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A Squashed Philosophers Complete Text


The Complete text of: The Philosophy of Religion, Vol 1
By: Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel
Year: 1895
Translated by: EB Speirs & J Burdon Sanderson
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By THE Rev. E. B. SPEIRS, B.D.



The first German edition of the *' Lectures on the Philosophy of Eeligion" was published at Berlin in 1832, the year after Hegel's death, and was "the earliest instalment of the collected edition of his printed and unprinted works, undertaken by a number of his friends. The book was rather hastily put together, mainly from students' copies of lectures on tbe subject delivered during different sessions, though it also contained matter taken from notes and outlines in Hegel's own liandwriting. A second edition, in an enlarged and very much altered form, appeared in 1840. In the preparation of this second edition, froin which tlie present translation has been made, the editor, Marheineke, drew largely on several important papers found amongst Hegel's MSS., in which his ideas were developed in much greater detail than in any of the sketches previously used; and he had also at his disposal fresh and very complete copies of the Lectures made by some of Hegel's most distinguished pupils. It will thus be seen that the book in the form in which we have it, is mainly an editorial compilation. With the exception of the "Lectures on the Proofs of the Existence of God/' which were printed as an appendix in the German edition, and which Hegel was revising for the press when he was suddenly carried off by cholera in the November of 1831, no part of it, not even the part which is Hegel's actual composition, was intended for publication. It is only fair to Hegel's memory that this fact should be taken into consideration, since it accounts for what may seem the rather ragged


and uneven shape of parts of the work, and for the occasional want of proportion between the various sections.

However, as the Master of Balliol has pointed out, the informal and discursive character of the Lectures on Eeligiou and other subjects, "if it takes from their authority as expressions of the author's mind, and from their value as scientific treatises, has some compensating advantages if we regard them as a means of education in philosophy; for," he continues - and his words specially apply to the present set of Lectures - " in this point of view their very artlessness, gives them something of the same stimulating, suggestive power which is attained by the consummate art of the Platonic Dialogues."

The following translation was originally undertaken by Miss J. Burdon Sanderson, who at the time of her death had reached the end of the first volume of the German edition (Vols. I., and IL 1-1-22, of the English edition); but the rendering had by no means received her final revision. This portion the Editor has carefully revised, and in many parts considerably altered, though in substance it remains as Miss Sanderson left it. The rest of the translation, with the exception of two small parts, is entirely the work of the Editor. A translation of the first three Lectures on the Proofs of the Existence of God, by E. B. Haldane, M.P., Q.C., was kindly placed by him at the Editor's disposal, and this, with a few minor alterations which were necessary, mainly in order to preserve uniformity of terminology, has been printed as it stood in Mr, Haldane's MS. He has also to thank Miss E. Haldane, the translator of Hegel's *' Lectures on the History of Philosophy," for sending a rough draft translation of the section on " The Eeligion of Beauty," which he has consulted and in part used. He has further to acknowledge the help derived from the letters of the different correspondents who supplied Miss Sanderson with various notes and suggestions, which were of


f^reat use for the revision of her portion of the work His special thanks are due to a friend whose assistance was freely given amidst a variety of;pressing duties, and whose advice, particularly in all difficulties connected with peculiarities of expression, greatly lightened the somewhat tedious toil of translation. Her sympathy and native knowledf^e of the language of the orifrinal have been invaluable throughout.

As regards the rendering of the more strictly technical terms employed by Hegel, it has seemed advisable not to adhere rigidly to any one set of English words, but rather to vary the renderings according to the various changes of meaning, and occasionally to add an alternative English equivalent. Thus "Begriff" has usually been translated by "Notion" - a word which, however objectionable otherwise, has already firmly fixed itself in our philosophical terminology; but " conception " has also been used for it in cases where there was no risk of misunderstanding. Miss Sanderson had decided on "idea" as the least objectionable renderings of " Vorstellung," - pejhaps the most troublesome word in the Hegelian language, - and this the Editor has retained where the German word was used in a very special sense; but " ordinary thought," " popular conception," and other equivalent expressions have been freely employed; and in this connection the Editor desires to acknowledge the great assistance he has derived from the notes on Hegelian terms given by Professor Wallace in the valuable Prolegomena to his translation of Hegel's " Logic."

As to the work itself, this is not the place to enlarge on its importance to students of philosophy and religion, or to estimate its influence on the development of modern speculative theology. Much of what is most original and suggestive in it has already passed into the best religious and philosophical thought of the time, and any one who has been giving any attention to recent


works on the great subject dealt with here by Hegel, and who turns to these Lectures, will be constrained to admit that in them we have the true " Sources " of the evolution principle as applied to the study of religion, although he may not be able to share the enthusiastic hope of the German editor and disciple, that the book, even in its present imperfect form, will go down to posterity as the imperishable monument of a frreat mind.


The Manse, Glendevon, April 26, 1895.


Introduction to the Philosophy of Religion . . 1-85

The Relation of the Philosophy of Religion to its Presuppositions AND 'to the Principles of the Time . 6-4S I. The severance of religion from the free worldly con sclonsness ., . . .6

II. The position of the philosophy of religion relatively

to philosophy and religion . . .18

1. The attitude of philosophy to religion generally 18

2. The relation of the philosophy of religion to the

system of philosophy . ... 23

3. The relation of the philosophy of religion to posi tive religion . ., 27

III. The relation of the philosophy of religion to the

current principles of the religious consciousness. 35

1. Philosophy and the prevalent iiidifference to de finite dogmas ....... 38

2. The historical treatment of dogmas . . 40

3. Philosophy and immediate knowledge 42


Preliminary Questions 48-58

Division of the Subjjict 59-85





The Conception of Keligion . 89-258


Of God . . . 90-100


The Eeligious Attitude . . . 101-210

I. The necessity of the religious standpoint . 105

II. The forms of the religious consciousness . 115

1. The form of feeling . . .118

2. Perception . . 13S

3. Idea, or ordinary thought . ... 142 III. The necessity and mediation of the religious attitude

in the form of thought . . 155-210

1. The dialectic of idea . . 156

2. The mediation of the religious consciousness in

itself .... ... 160

a. Immediate knowledge and mediation . .160

b. Mediated knowledge as observation and reflection 172

u. Finiteness in sensuous existence . ., 1 80

3, Finiteness from the point of view of reflection 1 82

y. The rational way of looking at finiteness . 193

c. The transition to the speculative conception of

religion . . . . -199

3. The speculative notion or conception of religion . 204


Worship or Cultus . . . 210-258

L Of faith . . .211

IL The definite character and special forms of worship,

or cultus . . .229

. III. The relation of religion to the State . . . 246



Definite Religion

Division of the subject

. 261 261-269


"The Beligion of Naturii: 270-349

1. Immediate religion 270-316

a. Magic . . . 290

b. The objectire characteristics of the religion of

magic . . 298

c. Worship or cultiis in the religion of magic 316 II. The division of consciousness within itself . .317

I. The Chinese religion, or the religion of measure . 335 a. The general character of this rjsligion, 335

h. The historical existence of this religion 336

c. Worship or cultua




It has appeared to me to be necessary to make religion by itself the object of philosophical consideration, and to add on this study of it, in the form of a special part, to philosophy as a whole. By way of introduction I shall, however, first of all (A) give some account of the severance or division of consciousness, which awakens the need our science has to satisfy, and describe the r&lation of this science to philosophy and religion, as also to the prevalent principles of the religious consciousness. Then, after I have (B) touched upon some preliminary questions which follow from those relations, I shall give©the division of the subject.

To begin with, it is necessary to recollect generally what object we have before us in the Philosophy of Eeligion, and what is our ordinary idea of religion. We know that in religion we withdraw ourselves from what is temporal, and that^Veligion is for our consciousness that region in which all the enigmas of the world are f solved, all the contradictions of deeper-reaching thought fi^have their meaning unveiled, and where 'the voice of the heart's pain is silenced - the region of eternal truth, of eternal rest, of eternal peace/' Speaking generally, it is through thought, concrete thpught, or, oto put it more



definitely, it is by reason of his being Spirit, that man is man; and from man as Spirit proceed all the many

-developments of the sciences and arts, the interests of political life, and all those conditions which have refer:ence to man's freedom and will. But all these manifold forms of human relations, activities, and pleasures, and all the ways in which these are intertwined}^ all that has worth and dignity for man, all wherein he seeks his happiness, his glory, and his pride, finds its

-ultimate centre in religion, in the thought, the conscious-' ness, and the feeling of God. Tlius God is the begin jiing of all things, and the end of all things. As all things proceed from this point, so all return back to it again. He is the centre which gives life and quickening to all things, and which animates and preserves in existence all the various forms of being. In religion man places himself in a relation to this centre, in which all other relations concentrate themselves, and in so doing he rises up to the highest level of consciousness and' to the region which is free from relation to what is other than itself, to something which is absolutely self-sufficient, the unconditioned, what is free, and is its own object and end., y Eeligion, as something which is occupied with this final object and end, is therefore absolutely free, and is its own end; for all other aims converge in this ultimate end, and in presence of it they vanish and cease to have value of their own. No other aim can hold its ground against this, and here alone all fitid their fulfilment.

In the region where the spirit occupies itself with this end, it unburdens itself of all finiteness, and wins for itself final satisfaction and deliverance; for here the spirit relates itself no longer to something that is other than itself, and that is limited, but to the unlimited and infinite, and this is an infinite relation, a relation of freedom, and no loriger' of dependence. Here its consciousness is absolutely free, and is indeed true conscious


ness, because it is consciousness of 'absolute truth. In Its character as feelidg, this condition of freedom is the "sense of satisfaction which we call blessedness, while as activity it has nothing further to do than to manifest the honour of God and to reveal His, glory, and in tliis attitude it is no longer with himself that man is concerned - with his own interests or his empty pride - but with the absolute end. All the various peoples feel that it is in the religious consciousness they possess truth, and they have always regarded religion as constituting their true dignity and the Sabbath of their life. Whatever awakens in us doubt and fear, all sorrow, all care, all the limited interests of finite life, we leave behind on the shores of time; and as from the highest peak of a mountain, far away from all definite view of what is earthly, we look down calmly upon all the limitations of the landscape and of the world, so with the spiritual eye man, lifted out of the hard realities of this actual world, contemplates it as something having only the semblance of existence, which seen from this pure region bathed in the beams of the spiritual sun, merely reflects back its shades of colour, its varied tints and lights, softened away into eternal rest. In this region of spirit flow the streams of forgetfulness from which Psyche drinks, and -in which she drowns all sorrow, while the dark things of this life are softened away into a dream-like vision, and become transfigured until they are a ijiere framework for the brightness of the Eternal.

This image of the Absolute may have a more or less present vitality and certainty for the religious and devout mind, and be a present source of pleasure; or it may be represented as something longed and hoped for, far off, and in the future. Still it always remains a certainty, and its rays stream as something divine into this present temporal life, giving the consciousness of the active presence of truth, even amidst the anxieties which torment the soul here in this region of time. Paith recof^uises it


as the truth, as the substance of actual existing things; andvVhat thus forms the essence of religious contemplation, is the vital force in the present world, makes itself actively felt in the life of the individual, and governs his entire conduct.' Such is the general perception, sensation, consciousness, or however we nfay designate it, of religion. To consider, to examine, and to comprehend its nature is the object of the present lectures.

We must first of all, however, definitely understand, in reference to the end we have in view, that it is not the concern of philosophy to produce religion in any individual. Its existence is, on the ccJntrary, presupposed as forming what is fundamental in every one. So far as man's essential nature is concerned, nothing new is to be introduced into him. To try to do this would be as absurd as to give a dog printed writings to chew, under the idea that in this way you could put mind into it.

He who has not extended his spiritiial interests beyond the hurry and bustle of this finite world, nor succeeded in lifting himself above this life through aspiration, through the anticipation, through the^feeling of the Eternal, and who has not gazed upon the pure ether of the soul, does not possess in himself that element which it is our object here to comprehend.

It may happen that religion is awakened in the heart by means of philosophical knowledge^ "but it is not necessarily so. It is not the purpose of philosophy to edify, and quite as little is it necessary for it to make good its claims by showing in any particnlair case that it must produce religious feeling in the individual. Philosophy, it is true, has to develop the necessity of religion in and for itself, and to grasp the thought that Spirit must of necessity advance from the other modes of its will in conceiving and feeling to this absolute mode; but it is the universal destiny of Spirit which is thus accomplished.

It is another matter to raise up the individual subject to this height. The self-will, the perversity, or the indo


lence of iudividuals may interfere with the necessity of their universal spiritual nature; individuals may deviate from it, and attempt to get for themselves a standpoint of their own, and hold to it. This possibility of letting oneself drift, through inertness, to the standpoint of untruthj or of lingering there consciously and purposely, is involved in the freedom of the subject, while planets, plants, animals, cannot deviate from the, necessity of their nature - from their truth - and become what they ought to be. But in human freedom what is and what ought to be are separate. This freedom brings with it the power of free choice, and it is possible for it to sever itself from its necessity, from its laws, and to work in opposition to its true destiny. Therefore, although philosophical knowledge should clearly perceive the necessity of the religious standpoint, and though the will should learn in the sphere of reality the nullity of its separation, all this does not hinder the will from being able to persist in its obstinacy, and to stand aloof=from its necessity and truth.

\^ There is a common and shallow manner of ar^i^uincr against cognition or philosophical knowledge, as when, for instance, it is said that such and such a man has a knowledge of God, and yet remains far from religion, and lias not become godly. It is not, however, the aim of knowledge to lead to this, nor is it meant to do so.

What knowledge must do is to know religion as something which already exists. It is neither its intention nor its duty to induce this or that person, any particular empirical subject, to be religious if he has not been so before, if he has nothing of religion in himself, and does not wish to have.*^

But the fact is, no man is so utterly ruined, so lost, and so bad, nor can we regard any one as being so wretched that he has no religion whatever in him, even if it were only that he has the fear of it, or some yearning after it, or a feeling of hatred towards it. Eor even


in this last case he is inwardly occupied jvitli it, and cannot free himself from it.^-^ As man, religion is essential to him, and is not a feeling foreign to his nature.

Yet the essential question is the relation of religion to X his general theory of the universe, and it is with this that philosophical knowledge connects itself, and upon which it essentially works. In this relation we have the source of the division which arises in opposition to the primary absolute tendency of the spirit toward religion, and here, toa, all the manifold forms of consciousness, and their most widely differing connections with the main interest of religion, have sprung up. Before the Philosophy of Eeligion can sum itself up in its own peculiar conception, it must work itself through all those ramifications of the interests of the time which have at present concentrated themselves in the widely-extended sphere \ of religion. At first the movement of the principles of i the time has its place outside of philosophical study, but this movement pushes ou to the point at which it comes into contact, strife, and antagonism with philosophy.

We shall consider this opposition and its solution when we have examined the opposition as it still maintains itself outside of philosophy, and have seen it develop until it reaches that completed state where it involves philosophical knowledge in itself.



I. - The Severance of Eeligion from the Free Worldly Consciousness.

a. In the relation in which religion, even in its immediacy, stands to the other forms of the consciousness of man, there already lie germs of division, since both sides are conceived of as in a condition of separation


TGlatively to each other. In their simple relation they already constitute two kinds of pursuits, two different regions of consciousness, and we pass to and fro from the -one to the other alternalely only. Thus man has in his actual worldly life a number of working days during which he occupies himself with his own special interests, with worldly aims in general, and with the satisfaction "of his needs; and then he has a Sunday, when he lays all this aside, collects his thoughts, and, released from absorption in finite occupations, lives "to himself and to the higher nature which is in him, to his true essential being. But into this separateness of the two sides there directly enters a double modification.

(a.) Let us consider first of all the religion of the godly man; that is, of one who truly deserves to be so called.

Faith is still presupposed as existing irrespective of, and without opposition to, anything else. To believe in God js thus in its simplicity, something different from that where a man, with reflection and with the consciousness that something else stands opposed to this faith, says, "I believe in God." Here the need of justification, of inference, of controversy, has already come in. I^ow that religion of the simple, godly man is not kept shut off and divided from the rest of his existence and life, but, on the contrary, it breathes its influence over all his feelings and actions, and his consciousness brings all the aims and objects of his worldly life into relation to God, as to its infinite and ultimate source. Every moment of his finite existence and activity, of his sorrow and joy, is lifted up by him out of his limited sphere, and by being thus lifted up produces in him the idea and sense -of his eternal nature. The rest of his life, in like .manner, is led under the conditions of confidence, of custom, of dutifulness, of habit; he is that which circumstances and nature have made him, and he takes his life, his circumstances, and rights as he receives everything, namely, as a lot or destiny which he does not


understand. It is so. In regard to God, he either takes what is His and gives thanks, or else he offers it up to Him freely as a gift, of free grace. The rest of his conscious life is thus subordinated, without reflection, to that higher region,

(/3.) From the worldly side, however, the distinction involved in this relation develops until it becomes opposition. It is true that the development of this side does not seem to affect religion injuriously, and all action seems to limit itself strictly to that side in the matter.

Judging from what is expressly acknowledged, religion is still looked upon as what is highest; but as a matter of fact it is not so, and starting frora the worldly side, ruin and disunion creep over into religion. The development of this distinction may be generally designated as the maturing of the understanding and of human aims.

While understanding awakens in human life and in science, and reflection has become independent, the will sets before itself absolute aims; for example, justice, the state, objects which are to have absolute worth, to be in and for themselves. Thus research recognises the laws, the constitution, the order, and the peculiar characteristics of natural things, and of the activities and productions of Spirit. Now these experiences and forms of knowledge, as well as the willing and actual carrying out of these aims, is a work of man, both of his understanding and will. In them he is in presence of what is his own. Although he sets out from what is, from what he fmds, yet he is no longer merely one who knows, who Jvas these rights; but what he maJces'ont of that which is given in knowledge and in will is his aff'air, Ms work, and he has the consciousness that he has produced it.

Therefore these productions constitute his glory and his pride, and provide for him an immense, an infinite wealth - that world of his intelligeuce, of his knowledge, of his external possession, of his rights and deeds.

