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Re: [hegel] Re: the death of God

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  • greuterb
    ... Alan, I think with this Bob and Paul and John would agree: there is only a difference in form (picture thinking - speculative thinking) but not in content.
    Message 1 of 168 , Jul 28, 2011
      Am 27.07.2011 13:56, Alan writes:

      > Hi Beat,
      >
      > I should have said "God or the divine is sterile" since religion is man's
      > creation.
      >
      > In any case, the reason I call this a Hegelian joke goes back to how Hegel
      > reminds us that we are to provide the concept of the various terms we
      > employ. Thus, there is the common and speculative conception of the
      > absolute
      > just as there are two conceptions of the truth. Hegel's conception of the
      > absolute shares with the common conception the idea of an absolute content
      > being unconditioned. But he does not share the view that an absolute
      > content
      > is something that lies beyond finite existence. This difference, in my
      > view,
      > is revealed by a difference between abstract and speculative form, the
      > latter being the infinite form of an identity in difference that
      > requires a
      > human mind employing a dual focus. You, I believe, make a simliar point in
      > your post if we just drop my reference to dual focus.
      >
      > So if we move away from religion and consider perception, the thing of
      > perception is meant to be absolute. But at the point where perceptual
      > consciousness breaksdown we get two moments - being-for-self and
      > being-for-another circling in a dialectic. The moment of creation is the
      > speculative insight that recollects or sees again but as if for the first
      > time the identity in this cycling of differences as the unconditioned
      > universal. What strikes perceptual consciousness as some sort of
      > nonsense is
      > meant to be taken up by the reader as a newfound coherence: the
      > unconditioned universal. This new content comes with insight into the
      > absolute form of the movement.
      >
      > Returning to Hegel's point about the same content, both religion and
      > philosophy attend to spiritual content. They both attend to being imbued
      > with significance. But religion explains the presence of such a curious
      > content by picturing a god who creates the world - thus accounting for its
      > spiritual significance - whereas philosophy actually creates this
      > world out
      > of its own speculative resources - a different way of accounting for
      > spiritual significance. More properly put Hegel makes the absolute our
      > abode
      > rather than a magnificent god in part because he wants to comprehend what
      > religion merely pictures: the creation of order out of chaos or the
      > emergence of the spiritual as a human achievement.
      >



      Alan,

      I think with this Bob and Paul and John would agree: there is only a
      difference in form (picture thinking - speculative thinking) but not in
      content. More, if you do not deny that at least Christian religion has
      an explicit speculative base then Hegel's philosophy has 'only' elevated
      and developed the rational within religion in logical form, in the
      Concept. Further, if you do not deny that religion is an important
      manifestation of human spirit then Hegel's philosophy would be the
      culmination point of this manifestation. Is this true?

