find out this is precisely what beginning of philosophy
      requires.

      [Hegel]

      "..pure being is the unity into which pure knowing withdraws, or, if
      this itself is still to be distinguished as form from its unity,
      then being is also the content of pure knowing. It is when taken in
      this way that this pure being, this absolute immediacy has equally
      the character of something absolutely mediated. But it is equally
      essential that it be taken only in the one-sided character in which
      it is pure immediacy, precisely because here it is the beginning. If
      it were not this pure indeterminateness, if it were determinate, it
      would have been taken as something mediated, something already
      carried a stage further: what is determinate implies an other to a
      first. Therefore, it lies in the very nature of a beginning that it
      must be being and nothing else. To enter into philosophy, therefore,
      calls for no other preparations, no further reflections or points of
      connection." (Hegel, SL, trans. Miller, para. 107, p. 72)


      O.k for me we are now at the crucial juncture between the
      Phenomenolgy and the SL. And so before I try to answer your
      question Beat let me try to reinforce this relationship between the
      PhG and SL one last time in the following paragraph:

      [Hegel]

      "Pure knowing yields only this negative determination, that the
      beginning is to be abstract. If pure being is taken as the content
      of pure knowing, then the latter must stand back from its content,
      allowing it to have free play and not determining it further. Or
      again, if pure being is to be considered as the unity into which
      knowing has collapsed at the extreme point of its union with the
      object, then knowing itself has vanished in that unity, leaving
      behind no difference from the unity and hence nothing by which the
      latter could be determined. Nor is there anything else present, any
      content which could be used to make the beginning more determinate."
      (Hegel, SL, para 108, p.73)

      Take particular note to: "KNOWLEDGE HAS COLLAPSED AT THE EXTREAM
      POINT OF ITS UNION WITH THE OBJECT" again reinforcing the fact that
      pure knowledge is not really knowledge at all. And also we again get
      a reference to the required indeterminate beginning.



      O.k., now let's look at the problem you have carved-up. (Sorry for
      the long post!!!)

      [Beat]
      > In the course of the derivation of the categories their content
      > or standard (of consciousness) is negated as well as preserved.
      > Only with this the Logic becomes a science which is not merely
      > formal. So, when Hegel takes into consideration also an immediate
      > beginning of the Logic with an absolute beginning without
      > mediation through the Phenomenology (SL, "With What must Science
      > Begin?", paras 98/99, translated by A.V. Miller) then I do not see
      > from where the content comes, and a later 'application' of the
      > logical method would then only be a formal application on an outer
      > content.


      O.k unfortunately Beat I am going to have try to answer you question
      in the next couple of days. But I do think I have an answer, I don't
      know if it is satisfactory or not though! First though I will leave
      the list with a couple of references to help solve the problem:

      "In the Phenomenology of Mind, I have exhibited consciousness in its
      movement onwards from the first immediate opposition of itself and
      the object to absolute knowing. The path of this movement goes
      through every form of the relation of consciousness to the object
      and has the Notion of science of its result.

      This Notion therefore *(apart from the fact that it emerges within
      logic itself)* needs no justification here because it has received
      it in that work; and it cannot be justified in any other way than by
      this emergence in consciousness, all the forms of which are resolved
      into this Notion as into their truth." (Hegel, SL, trans. Miller
      para 50, p48)

      See para 98 and 99 at the top of my post and then look at para 109.
      O.k. that's all for now.



      Kind regards,

      Randall
    • Randall Preston Jackwak
      Dear list, I am disappointed to report I will not be able answer Beat s question before break. I am going on Vacation to the Alps and then to Sicilia. I will
      Message 2 of 30 , Aug 7, 2004
        Dear list,

        I am disappointed to report I will not be able answer Beat's
        question before break. I am going on Vacation to the Alps and then
        to Sicilia. I will engage in some intense study, hopefully, I can
        find an inter-net cafe, and make a significant contribution along
        the way to the list. I look forward to catching up on some good
        discussion around September.

        buona vacanza,

        Randall
      • Marco Sgarbi
        Here in italy there are many internet cafe and wi-fi access point. Where are you going? What kind of intense study? Sorry for my curiosity... ----- Original
        Message 3 of 30 , Aug 8, 2004
          Here in italy there are many internet cafe and wi-fi access point. Where are you going? What kind of intense study? Sorry for my curiosity...
          ----- Original Message -----
          From: Randall Preston Jackwak
          To: hegel@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Sunday, August 08, 2004 12:35 AM
          Subject: [hegel] Vacation (was Hegel and the Pure Idea)


          Dear list,

          I am disappointed to report I will not be able answer Beat's
          question before break. I am going on Vacation to the Alps and then
          to Sicilia. I will engage in some intense study, hopefully, I can
          find an inter-net cafe, and make a significant contribution along
          the way to the list. I look forward to catching up on some good
          discussion around September.

          buona vacanza,

          Randall



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        • Beat Greuter
          ... I wish you good vacation. I am also in the mountains for a few days. I have an answer in mind on your recent comment but until now no time to write it down
          Message 4 of 30 , Aug 8, 2004
            Randall Preston Jackwak wrote:

            > Dear list,
            >
            > I am disappointed to report I will not be able answer Beat's
            > question before break. I am going on Vacation to the Alps and then
            > to Sicilia. I will engage in some intense study, hopefully, I can
            > find an inter-net cafe, and make a significant contribution along
            > the way to the list. I look forward to catching up on some good
            > discussion around September.
            >
            > buona vacanza,
            >
            > Randall


            I wish you good vacation. I am also in the mountains for a few days. I
            have an answer in mind on your recent comment but until now no time to
            write it down - perhaps next week. I would recommend concentrating more
            on a special text which we discuss systematically. For me it is
            difficult to read all your English quotations and I need always also the
            German original since at the first moment reading the English text I do
            not understand anything. It is an awful thing with these translations
            and I cannot imagine how one can grasp Hegel's philosophy without
            reading also the German text.

            Best wishes,
            Beat Greuter
          • Beat Greuter
            ... The true expression of this simple immediacy is Pure Being (SL, WITH WHAT MUST THE SCIENCE BEGIN?, para 97). The expression immediacy as such is
            Message 5 of 30 , Aug 14, 2004
              Randall Preston Jackwak wrote:

              > Dear Beat, dear list,
              >
              > In the section WITH WHAT MUST THE SCIENCE BEGIN? Hegel suggest that
              > entering into philosophy requires beginning with a pure
              > indeterminacy. The achievment of "Pure Knowing" in the Phenomenolgy
              > of Spirit allows us to make this proper beginning; i.e. it allows us
              > to begin the Science of Logic with "simple immediacy." Figuring out
              > how exactly Pure Knowing withdraws into pure being, allowing us to
              > concieve the simple immediacy required to begin the SL is a
              > difficult enough task in itself, but you have kindly (and correctly)
              > added an additional complexity pointing out that Hegel also
              > suggests we can begin the Logic without presupposing the PhG (para
              > 98,99). The question is how can we arrive at this required pure
              > inderminacy without the PhG?
              > ...............
              > (a) Pure science presupposes liberation from the opposition of
              > consciousness.
              >
              > [Hegel]
              > "it was remarked that the phenomenology of spirit is the science of
              > consciousness, the exposition of it, and that consciousness has for
              > result the *Notion* of science, i.e. *pure knowing*. Logic, then,
              > has for its presupposition the science of manifested spirit, which
              > contains and demonstrates the necessity, and so the truth, of the
              > standpoint occupied by pure knowing and of its mediation. In this
              > science of manifested spirit the beginning is made from empirical,
              > sensuous consciousness and this is immediate knowledge in the strict
              > sense of the word; in that work there is discussed the significance
              > of this immediate knowledge... In the [Phenemenology of Spirit]
              > immediate consciousness is also the first and that which is
              > immediate in the science itself, and therefore the presupposition;
              > but in logic, the presupposition is that which has proved itself to
              > be the result of that phenomenological consideration -- the Idea as
              > pure knowledge." (Hegel, SL, trans Miller, para 93, p.69)
              >
              > (a) Notice first in the above para. 93, that the Notion of
              > Science is identified with pure knowing. Also take note that Hegel
              > suggests that it is the PhG that begins with an immediate
              > consciousness, the SL on the contrary, begins with an "achieved"
              > immediate or what Hegel will call a "simple immediacy". This is the
              > same point I made back in December in my outline of Sense Certainty.
              >
              > > > The significance of the Phenomenology of Spirit is that its
              > > > movement brings consciousness from the most elementary form of
              > > > consciousness, the stipulated indeterminacy of Sense Certainty,
              > > > to the the standpoint of true indeterminacy, "Being"(the
              > > > beginning of the Science of Logic)


              The true expression of this "simple immediacy" is 'Pure Being' (SL, WITH
              WHAT MUST THE SCIENCE BEGIN?, para 97). The expression 'immediacy' as
              such is still an expression of reflection since its other (mediation) is
              outside or opposite itself - its meaning is a reflection into or the
              negative of its opposite. 'Pure Being' as the true expression of "simple
              immediacy" must therefore also include mediation - it is the unity of
              absolute immediacy and absolute mediation and as this unity itself an
              absolute:

              "This pure being is the unity into which pure knowing withdraws, or, if
              this itself is still to be distinguished as form from its unity, then
              being is also the content of pure knowing. It is when taken in this way
              that this pure being, this absolute immediacy has equally the character
              of something absolutely mediated." (SL, WITH WHAT MUST THE SCIENCE
              BEGIN?, para 107, translated by A.V. Miller)

              Therefore, in 'Pure Being' 'mediation' is sublated in 'immediacy'.
              Absolute mediation of consciousness reached at the end of the
              Phenomenology is the absolute negation of otherness and becomes
              therefore its opposite - absolute immediacy. However, 'Mediation'
              sublates itself and only with this becomes 'immediacy':

              "Here [with the presuppostion of the result of the Phenomenology of
              Spirit] the beginning is made with being which is represented as having
              come to be through mediation, a mediation which is also a sublating of
              itself; and there is presupposed pure knowing as the outcome of finite
              knowing, of consciousness." (SL, WITH WHAT MUST THE SCIENCE BEGIN?, para 98)

              The immediacy of pure knowing or thought - 'Pure Being' - is the
              negation of finite knowing of consciousness which has its otherness or
              opposite outside itself. This way of negation for achieving the absolute
              we know from Eleatic, Platonic and Christian metaphysical tradition.
              With his Phenomenology Hegel moves in the same tradition: 'Pure Being'
              as a pure thought can only be achieved by the total negation of the
              negative (otherness). 'Pure Being' is 'invisible'. It is thought which
              lies beyond consciousness and its separation of what is. Arising from
              this abstraction being becomes undifferentiated, void of any
              determination and meaning since both require otherness and mediation
              apart from pure unity. Unlike metaphysical tradition Hegel does not
              think this pure unity as beyond oppositions but as the absolute unity or
              coincidence of opposition - the unity of immediacy and mediation. The
              reason for this is the systematic self-negation of consciousness in its
              otherness in the course of the Phenomenology of Spirt. This systematic
              negation is also a preservation of the essential forms of mediation of
              consciousness and not only a pure negation of the negative (otherness).
              Therefore, 'Pure Being' becomes not an ultimate reality (a real ground,
              origin, cause) of the differentiation which nevertheless remains outside
              this ultimate reality, but merely the most abstract and basic beginning
              of thought which keeps the moment of mediation with its otherness within
              itself:

              "If pure being is taken as the content of pure knowing, then the latter
              must stand back from its content, allowing it to have free play and not
              determining it further. Or again, if pure being is to be considered as
              the unity into which knowing has collapsed at the extreme point of its
              union with the object, then knowing itself has vanished in that unity,
              leaving behind no difference from the unity and hence nothing by which
              the latter could be determined. Nor is there anything else present, any
              content which could be used to make the beginning more
              determinate." (SL, WITH WHAT MUST THE SCIENCE BEGIN?, para 108)

              'Pure Being' taken as the content of 'Pure Knowing' is the ambivalent
              outcoming of the Phenomenology of Spirit. On the one side 'Pure Knowing'
              or thought as such has a content - 'Pure Being'. On the other side, in
              its simple immediacy 'Pure Being' has no longer a content, it is the
              negation of all contents of consciousness. This can only mean that 'Pure
              Being' as the unity of immediacy and mediation has the movement of
              determination within itself though (and because of) it is itself void of
              any determination, of any presupposition as regards content coming from
              outside. So, as Hegel shows in paragraph 111, 'Pure Being' is the limit
              between undeterminateness and determinateness and therefore - as
              identical with 'Pure Nothing' (undeterminateness) - 'Pure Becoming':

              "[Here (with the presupposition of the result of the Phenomenology of
              Spirit) the beginning is made with being which is represented as having
              come to be through mediation, a mediation which is also a sublating of
              itself; and there is presupposed pure knowing as the outcome of finite
              knowing, of consciousness.] But if no presupposition is to be made and
              the beginning itself is taken immediately, then its only determination
              is that it is to be the beginning of logic, of thought as such. All that
              is present is simply the resolve, which can also be regarded as
              arbitrary, that we propose to consider thought as such. Thus the
              beginning must be an absolute, or what is synonymous here, an abstract
              beginning; and so it may not suppose anything, must not be mediated by
              anything nor have a ground; rather it is to be itself the ground of the
              entire science. Consequently, it must be purely and simply an immediacy,
              or rather merely immediacy itself. Just as it cannot possess any
              determination relatively to anything else, so too it cannot contain
              within itself any determination, any content; for any such would be a
              distinguishing and an inter-relationship of distinct moments, and
              consequently a mediation. The beginning therefore is pure being."
              (SL, WITH WHAT MUST THE SCIENCE BEGIN?, paras 98/99)