Thus the spirit has entered into the^condition of oppo


sition - as yet, it is true, artlessly, and ^vithout at first knowing it - but the opposition corals to be a cotiscious one, for the spirit now moves between two sides, of which the distinction has actually developed itself. The one side is that in which the spirit knows- itself to be its own, where it lives in its own aims and interests, and determines itself on its own authority as independent and selfsustaining. The other side is that where the spirit recognises a higher Power - absolute duties, duties without rights belonging to them, and what the spirit receives for the accomplishment of its duties is always regarded as grace alone. In the first instance it is the independence of the spirit which is the foundation,! here its attitude is that of humility and dependence. Itso religion is accordingly distinguished from what we have in that region of independence by this, that it restricts knowledge, science, to the worldly side^ and leaves for the sphere of religion, feeling and faith,

(7.) Notwithstanding, that aspect of independence involves this also, that its action is conditioned, and knowledge and will must have experience of the fact that it is thus conditioned. Man demands his right; whether or not he actually gets it, is something independent of his efforts, and he is referred in the matter to an Other. In the act of knowledge he sets out from the organisation and order of nature, and this is something giveii. The content of his sciences is a material outside of him.

Thus the two sides, that of independence and that of conditionality, enter into relation with each other, and this -relation leads man to the avowal that everything is made by God - all things which constitute ^ the content of his knowledge, which he takes possession of, and uses as means for his ends, as well as he himself, the spirit and the spiritual faculties of which he, as he says, makes use, in order to attain to that knowledge.

But this admission is cold and lifeless, because that which constitutes the vitality of this consciousness, ia


which it is " at home with itself," and is self-consciousness, this insight, this knowledge are wanting in ity^All that is determined comes, on the contrary, to be included in the sphere of knowledge, and of human, self-appointed aims, and here, too, it is only the activity belonging to self-consciousness which is present. Therefore that admission is unfruitful too, because it does not get beyond the abstract-universal, that is to say, it stops short at the thought that all is a work of God, and with regard to objects which are absolutely different (as, for example, the course of the stars and their laws, ants, or men), that relation continues for it fixed at one and the same point, namely this, that God has made all. Since this religious relation of particular = objects is always expressed in the same monotonous Tuanner, it would become tedious and burdensome if it were repeslted in reference to each individual thing. Therefore the matter is settled with the one admission, that God has made everything, and this religious side is thereby satisfied once for all, and then in the progress of knowledge and the pursuit of aims nothing further is thought of the matter.

It would accordingly appear that this admission is made simply and solely in order to get rid of the whole business, or perhaps it may be to get protection for the religious side as it were relatively to what is without.

In short, such expressions may be used either in earnest or not.

Piety doe? not weary of lifting up its eyes to God on all and every occasion, although it may do so daily and hourly in the same manner. But as religious feeling, it really rests in singleness or single instances; it is in every moment wholly what it is, and is without reflection and the consciousness which compares experiences. It is here, on the contrary, where knowledge and self-determination are concerned, that this comparison, and the consciousness of that sameness, are essentially present, and then a general proposition is


enunciated once for all. On the one side we have understanding playing its part, while oyer against it is the religious feeling of dependence.

h. Even piety is not exempt from the, fate of falling into a state of division or dxialism. On the contrary, division is already present in it implicitly, in that its actual content is only a manifold, accidental one. These tw^o attitudes, namely, that of piety and of the understanding that compares, however different they seem to be, have this in common, that in them the relation of God to the other side of consciousness is undetermined and . general. The second of these attitudes has indicated and pronounced this unhesitatingly in the expression already quoted, " God -has created all things."


(a.) The manner of looking at things, however, which is followed by the religious man, and whereby he gives a greater completeness to his reflection, consists in the contemplation of the constitution and arrangement of things according to the relations of ends ^ and similarly in the regarding all the circumstances of individual life, as well as the great events of history, as; proceeding from Divine purposes, or else as directed and leading back to such. The universal divine relation is thus not adhered to here. On the contrary, this becomes a definite relation, and consequently a more strictly defined content is introduced - for the manifold materials are placed in relation to one another, and God is then considered as the one who brings about these relations. Animals and their surroundings are accordingly regarded as being& definitely regulated, in that they have food, nurture their young, are provided with weapons as a«°defence against what is hurtful, stand the winter, and c^n protect themselves against enemies. In human life, it is seen how man is led to happiness, whether it be eternal or temporal, by means of this or that apparent accident, or perhaps misfortune. In short, the action, the will of


God, is contemplated here in definite dealings, conditions of nature, occurrences, and such-like.

But this content itself, these ends, representing thus a finite content, are accidental, are taken up only for the moment, and even directly disappear in an inconsistent and illogical fashion. If, for example, we admire the wisdom of God in nature because we see how animals are provided with weapons, partly to obtain their food and partly to protect them against enemies, yet it is presently seen in experience that these weapons are of no avail, and that those creatures which have been considered as ends are made use of by others as means.

It is therefore really progressive knowledge which has depreciated and supplanted this external contemplation of ends; that higher knowledge, namely, which, to begin with, at least demands consistenci/j and recognises ends of this kind, which are taken as Divine ends, as subordinate and finite - as something which proves itself in the very same experience and observation to be worthless, and not to be an object of the eternal, divine Will.

If that manner of looking at the matter be accepted, and if, at the same time, its inconsistency be disregarded, yet it still remains indefinite and superficial, for the very reason that all and every content - no matter what it be - may be included in it; for ther-e is nothing, no arrangement of nature, no occurrence, which, regarded in some aspect or other, might not be shown to have some use. Eeligious feeling is, in short, here no longer present in its na'ive and experimental character. On the contrary, it proceeds from the universal thought of an end, of a good, and makes inferences, inasmuch as it subsumes present things under these universal thoughts.

But this argumentation, this inferential process, brings the religious man into a condition of perplexity, because however much he may point to what serves a purpose, and is useful in this immediate world ~~ of natural things,


he sees, in contrast to all this, just as much that does not serve a purpose, and is injurious./ What is profitable to one person is detrimental to another,. and therefore does not serve a purpose. / The preservation of life and of the interests bound up with existence, which in the one case is promoted, is in the other case just as much endangered and put a stop to. Thus an^ implicit dualism or division is involved here, for in contradiction to God's eternal manner of operation, finite things are elevated to the rank of essential ends. The idea of God and of His manner of operation as universal and necessary is contradicted by this inconsistency, which is even destructive of that universal character.

Now, if the religious man considers external ends and the externality of the whole matter in accordance with which these things are profitable for an Other, the natural determinateness, which is the point of departure, appears indeed to be only for an Other. But this, more closely considered, is its own relation, its- own nature, the immanent nature of what is related, its necessity, in short. Thus it is that the actual transition to the other side, which was formerly designated as the moment of selfness, comes about for ordinary religious thought.

( S.) Eeligious feeling, accordingly, is forced to abandon its argumentative process; and now that a beginning has once been made with thought, and with the relations of thought, it becomes necessary, above all things to thought, to demand and to look for that which belongs to itself; namely, first of all consistency and necessity, and to place itself in opposition to that standpoint of contingency.

And with this, the principle of selfness at once develops itself completely. " I," as simple, universal, as thought, am really relation; since I am for myself, am self- consciousness, the relations too are to be for me. To the thoughts, ideas which I make my own, I give the character which I myself am. I am this simple point, and that which is for me I seek to apprehend in this unity.


Knowledge so far aims at that which is, and the' necessity of it, and apprehends this in the relation of cause and effect, reason and result, power and manifestation; in the relation of the Universal, of the species and of the individual existing things which are included in the sphere of contingency. Knowledge, science, in this manner places the manifold material in mutual relation, takes away from it the contingency which it has through its immediacy, and while contemplating the relations which belong to the wealth of finite phenomena, encloses the world of finiteness in itself so as to form a system of the universe, of such a kind that knowledge requires nothing for this system outside of the system itself. For what a thing is, what it is in its essential determinate character, is disclosed when it is perceived and made the subject of observation, From the constitution of things, we proceed to their connections in which they stand in relation to an Other; not, however, in ^n accidental, but in a determinate relation, and in which they point back to the original source from which they are a deduction.

Thus we inquire after the reasons and causes of things; and the meaning of inquiry here is, that what is desired is to know the special causes. Thus it is no longer sufficient to speak of God as the cause of the lightning, or of the downfall of the Eepublican system of government in Rome, or of the Trench Eevolution; here it is perceived that this cause is only an entirely general one, and does not yield the desired explanation. What we wish to know regarding a jnatural phenomenon, or regarding this or that law as effect or result, is, the reason as the reason of this particular phenomenon, that is to say, not the reason which applies to all things, but only and exclusively to this definite thing. And thus the reason must be that of such special phenomena, and such reason or ground must be the most immediate, must be sought and laid hold of in the flnite, and must itself be a finite one. Therefore this knowledge does not go


abbve or beyond the sphere of the finite, nor doe's it desire to do so, since it is able to apprehend all in its finite sphere, is conversant with everything, and knows its course of action. In this manner science forms a universe of knowledge, to which God is not necessary, which lies outside of religion, and has absolutely nothing to do with it. In this kingdom, knowledge spreads itself out in its relations and connections, and in so doing has all determinate material and content on its side; and for the other side, the side of the infinite and the eternal, nothing whatever is left.

(7.)\VThus both sides have developed themselves completely in their opposition. On the side of religion the lieart is filled with what is Divine, but without freedom, or self-consciousness, and without consistency in regard to what is determinate, this latter having, on the contrary, the form of contingency. Consistent connection of what i^ determinate belongs to the side of knowledge, which is at home in the finite, and moves freely in the thoughtdeterminations of the manifold connections of things, but can only create a system which is without absolute substantiality - without God^ The jreligious side gets the absolute material and purpose, but only as something abstractly positive. Knowledge has taken possession o£ all finite material and drawn it into its territory, all determinate content has fallen to its share-; but although it gives it a necessary connectiou, it is still unable to -give it the absolute connection. Si^ce finally science has taken possession of knowledge, and is the consciousness of the necessity of the finite, .religion has become devoid of knowledge, and has shrivelled„ up into simple feeling, into the coijtentless or empty elevation of the spiritual to the Eternal. It can, however, affirm nothing regarding the Eternal, for all that could be regarded as knowledge would be a drawing down of the Eternal into tlie sphere of the finite, and of finite connections of Ihinss. /


Now when two aspects of thoughtj which are so developed in this way, enter into relation with one another, their attitude is one of mutual distrust. Eeligious feeling distrusts the finiteness which lies in knowledge, and it brings against science the charge of futility, because in it the subject clings to itself, is in itself, and the " I " as the knowing subject is independent in relation to all that is external. On the other hand, knowledge has a distrust of the totality in which feeling entrenches itself, and in ^ which it confounds together all extension and development. It is afraid to lose its freedom -should it comply with the demand of feeling, and unconditionally recognise a truth wliich it does not definitely understand. And when religious feeling comes out of its universality, sets ends before itself, and passes over to the determinate, knowledge can see nothing but arbitrariness in this, and if it were to pass in a similar way to -anything definite, would feel itself given over to mere contingency. When, accordingly, reflection is fully developeS, and has to pass over into the domain of religion, it is unable to hold out in that region, and becomes impatient -with regard to all that peculiarly belongs to it.

cS Now that the opposition has arrived at this stage of development, where the one side, whenever it is approached by the other, invariably thrusts it away from it as an enemy, the necessity for an adjustment comes in, of such a kind that the infinite shall appear in the finite, and the finite in the infinite, and each no longer form a separate realm. This would be the reconcilia> tion of religious, genuine simple feeling, with knowledge and intelligence. This reconciliation must correspond with the highest demands of knowledge, and of the Notion, for these can surrender nothing of their dignity. But just as little can anything of the absolute content be given up, and that content be brought down into the region of finiteness; and when face to face with it knowledge must give up its finite form.^y


In the Christian religion, more than in other religions, the need of this reconciliation has of necessity come into prominence, for the following reasons:^

(a.) The Christian religion has its very beginning in absolute dualism or division, and starts from that sense of suffering iu which it rends the naturalunity of the spirit asunder, and destroys natural peace. In it man appears as evil from his birth, and is thus in his innermost life in contradiction with himself, and the spirit, as it is driven back into itself, finds itself separated from the infinite, absolute Essence.

(/3.) The Reconciliation, the need or which is here intensified to the uttermost degree, appears in the first place for Faith, but not in such a way as to allow of faith being of a merely ingenuous kind. Eor the spirit has left its natural simplicity behind, and entered upon an internal conflict; it is, as sinful, an Other in opposition to the truth; it is withdrawn, estranged from it. " I^" in this condition of schism, am not the truth, and this is therefore given as an independent content of ordinary thought, and the truth is in the first instance put forward upon authority.

(y.) When, however, by this means I am transplanted into an intellectual world in which the nature of God, the characteristics and modes of action which belong to God, are presented to knowledge, and when the truth of these rests on the witness and assurance of others, yet I am at the same time referred into myself^ for thought, knowledge, reason are in me, and in thejeeling of sinfulness, and in reflection upon this, my freedom is plainly revealed to me. Eational knowledge,^ therefore, is an essential element in the Christian religion itself.

In the Christian religion I am to retain my freedom or rather,. in it I am to become free. In it the subject, the salvation of the soul, the redemption of the individual as an individual, and not only the species, is an essential end. This subjectivity, this sel/ness (not selfishness) is just the principle- of rational knowledge itself.


\t8 introduction TO THE

Eational knowledge being thus a fundamental characteristic in the Christian religion, the latter gives development to its content, for the ideas regarding its general -subject-matter are implicitly or in themselves thoughts, and must as such develop themselves. On the other^ handj however, since the contend is something which exists essentially for the mind as forming ideas, it is distinct from unreflecting opinion and sense-knowledge, and as it were passes right beyond the distinction. In short, it has in relation to subjectivity the value of an absolute content existing in and for itself*VV The Christian -religion therefore touches the antithesis between feeling and immediate perception on the one hand, and reflection ¦¦ and knowledge on the other. It (Contains rational knowledge as an essential element, and has supplied to this rational knowledge the occasion for developing itself to its full logical issue as Porm and as a world of form, and has thus at the same time enabled it to place itself in opposition to this content as it appears in the shape of given truth. It is from this that the discord which characterises the thought of the present day arises. ^

Hitherto we have considered the progressive growth of the antitheses only in the form in which they have not yet developed into actual philosophy, or in which they still stand outside of it. Therefore the questions which primarily come before us are these: i. How does philosophy in general stand related to religion ? 2. How does the Philosophy of E^ligion stand related to philosophy? and 3. What is the relation of the philosophical study of, religion to positive religion ?

II. - The Position of the Philosophy of Eeligion relatively TO Philosophy and to Eeligion.

I. The Attitude of FhilosopJiy to JReligion generally/.

In saying above tliat philosophy makes religion the subject of consideration, and when further this considera


-tion of it appears to be ia the position of soraetbing which is different from its object, it would seem as if we are still occupying that attitude in which both sides remain mutually independent and separate. In taking up such an attitude in thus considering the subject, we should accordingly come out of that region of devotion and enjoyment which religion is, and the object and the consideration of it as the movement of thought would be as different as, for example, the geometrical figures in mathematics are from the mind which considers them.

Such is only the relation, however, as it at first appears, when knowledge is still severed from the religious side, and is finite knowledge. On the contrary, when we look more closely, it becomes apparent that as a matter of' fact the content, the need, and the interest of philosophy^, represent something which it has in common with religion.! .\' The object of religion as well as of philosophy is eternal truth in its objectivity, God and nothing but God, / and the explication of God. Philosophy is not a wisdom of the world, but is knowledge of what is not of the world; it is not knowledge which concerns external mass, or empirical existence and life,obut is knowledge \^^ of that which is eternal, of what God is, and what flows out of His nature. For this His nature must reveal and develop itself. Philosophy, therefore, only unfolds itself when it unfolds religion, and in unfolding itself it Unfolds religion.'/ As thus occupied with eternal truth which exists on its own account, or is in and for itself, and, as in fact, a dealing on the part of the thinking spirit, and not of individual caprice and'particular interest, ¦with this object, it is the same kind of activity as religion is. The mind in so far as it thinks philosophically immerses itself with like living interest in this object, and renounces its particularity in that it permeates its object, in the same way, as religious consciousness does, for the latter also does not seek to have anything of its ©WD, but desires only to immerse itself in this content.


^ Thus religion and philosopLy come to be one. Philosophy is itself, in fact, worship; it is religion, for in the same way it renounces subjective notions and opinions in order to occupy itself with Goa. Philosophy is thus identical with religion, but the distinction is that it is so in a peculiar manner, distinct from the manner of looking at things which is commonly called religion as such. What they have in common is, that they are religion; what distinguishes them from each other is merely the kind and manner of religion we find in each.

It is in the peculiar way in which they both occupy themselves with God that the distinction comes out.

It is just here, however, that the difficulties lie which appear so great, that it is even regarded as an impossibility that philosophy should be one with religion.

Hence comes the suspicion with which philosophy is looked upon by theology, and the antagonistic attitude of religion and philosophy. In accordance with this antagonistic attitude (as theology considers it to be) philosophy seems to act injuriously, destructively, upon religion, robbing it of its sacred character, and the way in which it occupies itself with God seems to be absolutely different from religion. Here, then, is the same old opposition and contradiction which had already made its appearance among the Greeks. Among that free democratic people, the Athenians, philosophical writings were burnt, and Socrates was condemned to death; now, however, this opposition is held to be an acknowledged fact, more so than that unity of religion and philosophy just asserted.

\^01d though this opposition is, however, the combina^ tion of philosophy and religion is just as old. Already to the neo-Pythagoreans and neo-Platonists, who were as yet within the heathen world, the gods of the people were not gods of imagination, but had become gods of thought. That combination had a place, too, among the most eminent of the Fathers of thp Church, who in their

PHILOSOPHY OF RELIGION -zi religious life took up an essentially intellectual attitude inasmuch as they set out from the presupposition that theology is religion together with conscious thought and comprehension. It is to their philosophical culture that the Christian Church is indebted for the first beginnings of a content of Christian doctrine.