      Regards,
      Beat Greuter



      > So as you say, religion may have lost its absoluteness for explaining the
      > world, but I would not view this merely as an historical outcome but one
      > which Hegel views as having conceptual import. We have moved beyond
      > telling
      > pleasing stories about creation to recognizing our destiny as creators.
      >
      > regards, Alan
      >
      > From: hegel@yahoogroups.com <mailto:hegel%40yahoogroups.com>
      > [mailto:hegel@yahoogroups.com <mailto:hegel%40yahoogroups.com>] On
      > Behalf Of
      > greuterb
      > Sent: Wednesday, July 27, 2011 6:33 AM
      > To: hegel@yahoogroups.com <mailto:hegel%40yahoogroups.com>
      > Subject: Re: [hegel] Re: the death of God
      >
      > Am 27.07.2011 06:51, Alan writes:
      >
      > > Hi Bob,
      > >
      > > You cover a lot of ground here. I will focus on a few points.
      > > ...............
      > >
      > > You then go on to say:
      > >
      > > "You have never explained why Hegel bothers to include Religion as
      > one of
      > > the three phases of Absolute Spirit. I don't think you ever will,
      > > because to
      > > do so would require that you take Religion seriously as more than a
      > > convenient "allegory" for something that really has nothing to do with
      > > religion as commonly understood. Nor have you explained why Hegel
      > > describes
      > > philosophy and religion as having the same "content.""
      > >
      > > ...................
      > >
      > > So you ask why does Hegel say philosophy and religion have the same
      > > content?
      > > I notice you do not answer your own question. I suspect it is
      > because you
      > > believe that it is evident that this means that they are quite
      > close. But
      > > this is a Hegelian joke. The understanding and speculative reason
      > > share the
      > > same content: the truth. What they do not share is the same form. Form
      > > makes
      > > all the difference for Hegel. For the understanding form is abstract. It
      > > represents. Philosophy and religion share the same content: the
      > > absolute or
      > > the identity of being and significance. But religion represents the
      > > absolute
      > > whereas philosophy emerges at the point that representation breaks
      > > down. The
      > > absolute form - unlike the religious absolute - creates at the point of
      > > breakdown by providing the insight into absolute form that becomes new
      > > content. What Hegel never says but which is implied by everything
      > else he
      > > says is that the religious absolute is sterile. It does not because it
      > > cannot create since creation involves a dual focus allowing for a
      > > recollective insight which is the creative event. It is something
      > only man
      > > is capable of. Religion pictures creation. But only man creates.
      > >
      > > I will stop here.
      > >
      > > regards, Alan
      > >
      >
      > Alan,
      >
      > Now we are at the point again we discussed since more than 10 years.
      > Hegel wrote several times in his work (please do not insist on
      > quotations) that religion and philosophy have the same 'content'. From
      > this Paul and Bob and others conclude that the Logic is 'religion' in
      > philosophical (logical) form. Your reply is not bad, better I think as
      > my several attempts since 10 years. Nevertheless, is your answer also
      > sufficient? Your write: "The absolute form - unlike the religious
      > absolute - creates at the point of breakdown by providing the insight
      > into absolute form that becomes new content." I take this as 'the
      > philosophical absolute (pure) knowledge develops its own (new) content
      > from which the form cannot be separated but is (like the content) a
      > moment of the absolute. This I think is consistent with what Hegel's
      > concept of the absolute claims. However, Hegel says "the same content".
      > He does not write 'new content'. You say that this is a "Hegelian joke".
      > But why a joke? Hegel is a serious philosopher. In such an important
      > philosophical question he usually does not make jokes. But according to
      > what you write here and to what I wrote several times in recent years
      > the answer is quite easy: In the expressions "same content" and 'new
      > content' 'content' does not mean the same. In the first expression it
      > only means 'issue' or' topic' or 'subject-matter' or 'aim' or 'result'
      > etc. as a general characterization of what is at stake in the forms of
      > absolute spirit: 'the absolute', 'the truth', 'the whole'. In the second
      > expression, however, it is said how this general issue is carried out or
      > developed or appears (not merely as form but as well as content), and
      > here there is no longer sameness but otherness. This does not mean that
      > religion is perished in philosophy. Quite the opposite: it has further
      > on its own right regarding form and content. With this Hegel avoids
      > both: that religion becomes the servant of philosophy (i.e. deism) as
      > well as that philosophy becomes the servant of religion (i.e. philosophy
      > in the Middle Ages). But it means that religion has lost its
      > absoluteness for explaining the world *). This now is the task of
      > philosophy which takes the absolute as the conceptual movement of
      > reality in all its manifestations (today the particular sciences
      > extrapolating from their results to the whole try to adopt this task,
      > but it is hopeless).
      >
      > *) You write: "What Hegel never says but which is implied by everything
      > else he says is that the religious absolute is sterile." With this I do
      > not agree.
      >
      > Regards,
      > Beat Greuter
      >




      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • john
      ... Dear Stephen, Of course I don t really know much of anything about all this. Just looking on the internet, I see that there are about 50,000 Jews in
      Message 168 of 168 , Aug 11, 2011
        --- In hegel@yahoogroups.com, stephen theron <stephentheron@...> wrote:
        >
        >
        > John,
        >
        > Well there is still a German-speaking Jewish population although it is for the time being much smaller.
        > Besides which, there are others who are surely interested.
        > I see the irony of course.
        >
        > Stephen.


        Dear Stephen,

        Of course I don't really know much of anything about all this. Just looking on the internet, I see that there are about 50,000 Jews in Germany now. But it seems they mainly arrived after the fall of the USSR, and they don't know any more about Judaism or the Bible than dogs or cats.

        I believe most Protestants use a revised version of the Luther translation, and Catholics use a translation which just _isn't_ the Luther translation.

        The interesting thing about the Buber-Rosenzweig Bible is that it attempts to capture, not only the content, but also the form. It tries to stay as close to the actual form of the Hebrew Bible as it is possible to do in German. There is an English translation of the first five books following the Buber-Rosenzweig translation. But apparently German is much more amenable to this sort of thing than is English.

        So, anyway, Scholem asked if this translation, whose audience ceased to exist as it was being prepared, would, nontheless, find an audience. One might think that, fifty years later, Scholem's question could be answered. Did the work find an audience? Is it still in print? Does it now have an audience? Have there been, and are there now, people actively engaged in reading it?

        Of course it may just be too early yet to know. My view is that, just on principle, this should become the standard translation of the OT in German for both Protestants and Catholics. And all Germans who fancy themselves to be the least bit cultured, even if they aren't religious, should also have a copy of this translation and study it, just as they have and study Homer or the Greek play-writes. I don't believe I'm asking too much.

        John
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