              Hegel regards his Phenomenology as the presupposition for beginning the
              Logic. At the same time the beginning must be immediate without
              presupposition. However, already the Phenomenology as the sublation of
              all presuppositions of consciousness achieves this result. For Hegel
              there is no pure immediacy but only mediated immediacy as we have
              discussed above. Therefore, his Science is a circle. The beginning of
              the Logic is the immediate inwardness after the negation of the
              outwardness of consciousness, and the beginning of the Phenomenology of
              Spirit is the immediacy of Sense-certainty as a moment of consciousness
              presupposing and sublating 'Pure Being'. However, at the end of the
              Phenomenology (or the beginning of the Logic) 'Pure Being' is the truth
              of thought which contains in-itself (an sich) the mediation whereas in
              Sense-certainty 'Pure Being' is merely the immediate whole of being in
              which consciousness begins to look for truth (Wahr-Nehmung / Taking for
              true / perception). I guess this is the same you say in your comment I
              have cited above:

              "The significance of the Phenomenology of Spirit is that its movement
              brings consciousness from the most elementary form of consciousness, the
              stipulated indeterminacy of Sense Certainty, to the the standpoint of
              true indeterminacy, "Being" (the beginning of the Science of Logic)"

              So, Hegel is right to say:

              "[It is when taken in this way that this pure being, this absolute
              immediacy has equally the character of something absolutely mediated
              (Phenomenology).] But it is equally essential that it be taken only in
              the one-sided character in which it is pure immediacy, precisely because
              here it is the beginning. If it were not this pure indeterminateness, if
              it were determinate, it would have been taken as something mediated,
              something already carried a stage further: what is determinate implies
              an other to a first. (SL, WITH WHAT MUST THE SCIENCE BEGIN?, para 107).

              We must not postulate an 'either ... or ...' but the coincidence of
              presupposition (Phenomenology) and immediacy (Logic) of the beginning of
              thought. This is a contradiction which only reason can deal with. The
              understanding must necessarily fail since it separates otherness and
              identity from the beginning.

              This was an attempt to answer my own question. However, I think there
              are still unsolved problems in Hegel's double justification of the
              beginning of the Science of Logic. One of these problems could be
              Hegel's statement in paragraph 98 that "all that is present is simply
              the resolve, which can also be regarded as arbitrary, that we propose to
              consider thought as such". However, this seems to be rather a subjective
              argument. We moreover should ask why for instance the Eleatic School
              began to think pure being. For consciousness in those days (and perhaps
              also today) it was madness to say that ultimate reality is pure being,
              nothing else than being and only the unity of being and no otherness
              which depends on and cannot be without this unity. For such a beginning
              of (pure) philosophy there are perhaps also some objective reasons
              (presuppositions) which also can be gathered from the Phenomenology of
              Spirt showing the path of consciousness to truth systematically.

              So, I am looking forward to your answer. I think Hegel's text in "WITH
              WHAT MUST THE SCIENCE BEGIN?" is a good and comprehensible introduction
              to the core of his philosophy.

              Best wishes,
              Beat Greuter



              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Randall Preston Jackwak
              ... Hello Marco, Sorry for the delay! I just got back from a little village about 60 miles North East of Torino, the mountains seperate the border of France.
              Message 6 of 30 , Aug 15, 2004
                --- In hegel@yahoogroups.com, "Marco Sgarbi" <dio@m...> wrote:
                > Here in italy there are many internet cafe and wi-fi access point.
                >Where are you going? What kind of intense study? Sorry for my
                >curiosity...


                Hello Marco,

                Sorry for the delay! I just got back from a little village about 60
                miles North East of Torino, the mountains seperate the border of
                France. It was beautiful the last couple days, but it rained for the
                first four days. And actually there is an internet point near there,
                it belongs to a strange community called the Damanahure, they are
                basically some hippy-cult there is a 10 story underground temple
                there. Anyway, I couldn't figure out there hours, and I didn't
                finish the post I have been working on for 5 days, so I didn't get a
                chance to check my mail. Tuesday I will go to Sicily for two
                weeks! The "intense" study I am engaged in now is Hegel's
                development of Substance as Subject. Although, I have been thinking
                about 'Being' alot, and I even picked up Heidegger's 'Being and
                Time' for the first time in 3 years. I believe that soon I will be
                ready for a significant confrontation with Heiedegger flanking
                Hegel. I also am set to lay down my outline of the chapter on
                the 'Understanding' in the PhG. Tomorrow I will post my argument
                concerning Substance as Subject, and then I'm off to Sicily, I don't
                know what I will be inspired to study.(I'm sure I'll have better
                luck with an internet cafe!)


                My best,

                Randall
              • Randall Preston Jackwak
                ... days. I ... time to ... Hey Thanks! I just got your new message and I will read it over the next few days. For me it is ... also the ... text I do ...
                Message 7 of 30 , Aug 15, 2004
                  > I wish you good vacation. I am also in the mountains for a few
                  days. I
                  > have an answer in mind on your recent comment but until now no
                  time to
                  > write it down - perhaps next week.

                  Hey Thanks! I just got your new message and I will read it over the
                  next few days.





                  For me it is
                  > difficult to read all your English quotations and I need always
                  also the
                  > German original since at the first moment reading the English
                  text I do
                  > not understand anything.


                  Interesting Beat. I guess I have been taking your skills in English
                  for granted, and I guess I can only imagine just how difficult your
                  task of translation is . I am afraid I am about to lay down another
                  long post, with plenty of English quotations, but I do appreciate
                  very much your efforts. Do not worry about responding quickly to my
                  posts, I will be happy to hear any comments that you have, even
                  after a couple weeks or a month.


                  It is an awful thing with these translations
                  > and I cannot imagine how one can grasp Hegel's philosophy without
                  > reading also the German text.
                  >

                  My answer is that logic is more primordial than Language. But the
                  truth of the matter is that often I run into a phrase, or a word and
                  I want to compare the context of use with other sections of Hegels
                  Philosophy, and there are times where I think that there is
                  something similar being said, but possibly not exact. And then it is
                  at these times where I need help.


                  I would recommend concentrating more
                  > on a special text which we discuss systematically.


                  Right now I am taking a good look at the Preface to the
                  Phenomenology, maybe you or others could join me


                  Kind regards,

                  Randall
                • Randall Preston Jackwak
                  [Hegel] ... [Hegel] ... [Hegel] ... Dear List, In the above post, I have argued through the use of para. 95 and 108 of the SL, that the achievement of the
                  Message 8 of 30 , Aug 16, 2004
                    [Hegel]
                    >"Logic is pure science, that is, pure knowledge in the entire range
                    >of its development. But in the said result, this Idea has determined
                    >itself to be the certainty which has become truth, the certainty
                    >which, on the one hand, *no longer has the object over against it*
                    >but has internalised it, *knows it as its own self* — and, on the
                    >other hand, has given up the knowledge of itself as of something
                    >confronting the object of which it is only the annihilation, has
                    >divested itself of this subjectivity and is at one with its self-
                    >alienation." (Ibid)

                    >(d)Here, Hegel first repeats the achievement of pure knowing, and
                    >from the point of departure of pure knowing we have now entered into
                    >pure thought, a movement that "no longer has the object over
                    >against it" this is, of course repeating the fact that the
                    >seperation constitutive of knowledge has been overcome. Hegel then
                    >uses intensly artistic terminolgy that allows us to envisage the
                    >immanent movement from pure knowledge to the content itself
                    >spontaneously developing itself.