N'^This union of religion and philosophy was carried out to a still greater extent in the Middle Ajres. So little was it believed that the knowledge which seeks to comprehend is hurtful to faith, that it was even held to be essential to the further development of faith itself. It was by setting out from philosophy that- those great men, Anselm and Abelard, further developed the essential characteristics of faith.

Knowledge in constructing its world for itself, without reference to religion, had only taken possession of the finite contents; but since it has developed into the true philosophy, it has the same content as religion.

If we now look provisionally for the distinction between religion and philosophy as it presents itself in this unity of content, we find it takes the following form: - ¦ '^^ a, A speculative philosophy is the consciousness of the Idea, so that everything is apprehended as Idea; the Idea, however, is the True in thought, and nof^-in mere sensuous contemplation or in ordinary conception. The True in thought, to put it more precisely, means that it is something concrete, posited as divided in itself, and in such away, indeed, that the two sides of what is divided are opposed characteristics of tho'ught, and the Idea must be conceived of as the unity of these.'^^To think speculatively means to resolve anything real into its parts, and to oppose these to each other in such a way that the distinctions are set in opposition in accordance with the characteristics ofi thought, and the object is apprehended as unity of the two.)

In sense-perception or picture-thought we have the object before us as a whole, our reflection distinguishes, apprehends different sides, recognises the diversity iu


them, and severs them. In this act of distinguishing, reflection does not keep firm hold of their unity. Sometimes it forgets the wholeness, sometimes the distinctions; and if it has both before it, it yet separates the properties from the object, and so places both that that in whicli the two are one becomes a third, which is different from the object and its properties. In the case of mechanical objects which appear in the region of externality, this relation may have a place, for the object is only the lifeless substratum for the distinctions, and the quality of oneness is the gathering together of external aggregates.

In the true object, however, which is not merely an aggregate, an externally united multiplicity, the object is one, although it has characteristics wliich are distinguished from it, and it is speculative thought which first gets a c^rasp of tlie unity in this very antithesis as such. It is in fact the business of speculative thought to apprehend all objects of pure thought, of nature and of Spirit, in the form of thought, and thus as the unity of the difference, f/

h. Eeligion, then, is itself the standpoint of the consciousness of the True, which is in and for itself, and is consequently the stage of Spirit at which the speculative content generally, is object for consciousness. ^ Religion is not consciousness of this or that truth in individual objects, ^ but of the absolute truthjCof truth as the Universal, the All-comprehending, outside of which there lies nothing at all. The content of its consciousness is further the Universally True, which exists on its own account or in and for itself, which determines itself, and is not determined from without. While the finite required an Other y for its determinateness, the True has its determinateness, the limit, its end in itself; it is not limited through an Other, but the Other is found in itgelf. It is this speculative element which comes to consciousness in religion.

Truth is, indeed, contained in every -other sphere, but not the highest absolute truth, for this exists only in perfect universality of characterisation or determination, and in


-the fact of being determined in and for itself, which is not -simple determinateness having reference to an Other, but contains the Other, the difference in its very self.

c, Eeligion is accordingly this speculative element in the form, as it were, of a state of consciousness, of which the aspects are not simple qualities of thought, but are concretely filled up. These moments can be no other than the moment of Thought, active universality, thought in operation, and reality as immediate, particular selfconsciousness.

Now, while in philosophy the rigidity of these two sides loses itself through reconciliatibn in thought, because both sides are thoughts, and the one is not pure universal thought, and the other of an empirical and individual character, religion only arrives at the enjoyment of unity by lifting these two rigid extremes out of this state of severance, by rearranging them, and bringing them together again. But by thus stripping off the form of dualism from its extremes, rendering the opposiition in the element of Universality fluid, and bringing it to reconciliation, religion remains always akin to thought, even in its form and movement; and philosophy, as simply active thought, and thought which unites opposed elements, has approached closely to religion.

The contemplation of religion in thought has thus raised the determinate moments of religion to the rank of thoughts, and the question is how this contemplation of religion in thought is related generally to philosophy as forming an organic part in its system.

2. The Relation of the Philosophy df Religion to the System of Fhilosophy.

a. In philosophy, the Highest is called the Absolute, the Idea; it is superfluous to go furtlter back here, and ¦to mention that this Highest was in the Wolfian Philosophy called ens, Thing 5 for that at once proclaims itself


an abstraction, ¦which corresponds very inadequately to our idea of God. In the more recent philosophy, the Absolute is not so complete an abstractioUj but yet it has not on that account the same signification as is implied in the term, God. In order even to make the difference apparent, we must in the first place consider what the word signify itself signifies. When we ask, " "What does this or that signify ? " we are asking about two kinds of things, and, in fact, ab„out things which are opposed. In the first place, we call what we are thinking of, the meaning, the end or infiention, the general thought of this or that expression, work of art, &c.; if we ask about its intrinsic character, it is essentially the thought that is in it of which we wish to have an idea.

When we thus ask "What is God?" "What does the expression God signify ? " it is the thought involved in it that we desire to know; the idea we possess already.

Accordingly, what is signified here is that we have got to specify the Notion, and thus it follows that the Notibn is the signification; it is the Absolute, the nature of God as grasped by thought, the logical knowledge of this, to which we desire to attain. This, then, is the one signification of signification, and so far, that which we call the Absolute has a meaning identical with the expression God.

6. But we put the question again, in a second sense, according to which it is the opposite of this which is sought after. When we begin to occupy ourselves with pure thought-determinations, and not with outward ideas, it may be that the mind does not feel satisfied, is not at home, in these, and asks what this pure thought-determination signifies. For example, every one can understand for himself what is meant hj the terms unity, objective, subjective, &c., and yet it may very well happen that the specific form of thought we call the unity of subjective and objective, the unity of real and ideal, is not understood. What is asked for in such a case is the meaning in the very opposite sense from that


¦which was required before. Here it is aa idea or a pictorial conception of tlie thought-determination which is demanded, an example of the content;^ which has as yet only been given in thought. If we find a thoughtcontent difficult to understand, the difficu'lty lies in this, that we possess no pictorial idea of it; it is by means of an example that it becomes clear . to us, and that the mind first feels at home with itself in this content.

When, accordingly, we start with the ordinary conception of God, the Philosophy of Keligion has to consider its signification - this, namely, that God is the Idea, the Absolute, the Essential Eeality which is grasped in thought and in the Notion, and this it iias in common with logical philosophy; the logical Idea is God as He is in Himself. But it is just the nature of God tliat He should not be implicit or in Himself only. He is as essentially for Himself, the Absolute Spirit, not only the Eeing who keeps Himself within thought, but who also manifests Himself, and gives Himself objectivity.

c. Thiis, in contemplating the Idea of God, in the Philosophy of Eeligion, we have at the same time to do with the manner of His manifestation or presentation to us; He simply makes Himself apparent, represents Himself to Himself. This is the aspect of the determinate being or existence of the Absolute. v In the Philosophy of Eeligion we have thus the Absolute as object; not, however, merely in the form of thought, but also iu the form of its manifestation. The universal Idea is thus to be conceived of with the purely concrete meaning of essentiality in general, and is to be regarded from the point of view of its activity in displaying itself, in appearing, in revealing itself. Popularly speaking, we say God is the Lord of the natural world and of the realm of Spirit. He is the absolute harmony of the two, and it is He who produces and carries on this harmony.

Here neither, thought and Notion nor their manifestation - determinate being or existence -^ are wanting.


This aspect, thus represented by determinate being, is itself, however, to be grasped again in thought, since we are here in the region of philosophy.

Philosophy to begin with contemplates the Absolute as logical Idea, the Idea as it is in thought, under the aspect in which its content is constituted by the specific forms of thought. Further, philospphy exhibits the Absolute in its activity, in its creations. This is the manner in whicli the Absolute becomes actuah or "for itself," becomes Spirit^ and God is thus the result of philosophy.

It becomes apparent, however, that this is not merely a result, but is something which eternally creates itself, and is that which precedes all else. The onesidedness of the result is abrogated and absorbed in the very result itself.

Nature, finite Spirit, the world of consciousness, of intelligence, and of will, are embodiments of the divine Idea, but they are definite shapes, special modes of the appearance of the Idea, forms, in which the Idea has not yet penetrated to itself, so as to be absolute Spirit.

In the Philosophy of Eeligion, however, we do not contemplate the implicitly existing logical Idea merely, in its determinate character as pure thought, nor in those finite determinations where its mode of appearance is a finite one, but as it is in itself or implicitly in thought, and at the same time as it appears, manifests itself, and thus in infinite manifestation as Spirit, which reflects itself in itself; for Spirit which does not appear, is not.

In this characteristic of appearance finite appearance is also included - that is, the world of nature, and the world of finite spirit, - but Spirit is regarded as the power or force of these worlds, as producing them out of itself, and out of them producing itself.

N^This, then, is the position of the Philosophy of Eeligion in relation to the other parts of philosophy. Of the other parts, God is the result; here, this End is made the Beginning, and becomes our special Object, as the simply concrete Idea, with its infinite manifestations;


and this characteristic concerns the content of the Philosophy of Eeligion. We look at this content, however, from the point of view of rational thought, and this concerns the form, and brings us to consider tlie position of the Philosophy of Eeligion with regard to religion as this latter appears in the shape of positive religion.

3. The Rdation of the Philosophy of Beligion to Positive Religion.

It is well known that the faith of the Church, more especially of the Protestant Church, has taken a fixed form as a system of doctrine. This content has been "universally accepted as truth; and as the description of what God is, and of what man is in^ relation to God, it has been called the Greed, that is, in the subjective sense that which is believed, and objectively, what is to be known as content^ in the Christian Church, and what God has revealed Himself to be. „Kow as universal established doctrine this content is partly laid down in the Apostolic Symholum or Apostles' Creed, partly in later symbolical books. And moreover, in the Protestant Church the Bible has always been characterised as the essential foundation of doctrine.

a. Accordingly, in the apprehension and determination of the content of doctrine, the influence of reason, as " argumentation " has made itself felt. At first indeed, this was so much the case that the doctrinal content, and the Bible as its positive foundation, were to remain unquestioned, and thought was only to take up the thoughts of the Bible as Exegesis, But as a matter of fact understanding had previously established its opinions and its thoughts for itself, and then attention was directed towards, observing how the words of Scripture could be explained in accordance with these. The words of the Bible are a statement of truth which is not


systematic; they are Christianity as it appeared in the beginning; it is Spirit -which grasps the content, which unfolds its meaning. This exegesis having thus taken counsel with reason, the result has been that a so-called Theology of Eeason "^ has now come iiito existence, which is put in opposition to that doctrinal system of the Church, partly by this theology itself, and partly by that doctrinal system to which it is opposed. At the same time, exegesis takes possession of the written word, interprets it, and pretends only to lay stress on the understanding of the word, and to desire to remain faithful to it.

But whether it be chiefly to save appearances, or whether it is really and in downright earnest that the Bible is made the foundation, it is inherent in the very nature of any explanation wh-ich interprets, that thought should have its part in it. Thought explicitly contains categories, principles, premises, which must make their influence felt in the work of interpretation. If interpretation be not mere explanation of words but explanation of tlie sense, the thoughts of the interpreter must necessarily be put into the words which constitute the foundation. Mere word -interpretation can only amount to this, that for one word another co-extensive in meaning is substituted; but in the course of explanation further categories of thought are combined with it. Por a development is advance to further thoughts. In appearance the sense is adhered to, but in reality further thoughts are developed, h Commentaries on the Bible do ..not so much make us acquainted with the content of the ^ Scriptures, as rather with the manner in which things were conceived in the age in which they were written. ^/ It is, indeed, the sense contained in ^the words which is supposed to be given. The giving of the sense means, however, the bringing forward of the sense into consciousness, into the region of ideas; and these ideas, which get determinate character elsewhere, then assert their influence

^ Vernunft Tkeologie,


in the exposition of the sense supposed *to be contained in the words. It is the case even in the^ presentation of a philosophical system which is already fully developed, as, for example, that of Plato or of Aristotle, that the presentation takes a different form, according to the definite kind of idea which those who undertake thus to expound it have already formed themselves. Accordingly, the most contradictory meanings have been exegetically demonstrated by means of Theology out of the Scriptures, and thus' xhe so-called Holy Scriptures have been made into a ^nose of wax. All heresies have, in common with the Church, appealed to the Scriptures, ^/

h. The Theology of Eeason, which thus came into existence, did not, however, limit itself to being merely an exegesis which kept to the Bible as its foundation, but in its character as free, rational knowledge assumed a certain relation to religion and its content generally. In this more general relation the dealing with the subject and the result can amount to nothing more than to the taking .possession by such knowledge of all that, in religion, has a determinate character. For the doctrine concerning God goes on to that of the characteristics, the attributes, and the actions of God. Such knowledge takes possession of this determinate content, and would make it appear that it belongs to it. It, on the one hand, conceives of the Infinite in its own finite fashion, as something which has a determinate character, as an abstract infinite, and then on the other hand finds that all special attributes are inadequate to this Infinite. By such a mode of proceeding the religious content is annihilated, and the absolute object reduced to complete poverty. The finite and determinate which this knowledge has drawn into its territory, points indeed to a Beyond as existing for it, but even this Beyond is conceived of by it in a finite manner, as an abstract, supreme Being, possessing no character .at all. " Enli

to place God very high when it speaks of Him as the Infinite, with regard to which all predicates are inadequate, and are unwarranted anthropomorphisms. In reality, however, it has, in conceiving God as the supreme Being, made Him hollow, empty, and poor.

c. If it should now seem as if the Philosophy of Eeligion rested on the same basis as this Theology of Treason, or Theology of Enlightenment, and was consequently in the same condition of opposition to the content of religion, further reflection shows that this is merely an appearance of resemblance which vanishes directly it is examined into.

(a.) For God was conceived by that rationalistic way of looking at religion, which was only the abstract metaphysic of the understanding, as an abstraction which is empty ideality, and as against which the finite stands in an external fashion, and thus too from this point of view morals constituted, as a special science, the knowledge of that which was held to belong to the actual subject as regards general actions and conduct. The fact of the relation of man to G-od, which .represents the one side, occupied a separate and independent position. Thinking reason, on the contrary, which is.no longer abstract, but which sets out from the faith of man in the dignity of his spirit, and is actuated by the courage of truth and freedom, grasps the truth as something concrete, as fulness of content, as . Ideality, in which determinateness - the finite - is contained as a moment. Therefore, to thinking reason, God is not emptiness, but Spirit; and this characteristic of Spirit does not remain for it a word only, or a superficial characteristic; on the contrary, the nature of Spirit unfolds itself for rational thought, inasmuch as it apprehends God as essentially the Triune God. Thus God is conceived of as making Himself an object to Himself, and further, the object remains in this distinction in identity with God; in it God loves Himself. Without this characteristic of Trinity, God wpuld not be Spirit^


¦and Spirit would be an empty word. But if God be ponceived as Spirit, then this conception includes the subjective side in itself or even devejops itself so as to reach to that side, and the Philosophy "of Eeligion, as the contemplation of religion by thought, binds together again the determinate content- of religion in its entirety.

(j8.) With regard, however, to that "form of contemplation in thought, which adheres to the words of Holy -Scripture, and asserts that it explain^ them by the aid of reason, it is only in appearance that the Philosophy of Eeligion stands on the same basis with it. Eor that ¦kind of contemplation by its own sovereign power lays down Us arfTumeutations as the foundation of Christian doctrine; and although it still leaves the Biblical words Standing, yet the particular meaning remains as the principal determination, and to this the assumed Biblical truth must subordinate itself. This argumentation accordingly retains its assumptions, and moves within the relations of the Understanding, which belong to Reflection, without subjecting these to criticism. But the Philosophy of Eeligion, as being rational knowledge, is opposed to the arbitrariness of this argumentative process, and is the Eeason of the Universal, which presses forward to unity.

Philosophy is therefore very far removed from being on the common highway on which this Theology of Reason and this exegetical argumentative process move, the truth rather being that it is these tendencies chiefly which combat it, and seek to bring it under suspicion.

They protest against philosophy, but only in order to reserve to themselves the arbitrariness of their aro^umentative process. \ Philosophy is called something special and particular, although it is nothing else than rational, truly universal thought. Philosophy is regarded as a something ghostly, of which we know nothing, and about which there is something uncanny; but this idea only shows that these rationalistic theologians find it


more convenient to keep to their unregulated arbitrary reflections, to which philosophy attaches no validity* If, then, those theologians, who busy themselves with their argumentations in exegesis, and appeal to the Bible in connection with all their notions, when they deny as against philosophy the possibility of knowledge, have brought matters to such a pass, and have so greatly depreciated the reputation of the Bible, that if the trutli were as they say, and if according to the true explanation of the Bible, no knowledge of the nature of God were possible, - the spirit would be compelled to look for another source in order to acquire such truth as should be substantial or full of content./^y

('y.)VThe Philosophy of Eeligion cannot, therefore, in the fashion of that metaphysic of the Understandingj and exegesis of inferences, put itself in opposition to positive religion, and to such doctrine of the Church as has still preserved its content. On the contrary, it will become apparent that it stands infinitely nearer to positive doctrine than it seems at first sight to do.