                    >After having "divested itself of this subjectivity"....[it] "is at
                    >one with its self-aleination."

                    >Question:
                    >(1) But first how does the Phenomenolgy of Spirit achieve
                    >this "liberation from the opposition of consciousness?"
                    >(2) And why does this Pure Knowing withdraw into a unity with Pure
                    >Being that begins the SL?

                    >Answer :
                    >(1)The separation is removed when consciousness takes itself as its
                    >object, or when consciousness attains a pure *self-consciousness*.
                    >Of course to understand how consciousness attains self-consciousness
                    >is the story of the PhG. But for the purpose of this discussion, we
                    >can examine the consequences of the achievement of Pure knowledge.

                    >(2) The answer to the second question involves the crucial
                    >transition from the Subjective Idea to being (this is the same topic
                    >of a hundred sovereigns, and it asserts that there is an *idea* that
                    >is immediately and inseperately bound up with the certainty of its
                    >*actual existence*).

                    >2. Pure Self-consciousness, the notion of Science or Pure Knowledge

                    >(a) In the Phenomenology of Spirit consciousness becomes aware of
                    >the self-relation that necessarily constitutes every phenomenal
                    >represention. This self-consciousness results in an identity
                    >between reference and referent, thus this self-consciousness
                    >eliminates any seperation between reference and referent, and so it
                    >is said to be immediate or pure knowledge.


                    >[Hegel]
                    >"Pure knowing as concentrated into this unity has sublated all
                    >reference to an other and to mediation; it is without any
                    >distinction and as thus distinctionless, ceases itself to be
                    >knowledge; what is present is only simple immediacy."(Hegel, SL,
                    >trans Miller, para 95 p.69)

                    >(b) "PURE KNOWING" CEASES ITSELF TO BE KNOWLEDGE what is present is
                    >only SIMPLE IMMEDIACY. Hegel suggests that Pure knowing is
                    >simply "knowing as such", meaning that it has achieved an identity
                    >of knowing and object known. Pure knowing's identity with its
                    >object signifies that true knowing is indistinquishable from its
                    >object. The distinction of reference and referent , knowing and
                    >object known is constitutive of knowledge, without this distinction
                    >it ceases itself to be knowledge.

                    >(b) But what about the transition from pure knowledge and
                    >its "simple immediacy" to being? Hegel gives us a clue to this
                    >question in the quote below from the EL when he suggests
                    >interogatively, "and what is that reference to self, but being?"

                    [Hegel]
                    >"For the notion, whatever other determination it may receive, is at
                    >least reference back on itself, which results by abolishing the
                    >intermediation, and thus is immediate. And what is that reference to
                    >self, but being? Certainly it would be strange if the notion, the
                    >very inmost of mind, if even the `Ego', or above all the concrete
                    >totality we call God, were not rich enough to include so poor a
                    >category as being, the very poorest and most abstract of all. For,
                    >if we look at the thought it holds, nothing can be more
                    >insignificant than being. And yet there may be something still more
                    >insignificant than being that which at first sight is perhaps
                    >supposed to be, an external and sensible existence, like that of the
                    >paper lying before me" (Hegel, EL, trans Wallace, para 51, p.85)


                    >Hegel suggest that the only thing more insignificant than being is
                    >appearances ("that which...is ..supposed to be, an external sensible
                    >existence). Here is a good comparison between the beginning of the
                    >SL and the beginning of the PhG.


                    >Now, what I am trying to do is make the conection between the
                    >general endeavour of philosophy to demonstrate a thought that is
                    >inseperable from being (or actuality) and Hegel's achievement of
                    >pure knowledge in the PhG and its transition to pure being.

                    >We learn from the above that pure knowledge (or the notion), the
                    >identity of knowing and object known, is really nothing more than an
                    >abstract reference to self (without determinate quality). And thus
                    >this grand achievement of the endeavour of philosophy, the identity
                    >of thought and being, only ammounts to a pure indeterminacy. But as
                    >we will find out this is precisely what beginning of philosophy
                    >requires.

                    [Hegel]

                    >"..pure being is the unity into which pure knowing withdraws, or, if
                    >this itself is still to be distinguished as form from its unity,
                    >then being is also the content of pure knowing. It is when taken in
                    >this way that this pure being, this absolute immediacy has equally
                    >the character of something absolutely mediated. But it is equally
                    >essential that it be taken only in the one-sided character in which
                    >it is pure immediacy, precisely because here it is the beginning. If
                    >it were not this pure indeterminateness, if it were determinate, it
                    >would have been taken as something mediated, something already
                    >carried a stage further: what is determinate implies an other to a
                    >first. Therefore, it lies in the very nature of a beginning that it
                    >must be being and nothing else. To enter into philosophy, therefore,
                    >calls for no other preparations, no further reflections or points of
                    >connection." (Hegel, SL, trans. Miller, para. 107, p. 72)


                    >O.k for me we are now at the crucial juncture between the
                    >Phenomenolgy and the SL.

                    >[Hegel]

                    >"Pure knowing yields only this negative determination, that the
                    >beginning is to be abstract. If pure being is taken as the content
                    >of pure knowing, then the latter must stand back from its content,
                    >allowing it to have free play and not determining it further. Or
                    >again, if pure being is to be considered as the unity into which
                    >knowing has collapsed at the extreme point of its union with the
                    >object, then knowing itself has vanished in that unity, leaving
                    >behind no difference from the unity and hence nothing by which the
                    >latter could be determined. Nor is there anything else present, any
                    >content which could be used to make the beginning more determinate."
                    >(Hegel, SL, para 108, p.73)

                    >Take particular note to: "KNOWLEDGE HAS COLLAPSED AT THE EXTREAM
                    >POINT OF ITS UNION WITH THE OBJECT" again reinforcing the fact that
                    >pure knowledge is not really knowledge at all. And also we again get
                    >a reference to the required indeterminate beginning.

                    Dear List,

                    In the above post, I have argued through the use of para. 95 and 108
                    of the SL, that the achievement of the Phenomenology of Spirit, Pure
                    knowing (or Pure self-recognition in absolute otherness), actually
                    ceases itself to be knowledge when its knowing achieves an identity
                    with its object; moreover after divesting the seperation between
                    knowing and object known what is now present is "the very Substance
                    of Spirit" (or simple immediacy), and only now have we entered into
                    the element or Aether in which Science properly develops and
                    determines itself. What I now would like to develop is the relation
                    between the movement of this "very Substance of Spirit"'s self-
                    determination, and Hegel's requirement of grasping Substance as
                    Subject. The key themes will revolve around the determination
                    (movement, seperation, otherness, mediation) that immanates from the
                    achieved pure indeterminacy of Pure Knowing.