Indeed, the re-establishment of the doctrines of the Church, reduced to a minimum by "the Understanding, is so truly the work of philosophy, that it is decried by that so-called Theology of Reason, which is merely a Theology of the Understanding, as a darkening of the mind, and this just because of the true content possessed by it. The fears of the Understanding, and its hatred of philosophy, arise from a "feeling of apprehension, based on the fact that it perceives how philosophy carries back its reflecting process to its foundation, that is, to the affirmative in which it perishes, and yet that philosophy arrives at a content, and at a knowledge of the nature of God, after all content seemed to be already done away with. Every content appears to this negative tendency to be a darkening of the mind, its only desire being to continue in that nocturnal darkness which it calls enlightenment, and hence ^the


rays of the light of knowledge must be necessarily regarded by it as hostile/'

¦.It is sufficient here merely to observe regarding the supposed opposition of the Philosophy of Eeligion and positive religion, that there cannot be two kinds of reason and two kinds of Spirit; there cannot be a Divine reason and a human, there cannot be a Divine Spirit and a human, which are absolutely d'iffer&nt. Human reason - the consciousness of one's being - is indeed reason; it is the divine in man, and Spirit, in so far as it is the Spirit of God, is not a ^spirit beyond the starSj beyond the world. On the cootrary, God is present, omnipresentj and exists as Spirit in all spirits. God is a living God, who is acting and working. Eeligion is a product of the Divine Spirit; it is not a discovery of man, but a work of divine operation and creation in him. The expression that God as reason rules the world, would be irrational if we did not assume that it has reference also to religion, and that the Divine Spirit works in the special character and form assumed by religion. But the development of reason as perfected iu thought does not stand in opposition to this Spirit, and consequently it cannot be absolutely different from the work which the Divine Spirit has produced in religion. The more a man. in thinking, rationally lets the _ true^tlim^^ or fact ^ itself hold sway with him^ renounces his particularity^^ acts as universal consciousness, while his reason does not seek its own in the sense of something special, the less will he, as the embodiment of this reason, get into that condition of opposition; for it, namely, reason, is itself the essential fact or thingj the spirit, the Divine Spirit. The Church or the theologians may disdain this aid, or may take it amiss when their doctrine is mad§ reasonable ¦• they may even repel the exertions of philosophy with proud irony, though these are not directed in a hostile spirit

^ Die Sache.



against religion, but, on the contrary, seek to fathom its truth; and they may ridicule the " manufactured " triith- "but this scorn is no longer of any avail, and is, in fact, idle when once the need of true rational knowledge, and the sense of discord between it and religion, have been awakened. The intelligence has here its rights, which can in no way be longer denied to it, and the triumph of knowledge is the reconciliation of the opposition.^

Although then, philosophy, as the Philosophy of Eeligion, is so very different from those tendencies of the understanding, which are at bottom hostile to religion, and is in no way such a spectral thing as it has usually been represented to be, yet even at the present day we still see the belief in the absolute opposition between philosophy and religion made one of the shibboleths of the time. All those principles of the religious consciousness which have been developed at the present time, however widely distinguished their forms may be from one another, yet agree in this, that they are at enmity with philosophy, and endeavour at all hazards to prevent it from occupying itself with religion; and the work that now lies before us is to consider philosophy in its relation to these p^Hnciples of the time. From this consideration of the subject we may confidently promise ourselves success, all the more thaj it will become apparent how, in presence of all that enmity which is shown to philosophy, from however many sides it may come - indeed, it comes from almost every side of consciousness in its present form - the time has nevertheless firrived when philosophy can, partly in an unprejudiced and partly in a favourable and successful manner, occupy itself with religion. Tor the opposition takes one or \ other of those forms of the divided consciousness which »we considered above. They occupy partly the standipoint of the metaphysic of the Understanding, for which 'God is emptiness, and content has vanished, partly the


standpoint of feeling, whicli after tjie loss of absolute content has withdrawn itself into its« empty subjectivity, but is in accord with that metaphysic iu coming to the result that every characterisation is 'inadequate to the eternal content - for this indeed is only an abstraction.

Or we may even see that the assertions of the opponents of philosophy contain nothing else than what philosophy itself contains as its principle, and as the foundation of its principle. This contradiction, namely, that the opponents of philosophy are the opponents of religion who "have been overcome by it, and that they yet implicitly -possess the principle of philosophical knowledge in their leflections, lias its foundation in this, that they represent the historical element out of which philosophical thought -in its complete shape has been formed.^

III. - The Relation op the Philosophy op Keligion to THE Current Principles of the Religious Consciousness.

If at the present day philosophy be an object of enmity because it occupies itself with religion, this cannot really surprise us when we consider the general character of the time. Every one who attempts to take to do with the knowledge of God, and by the aid of thought to comprehend His nature, must be prepared to find, that either no attention will be paid to him, or that people will turn against him and combine to ^oppose him.

The more the knowledge of finite things has increased - and the increase is so great that the extension of the sciences has become almost boundless, and all regions of knowledge are enlarged to an extent which makes a ..comprehensive view impossible - so much the more has the sphere of the knowledge of God become contracted.

^ There was a time when all knowledge was knowledge of God. Our own time, on the contrary,^ has the distinction of knowing about all and everything, about an infinite



number of subjects, but nothing at all of God. Formerly the mind found its supreme interest in knowing God, and searching into His nature. It had and it found no rest unless in thus occupying itself with God. "When it could not satisfy this need it felt unhappy. The spiritual convicts to which the knowledge of God gives rise in the inner life were the highest which the spirit knew and experienced in itself, and all other interests and knowledge were lightly esteemed. Our own time has put this need, with all its toils and conflicts, to silence; we have done with all this, and got rid „of it. What Tacitus said of the ancient Germans, that they were securi adversus deos, we have once more become in regard to knowledge, securi adversus deum,'^

It no longer gives our age any concern that it knows nothing of God; on the contrary, it is regarded as a mark of the highest intelligence to hold that such knowledge is not even possible. What is laid down by the Christian religion as the supreme, absolute commandment, "Ye shall know God," is regarded as a piece of folly. Christ says, " Be ye perfect, as My Father in heaven is perfect." This lofty demand is to the wisdom of our time an empty sound. It has made of God an infinite phantom, which is far from us, and in like manner has made human knowledge a futile phantom of finitenesSj or a mirror upon which fall only shadows, only phenomena. How, .then, are we any longer to respect the commandment, and grasp its meaning, when it says to us, " Be ye perfect, as your Father in heaven is perfect/' since we know nothing of the Perfect One, and since our knowing and willing are confined solely and entirely to appearance, and the truth is to be and to remain absolutely and exclusively a something beyond the present? And what, we must further ask, what else would it be worth while to comprehend, if God is incomprehensible ?

This standpoint must, judged by its content, be -considered as the last stage of the degradation of man, in


-which at the same time he is, it is truie, all the more arrogant inasmuch as he thinks he has proved to himself that this degradation is the highest possible state, and is his true destiny. Such a point of view is, indeed, directly opposed to the lofty nature of the Christian religion, for according to this we ought to know God, His nature, and His essential Being, and to esteem this knowledge as something which is the highest of all, (The distinction as to whether this knowledge is brought to us by means of faith, authority, revelation, or reason, is here of no importance.) But although this is the case, and although this point of view has come to dispense both with the content which revelation gives of the Divine nature, and with what belongs to reason, yet it has iiot shrunk, after all its abject gropings, in that blind arrogance which is proper to it, from turning against philosophy. And yet it is philosophy which is the liberation of the spirit from that shameful degradation, and which has once more brought religion out of the stage of ijitense suffering which it had to experience when occupying the standpoint referred to. Even the theologians, who are on their own ground in that region of vanity, have ventured to charge philosophy with its destructive tendency - theologians who have no longer anything left of that substantial element which could possibly be destroyed.

In order to repel these not merely groundless, but, what is more, frivolous and unprincipled objections, we need only observe cursorily how theologians have, on the contrary, done everything in their power to do away with what is definite in religion, in that they have (i) thrust dogmas into the background, or pronounced them to be unimportant; or (2) consider them only as extraneous definitions given by others, and as mere phenomena of a past history. When we have reflected in this manner upon the aspect presented by the content, and have seen how this last is re-established by philosophy, and placed in safety from the devastations of theology, we shall (3)


reflect upon the form of that standpoint, and shall see here how the tendency which, taking its departure from the form, is at enmity with philosophy, is so ignorant of what it is, that it does not even know that it contains in itself the very principle of philosophy.

I. Philosophy and the Frevalent Indifference to Definite JDogmas.

If, then, it be made a reproach to philosophy in its relation to religion that the content of the doctrine of revealed positive religion, and nioje expressly of the Christian religion, is depreciated by at, and that it subverts and destroys its dogmas, yet this hindrance is taken out of the way, and by the new theology itself, in fact.

There are very few dogmas of the earlier system of Church confessions left which have any longer tlie importance formerly attributed to them, and in their place no other dogmas have been set up. It is easy to convince oneself, by considering what is the real value now attached to ecclesiastical dogmas, that into the religious world generally there has entered a widespread, almost universal, indifference towards what in earlier times were held to be essential doctrines of the faith. A few examples will prove this,

Christ still indeed continues to be made the central point of faith, as Mediator, Reconciler, and Eedeemer; but what was known as the work of redemption has received a very prosaic and merely psychological signification, so that although the edifying words have been retained, the very thing that was essential in the old doctrine of the Church has been expunged.

*' Great energy of character, steadfast adherence to

^conviction for the sake of which He regarded not His

life " - these are the common categories through which

Christ is brought down, not indeed to the plane of

ordinary everyday life, but to that of human action in


general and moral designs, and into a moral sphere into which even heathens like Socrates wer^ capable of entering. Even though Christ be for many the central point of faith and devotion in the deeper sense, yet Christian y^ life as a whole restricts itself to this devotional bent, and the weighty doctrines of the Trinity, of the resurrection of the body, as also the miracles in the Old and iN'ew Testaments, are neglected as matters of indifference, and have lost their importance. The divinity of Christ, dogma, what is peculiar to the Christian religion is set aside, or else reduced to something of merely general nature. It is not only by " enlightenment " that Christianity has been thus treated, but even by pious theologians themselves. These latter join with the men of enlightenment in saying that the Trinity was brought into Christian doctrine by the Alexandrian school, by the neo-Platonists. But even if it must be conceded^ that the fathers of the Church studied Greek philosophy, it is in the first instance a matter of no importance/y whence that doctrine may have come; the only ques-i tion is, whether it be essentially, inherently, true; but I that is a point which is not examined into, and yet that doctrine is the key-note of the Christian religion.

If an opportunity was given to a large number of these theologians to lay their hand on their heart, and say whether they consider faith in the Trinity to be indispensably necessary to salvation, and whether they believe that the absence of such faith leads to damnation, there can be no doubt what the answer would be.

Even the words eternal happiness and eternal damnation are such as cannot be used in good society 5 such expressions are regarded as dppt^ra, as .words which one shrinks from utterinfj. Even although a man should riot wish to deny these doctrines, he would, in case of his being directly appealed to, find it very difficult to express himself in an affirmative way.

In the doctrinal teaching of these theologians, it will


be found that dogmas have become very thin and ¦shrunken, although they are talked about a great deal.

If any one were to take a number of religious books, or collections of sermons, in which the fundamental doctrines of the Christian religion are supposed to be set forth, and attempt to sift the greater part of those writings conscientiously in order to ascertain whether, in a large proportion of such literature, the fundamental doctrines of Christianity are to be found contained and stated in the orthodox sense, without ambiguity or evasion, the answer is again not a doubtful one.

It would appear that the theologians themselves, in accordance with the general training which most of them have received, only attribute that importance which they formerly assigned to the principle and doctrines of positive Christianity - when these were still regarded as such - to these doctrines when they ate veiled in a misty indeiiniteness. Thus if philosophy has always been regarded as the opponent of the doctrines of the Church, it cannot any longer be such, since these doctrines, which it seemed to threaten with destruction, are no longer regarded by general conviction as ^of importance. A great part of the danger which threatens philosophy from this side when she considers these dogmas in order to comprehend them ought to be thus taken away, and so philosophy can take up a more untrammelled attitude with regard to dogmas which have so much sunk in interest with theoloi^ians themselves.

2. The Historical Treatment of Dogmas.

The strongest indication, however, that the importance of these dogmas has declined, is to be perceived in the fact that they are treated principally in an historical manner, and are regarded in the light of convictions which belong to others^ as matters of history, which do not go on in our own mind as such, and which do not concern


the needs of our spirit. Tiie real interest here is to find out how the matter stands so far as others are concerned, what part others have played, and centres in this accidental origin and appearance of doctrine. The question as to what is a man's own personal conviction only excites astonishment. ^ u'he absolute manner of the origin of these doctrines out of the depths of Spirit, and thus the necessity, the truth, which they have for our spirits too, is shoved on one side by this historical treatment. It brings much zeal and erudition to bear on these doctrines; it is not with their essential substance, however, that it is occupied, but with the externalities of the controversies about them, and with the passions which have gathered around this external mode of the origin of truth.//rhus Theology is by her own act put in a low enough position.' N\lf the philosophical knowledge of religion is conceived of as something to be reached historically only, then we should have to re^rard the theolofrians who have brought ic to this point as clerks in a mercantile house, who have only to keep an account of the wealth of strangers, who only act for others without obtaining any property for themselves. They do, indeed, receive salary, but their reward is only to serve, and to register that which is the property of others. Theology of this kind has no longer a place at all in the domain of thought; it has no longer to do with infinite thought in and for^ itself, but only with it as a finite fact, as opinion, ordinary thought, and so on.

History occupies itself with truths which were truths - namely, for others, not with such as would come to be the possession of those who are occupied with them.

With the true content, with the knowledge of God, such •theologians have no concern. They know as little of God as a blind man sees of a painting, even though he handles the frame. They only know how a certain dogma was established by this or that council; what grounds those present at such a council had for establishing it, and how this or that opinion came to predomi


nate. And in all this, it is indeed religion that is in question, and yet it is not religion itself which here comes under consideration. Much is told us of the history of the painter of the picture, and of the fate of the picture itself, what price it had at different times, into what hands it came, but we are, never permitted to see anything of the picture itself.'/

\\It is essential in philosophy and religion, however, that the spirit should itself enter with supreme interest into an inner relation, should not only occupy itself with a thing that is foreign to it, but should draw its content from that which is essential, and should regard itself as worthy of such knowledge. For here it is with the value of his oion spirit that maji is concerned, and he is not at liberty humbly to ren^ain outside and to wander about at a distance. ^y

3. Philosophy/ and Immediate Knoioledge.

In consequence of the emptiness of the standpoint just considered, it might appear as if we only mentioned the reproaches which it casts upon philosophy in order to pronounce expressly against such a point of view, and that our aim, which we do not relinquish, is to do the opposite of that which it holds to be the highest of all aims - namely, to know God. Yet this standpoint has an aspect belonging to its forni in which it must really have a rational interest for us, and regarded from this side, the recent attitude of theology is more favourable for philosophy. For with the thought that all objective determinateness lias converged in the inwardness of subjectivity, the conviction is bound up that God gives revelation in an immediate way in man; that r^eligion consists just in this, that man has immediate knowledge of God. This immediate knowing is called reason, and also faith, but

.. in a sense other than that in which the Ciiurch takes faith.

^ All knowledge, all conviction, all piety, regarded from


the point of view which we are considerrag; is based on the principle that in the spirit, as such, the consciousness of God exists immediately with the; consciousness of its self.//

a. This statement taken in a direct sense, and as not implying that any polemical attitude has been taken up to philosophy, passes for one which needs no proof, no confirmation. This universal idea, which is now matter of assumption, contains this essential principle - namelyi that the highest, the religious content shows itself in the spirit itself, that Spirit manifests itself in Spirit, and in fact in this my spirit, that this faith has its sojirce, its root in my deepest personal being, and that it as what is most peculiarly my own, and as such is inseparable from the consciousness of pure spirit. "^

VMnasmuch as this knowledge exists immediately in myself, all external authority, all foreign attestation is cast aside; what is to be of value to me must have its verification in my own spirit, and in order that I may believe I must have the witness of my spirit. It may indeed come to me from without, but any such external origin is a matter of indifference; if it is to be valid, this validity can only build itself up upon the foundation of all truth, in the witness of the Spirit//

This principle is the simple principle of philosophical knowledge itself, and philosophy is so far from rejecting it that it constitutes a fundamental characteristic in it itself. Thus it is to be regarded as a gain, a kind of happy circumstance, that fundamental principles of philosophy live even in general popular conceptions, and have become general assumptions, for in this way the philosophical principle may expect the more easily to obtain the general consent of the educated. As a result of this general disposition of the spirit of our time, philosophy has not only won a position which is externally favourable - with what is external it is never;concerned, and least of all where it, and active interest in it, takes the


form of an institution of the State - but is favoured iawardly, since its principle already lives in the minds and in the hearts of men as an assumption.X For philosophy has this in common with the form of culture referred to, t hat r eason is regarde d _as__^igiL^art of the spirit in which God reveals himself, to man/^

h. But the principle of immediate knowledge does not rest satisfied with this simple deter minateness, this natural and ingenuous content; it does not only express itself affirmatively, but takes up a directly polemical attitude to philosophical knowledge, and directs its attacks especially against the philosophical knowledge and comprehension of God. Kot only does it teach that we are to believe and to know in an immediate manner, not only is it maintained that the consciousness of God is bound up with the consciousness of self, but that the relation to God is only an immediate one. The immediateness of the connection is taken as excluding the other characteristic of mediateness, and philosophy, because it is mediated knowledge, is said to be only a finite knowledge of that which is finite.

Thus this knowledge in its immediacy is to get no further than this, that we know that God is, but not what He is; the content, the filling up of the idea of God, is negated. By philosophical knowledge or cognition, we mean not only that we know that an object is, but also what it is; and that to know what it is, is not to know it to the extent of possessing a certain knowledge, certainty, of what it is; but more than this, this knowledge must relate to its characteristics, to its content, and it must be complete and full and proved knowledge, in which the necessary connection of these characteristics is a matter of knowledge.

If we consider more closely what is involved in the assertion of immediate knowledge,, it is seen to mean that the consciousness so relates itself to its content that it itself and this content - God - are inseparable. It is


this relation, in fact - knowledge of God - and this inseparableness of consciousness from this content, which we call religion. Further, however, it is of the essence of this assertion that we are to limit ourselves to the consideration of religion as such, and to keep strictly to the consideration of the relation to God, and are not to proceed to the knowledge of God, that is, of the divine .pontent - of what the divine content essentially is in itself.

In this sense it is stated, further, that we can only know our relation to God, not what God Himself is; and "that-'tfis only our relation to God which is embraced in what is generally called religion. Thus it happens that at the present time we only hear religion spoken of, and .do not find that investigation is made regarding the nature of God, what He is in Himself, and how the .nature of God must be determined. God, as God, is not even made an object of thought; knowledge does not trench upon that object, and does not exhibit distinct attributes in Him, so as to make it possible tliat He Himself should be conceived of as constituting tlie relation of these attributes, and as relation in Himself. \^God is not before us as an object of knowledge, but only our relation with God, our relation to Him; and while discussions of the nature of God have become fewer and fewer, it is now only required of a man that he should be religious, that he should abide by r.eligion, and we are told that we are not to proceed further to get a knowledge of any divine content.'^

c. If, however, we bring out what is inherent in the principle of immediate knowing, that is, what is directly affirmed in it, we find it to be just this, that God is spoken of in relation to consciousness in such a way that this relation is something inseparable, or, in other words, that we must of necessify contemplate hotJi. ' It implies, in the first place, the essential distinction which the conception of religion contains; on the one


side, subjective consciousnesSj and on the other, God recognised as Object in Himself, or mplicitly. At the same time, however, it is stated that there is an essential relation between the two, and that it is this iuse-^ parable relation of religion which is the real point, and not the notions which one may have i^oncerning God.

What is really contained in this position, and really constitutes its true kernel, is the philosophical Idea itself, only that this Idea is confined by immediate knowledge "within limitations which are abolished by philosophy, and which are by it exhibited in their onesidedness and untruth. According to the philosophical conception, God is Spirit, is concrete; and if we inquire more closely what Spirit is, we find that the whole of religious doctrine consists in the development of the ffeindamental conception of Spirit. ^N Tor the present, however, it may suffice to say that Spirit is essentially self-manifestation - its nature is to he for Spirit/^ Spirit is for Spirit, and not, be it observed, only in an external, accidental manner.

On the contrary, Spirit is only Spirit in so far as it is for Spirit; this constitutes the conception or notion of Spirit itself. Or, to express it more theologically, God is essentially Spirit, so far as He is in His Church. /It has been said that the world, the material universe, must have spectators, and must be for Spirit or miud; how much more, then, must God be for Spirit.

We cannot, consequently, view tlje matter in a onesided way, and consider the subject merely according to its finiteness, to its contingent life, but inasmuch too as it has the infinite absolute object as its content. For if the Subject be considered by itself, it is considered within the limits of finite knowledge, of knowledge whicli concerns the finite. It is also maintained, on the other hand, that God, in like manner, musE not be considered for Himself, for man only knows of God in relation to consciousness; and thus the unity and inseparability of the two determinations - of the knowledge of God and


self-consciousness - even presupposes what is expressed in identity, and that dreaded identity itself is contained in it^

As a matter of fact, we thus find tlie fundamental conception ^vhich belongs to philosophy already existing as an universal element in the cultured thouglit of the present day. And here it becomes apparent, too, that philosophy does not stand above its age as if it were something absolutely different from the general character of the time, but that it is One Spirit ^hich pervades both the actual world and philosophical thought, and that this last is only the true self-comprehension of what is actual.

Or, in other words, it is one movement upon which both the age and its philosophy are borne, the distinction being only that the character of the time still appears to present itself as accidental, and is not rationally justified, and may thus even stand in an unreconciled, hostile attitude towards the truly essential content; while philosophy, as the justification of principles, is at the same time the universal peace-bring er and universal reconciliation.

As the Lutheran Eeformation carried faith back to the first centuries, so the principle of immediate knowledge has carried Christian knowledge back to the primary elements. If, however, this process at first causes the essential content to evaporate, yet it is philosophy which recognises this very principle of immediate knowledge as representing content, and as being such carries it forward to its true expansion within itself.

The want of sound sense which marks the arguments advanced against philosophy knows no bouuds. The very opinions which are supposed by those who hold them to militate against philosophy^ and to be in the sharpest antagonism to it, upon examination of their content exhibit essential agreement with that which they combat. Thus the result of the study of philosophy is that these walls of separation, which are supposed to divide absolutely, become transparent; and that when we go to the root of things we find tjiat there is absolute


accordance where it was believed that there was the greatest opposition.



Before we can proceed to the treatment of our subject itself, it appears to be indispensable to solve several preliminary questions, or rather to institute an investigation into these with the view of showing that the possibility of any such treatment of the subject, and of a rational knowledge of religion, is made dependent on the result of this investigation. It appears to be absolutely necessary to examine and to answer thess questions, for this reason, that they have very specially engaged the interest of thinking men in our day, both in a philosophical and in a popular connection, and because they have to do with the principles upon which prevalent opinions regarding the religious content, or substantial element of religion, as also regarding the knowledge of it, are based.

If we omit such examination, it will at least be necessary to prove that this omission is ^not accidental, and that we possess the right to do this, since the essential element of any such examination is included in the science of philosophy itself, and all those questions can only find their solution there.

Here, therefore, we have only to look the hindrances in the face which the culture and opinion of the time, as hitherto considered, put in the way of our exercising the right to get an intellectual grasp of religion.

i; In the first place, it is not religion in general that we have before us, but positive religion, regarding which it is acknowledged that it is the gift of God, which rests on higher than human authority, and therefore appears to be outside the sphere of human reason, and to be elevated above it. ' '' The first hindrance in this connection


is, that we should be called upon, before proceeding further, to verify the competence and capability of reason to deal with the truth and doctrine of a religion which is supposed to be withdrawn from the sphere of human reason. Bational or philosophical knowledge comes, however, and must of necessity come, into relation with positive religion. It has been„said indeed, and is said still, that positive religion is "for itself," or stands on its own basis. We do not question its doctrines; we respect them, and hold them in honour; on the other side stands reason, thought, which seeks to grasp its object intellectually, and these two are supposed not to come into relation; reason is not to interfere with these doctrines. Formerly, it was imagined that the freedom of philosophical investigation could be guarded in this way.

It was then said, that it was a thing by itself, which was not to do any harm to positive religion, and its result, moreover, also was subordinated to the teaching of positive religion.

We do not wish, however, to place the present investigation on this footing. \ It is a false idea that these two, faith and free philosophical investigation, can subsist quietly side by side. There is no foundation for maintaining that faith in the content or essential element of positive religion can continue to exist, if reason has convinced itself of the opposite. The Church has, therefore, consistently and justly refused to allow that reason might stand in opposition to faith, and yet be placed under subjection to it. - 'The human spirit in its inmost nature is not something so divided up that two contradictory elements might subsist together in it.-^\If discord has arisen between intellectual insight and religion, and is not overcome in Jvnowledge, it leads to despair, which comes in the place of reconciliation.

This despair is reconciliation carried out in a one-sided manner. The one side is cast away, the other alone held fast; but a man cannot win true peace in this way.

The one alternative is, for the divided spirit to reject the demands of the intellect and try to return to simple



religious feeling. To this, however, the spirit can only attain by doing violence to itself, for the independence of consciousness' demands satisfaction, and will not be thrust aside by force; and to renounce independent thought, is not within the power of the healthy mind.

Religious feeling becomes yearning hyprocrisy, and retains the moment of non-satisfaction. The other alternative is a one-sided attitude of indifference toward religion, which is either left unquestioned and let alone, or is ultimately attacked and opposed. That is the course followed by shallow spirits.

This, then, is the first preliminary question in virtue of which the right of reason to occupy itself with the doctrines of religion has to be proved.

2. In the sphere above referred to, it is only maintained that reason cannot appreheijd the truth of the nature of God: the possibility of apprehending other truths is not denied to it; it is only the highest truth which is said to be beyond its knowledge. According to another position, however, it is entii;ely denied to reason to know truth at all. It is asserted that philosophical knowledge, when it deals with Spirit in its true essence, in and for itself, with life, with the infinite, only produces n^istakes, and that reason must renounce all claim to grasp anything of the infinite in an affirmative manner; the infinite is destroyed by thought, is brought down to the level of the finite. This result, in regard to reason, this negation of reason, is even sdid to be a result of rational knowledge itself. Thus it would be necessary first to examine reason itself in order to ascertain whether the capability of knowing God, aii-d consequently the possibility of a philosophy of religion, is inherent in it.

3. It follows from this that the knowledge of God is not to be placed in the reason which seeks to comprehend its object, but that the consciousness of God springs only out of feeling; and that the relation of man to God lies .within tlie sphere of feeling only, and is not to be


brought over into thought. If God be excluded frora the region of rational intelligence or insight, of necessary, substantial subjectivity, nothing indeed is left but to assign to Him the region of accidental subjectivity, that of feeling, and in this case it may well be a subject of wonder that objectivity is ascribed to God at all. In this respect, materialistic views, or by whatever other name you choose to designate them, empirical, liistorical, naturalistic, have been at least more consistent, in that they have taken Spirit and Thought for something material, and imagine they have traced the matter back to sensations, even taking God to be a product of feeling, and denying to Him objectivity. The result has, in this case, been atheism. God would thus be an historical product of weakness, of fear, of joy, or of interested hopes, cupidity, and lust of power. What has its root only in my feelings, is only for me; it is mine, but not its own; it has no independent existence in and for itself. Therefore it appears to be necessary, before going further, to show that God is not rooted in feeling merely, is not merely my God. Eor this reason the older metaphysic has always demonstrated first of all that a God is, and not merely that there is a feeling of God, and thus the Philosophy of Eeligion too finds the demand made upon it to demonstrate God.

It might seem as if the other sciences had the advantage over philosophy, inasmuch as their material is already acknowledged, and they are exempted from the necessity of proving the existence of this material. To arithmetic the fact of numbers, td geometry that of space, to medicine that of human bodies and diseases, is granted from the very beginning, and it is not required of them to prove, for example, that space, bodies, diseases, exist. Philosophy, however, seems to labour under the disadvantage of being obliged, before beginning, to guarantee an existence to its objects; if it be granted without challenge that there is a world, yet no sooner


does philosophy go on to assume the reality of the immaterial in general, of a Thought and Spirit free from what is material, and still more the reality of God, than it is at once taken to task. The object with which philosophy occupies itself is not, however, of such a character as to be something merely hypothetical, and it is not to be regarded as such. Were it so, philosophy, and especially the Philosophy of Eeligion, would have in the first place to verify its object for itself. It would have to direct its efforts toward showing it to be necessary that before it exist it prove that it is; it would have before its existence to prove its existence.

These, then, are the preliminary questions which it seems would have to be solved beforehand, as in their solution the very possibility of a Philosophy of Eeligion would lie. For, if such points of view be valid, then any Philosophy of Eeligion is absolutely impossible, since in order to prove its possibility these obstacles must in the first place be removed. So it appears at first sight.

We nevertheless leave them on one side; and for what reason we do so will, so far as the principal points are concerned, be briefly explained, in order that this difficulty may be met.

The first demand is that reason, the faculty of knowledge, should be examined to begin with, before we advance to knowledge. Knowledge is thus conceived of as if it were to be got at by means of an instrument, with which the truth is to be laid hold of. When looked at more closely, however, the demand that this instrument should first be known is a clumsy one.

Criticism of the faculty of knowledge is a position of the Kantian philosophy, and one which is general in the present time, and in the theology of the day. It was believed to be a great discovery, but as so often happens in the world, this belief proved to be selfdeception. For it is commonly the case that when people have a notion which they consider to be a very


clever one, it is in connection with: it that they show themselves most foolish, and their satisfaction consists in having found a splendid outlet for thi9ir folly and ignorance. Indeed they are inexhaustible in finding such outlets when it is a question of keeping a good conscience in the face of their indolence, and of getting quit of the whole affair.

Eeason is to be examined, but how ? It *is to be rationally examined, to be known; this is, however, only possible by means of rational thought; it is impossible in any other way, and consequently a demand is made which cancels itself. If we are not to begin philosophical speculation without having attained rationally to a knowledge of reason, no beginning can be made at all, for in getting to know anything in the philosophical sense, we comprehend it rationally; we are, it seems, to give up attempting this, since the very thing we have to do is first of all to know reason. This is just the demand which was made by that Gascon who would not go into the water until he could swim. It is impossible to make any preliminary examination of rational activity without being rational.

Here in the Philosophy of Eeligion it is more especially God, reason in fact, that is the object; for God is essentially rational, rationality, which as Spirit is in and for itself. ^!N"ow in speculating philosophically upon reason, we investigate knowledge, only we do it in such a way as to imply that we do not suppose we would want to complete this investigation beforehand outside of the object; on the contrary, the knowledge of reason is precisely the object with which we are concerned. It is of the very essence of Spirit to be 'for Spirit, '-'' That is just what Spirit is, and this consequently implies that finite spirit has been posited, and the relation of finite spirit, of finite reason to the divine, originates of itself within the Philosophy of Pi,eligion itself, and must be treated of there, and indeed in the yery place where it


first originates. It is this which constitutes the difference between a science and conjectures about a science; tbe latter are accidental; in so far, however, as they are thoughts, which relate to the matter itself, they must be included in its treatment, and they are in this case no longer mere chance bubbles of thought.

Spirit in making itself an object gives itself essentially the form of Appearance or Manifestation, as something which comes in a higher manner to tbe finite spirit; and it is essentially owing to this that the finite spirit arrives at a positive religion. Spirit becomes for itself or actual in the form of mental representation or idea, in the form of the Other, and for that other for'which it is, religion is produced as something positive. Thus, too, there is inherent in religion that characteristic of reason in virtue of which it involves knowledge, in -virtue of which it is activity of comprehension and of thought. This standpoint of knowledge is included in religion, and so, too, is the standpoint of feeling. Feeling is the subjective element; that which belongs to nie as this individual, and because of which it is to myself that I appeal. The standpoint of feeling, too, in so far as God gives Himself this ultimate individualisation of This One, of one who feels, has its place in the development of the conception of religion, because this feeling has in it a spiritual relation, has spirituality in it. The determination, too, that God is, is a determination which is essentially included in the consideration of religion.

Eeligion, however, speaking generally, is the ultimate and the highest sphere of human consciousness, whether it be opinion, will, idea, ordinary knowledge, or philosophical knowledge. It is the absolute result - it is the region into which man passes over, as into the domain of absolute truth.

By reason of this universal character of religion, consciousness must, when in this sphere, have already raised itself above all that is finite - above finite existence,


conditions, ends, interests, as well as above finite thoughts, finite relations of all kinds. To be actually within the sphere of religion, it is necessary to have laid these aside.

Yet although even for the ordinary consciousness religion is the act of rising up above the finite, it usually happens when philosophy in general,^ and especially the philosophy which deals with God, with religionj is attacked, that in support of this polemical attitude, finite thoughts, relations belonging to limitation, categories and forms of the finite are brought forward to the disregard of this fundamental characteristic. Such forms of the finite are made points of departure from which to oppose pbilosophy, especially the highest philosophy, the Philosophy of Heligion.

We shall only touch briefly upon this. Immediacy of knowledge - the fact of consciousness^is, for example, such a finite form; such finite categories are the antitheses of finite and infinite, subject and object. But ' these antitheses, finite or infinite, subject or object, are abstract forms, which are out of place in such an absolutely rich, concrete content as religion is. In Spirit, soul - that which has to do with religion- - quite other qualities are present than finiteness, &c.; and on such qualities is based all that is essential in religion. These forms must indeed be employed, since they are moments of the essential relation which lies at the foundation of religion, but it is of primary importance that their nature should have been examined into and recognised Ions before. This logical knowledge, which comes first, must lie behind us when we have to deal with religion scientifically; such categories must have long ago been done with. But the usual thing is to emplpy these as weapons against the Notion, the Idea; against- rational knowledge.

Those categories are used entirely without criticism, in a quite artless way, just as if Kant's "Critique of Pure Eeason" did not exist, which at least Attacked these forms, and a^fter its own fashion reached the result that it is only


phenomena which can be known by means of these categories. In religion it is not, however, with phenomena that we have to do, it is with an absohite content.

But those who employ this argumentative kind of reasoning seem to think the Kantian philosophers have existed only to afford opportunity for the more unblushing use of those categories.

It is entirely out of place, it is indeed preposterouSj to bring forward these categories, such as immediacy, fact of consciousness, in opposition to philosophy, and to meet philosophy with the reply that the finite is different from ¦the infinite, and the object from the subject, as if there were any one, any philosopher whatever, who did not know this, or had still to learn such trivialities. Yet people are not ashamed to parade triumphantly cleverness of this sort, as if they had made a new discovery.

We shall here remark only that such characteristics as finite and infinite, subject and „ object - and this is what always constitutes the foundation of that very knowing and overwise talk - are undoubtedly different, but are at the same time inseparable too. "We have an example of this in physics, in the north and south pole of the magnet. It is often said " those characteristics are as different as heaven and earth." That is quite correct; they are absolutely different, but as is already suggested by the figure just mentioned, they are inseparable. Earth cannot be shown without heaven, and vice versd.

It is difficult to enter into discussion with those who wage war on the Philosophy of Eeligion and think they have triumphed over it, for they tell us so bluntly that immediacy, after all, " is something quite different from mediation." At the same time they show an incredible ignorance, and a complete want of acquaintance with the forms and categories by means of which they make their attacks and pronounce a final judgment upon philosophy. They make their affirmations quite artlessly, with


out having thought over these subjects, or having made any thorough observation of external nature and of the inner experience of their consciousness - of their minds - and of the manner in which these qualities present themselves there. Eeality is not for them something present, but is something strange and unknown. The hostile language which tbey direct against philosophy is therefore mere scholastic pedantry - th^ chatter of the schools - which entangles itself in empty, unsubstantial categories, while in philosophy we are not in the so-called " school," but are in the world of reality; and in the wealth of its qualities we do not find a y^ke under which we are in bondage, but have in them free movement.

And then, those who attack and disparage philosophy are, owing to their finite style of thinking, incapable of even grasping a philosophical proposition; and though they may perhaps repeat its words, they have given it a wrong meaning, for they have not grasped its infiniteness, but have introduced their finite conditions into it.

Thus philosophy is indefatigable, so to speak, and imposes upon itself the great labour of carefully investigating what its opponents have to say. Indeed that is its necessary course, being in accordance with its conception, and it can only satisfy the inward impulse of its notion or conception by getting a knowledge both of itself and of what is opposed to it {verum index sui et falsi), but it ..ought to be able to expect as a recompense that the opposition should now, by way of a reciprocal service, relinquish its hostility, and calmly comprehend its essential nature. But that is certainly not the result in this case, and the magnanimity which desires to recognise in a friendly way the adversary, and which heaps coals of fire on his head, does not help philosophy in the least; for the adversary will not keep quiet, but persists in his attacks. When we perceive, however, that the antithesis vanishes like a phantom, and dissolves into mist, we shall at the same time only render to ourselves and to philo


sophical 'tliought what is due, and shall not seek merely to carry our point as against the other. And indeed to convince that " other/' to exert thfs personal influence upon him, is impossible, since he remains wedded to his limited categories*

The thinking spirit must have got beyond all these forms of Reiiectiou; it must know their nature, the true relation involved in them, the infinite relation, that is to saVj that in which their finiteness is done away with.