                    In the preface to the PhG, Hegel writes:

                    "Pure self-recogniton in absolute otherness, this Aether as such, is
                    the ground and soil of Science or knowledge in general. The
                    beginning of philosophy presupposes or requires that consciousness
                    should dwell in this element. But this element itself achieves its
                    own perfection and transparency only through the movement of its
                    becoming. It is pure spirituality as the universal that has the
                    form of simple immediacy. This simple being in its existential
                    form is the soil [of Science], it is thinking which has its being in
                    Spirit alone. Because this element, this immediacy of Spirit, is
                    the *very substance of Spirit*, it is the transfigured essence,
                    reflection which is itself simple, and which is for itself immediacy
                    as such, being that is reflected into itself. Science on its part
                    requires that self-consicousness should have raised itself into this
                    Aether in order to be able to live—and [actually] to live—with
                    Science as Science. Conversely, the individual has the right to
                    demand that Science should at least provide him with the ladder to
                    this standpoint, should show him this standpoint within himself..."
                    (Hegel, PhG, trans Miller, para 26 p. 14)

                    Here, I think Hegel recapitualates nicely a few of the points that I
                    layed down in my previous post.

                    -"Pure self-recognition in absolute otherness" is the Pure knowledge
                    achieved by the Phenomenology of Spirit.

                    -"The beginning of Philosophy" or the Science of Logic "presupposes
                    or requires that consciousness should dwell in this element"


                    However, Hegel does add some additional information when he suggests
                    that:

                    -"this element itself achieves its own perfection and transparency
                    only through the movement of its becoming"

                    This comment is referring to the actual development of the Science
                    of Logic itself.

                    With the achievement of Pure Knowing, Science arrives on the scene
                    in its...

                    "...pure immediacy, precisely because here it is the beginning. If
                    >it were not this pure indeterminateness, if it were determinate, it
                    >would have been taken as something mediated, something already
                    >carried a stage further: what is determinate implies an other to a
                    >first. Therefore, it lies in the very nature of a beginning that it
                    >must be being and nothing else."


                    Also:


                    >"[the Idea] has divested itself of this subjectivity and is at one
                    with its >self-alienation."

                    The achieved "Substance of Spirit" (simple immediacy) only achieves
                    determinacy through the movement of the Science of Logic. And the
                    nature of this movement is a self-alienation and it is completly
                    autonomous or self-delveloping (i.e. no outside content is allowed).


                    So, even though I am arguing that the structure of knowledge has at
                    the point of Pure knowing collapsed( i.e. finite knowing of
                    consciousness has been overcome), I want to stress that when we
                    enter into the Pure element of Science (the Notion), we still must
                    develop this achieved "substance of spirit" as *Subject*.

                    Hegel's states in the Preface of the PhG:

                    "That the True is actual only as system, or that Substance is
                    essentially Subject, is expressed in the representation of the
                    Absolute as Spirit"

                    To develop what Hegel means by "Substance is essentially Subject",
                    let's take a closer look at the Preface of the PhG.

                    I. Substance is Subject

                    "The true shape in which truth exists can only be the scientific
                    system of such truth. To help bring philosophy closer to the form
                    of Science, to the goal where it can lay aside the title `love of
                    knowing' and be actual knowing—that is what I have set myself to
                    do." (para 5)

                    Hopefully it is now clear that in the quoted paragraph
                    above, "Actual knowing" is not really knowing at all--as stated
                    previously-- with achievement of Actual knowing, the constituent
                    structure (seperation) of knowledge has collapsed, additionally this
                    achievement of actual knowing allows us to enter into "the
                    scientific system of truth".

                    "the true shape of truth is scientific—or, what is the same thing,
                    to maintain that truth has only the *Notion* as the element of its
                    existence—"
                    (Hegel, PhG, trans. Miller, Para 6. p.4)

                    In the Phenomenology of Spirit we start from the forms of
                    aquaintence (sense knowledge, perception, figurate conception) of
                    Phenomenal consciousness, or what is called "appearances", and we
                    then advance to "the very inmost of mind", or Pure knowing (or Pure
                    self-recognition in absolute otherness). It is only at this point,
                    when we have divested the seperation between knowing and object
                    known, that we have simultaneously (or coincidently) entered into
                    (or collapsed into) the actuality of the element of the *Notion*.

                    The topic of this post is that "everything turns on grasping and
                    expressing the True, not only as Substance, but equally as
                    Subject". So the question is: after we have achieved Pure knowing,
                    how is it that we can grasp "the simple immediacy" of "the very
                    substance of Spirit" as Subject?

                    The approximate answer involves understanding that when Science
                    arrives on the scene in its simple immediacy (as the substance of
                    Spirit), it is only a moment, and it must achieve its own perfection
                    and transparency (or determination) through the movement of its
                    becoming.

                    When Hegel suggests that Substance is Subject he is talking about
                    the immanent development of Autonomous Reason.


                    In the EnL, Hegel outlines two "defects" of Empiricism which may
                    shed light on how the Notion is to be concieved as Subject:

                    "The method of empirical science exhibits two defects. The first is
                    that the Universal or general principle contained in it, the genus,
                    or kind, etc., is , on its own account indeterminate and vague, and
                    therefore not on its own account connected with the particulars or
                    the details. Either is external and accidental to the others. The
                    second defect is that the beginnings are in every case data and
                    postulates, neither accounted for nor deduced. In both these points
                    the form of necessity fails to get its due. Hence reflection ,
                    whenever it sets itself to remedy these defects, becomes speculative
                    thinking, the thinking proper to philosophy." (Hegel, EnL, para 9,
                    p.13)

                    Hegel suggest above, that Empiricism is defective because:

                    (1) The form and content are external and accidental to one another.
                    (2) Empiricism relies on an unaccounted for Given

                    The "defect" of the differentation between form and content in the
                    scientific methodology of empiricism is correlate with the
                    seperation of knowing from the object known that is constituitive of
                    phenomenal consciousness. And the "defect" of the unaccounted for
                    given mentioned above, is also correlate with the limits of
                    phenomenal consciousness, a knowing in which the standard of truth
                    resides in the independent given comprising knowing's referent.

                    Of course the above "defects" of traditional scientific method are
                    outlined in much more detail in the INTRODUCTION TO THE SCIENCE OF
                    LOGIC. But I like the above passage because Hegel states:

                    "reflection, whenever it sets itself to remedy these defects,
                    becomes *speculative* thinking, the thinking proper to philosophy"

                    So in terms of Hegel's attempt to "remedy" these "defects" (of the
                    seperation of form and content and the reliance on a given), he will
                    use *speculative terminology* such as:

                    -"It is the movement of positing itself, or is the mediation of the
                    self-othering with itself"

                    -"it is that which relates itself to itself and is determinate"

                    -"it is other-being and being-for-self, and in this determinateness,
                    or in its self-externality, abides within itself; in other words, it
                    is in and for itself."

                    Also take into consideration that the "self-alienating" terminology
                    mentioned earlier is clearly speculative.

                    If we take into consideration para. 9 in the EL mentioned above, the
                    INTRODUCTION of the SL, and at the same time consider the
                    achievement of Pure Knowledge that I have outlined, we can easily
                    argue that *any method that maintains a distinction between form and
                    content is not speculative thinking*. Furthermore, any method that
                    relies on an unaccounted for given is not speculative thinking. And
                    thus any theory that maintains a distinction between form and
                    content or is reliant on an unaccounted for given, does not grasp
                    Substance as Subject as Hegel requires.