Then it will become apparent, too, that immediate knowledge, like mediated knowledge, is entirely one-sided.

What is true is their unity, an immediate knowledge which is likewise mediated, something mediated which is likewise simple in itself, which isammediate reference to itself. Inasmuch as the one-sidedness is done away with by means of such combination, it is a condition of infiniteness. Here is union, in which the difference of those characteristics is done away with/ while they at the same time being preserved ideally have the higher destiny of serving as the pulse of vitality, the impulse, movement, unrest of the spiritual, as of the natural life.

Since it is with religion, with w^hat is supreme and ultimate, that we are to be occupied in the following dissertation, we ought now to be in a position to assume that the futility of those relations has long ago been overcome. But at the same time, since we do not begin at the very beginning of the science, but are considering religion;peT se, regard must be also had when dealing with it to such relations 6f understanding as are wont to come principally under consideration in connection with it.

Witli this reference to the following dissertation itself, we shall nov;- proceed to give the: general survey, the synopsis or division of our science,

^ Aufffchoh€n = ahrogated, annulled, done away with, but also " preserved, " as below. This is an example of the use uf the word in the second phase of its double meaning.




There can be but one metliod in all science, since tlie method is the self-uufolding Notion (Begriff) and nothing else, and this latter is only one.

In accordance, therefore, with the moments of the Notion, the exposition and development of religion will be presented in three parts. In the first place, the notion or conception of religion will be considered in its universal aspect; then, secondly, in its particular form as the self-dividing and self-differentiating notion, that is, under the aspect of judgment/ of limitation, of difference, and of finiteness; and ¦thirdly, we shall consider the notion, which encloses itself within itself, the syllogism, or the return of the notion to itself out of the particularity in which it is unequal to itself, so that it arrives at equality with its form, and does away with its limitation. This is the -rhythm, the pure eternal life of Spirit itself; and had it not this movement, it would be something dead. It is of tlie essential nature of Spirit to have itself as object, and thence arises its manifestation. But here Spirit is to begin with in the relation of objectivity, and in this relation it is something finite. The third stage is reached when it is object to itself in such a way that it reconciles itself with itself in the object, is " with itself," and in being so has attained its freedom. For freedom means to be self-contained, or at home with oneself.

But this rhythm, within which our science as a whole, and the entire development of the Notion moves, reappears in each of the three moments specified, since each of these is potentially totality in its determinateness, until this totality is made explicit as such in the final moment. Therefore, when the Notion first

¦^ Z/r-iAei^z: separation of subject froin predicate.


appears in the form of Universalitjj then in the form of Particularity, and lastly, in the form of Slngularityj or when the movement of our science as a whole is that in which the Notion becomes judgment, and completes itself in the syllogism, in every sphere of this movement the same development of the moments will show itself, only that in the first sphere it is held together within the determinate character of universality, in the second sphere within that of particularity, where it exhibits the moments independently, and it is only on arriving at the sphere of individuality that it returns to the real syllogism, which mediates itself in the totality of determinations.

Such, then, is the division of the subject, representing the movement, nature, and action of Spirit itself, of which we, so to speak, are only spectators. It is necessitated by the Notion; the necessity of the progression has, however, to present, explicate, prove itself in the development itself. The division, the different parts and content of which we shall now indicate in a more definite way, is therefore simply historical.

I. - The General Notion^ or Conception op Religion.

\ What comes first is the notion in=its universal aspect, what follows in the second place is the determinateness of the notion, the notion in its definite forms; these are indissolubly united with the notion itself, for in the philosophical mode of treatment it is not the case that the Universal, the Notion, is put into prominence, to do it honour, as it were.' /There are indeed notions or conceptions of Right and of Nature which are general definitions, and which are given a prominent place, and as to which there is to tell the truth room for doubt.

These are not, however, taken seriously, and so we feel that it is not these that are ol importance, but the

i Begritf.


particular content itself, the particular subjects. What is in this connection called the notion, has no further influence upon this content beyond, pointing out in a general way what is the ground upon which we stand in dealing with these subjects, and preventing the introduction of content from any other sphere. The content, for example, magnetism, electricity, answers to the subject-matter itself,^ the notion to the formal element.

The conception or notion which is ^placed in the foreground (as, for example, that of Eight) may, however, in connection with such a mode of considering the subject, become a mere name for the most abstract, uncertain content.

For the philosophical way of looking at things, too, the notion occupies the first place, \mt here the notion is the content itself, the absolute ^subject-matter, the substance, as in the case of the germ, out of which the whole tree develops itself. All specifications or determinations are contained in this, the whole nature of the tree, the kind of sap it has, the w^ay in which the branches grow; but in a spiritu-al manner, and not pre-formed so that a microscope could reveal its boughs, its leaves, in miniature. \^t is thus that the notion contains the whole nature of the object, and knowledge itself is nothing else than the development of the notion, of that which is implicitly contained m the notion, and has not yet come into existence, has not been unfolded, displayed. "/Thus we begin with the notion or conception of religion.

I. The Moment of Universality,

In the notion or conception of religion the purely universal, again, does indeed take the first place; that is, the moment of thought in its complete universality.

It is not this or that that is thought, but Thought thinks itself. The object is the Universal,- which, as active, is Thought. As the act of rising up to- the True, religion is

1 Saclie.


a departing from sensuous, finite objects. If this becomes merely an advance to an " Other," it is the false progressive process ad- infinihimy and is that kind of talk which does not get out of the bit. vThought, however, is a rising up from the limited to the absolutely Universal, and religion is only through thought, and in thought.

God is not the highest emotion, but the highest Thought./ Although He is lowered down to popular conception, yet the content of this conception belongs to the realm of thought. VThe opinion that thought is injurious to religion, and that the more thought is abandoned the more secure the position of religion is, is the maddest error of our time. /This misunderstanding originates in a fundamental misconception of the higher spiritual relations. Thus in regard to Eight, good-will for itself (or as an independent motive) is taken as something which stands in contrast to intelligence, and men are given the more credit for true good- will the less they think. Eight and morality, on the contrary, consist in this alone, that I am a thinking being; that is to say, in the fact that I do not look upon my freedom as that of my empirical personality, which belongs to me as this individttal, and in which I might subjugate my neig.hbour by means of stratagem or force, but in my regarding freedom as something that has its being in and for itself, or exists on its own account, that is, as something Universal.

If vve now say that religion has the moment of thought in its complete Universality in itself, and that the Unlimited-Universal is supreme absolute Thought, we do not as yet make the distinction here between subjective and objective Thought. The Universal is object, and is thought pure and simple, but not as yet tliought developed and made determinate in itself. All distinctions are as yet absent, and exist potentially only. In this ether of thought all that is finite has passed away, everything has disappeared, while at the same time everyrthing is included in it. But this element of the Universal has not as yet


taken those more explicit forms. Out of this liquid element, and in this transparency, nothing has as yet fashioned itself into distinct shape.

'Now the further advance consists in this, that this Universal determines itself for itself, "and this self-determination constitutes the development of the Idea of God.

In the sphere of Universality the Idea itself is, to begin with, the material of determination, and the progress is revealed in divine figures, but as yet the second element - form - is retained in the divine Idea, which is still in its substantiality, and under the character of eternity it remains in the bosoni of the Universal.

2. The Moment of FccrticiUariti/, or the Sphere oj Diferentiation.

The particularisation, therefore, which is as yet retained in the sphere of the Universal, when it actually manifests itself outwardly as such, constitutes the Other as against the extreme of Universality, and this other extreme is consciousness in its individuality as such. It is the subject in its immediacy, and with its needs, conditions, sins - in fact, in its wholly empirical, temporal character.

In religion, I am myself the relation of the two sides as thus determined, I .who think, who am that which lifts myself up, the active Universal, and Ego, the immediate subject, are one and the same "I." And further, the relation of these two sides which are so sharply opposed - the absolutely finite consciousness and being on the one hand, and the infinite on the other - exists iu ^¦eligion for me. \ In thinking I lift myself up to the Absolute above all that is finite, and am infinite consciousness, while I am at the same time finite consciousness, and indeed am such in accordance with my whole .empirical character. Both sides, as well as their relation, exist for me. Both sides seek each other, .and both flee


from each other<^ At one time, for example^ I accentuate my empirical, finite consciousness, and place myself in opposition to infiniteness; at another I exclude myself from myself, condemn myself, and give the preponderance to the infinite consciousness. The middle term contains nothing else than the characteristi'cs of hoth tlie extremes. They are not pillars of Hercules, which confront each other sharply. I am, and it is in onyself and for myself that this conflict and this conciliation take place. In myself, I as infinite am against or in contrast with myself as finite, and as finite consciousness I stand over against my thought as infinite. I am the feeling, the perception, the idea alike of this unity and this conflict, and am what holds together the conflicting elements, the effort put forth in this act of holding together, and represent the labour of heart and soul to obtain the mastery over this opposition.

I am thus the relation of these two sides, which are not abstract determinations, as " finite and infinite." On the contrary, each is itself totality. V'Each of tlie two extremes is itself " I,'* what relates them; and the holding together, the relating, is itself this which is at once in conflict with itself, and brings itself to unity in the conflict. Or, to put it differently, I am the conflict, for the conflict is just this antagonism, which is not any indifference of the two as different, but is their being bound together. I am not one of those taking part in the strife, but I am both the combatants, and am the strife itself, I am the fire and the water which touch each other, and am the contact and union of what flies apart, and this very contact itself is this double, essentially conflicting relation, as the relation of what is now separated, severed, and now reconciled and in unity with itself.

As representing the forms of the relation of the two extremes, we shall make ourselves acquainted with (i) Peeling; (2) Sense-perception;^ (3) Idea,^ or ordinary thought.

^ Anschauwn-g. ^ VoYstdlung,


Before entering upon this subject, it^ will be necessary to get a knowledge of the entire sphere of these relations in its necessity, in so far as it contains,!as elevation of the finite consciousness to the Absolute, the -forms of religious Consciousness. In investigating this necessity of religion, we are obliged to conceive religion a^ posited through what is other than itself.

In this mediation indeed, when it opens for us the way into the sphere of those forms ^ of consciousness, religion will present itself already as a result which at once does away with itself as a result.; consequently it will present itself as the primary thing, through which all is mediated, and on which all else depends. We shall thus see in what is mediated the counter-impact, the reciprocal action of the movement and of necessity, which both goes forwards and pushes backwards. But this mediation of necessity is now to be posited within religion itself too, so that in fact the relation and the essential connection of the two sides, which are comprised in the religious spirit, may be known as necessary.

The forms of feeling, of sense-perception, and of idea or mental representation, as they necessarily proceed one out of the other, are now forced of themselves into that sphere in which the inward mediation of their moments proves itself to be necessary, that is to say, into the sphere of thought in which religious consciousness will get a grasp of itself in its notion. These two mediations of necessity, therefore, of which one leads to religion and the other takes place within religious consciousness itself, comprise the forms of religious consciousness as it appears as feeling, sense-perception, and idea or:6rdinary thought.

3. The Annulling of the Differentiation, or Worship (Cultus).

The movement in the preceding sphere is just that of the notion of God, of the Idea, in becoming objective to



itself. We have this movement before us in the language of ordinary thought, ia the expression " God is a Spirit/' Spirit is not something having a single existence, but is Spirit only in being objective to itself, and in beholding itself in the " Other," as itself. The highest characteristic of Spirit is self-consciousness, which includes this objecttivity in itself. God, as Idea, is subjective for what is objective, and is objective for what is subjective. When the moment of subjectivity defines itself further, so that the distinction is made between God as Object and the knowing spirit, the subjective side defines itself in this distinction as that which belongs to the side of finiteness, and the two stand at first so contrasted, that the separation constitutes the antithesis of finiteness and infiniteness.

This infinitude, however, being still encumbered with this opposition, is not the true infinitude; to the subjective side, which exists for itself, the absolute object remains still an Other, and the relation in which it stands to it is not self-consciousness. Such an attitude, however, also involves the relation which is expressed by saying, that the finite knows itself as a nullity in its state of separation, and knows its object as the Absolute, as its Substance. And here the first attitude toward the absolute object is that of fear; for individuality knows itself as in regard to the absolute object only as accidental, or as something which is transient and vanishing.

But this standpoint of separation is not the true relation.

On the contrary, it is what knows itself to be a nullity, and, therefore, something which is to, be done away with and absorbed; 'and its attitude is not merely a negative one, but is in itself, or implicitly, positive. The subject recognises the absolute substance, in which it has to annul or lose itself, as being at the sdme time its essence, its substance, in which, therefore, self-consciousness is inherently contained. It is this unity, reconciliation, restoration of the subject and of its self-consciousness, the positive feeling of possessing a share^ in, of partaking in


this Absolute, and making unity with it actually one's own - this abolition of the dualism, which constitutes the sphere of worship. Worship comprises this entire inward and outward action, which has this restoration to unity as its object. The expression " worship " is usually taken merely in the limited sense in which it is understood to mean only outward public acts, and the inward action of the heart does not get so much prorfiinence. We, however, shall conceive of worship as that action which includes both inwardness and outward manifestation, and which in fact produces restoration of unity with the Absolute, and in so doing is also essentially an inward conversion of the spirit and soul. Thus Christian worship does not only include the sacrament-s and the acts and duties pertaining to the Church, but it also includes the so-called "way of salvation" as a matter of absolutely inward history, and as a series of actions on the part of the inner life - in fact, a movement which goes forward in the soul, and has its right place tljere.

\yBut we shall always find these two sides, that of self-consciousness, that is, of worship, and that of consciousness or of idea, corresponding with each other at every stage of religion.-^ According as the content of the notion or conception of God or consciousness is determined, so too is the attitude of the subject to Him; or to put it otherwise, so too is self-consciousness in worship determined. The one moment is always a reflection or copy of the other, the one points to the other. Both modes, of which the one holds fast to objective consciousness only, and the other to pure selfconsciousness, are one-sided, and each brings about its own abrogation.

It was, therefore, a one-sided view if the natural theology of former times looked upon God as Object of consciousness only. Such a mode of ^ contemplating the Idea of God, although the words "Spirit" or "Person" might be made use of, could never in reality get beyond


"the idea of an Essence. It was inconsistent, for if actually carried out it must have led to the other, the subjective side, that of self-consciousness.

VVit is just as one-sided to conceive of religion as soroe" thing subjective only, thus in fact making the subjective aspect the only one. So regarded, wbrship is absolutely bald and empty; its action is a movement which makes no advance, its attitude towarf God a relation to a nullity, an aiming at nothing. -^But even this merely subjective action has inconsistency inherent in it, and must of necessity annul itself. Por if the subjective side also is to be in any way determined or qualified, it is involved too in the very conception of Spirit, that it is consciousness, and that its determinate character becomes object to it. The richer the feeling, the more fully determined or specialised it is, the richer must the object be for it too. And further, -the absoluteness of that feeling, which is supposed to be substantial, would, in accordance with its very nature, require to set itself free from its subjectivity; for the substantial character which is supposed to belong to it, is specially directed against the accidental element of opinion and of inclination, is in fact something permanent and fixed in and for itself, independent of our feeling or experience. It is the Objective, what exists in and for itself. ^If this substantial element remains shut up in the heart only, it is not recognised as the something higher than ourselves, and God Himself becomes something merely subjective, while the efforts of subjectivity remain at the most, as it were a drawing of lines into empty space, / For the recognition of a something higher than ourselves, which is capable too of being described, this recognition of One who is undefined, and these lines which are to be drawn in accordance with such recognition,^ possess no support, no connecting element, derived from what is objective, and are and remain merely our act, our lines, something subjective, and the finite never attains to a true real


renunciation of itself; while Spirit ought, on the contrary, in worship to liberate itself from its finiteness, and to feel and know itself in God.\\ In the absence of that which is self-existent and commands our obedience, all worship shrinks up into subjectivity. Worship is essentially made up of dealings with and enjoyment of a something higher than ourselves, and includes assurances, evidences, and confirmation of the existence of this higher Being; but such definite dealings, such actual enjoying and assurances can have no place if the objective, obligatory moment be wanting to them,vand worship would, in fact, be annihilated if the subjective side were taken to be the wholes The possibility of getting out of the subjective heart into action would thus be as much precluded as the possibility of consciousness attaining to objective knowledge. The one is connected in the closest manner with the other. \ What a man believes he has to do in relation to God, corresponds with the idea which he has formed of God. His consciousness of self answers to his consciousness, and conversely he cannot believe himself to have any definite duties toward God if he neither have nor suppose himself to have any definite idea of Him as anObject.-^N"ot until religion is really relation, and contains the distinction involved in consciousness, does worship attain to a definite form as the lifting up into a higher unity of the severed elements, and become a vital process. This movement of worship does not, however, confine itself to the inner life alone in which consciousness frees itself from its finiteness, is the consciousness of its essence, and the subject as knowing itself in God has penetrated into the foundation of its life. But this its infinite life now develops towards what is outside too, for the worldly life which the subject leads has that substantial consciousness as its basis, and the way and manner in which the subject defines its ends depends on the consciousness of its essential truth. It is in connection with this side that religion reflects itself


into worldly or secular life, and that knowledge of the world shows itself. This going out into the actual world is essential to religion, and in this transition religion appears as morality in relation to the State and to the entire life of the State. ^^ According as the religion of nations is constituted, so also is their morality and their government. The shape taken by these latter depends entirely on whether the conception of the freedom of Spirit which a people has reached is a limited one, or on whether the nation has the true consciousness of freedom.