                    [End part 1]

                    All the Best,

                    Randall
                  • Randall Preston Jackwak
                    Dear list, Here is Hegel s formal introduction of his `Substance is Subject line of argument: In my view, which can be justified only by the exposition of
                    Message 9 of 30 , Aug 16, 2004
                      Dear list,


                      Here is Hegel's formal introduction of his `Substance is Subject'
                      line of argument:

                      "In my view, which can be justified only by the exposition of the
                      system itself, everything turns on grasping and expressing the
                      true, not only as Substance, but equally as Subject. At the same
                      time, it is to be observed that substantiality embraces the
                      universal, or the immediacy of knowledge itself, as well as that
                      which is being or immediacy for knowledge." (Hegel, PhG, trans.
                      Miller, para 17)

                      First let's take note of the following:

                      1. Being: is defined in para. 17 as an immediacy that is *for*
                      knowledge
                      2. Universal: is defined in para. 17 as immediacy *of* knowledge
                      itself

                      and later Hegel will introduce:

                      3. Identity: Thought united with Being


                      "If the conception of God as the one Substance shocked the age in
                      which it was proclaimed, the reason for this was on the one hand an
                      instinctive awareness that, in this definition, self-consciousness
                      was only submerged and not preserved.On the other hand, the opposite
                      view, which clings to thought as thought, to universality as such,
                      is the very same simplicity, is undifferentiated unmoved
                      substatiality.And if, thirdly, thought does unite itself with the
                      being of Substance, and apprehends immediacy or intution as
                      thinking, the question is still whether this intellectual intuition
                      does not again fall back into inert simplicity, and does not depict
                      actuality itself in a non-actual manner." (PhG, Preface, para17)


                      The above is the second half of para. 17, let's now correlate the
                      second half of para 17 with the above categories outlined above
                      (Being, Universal, Identity). Also take note that para 17 roughly
                      corresponds with THE ATTITUDES OF THOUGHT TO OBJECTIVITY that Hegel
                      outlines in the EnL (Chapters III, IV, V).

                      1. Being
                      "If the conception of God as the one Substance shocked the age in
                      which it was proclaimed, the reason for this was on the one hand an
                      instinctive awareness that, in this definition, self-consciousness
                      was only submerged and not preserved."

                      a. God as Substance (metaphysics)

                      (1) It is clear that Hegel is suggesting that concieving God as the
                      one Substance does not constitute grasping substance as Subject.
                      Instead, from the above depicted attitude we advance straight upon
                      an object, thus here God is an immediacy *for* knowledge. Clearly
                      there remains here a seperation between knowing and object known.
                      Thus the antithesis between subject and object is unresolved, and
                      consequently, the seperation between form and content remains.
                      Furthermore, we can add that this attitude relies on an unaccounted
                      for given (a Metaphysical "beyond").

                      (a) Later in the Preface Hegel will say:

                      "the word `God'. This by itself is a meaningless sound, a mere
                      name; it is only the predicate that says what God is, gives Him
                      content and meaning. Only in the end of the proposition does the
                      empty beginning become actual knowledge. This being so, it is not
                      clear why one does not speak merely of the eternal, of the moral
                      world order, and so on, or as the ancients did, or pure notions
                      like `being', `the One', and so on, in short, of that which gives
                      the meaning without adding the meaningless sound [of the word God]
                      as well."

                      (b) Hegel answers his own question a few sentences later suggesting
                      that when we add "the meaningless sound" `God' as in the
                      proposition, "God is the Eternal" we anticipate the need to
                      represent the Absolute as Subject.

                      "But it is just this word [God] that indicates that what is posited
                      is not a being [i.e. something that merly is], or essence, or a
                      universal in general, but rather soemthing that is reflected into
                      itself, as Subject. But at the same time it is only anticipated.
                      The Subject is assumed as a fixed point to which, as thier support,
                      the predicates are affixed by a movement belonging to the knower of
                      this Subject, and which is not regarded as belonging to the fixed
                      point itself; yet it is only through this movement that the content
                      could be represented as Subject. The way in which this movement has
                      been brought about is such that it cannot belong to the fixed point;
                      yet, after this point has been presupposed, the nature of the
                      movement cannot really be other than what it is, it can only be
                      external. Hence the mere anticipation that the Absolute is Subject
                      is not only not the actuality of this Notion, but it even makes
                      actuality impossible; for the anticipation posits the subject as an
                      inert point, whereas the actuality is self-movement." (Hegel, PhG,
                      trans Miller, para 23, p.13)

                      (1)But Hegel is clearly suggesting here that merely anticipating the
                      need to represent the Absolute as Subject is *not* enough, and in
                      the end this method actually prevents us from grasping Substance as
                      Subject because of externality of its procedure.

                      (c) Additionally it was the general assumption of this metaphysical
                      method that a knowledge of the Absolute was gained by assigning
                      predicates to it. In doing so Hegel suggests that this Metaphysical
                      method never went beyond the province of the analytic
                      understanding. Without preliminary inquiry this method of the old
                      Metaphysics adopted the abstract categories of thought, and ranked
                      them as predicates of truth. (EL, para 28) The thinking of the old
                      metaphysical system was finite. Its whole mode of action was
                      regulated by categories, the limits of which it believed to be
                      permanently fixed and not subject to any further negation. This is
                      in contrast to *speculative* thought, the nature of which is to be
                      infinite:

                      "The nominal explanation of calling a thing finite is that it has an
                      end, that it exists up to a certain point only, where it comes into
                      contact with, and is limited by, its other. The finite therefore
                      subsists in reference to its other, which is its negation and
                      presents itself as its limit. Now thought is always in its own
                      sphere; its relations are with itself. Generally speaking, an
                      object means a something else, it has an object which is at the same
                      time no object: in other words, its objectivity is suppressed and
                      transformed into an idea. Thought as thought, therefore in its
                      unmixed nature involves no limits; it is finite only when it keeps
                      to limited categories, which it believes to be ulitmate. Infinite
                      or speculative thought, on the contrary, while it no less defines,
                      does in the very act of limiting and defining make that defect
                      vanish. And so infinity is not, as most frequently happens, to be
                      concieved as an abstract away and away for ever and ever, but in the
                      simple manner previously indicated." (Hegel, EL, para 28, p.49)

                      (1)Hegel is of course talking about the infinite (and determinate)
                      nature of the self-thinking thought of the Logic.

                      (d) Objects of Reason cannot be defined by finite predicates:

                      "It was therefore the main question of the pre-Kantian metaphysics
                      to discover whether predicates of the kind mentioned were to be
                      ascribed to its objects. Now these predicates are after all only
                      limited formulae of the understanding which, instead of expressing
                      the truth, merely impose a limit. More than this, it should be
                      noted that the chief feature of the method lay in `assigning'
                      or `attributing' predicates to the object that was to be cognized,
                      for example, to God. But attribution is more than an external
                      reflection about the object: the predicates by which the object is
                      to be determined are supplied from the resources of picture-thought,
                      and are applied in a mechanical way. Whereas, if we are to have
                      genuine cognition, the object must characterize its own self and not
                      derive its predicates from without. Even supposing we follow the
                      method of predicating, the mind cannot help feeling that predicates
                      of this sort fail to exhaust the object. From the same point of
                      view the Orientals are quite correct in calling God the many-named
                      or the myriad-named One. One after another of these finite
                      categories leaves the soul unsatisfied, and the Oriental sage is
                      compelled unceasingly to seek for more and more of such predicates"
                      (EL, para 28, p.49-50)

                      (e) And one last very effective argument against the inherently
                      limited nature of the propositional statements of this Metaphysical
                      attitude is the argument that Jacobi puts forth in his attack
                      against knowledge in general.