The more definite characteristics of worship will be seen to be the moment of presupposed unity, the sphere of separation, and the freedom which re-establishes itself in the separation, \^ (xX'^orship is thus, in fact, the eternal process by which the subject posits itself as identical with its essential being, ^/ vVThis process of the cancelling Of the dualism seems to belong to the subjective side only, but it is posited in the object of consciousness too. Through worship, unity is attained; what is not originally united, however, cannot be posited or made explicit as such. This unity, which appears as the act, the result of worship, must be recognised, too, as existing in and for itself. For what is object for consciousness is the Absolute, and its essential characteristic is that it is unity of its absoluteness with particularity. This unity is therefore in the object itself; for example,, in the Christian conception of the Incarnation of God.'^

This self-existent unity, or, put more definitely, the human form, God's becoming man,ns in fact an essential moment of religion, and must necessarily appear in the definition of its object. In the Christian religion this characteristic is completely developed, but it occurs, too, in inferior religions, even if the only sign of it is that the infinite is seen in unity with the finite in such a way that it appears as this particular Being, as a definite


immediate existence in stars or animals. Purther, too, it must be observed here that it is only momentarily that God assumes a human or other form of existence, that He becomes externally manifest, or inwardly reveals Himself in a dream, or as an inward voice.

This is the moment of presupposed or hypothetical unity, which is essentially involved in the conception of God, and in such a way that the object of consciousness (God) exhibits the entire conception of religion in its content, and is itself totality. The moments of the conception of religion thus present themselves here in the character of unification. Each of the aspects or sides of the true Idea is itself the same totality which the whole is. The specific characteristics of content in the two sides are consequently not different in themselves, but only in their form. The absolute object therefore determines itself for consciousness as totality which is in unity with itself.

&. This totality now presents itself in the form of separation and of finiteness, which, as representing the other side, stands over against that totality which is in unity with itself. The moments of the content of the entire conception are here posited as separating themselves from one another, as differentiated, and consequently as abstract. The first moment on this side of differentiation is that of potentiality, tlie moment of Being which is in identity with itself, of formlessness, of objectivity, in fact. This is matter as representing what is indifferent or undifferentiated, as existence of which all parts are of equal value. Form may be introduced into it, but it remains still in a condition of abstract being for self. We then call it the World, which in relation to God appears partly as His garment, vesture, form, or as something in contrast with Himself.

Over against this moment of undifferentiated potential Being there now stands Being-for-se\f, the N"egative in


general, Form. This negative now appears, in its at first indeterminate form, as the negative element in the worldj while the latter is the positive element, what subsists. The negativity which is opposed to this subsisting element, to this feeling of self, to this definite being, to this established existence, is Evil. In contrast to God, to this reconciled unity of Eeing-in-itself and Being-for-itself, appears the element of distinction or difference. We have on the one hand the world as positively and independently existijig, and on the other destruction and contradiction in the world; and here the questions suggest, themselves, which pertain to all religions based on a more or less developed consciousness, as to how evil is to be reconciled with the absolute unity of God, and wherein lies the origin of evil.

This negative, in the first place, appears as the evil in the worldj but it recalls itself into identity with itself, in which it is the Being-for-self of self-consciousness - finite Spirit.

This negative which recalls its6lf into itself is now once more a something positive, because it relates itself simply to itself. As evil, it appears as involved in positive existence. But the negativity which is present for itself and independently, and not in another which is regarded as having independent existence of its own, the negativity which reflects itself into itself, the inward, infinite negativity which is object to itself, is just the " Ego." In this self-consciousness, and in its own inner movement, finiteness definitely appears, and self-contradiction is thus incideiit in it. Thus there is an element of disturbance in it, evil makes its appearance in it, and thus is evil of the will.

c. I, however, who am free can abstract from everything; it is this negativity and isolation which constitutes my essential being. Evil is not the whole of the subject. On the contrary, this . latter has in it also unity with itself, which constitutes the positive side


(goodness) and the absoluteness, the infinitude of consciousness of self. It is this ability to abstract from all that is immediate, from all that is external, which constitutes the essential moment of the isolation or seclusion of Spirit, This isolation is exempted from the temporariness, change and vicissitude of this world, from evil and from disunion, and is represented as the absoluteness of consciousness of self in the thought of the immortality of the soul. At first the ^prominent element In this thought is continued existence in time; this exemption from the dominion and from the vicissitudes of change is represented, however, as essentially and originally belonging to Spirit, and not as being brought about secondarily by means of reconciliation. And thus advance is made to the further determination that the Spirit's consciousness of self is an eternal, absolute moment in that eternal life in which it is lifted up far above time, above this abstraction of change, and above the reality of change, above dualism, when it is taken up into the unity and reconciliation which is 'presupposed as originally present in the object of consciousness.

II. - Of Judgment, or Definite REf^iGiON.

If in the first part we have considered religion in its notion or conception, the simple conception of religion, the character of the content, the Universal, it is now necessary to leave this sphere of Universality and go on to treat of determinateness in religion.

The notion as such is not as yet unfolded; the determinate qualities, the moments are contained in it^ but are not as yet openly displayed, and have not received the right distinction or difference which belongs to them.

It is only by means of the judgment {i.e., the act of differentiation) that they receive this. It is when God, the Notion, performs the act of judgment, and the category of determinateness enters, that we first come to have


existing religion, which is at the same time definitely existing religion.

The course followed in passing from the abstract to the concrete is based upon our method, upon the notion, and not on the fact that much special content is present.

There is a complete distinction between this and our point of view. Spirit, to which belongs Being which is absolute and supreme, is, exists only as activity; that is to say, in so far as it posits itself, is actual or for itself, and produces itself. But in this its activity it has the power of knowing, and only as it thus knows is it that which it is. It is thus essential to religion not only to exist in its notion, but also to be the consciousness of that which the notion is, and the material in which the notion as the plan, so to speak, realises itself, which it makes its own, which it moulds in accordance with itself, is human consciousness. So too, Eight, for example, only is when it exists in the spirit, when it takes possession of the wills of men, and th^y know of it as the determination of their wills. And it is in this way that the Idea first realises itself, having before only been posited as the form of the notion.

Spirit, in short, is not immediate; natural things are immediate, and remain in this condition of immediate Being. The Being of Spirit is not thus immediate, but is, exists only as producing itself, as making itself for itself by means of negation as Subject; otherwise it would be substance only. And this coming to itself on the part of Spirit is movement, activity, and mediation of itself with itself.

A stone is immediate, it is complete. Wherever there is life, however, this activity is already to be found.

Thus the first form of the existence of plants is the feeble existence of the germ, and out of this it has to develop itself and to produce itself. Finally the plant epitomises itself when it has unfolded itself in the seed; this beginning of the plant is also its ultimate product.


In like manner man is at first a child, and as belonging to Nature he describes this round in order to beget another.

In plants there are two kinds of individual forms: this germ which begins, is different from the one "which is the completion of its life, and in which this evolution reaches maturity. But it is the very nature of Spirit, just because it is living, to be at first only potential, to be in its notion or conception, then to come forward into existence, to unfold, produce itself, become mature, bringing forth the notion of itself, that which it implicitly is, so that what it is in itself or implicitly may be its notion actually or for itself. The child is not as yet a reasonable person; it has capacities only, it is at first reason, Spirit, potentially only. It is by means of education and development that it becomes- Spirit,

This, then, is what is called self-determination entering into existence, being " for other," bringing one's moments into distinction, and unfolding one's self. These distinctions are no other than the characteristics which the notion itself implicitly contains.

The development of these distinctions, and the course of the tendencies which result from them, are the way by which Spirit comes to itself; it is itself, however, the goal. The absolute end, which is that Spirit should know itself, comprehend itself, should become object to itself as it is in itself, arrive at perfect knowledge of itself, first appears as its true Being, Now this process, followed by self-producing Spirit, this path taken by it, includes distinct moments; but the path is not as yet the goal, and Spirit does not reach the goal without having traversed the path; it is not originally at the goal; even what is most perfect must traverse the path to the goal in order to attain it. Spirit, in these haltingplaces of its progress, is not as yet perfect; its knowledge, its consciousness regarding itself, is not what is .true, and it is not as yet revealed to itself. Spirit being


essentially this activity of self-production, it follows that there are stages of its consciousness, but its consciousness of itself is always in proportion only to the stage which has been reached. Kow these stages supply us with definite reliction; here religion is consciousness of the universal Spirit, which is not as yet fully developed as absolute; this consciousness of Spirit at each stage is definite consciousness of itself, it is the path of the education of Spirit. We have therefore to consider the definite forms of religion. These, as being stages on the road followed by Spirit, are imperfect.

The different forms or specific kinds of religion are, in one aspect, moments of religion in general, or of perfected religion. They have, however, an independent aspect too, for in them religion has developed itself in time, and historically.

Eeligion, in so far as it is definite, and has not as yet completed the circle of its determinateness - so far that is as it is finite religion, and exists as finite - is historical religion, or a particular form of religion. Its principal moments, and also the manner in which they exist historically, being exhibited in the progress of religion from stage to stage, and in its development, there thus arises a series of forms of religion, or a history of religion.

That which is determined by means of the Notion must of necessity have existed, and the religions, as they have followed upon one another, have not arisen accidentally. It is Spirit which rules inner life, and to see only chance here, after the fashion of the historical school, is absurd.

The essential moments of the notion or conception of religion show themselves and make their appearance at every stage in which religion exists at all. It is only because the moments are not as yet posited in the totality of the notion, that any difference between it and its true form arises. These definite religions are not indeed our religion, yet they are includeci in ours as essential.


although as subordinate moments, which cannot miss having in them absolute truth. Therefore in them we have not to do with what is foreign to us, but with what is our own, and the knowledge that such is the case is the reconciliation of the true religion with the false.

Thus the moments of the notion ot conception of religion appear on lower stages of development, though as yet in the shape of anticipations or presentiments, as natural flowers and creations of fancy which have, so to speak, blossomed forth by chance. What determines the characteristics of these stages, however, through their entire history, is the determinateness of the notion itself, which can at no stag^ be absent. The thought of the Incarnation, for example, pervades every religion. Such general conceptions make their, presence felt too in other spheres of Spirit. Wl at is substantial in moral relations, as, for example, property, marriage, protection of the sovereign and of the State, and the ultimate decision which rests with subjectivity regarding that which is to be done for the whole, all this is to be found in an uneducated society as well as in the perfect state; only the definite form of this substantial element differs according to the degree of culture which such a society has reached. What is here of special importance, however, is that the notion should also become actually known in its totality, and in exact accordance with the degree in which this knowledge is present, is the stage at which the religious spirit is, higher or lower, richer or poorer.

Spirit may have something in its possession without having a developed consciousness of it. It actually has the immediate, proper nature of Spirit, has a physical, organic nature, but it does not know that nature in its essential character and truth, and has only an approximate, general idea of it. Men live in the State, they are themselves the life, activity, actuality of the State, but the positing, the becoming conscious of what the State is, does not on that account take place, and yet


the perfected State just means that everything which is 'potentially in it, that is to say, in its notion or conception, should be developed, posited, and made into rights and duties, into law. In like manner the moments of the notion or conception are actually present in the definite religions, in mental pictures, feelings, or immediate imagery; but the consciousness of these moments is not as yet evolved, or, in other words, they have not as yet been elevated to the point at which they are the determination of the absolute object, and God is not as yet actually represented under these determinations of the totality of the conception of religion. It is undoubtedly true that the definite religions of the various peoples often enough exhibit the most distorted, confused, and abortive ideas of the divine Being, and likewise of duties and relations as expressed in worship. But we must not treat the matter so lightly, and conceive of it in so superficial a manner, as to reject these ideas and these rites as superstition, error, and deceit, or only trace back their origin to pious feeling, and thus value them as merely representing some sort of religious feeling, without caring how they may chance to be constituted. The mere collection and elaboration of the external and visible elements cannot satisfy us either.: On the contrary, something higher is necessary, namely, to recognise the meaning, the truth, and the connection with truth; in short, to get to know what is rational in them.\^ They are human beings who have hit upon such religions, therefore there must be reason in them, and amidst all that is accidental in them a higher necessity. We must do them this justice, for what is human, rational in them, is our own too, although it exists in our higher consciousness as a moment only.// To get a^ grasp of the history of religions in this sense, means to reconcile ourselves even with what is horrible, dreadful, or absurd in them, and to justify it. "We are on no account to regard it as right or true, as it presents itself in its purely immediate


form - there is no question of doing this - but we are at least to recognise its beginning, the source from which it has originated as being in human nature. Such is the reconciliation with this entire sphere, the reconciliation which completes itself in the notion. Eeligions, as they follow upon one another, are determined by means of the notion. Their nature and succession are not determined from without; on the contrary, they are determined by the nature of Spirit which has entered into the world to bring itself to consciousness of itself. Since we look at these definite religions in accordance with the notion, this is a purely philosophical study of what actually is or exists. Philosophy indeed treats of nothing which is not and does not concern itself with what is so powerless as not even to have the energy to force itself into existence.

Kow in development as such, in so far as it has not as yet reached its goal, the moments of the notion are still in a state of separation or mutual exclusion, so that the reality has not as yet come to be equal to the notion or conception. The finite religions are the appearance in history of these moments. In order to grasp these in their truth, it is necessary to consider them under two aspects; on the one hand, we have to consider how God is known, how He is characterised; and on the other, how the subject at the same time knows itself. Por the two aspects the objective and subjective have; but one foundation for their further determination, and but one specific character pervades them both.\\ The idea which a man has of God corresponds with that which he has of himself, of his freedom. Knowing himself in God, he at the same time knows his imperishable life in God; he knows of the truth of his Being, and therefore the idea of the immortality of the soul here enters as an essential moment into the history of religion. The ideas of God and of immortality have a necessary relation to each other; when a man knows truly about God, he knows


truly about himself too: the two sides correspond with each other. -/ At first God is soAiething quite undetermined; but in the course of tlie development of the human mind, the consciousness of that which God is gradually forms and matures itself, losing more and more of its initial indefiniteness, and with this the development of true se^/-consciousness advances also. The Proofs of the Existence of God fall to be included also within the sphere of this progressive development, it being their aim to set forth the necessary elevation of the spirit to God. For the diversity of the characteristics which in this process of elevation are attributed to God, is fixed by the diversity of the points of departure, and this diversity again has its foundation in the nature of the historical stage of actual self- consciousness which has been reached. The different forms which this elevation of the spirit takes will always indicate the metaphysical spirit of the period in question, for this corresponds with the prevalent idea of God and the sphere of worship. If we now attempt to indicate in a: more precise way the divisions of this stage of definite: religion, we find that what is of primary importance here is the manner of the divine manifestation. God is manifestation, not in a general sense merely, but as being Spirit He determines Himself as appearing to Himself; that is to say, He is not Object in the general sense, but is Object to Hiniself.

I. As for manifestation generally, or abstract manifestation, it is !N"ature in general. Manifestation is Being for Other, an externalisation of things mutually distinct, and one, in fact, which is immediate and not yet reflected into itself. This logical determination is taken here in its concrete sense as the natural world. What is for an " Other," exists for this very reason in a sensuous form.

The thought, which is for another thought, which, as having Being, is to be posited as distinct, that is to say, as something which exists as an independent subject in reference to the other, is only capable of being communi


cated by the oue to the other through the sensuous medium of sign or speech, in fact, by bodily means.

But since God exists essentially only as appearing to Himself, that abstract attitude of:man to nature does not belong to religion; on the contrary, in religion nature is only a moment of the Divine, and therefore must, as it exists for the religious consciousness, h^ve also the characteristic note of the spiritual mode of existence in it. It thus does not remain in its pure, natural element, but receives the characteristic quality of the Divine which dwells in it.\ It cannot be said of any religion that in it men have worshipped the sun, the sea, or nature; when they worship these objects, the latter no longer have for the worshippers the prosaic character which they have for ourselves. Even while these objects are for them divine, they still, it is true, remain natural; but when they become objects of religion, they at once assume a spiritual aspect.-/ The contemplation of the sun, the stars, &c., as individual natural phenomena, is outside the sphere of religion. The so-called prosaic manner of looking at nature, as the latter exists for consciousness when regarding it through the understanding, betokens a separation which comes later; its presence is consequent on much deeper and more thorough-going reflection. Not till the spirit or mind has posited itself independently for itself, and as free from nature, does the latter appear to it as an Other, as something external.

The first mode of manifestation then, in the form of Nature namely, has the subjectivity, the spiritual nature of God as its centre in a general sense only, and consequently these two determinations have not as yet come into relation through reflection. When this takes place, it constitutes the second mode of manifestation.

2. In Himself or potentially God;s Spirit; this is our notion or conception of Him, But for this very reason He must be posited too as Spirit, and this means that the manner of His manifestation must be itself a spiritual



one, and consequently the negation of tlie natural. And for this it is necessary that His determinatenesSj the Idea on the side of reality, be equal to the conception; and -the relation of reality to the divine conception is complete when Spirit exists as Spirit; that is to say, when both the conception and reality exist as this Spirit. To begin with, however, we see that the form of nature constitutes that determinateness of the conception of God, or the aspect of reaUty belonging to the Idea. The emergence of the spiritual element of subjectivity out of nature, accordingly appears at first merely as a conflict between the two sides, which are still entangled with one another in that conflict. Therefore this stage of definite religion too remains in the sphere of what is natural, and in fact constitutes, in common with the preceding one, the stage of the Keligion of Nature.

3. It is actually within the definite religions as they succeed each other that Spirit in its movement attempts to make the determinateness correspond with the notion or conception, but this determinateness ^.ppears here as still abstract, or, to put it otherwise, the notion appears as still the finite notion. \^These attempts, in which the principle of the preceding stages, namely, Essence, or essential Being, strives to grasp itself together into infinite inwardness are: I. the Jewish religion; 2. the Greek; 3. the Eoman. The God of the Jews is Oneness or soleness, which as such continues to be abstract unity, and is not as yet concrete in itself. This God is indeed God in the Spirit, but does not exist as yet as Spirit.

He is something not presented to sense, an abstraction of Thought, which has not as yet that fulness in itself which constitutes it Spirit. The freedom which the notion seeks to reach through self-development in the Greek religion, still lives under the sway of the sceptre of necessity of Essence; and the notipn as it appears in and seeks to win its independence in the Eoman religion is still limited, since it is related to an external world


which stands opposite to it, in which it is only to be objective, and is, therefore, external adaptation to an end, or external utility.