                      "In his attack knowldge is taken to mean knowledge of the finite
                      only, a process of thought from one condition in a sereios to
                      another, each of which is at once conditioning and conditioned.
                      According to such a view, to explain and to get the notion of
                      anything, is the same as to show it to be derived from something
                      else. Whatever such knowledge embraces , consequently, is partial,
                      dependent, and finite, while the infinite or true, i.e. God, lies
                      outside the mechanical interconnection to which knowledge is said to
                      be confined. It is important to observe that, while Kant makes the
                      finite nature of the categories consist mainly in the formal
                      circumstance that they are subjective, Jacobi discusses the
                      Categories in their won proper character, and pronounces them to be
                      in thier very import finite." (Hegel, EL, para 62)


                      2.Universal
                      "On the other hand, the opposite view, which clings to thought as
                      thought, to universality as such, is the very same simplicity, is
                      undifferentiated unmoved substantiality."

                      (a) Thought as thought (reflection)

                      (1) Thoughts, according to this theory, although universal and
                      necessary categories, are only our thoughts—separated by an
                      impassable gulf from the thing, as it exists apart form our
                      knowledge.

                      - Thus this reflective method leaves a seperation between form and
                      content
                      - Additionally, in both Kant and Fichte's version of this theory,
                      they rely on an unaccounted for
                      - given. For Kant it is the "in-itself" and for Fichte it is "the
                      impulse from without".

                      *The true importance of Critical thought will be the actual mode of
                      advance(dialectical) for Speculative thought, but this is another
                      topic.

                      3.Identity
                      "And if, thirdly, thought does unite itself with the being of
                      Substance, and apprehends immediacy or intution as thinking, the
                      question is still whether this intellectual intuition does not again
                      fall back into inert simplicity, and does not depict actuality
                      itself in a non-actual manner." (para17)

                      (a) Identity of thought and being (intellectual intuition)

                      "This immediate knowledge, consists in knowing that the Infinite,
                      the Eternal, the God which is in our Idea, really is: or it asserts
                      that in our consciousness there is immediately and inseperately
                      bound up with this idea the certainty of its actual being.
                      To seek to controvert these maxims of immediate knowledge is the
                      last thing philosophers would think of....From a formal point of
                      view, there is a peculiar interest in the maxim that the being of
                      God is immediately and inseparately bound up with the thought of
                      God, that objectivity is bound up with the subjectivity which the
                      thought originally presents...it is the endeavour of philosophy to
                      *prove* such a unity, to show that it lies in the very nature of
                      thought and subjectivity, to be inseperable form being and
                      objectivity. "(Hegel, EL, para 64)

                      (1) The Passage from thought to being is precisely what philosophy
                      would like to prove. However, the difference between philosophy and
                      the asservations of immediate knowledge centers on the exclusive
                      attitude which immediate knowledge adopts, and so even though it has
                      a common goal it sets itself up against philosophy.

                      "Its distinctive doctrine is that immediate knowledge alone, to the
                      total exclusion of mediation, can possess a content which is true.
                      This exclusiveness is enough to show that the theory is a relapse of
                      the metaphysical understanding...And thus it is really a relapse
                      into the habit of external mediation..." (EnL, para 65)

                      -So immediate or intuitive knowledge because it attempts to advance
                      directly to `being' does not resolve the seperation between form and
                      content.
                      - Additionally this method relies on an unaccounted for given in the
                      form of the self-evidence of the immediate.

                      "It is the passage from the subjective Idea to being which forms
                      the main concern of the doctrine of immediate knowledge. A primary
                      and self-evident interconnection is declared to exist between our
                      Idea and being. Yet precisely this central point of transition,
                      utterly irrespective of any connections which show in experience,
                      clearly involves a mediation." (EL,para 69)

                      (2) Mediation
                      Hegel is suggesting that *mediation* is required in order to take
                      the speculative leap from thought to being. And with the
                      identification of this element of mediation, we are one step closer
                      to grasping substance as subject.

                      "For what this theory asserts is that truth lies neither in the Idea
                      as a merely subjective thought, nor in mere being on its own account—
                      that mere being per se, a being that is not of the Idea, is the
                      sensible finite being of the world. Now all this only affirms,
                      without demonstration, that the Idea has truth only by means of
                      being, and being has truth only by means of the Idea. The maxim of
                      immediate knowledge rejects an indefinite empty immediacy (and such
                      is abstract being, or pure unity taken by itself), and affirms
                      insead the unity of the Idea with being. And it acts rightly in so
                      doing. But it is stupid not to see that the unity of distinct terms
                      or modes is not merely an immediate unity, i.e. unity and empty and
                      indeterminate, but that—with equal emphasis—the one term is shown to
                      have truth only as mediate through the other—or, if the phrase be
                      preferred, that either term is only mediated with truth through the
                      other." (Hegel, EL para 70, p.104-105)

                      [End of part 2]

                      All the best,

                      Randall
                    • Beat Greuter
                      ... I think that the connection of your cited passages with later paragraphs in the Preface of the Phenomenology and also with the introductory passages of the
                      Message 10 of 30 , Aug 18, 2004
                        Randall Preston Jackwak wrote:

                        > Dear list,
                        >
                        > Here is Hegel's formal introduction of his `Substance is Subject'
                        > line of argument:
                        >
                        > "In my view, which can be justified only by the exposition of the
                        > system itself, everything turns on grasping and expressing the
                        > true, not only as Substance, but equally as Subject. At the same
                        > time, it is to be observed that substantiality embraces the
                        > universal, or the immediacy of knowledge itself, as well as that
                        > which is being or immediacy for knowledge." (Hegel, PhG, trans.
                        > Miller, para 17)
                        >
                        > First let's take note of the following:
                        >
                        > 1. Being: is defined in para. 17 as an immediacy that is *for*
                        > knowledge
                        > 2. Universal: is defined in para. 17 as immediacy *of* knowledge
                        > itself
                        >
                        > and later Hegel will introduce:
                        >
                        > 3. Identity: Thought united with Being
                        >
                        >
                        > "If the conception of God as the one Substance shocked the age in
                        > which it was proclaimed, the reason for this was on the one hand an
                        > instinctive awareness that, in this definition, self-consciousness
                        > was only submerged and not preserved.On the other hand, the opposite
                        > view, which clings to thought as thought, to universality as such,
                        > is the very same simplicity, is undifferentiated unmoved
                        > substatiality.And if, thirdly, thought does unite itself with the
                        > being of Substance, and apprehends immediacy or intution as
                        > thinking, the question is still whether this intellectual intuition
                        > does not again fall back into inert simplicity, and does not depict
                        > actuality itself in a non-actual manner." (PhG, Preface, para17)
                        >
                        >
                        > The above is the second half of para. 17, let's now correlate the
                        > second half of para 17 with the above categories outlined above
                        > (Being, Universal, Identity). Also take note that para 17 roughly
                        > corresponds with THE ATTITUDES OF THOUGHT TO OBJECTIVITY that Hegel
                        > outlines in the EnL (Chapters III, IV, V).
                        >
                        > 1. Being
                        > "If the conception of God as the one Substance shocked the age in
                        > which it was proclaimed, the reason for this was on the one hand an
                        > instinctive awareness that, in this definition, self-consciousness
                        > was only submerged and not preserved."
                        >
                        > a. God as Substance (metaphysics)
                        >
                        > (1) It is clear that Hegel is suggesting that concieving God as the
                        > one Substance does not constitute grasping substance as Subject.
                        > Instead, from the above depicted attitude we advance straight upon
                        > an object, thus here God is an immediacy *for* knowledge. Clearly
                        > there remains here a seperation between knowing and object known.
                        > Thus the antithesis between subject and object is unresolved, and
                        > consequently, the seperation between form and content remains.
                        > Furthermore, we can add that this attitude relies on an unaccounted
                        > for given (a Metaphysical "beyond").
                        >
                        > (a) Later in the Preface Hegel will say:
                        >
                        > "the word `God'. This by itself is a meaningless sound, a mere
                        > name; it is only the predicate that says what God is, gives Him
                        > content and meaning. Only in the end of the proposition does the
                        > empty beginning become actual knowledge. This being so, it is not
                        > clear why one does not speak merely of the eternal, of the moral
                        > world order, and so on, or as the ancients did, or pure notions
                        > like `being', `the One', and so on, in short, of that which gives
                        > the meaning without adding the meaningless sound [of the word God]
                        > as well."
                        >
                        > (b) Hegel answers his own question a few sentences later suggesting
                        > that when we add "the meaningless sound" `God' as in the
                        > proposition, "God is the Eternal" we anticipate the need to
                        > represent the Absolute as Subject.
                        >
                        > "But it is just this word [God] that indicates that what is posited
                        > is not a being [i.e. something that merly is], or essence, or a
                        > universal in general, but rather soemthing that is reflected into
                        > itself, as Subject. But at the same time it is only anticipated.
                        > The Subject is assumed as a fixed point to which, as thier support,
                        > the predicates are affixed by a movement belonging to the knower of
                        > this Subject, and which is not regarded as belonging to the fixed
                        > point itself; yet it is only through this movement that the content
                        > could be represented as Subject. The way in which this movement has
                        > been brought about is such that it cannot belong to the fixed point;
                        > yet, after this point has been presupposed, the nature of the
                        > movement cannot really be other than what it is, it can only be
                        > external. Hence the mere anticipation that the Absolute is Subject
                        > is not only not the actuality of this Notion, but it even makes
                        > actuality impossible; for the anticipation posits the subject as an
                        > inert point, whereas the actuality is self-movement." (Hegel, PhG,
                        > trans Miller, para 23, p.13)
                        >
                        > (1)But Hegel is clearly suggesting here that merely anticipating the
                        > need to represent the Absolute as Subject is *not* enough, and in
                        > the end this method actually prevents us from grasping Substance as
                        > Subject because of externality of its procedure.
                        >
                        > (c) Additionally it was the general assumption of this metaphysical
                        > method that a knowledge of the Absolute was gained by assigning
                        > predicates to it. In doing so Hegel suggests that this Metaphysical
                        > method never went beyond the province of the analytic
                        > understanding. Without preliminary inquiry this method of the old
                        > Metaphysics adopted the abstract categories of thought, and ranked
                        > them as predicates of truth. (EL, para 28) The thinking of the old
                        > metaphysical system was finite. Its whole mode of action was
                        > regulated by categories, the limits of which it believed to be
                        > permanently fixed and not subject to any further negation. This is
                        > in contrast to *speculative* thought, the nature of which is to be
                        > infinite:


                        I think that the connection of your cited passages with later paragraphs
                        in the Preface of the Phenomenology and also with the introductory
                        passages of the Science of Logic in "With What Must Science Begin?" is
                        much more important than your reference to "THE ATTITUDES OF THOUGHT TO
                        OBJECTIVITY" ("Preliminary Notion") at the beginning of the Encyclopaedia:


                        "Usually, the Subject is first made the basis, as the objective, fixed
                        self; thence the necessary movement to the multiplicity of
                        determinations or Predicates proceeds. Here, that Subject is replaced by
                        the knowing 'I' itself [speculative thought / pure knowing], which links
                        the Predicates with the Subject holding them. But, since that first
                        Subject enters into the determinations themselves and is their soul, the
                        second Subject, viz. the knowing 'I', still finds in the Predicate what
                        it thought it had finished with and got away from, and from which it
                        hoped to return into itself; and, instead of being able to function as
                        the determining agent in the movement of predication, arguing back and
                        forth whether to attach this or that Predicate, it is really still
                        occupied with the self of the content, having to remain associated with
                        it, instead of being for itself." (Phenomenology of Spirit, para 60,
                        translated by A.V. Miller)

                        "To illustrate what has been said: in the proposition 'God is being',
                        the Predicate is 'being'; it has the significance of something
                        substantial in which the Subject is dissolved. 'Being' is here meant to
                        be not a Predicate, but rather the essence; it seems, consequently, that
                        God ceases to be what he is from his position in the proposition, viz. a
                        fixed Subject. Here thinking, instead of making progress in the
                        transition from Subject to Predicate, in reality feels itself checked by
                        the loss of the Subject, and, missing it, is thrown back on to the
                        thought of the Subject. Or, since the Predicate itself has been
                        expressed as a Subject, as the being or essence which exhausts the
                        nature of the Subject, thinking finds the Subject immediately in the
                        Predicate; and now, having returned into itself in the Predicate,
                        instead of being in a position where it has freedom for argument, it is
                        still absorbed in the content, or at least is faced with the demand that
                        it should be." (Phenomenology of Spirit, para 62)

                        "We cannot really extract any further determination or positive content
                        for the beginning from the fact that it is the beginning of philosophy.
                        For here at the start, where the subject matter itself is not yet to
                        hand, philosophy is an empty word or some assumed, unjustified
                        conception. Pure knowing yields only this negative determination, that
                        the beginning is to be abstract. If pure being is taken as the content
                        of pure knowing, then the latter must stand back from its content,
                        allowing it to have free play and not determining it further." (SL,
                        "With What Must Science Begin?", para 108, translated by A.V. Miller)


                        Hegel emphasizes the emancipation of the Subject opposite to Being or
                        Substance: The Subject of the Substance must not be usurped
                        and incapacitated by the Subject of the investigation - the knowing 'I'.
                        This is the basic lesson of Hegel's philosophy, however, at the same
                        time - at least it seems so - the most difficult one for the understanding.

                        Best wishes,
                        Beat Greuter


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