These are the principal specific forms which here present themselves as the modes of the Eeality of Spirit.

As determinate they are inadequate to the notion or conception of Spirit, and are finite in ^characterj and this infinitude, namely, that there is one G-od, this abstract affirmation, is finite also. This determination of the manifestation of God in consciousness as pure ideality of the One, as abolition of the manifold character of external manifestation, might perhaps be contrasted, as being that which is true, with the religion of nature, but it is really only one form of determinateness as against the totality of the notion of Spirit. It corresponds with this totality just as little as its opposite does, -These definite religions are not in fact as yet the true religion, and in them God is not as yet known in His true nature, since there is wanting to them the absolute content of Spirit.

III. - Revealed Religion.

Manifestation, development, and determination or specification do not go on ad infinitum, and do not cease accidentally. True progress consists rather in this, that this reflexion of the notion into itself stops short, inasmuch as it really returns into itself. Thus manifestation is itself infinite in nature; the content is in accordance with the conception of Spirit, and the manifestation is, like Spirit, in and for itself. The notion or conception of religion has in religion become objective to itself.

Spirit, which is in and for itself, has now no longer individual forms, determinations of itself, before it, as it unfolds itself. It knows itself no longer as Spirit in any definite form or limitation, but has now overcome those limitations, this finiteness, and is actually, what it is potentially. This knowledge of Spirit for itself or


actually, as it is in itself or poteiitially, is the being in-and-for-itself of Spirit as exercising knowledge, the perfect, absolute religion, in "which it is revealed what Spirit, what God is; this is the Chriatian religion.

That Spirit, as it does in all else, must in religion also run through its natural course, is necessarily bound up with the conception of Spirit. Spirit is only Spirit when it exists for itself as the negation of all finite forms, as this absolute ideality.

I form ideas, I have perceptions, and here there is a certain definite content, as, for instance, this house, and so on. They are my perceptions, -they present themselves to me; I could not, however, present them to myself if I did not grasp this particular content in myself, and if I had not posited it in a simple, ideal manner in myself. Ideality means that this definite external existence, these conditions of space, of time, and matter, this separateness of parts, is done away with in something higher; in that I know this external existence, these forms of it are not ideas which: are mutually exclusive, but are comprehended, grasped together in me in a simple manner.

Spirit is knowledge; but in order that knowledge should exist, it is necessary that the content of that which it knows should have attained to this ideal form, and should in this way have been negated. "What Spirit is must in that way have become its own, it must have described this circle; and these forms, differences, -determinations, fmite qualities, must have existed in order that it should make them its own.

This represents both the way and the goal - that Spirit should have attained to its own notion or conception, to that which it implicitly is, and in this way onl}'', the way which has been indicated in its abstract moments, does it attain it. Eevealed religion is manifested religion, because in it God has become wholly manifest.

Jiere all is proportionate to the notion; there is no longer


anything secret in God. Here, then, is the consciousness of the developed conception of Spirit, of reconciliation, not in beauty, in joyousness, "but in the Spirit.

Eevealed religion, which was hitherto still veiled, and did not exist in its truth, came at its own time. This was not a chance time, dependent on some one's liking or caprice, but determined on in the essential, eternal counsel of God; that is, in the eternal reason, wisdom of God; it is the notion of the reality or fact itself, the divine notion, the notion of God Himself, which determines itself to enter on this development, and has set its goal before it.

This course thus followed by religion is the true theodicy; it exhibits all products of Spirit, every form of its self-knowledge, as necessary^ because Spirit is something living, working, and its impulse is to press on through the series of its manifestations towards the consciousness of itself as embracinf^ all truth.






What we have to commence with is the question, How is a beginning to be made ? It is at least a formal demand of all science, and of philosophy in particular, that nothing should find a place in it which has not been proved. To prove, in the superficial sense, means that a content, a proposition, or a conception is exhibited as resulting from something that has preceded it.

But when a beginning has to be made, nothing has as yet been proved; for we are not yet in the region of result, of what is mediated, or established by means of something else. In dealing with a beginning, we have to do with the immediate. Other sciences have an easy part in this respect, their object being something actually given for them. Thus in geometry, for example, a beginning has been made, for there is: a space, or a point.

Here there is no question of proving the object, for its existence is directly granted.

It is not allowable in philosophy to make a beginning with " There is, there are," for in philosophy the object must not be presupposed. This may constitute a difficulty in regard to philosophy in general. But in the present case we do not begin at the point where philosophy has its fountainhead.^'' The science of religion is a science within philosophy; it assumes, so far, the exis


tence of the other divisions of philosophical study^ and it is thus a result. From the philosophical point of view we are here already in possession of a result flowing from premises previously established, which now lie behind us. We may, nevertheless, turn for aid to our ordinary consciousness, accept data assumed in a subjective way, and make a bemnninir from there.' ¦' The beginning of religion is, similarly with its general content^ the as yet undeveloped ^conception of religion itself; namely, that God is the absolute Truth, the Truth of everything, and that religion alone is absolutely true knowledge. We have thus to begin by treating -



Por us who are already in possession of religion, what God is, is something we are familiar with - a substantial truth which is present in our subjective consciousness.

But scientifically considered, ' God is at first a general, abstract name, which as yet has not come to have any true -value. For it is the Philosophy of Religion which is the unfolding, the apprehension of that which God is, and it is only by means of it that our philosophical knowledge of His nature is reached. God is this wellknown and familiar idea - an idea, however, which has not yet been scientifically developed, scientifically known, f

Having thus referred to this development, which has its justification in philosophical science itself, we shall, to begin with, accept as a simple statement of fact the assertion that the result of philosophy is that God is the absolutely True, the Universal in and for itself, the Allcomprehending, All-containing, that from which everything derives subsistence. And in regard to this assertion we may also appeal in the first place to religious consciousness, where we find the conviction that God is


indeed the absolutely True, from which all proceeds, and into which all returns, upon which all is dependent, and beside which nothing has absolute^ true self-sustained existence. This, then, is what constitutes the beginning.

This beginning is, scientifically, still abstract. The heart may be ever so full of this idea, still in science it is not with what is in the heart that we have to do, but with what is definitely considered as object for consciousness, and more strictly for thinking consciousness which has attained to the form of thought. To give this fulness the form of thought, of the Notion, is the special work of the Philosophy of Religion.

a. The beginning as abstract, as the first content, Universality namely, has thus, as it were, as yet a subjective standing, implying that the Universal is universal for the beginning only, and does not continue in this condition of universality. The beginning of the content is itself to be conceived of in such a way that, while in all further developments of this content, this Universal will show itself to be absolutely concrete, rich in matter, and full of content, we at the same time do not pass beyond this universality; that this universality, though in a sense we leave it behind so far as the form is concerned, inasmuch as it undergoes a defi;nite development, nevertheless maintains its position as the absolute, permanent foundation, and is not to be taken as a mere subjective beginning.

In so far as He is the Universal, God is for us from the point of view of development, what is shut up within itself, what is in absolute unity with itself. If we say God is that which is shut up within itself, in using such an expression we are thinking of ^ development which we expect to take place; but the undeveloped condition which we have called the Universality of God, is not in regard to the content itself to be taken as an abstract Universality, outside of which, and as opposed to which, the particular has an independent existence.


This Universality is thus to be understood as the absolutely full, filled up universality, and when we thus say that God is universal, concrete, full of content, we imply that God is One only, and not one as contrasted with many Gods, but that there is only the One, that is, God.

Existing things, the developments of the natural and spiritual world, take manifold forms, and have an infinite variety; they have a being which differs in degree, force, strength, content; but the being of all these things is not independent, but is supported by, dependent on, something else, and has no true independence. If we attribute a being to particular things, it is only a borrowed being, only the semblance of a being, not the absolute self-sustained Being, which is God.

God in His universality, this Universal, in which there is no limitation, no finiteness, no particularity, is the absolute Self-subsisting Being, and the only Self-subsisting Being; and what subsists has its root, its subsistence, in this One alone.

If the substantial element in this its first form is understood in this sense, we may express ourselves thus: God is the absolute Substance, the only true reality.

All else, which is real, is not real in itself, has no real existence of itself } the one absolute reality is God alone, and thus He is the absolute Substance,'

If this conception is held to in "this abstract fashion, it is undoubtedly Spinozism. Substantiality, Substance as such, is as yet not at all differentiated from subjectivity* But the following thought also forms part of the presupposition thus made. God is Spirit, the Absolute Spirit, the eternally undifferentiated Spirit, essentially at home with Himself; this ideality, this subjectivity of Spirit, which is, so to speak, transparency, pure ideality excluding all that is particular, is just the Universality spoken of above, that pure relation to self, what is and remains absolutely at home with itself.

If we use the expression "Substance," it is implied


that this Universal is not yet conceived of as concrete in itself: when it is so conceived of, it is Spirit; and Spirit too always is this unity with itself, even in its concrete inner determination - this One Reality, which we just now called Substance. A further characteristic is that the substantiality, the unity of the absolute reality with itselfj is only the foundation, one moment in the determination of God as Spirit. The disparagement of philosophy is connected maiuly with this way of looking at the question. You hear it said that philosophy must be Spinozism if it is consistent, and that thus it is atheism, fatalism.

But at the beginning we have not as yet characteristics which are distinguished, as One and Another; at the beginning we are only concerned with the One, not with the Other.

In starting from here we have the content as yet in the form of substantiality. Even when we say, " God, Spirit," these are indefinite words or genera! ideas. Everything depends upon what has entered into consciousness. At first it is the Simple, the Abstract, that enters into consciousness. In this first simplicity, we still have God in the character of Universality, but we do not remain at this standpoint.

Still, this content continues to be the foundation; in all further development, God never comes out of His unity with Himself. When He, as it is commonly expressed, creates the world, there does not c©me into existence something evil, Another, which is self-sustained, and independent.

&. This beginning is an object for us or content in us; we have this object; and thus the question immediately arises, Who are we t " We," " I," the spirit is itself something very concrete, manifold. I have perceptions, I am, I see, hear, &c.j all this I am; th,is feeling, this seeing. Thus the more precise meaning of this question is, which of these forms of consciousness determines the


shape in which this content exists for our minds ? Is it found in idea, will, imagination, "or feeling ? What is the place, where this content, this object has its home ? Which of all these supplies the basis of this mental possession ?

If we think of the current answers in regard to this, we find it said that God is in us in so far as we believe, feel, form ideas, know. These forms, faculties, aspects of ourselves, namely, feeling, faith, ordinary conception, are to be more particularly considered further on, and especially in relation to this very point. For the present we postpone the search for any reply, nor do we betake ourselves to what we know by experience, observation, namely that we have God in our feeling, &c. To begin with, we shall keep to what we have actually before us, this One, Universal, this Fulness, which is this ever unchangeable transparent ethereal clement.

If in considering this One we ask, For which of our faculties or mental activities does this One, this pure Universal, exist ? we can only point to the corresponding activity of our mind, the faculty «which answers to it, as the soil or substratum in which this content has its home. This is Thought.

Thought alone is the substratum of this content: Thought is the activity of the Universal; it is the Universal in its activity, or operation; or if we express it as the comprehension of the Universal, then that for which the Universal is, is still Thought.

This Universal, which can be produced by Thought, and which is for Thought, may be quite abstract; it is then the Immeasurable,' the Infinite, the removal of all limit, of all particularity. This Universal, which is to begin with negative, has its seat in Thought only.

To think of God- means to ^ rise above what is sensuous, external, and individual. It means to rise up to what is pure, to that which is in unity with itself; it is a going forth aboye and beyond the


sensuous, beyoud what belongs to the sphere of the senseSj into the pure region of the Universal. And this region is Thought.

Such, so far as the subjective side is concerned, is the substratum for this content. The content is this absolutely undivided, continuous, self-sufficing One, the Universal; and Thought is the mode of mind for which this Universal exists.

Thus we have a distinction between Thought and the Universal which we at first called God; it is a distinction which in the first place belongs only to our reflection, and which is as yet by no means included in the content on its own account. It is the result of philosophy, as it is already thfr belief of religion, that God is the One true Eeality, and that there is no other reality whatsoever. In this One Eeality and pure -clearness, the reality and the distinction which we call thinking, have as yet no place.

What we have before us is this One Absolute: we cannot as yet call this content, this determination, religion; for to religion belongs subjective spirit, consciousness. This Universal has its, place in Thought, but its localisation in Thought is, to begin with, absorbed in this One, this Eternal, this absolute existence.

In this true, absolute, determination, which is only not as yet developed, perfected, God remains through all development absolute Substance.

This Universal is the starting-point and point of departure, but it is this absolutely abiding Unity, and not a mere basis out of which differences spring, the truth rather being that all differences are here enclosed within this Universal. It is, however, no inert, abstract Universal, but the absolute womb, the eternal impetus and source from which everything proceeds, to which -everything returns, and in which everything is eternally preserved.


Thus the Universal never goes out of this ethereal element of likeness with itself, out of this state in which it is together with or at home with itself. It is not possible that God, as this Universal, can actually exist along with another whose existence is anything more than the mere play of appearance or semblance of existence. In relation to this pure Unity and pure transparency, matter is nothing impenetrable, nor has the spirit, the " I," such exclusiveness as to possess true substantiality of its own.

c.V There has been a tendency to call this idea by the name Pantheism; it would be more correctly designated, " the idea of substantiality.'* God is here characterised at first as substance only; the absolute Subject, too. Spirit, remains substance; Spirit is not however substance only, but is also self-determined as Subject. Those who say that speculative philosophy is Pantheism, generally know nothing of this distinction; they overlook the main point, as they always do, and they disparage philosophy by representing it as different from what it really is.

Pantheism, with those who brinjif this charge against philosophy, has usually been taken to mean that everything, the All, the Universum, this complex collection of all that exists, those infinitely many finite things are God, and philosophy is accused of maintaining that All is God - that is, this infinite manifoldness of single things; not the Universality which has essential being, but the individual things in their empirical existence, as they are immediately.

If it be said, God is all this here, this paper, &c., then that is certainly Pantheism, as understood by those who by way of reproach bring forward the objection to which reference has been made, their meaning being that God is everything, all individual things. If I say " species," that too is a universality, but of quite another kind than Totality, in which the Universal is thought of


only as that which comprehends all individual existences, and as that which has Being, that which lies at the foundation of all things, the true content of all individual things.

Pantheism of this kind is not to be found in any -religion, and the statement that it is so discoverable is wholly false. It has never occurred to any man to say, all is God- that is, things in th§ir individuality or contingency - much less has it been maintained in any philosophy.

With oriental pantheism, or more correctly Spinozism, we shall make acquaintance later on, under the head of definite religion. "^^ Spinozism itself as such, and oriental pantheism, too, contain the thought that in everything the divine is only the universal element of a content, the Essence of things, while at the same time it is also represented as being the determined or specific Essence of the things. '^^

When Brahm says, " I am the brightness, the shining element in metals, the Ganges among rivers, the life in all that lives, &c.," what is individual is done away with and absorbed. Brahm does not say, "I am the metal, the rivers, the individual things of each kind by themselves, as such, as they exist immediately."

The brightness is not the metal itself, but is the Universal, the Substantial, elevated above any individual form; it is no longer to irav, everything as individual.

What is expressed here is no longer what is called pantheism; the idea expressed is rather that of the Essence in such individual thinfjs.

All that has life is -characterised by the note of time and space; it is, however, only on the imperishable element in this singularity that sti^ss is laid. " The life of all that lives" is, in that imp"erishable sphere of life, the Unlimited, the Universal. When, however, it is said that everything is God, the singularity is understood in accordance with all its limits, its finiteness, its



perisliableness. The origin of this idea of pantheism is to be- found in the fact that stress is laid on the abstract, not on the spiritual unity; and then, when the idea

.^. takes its religious form, where only the substance, the

N One, ranks as true reality, those who hold these opinions forget that it is just in presence of this One that the individual finite things disappear, and have no reality ascribed to them, and yet they attempt to retain this reality in a material way alongside of the One. They do not believe the Eleatics, who say, the One only exists, and express'ly add, and what is not has no existence whatever. All that is finite would be limitation, negation of the One; but that which is not, limitation, finitenesSj limit, and that which is limited, have no existence whatever.

Spinozism has been charged with being atheism, but the world, this AH, does not exist at all in Spinozism; it has an outward form it is true, we speak of its existence, and our life is to be in it as thus existing.

In the philosophical sense, however, the world has no reality at all/ has no existence. No reality is ascribed to these individual things; they are finite in nature, and it is plainly stated that they do not exist at all.

\\Spinozism has been universally charged with leading to the following conclusions: - If all be One, then this philosophy maintains that good is one with evil, and that there is no difference between good and evil, and with this all religion is done away with. You hear it, -/' \ asserted that if the distinction of good and evil is not

\, ^^ valid in itself, then it is a matter of indifference whether

a man be good or bad. It may, indeed, be conceded that the distinction between good and evil is done away with potentially, that is, iu God, who is alone the true Eeality. In God there is no evil; the distinction between good and evil could exist only if God were Evil; no one, however, would concede that evil is something affirmative, and that this affirmative is in God.


God is good, and good alone; the distinction between evil and good is not present in this One, in this Substance; it is, \vith the element of distinction, or differentiation, that it "first enters at all.

• God is the One absolutely self-sufficing Being; in substance there is no distinction, no element of difference.

With the distinction of God from the world, and especially from man, there first appears the distinction between good and evil. It is a fundamental principle of Spinozism, with lef^ard to this distinction betVeen God and man, that man must have God alone as his chief end.

And thus the love of God is law for the element of difference, that is to say, for man; this love to God is alone to be his guide; he is not to ascribe value to his separate existence, to his difference in itself, not to desire to continue in it, buc to direct his entire thought towards God alone.

A^This is the most sublime morality, that evil is nonexistent,- and that man is not to allow to: this distinction, this nullity, any valid existence. Man may wish to persist in this difference, to carry this separation on into a settled opposition to God - the essentially existing Universal - and then man is evil. But. it is also possible for him to regard his difference ks non-existent, to place his true being in God alone, and direct his aim toward God - and then man is good.

V In Spinozism, the distinction between good and evil undoubtedly makes its appearance w^ith reference to God and man - and it appears in it with this qualification, that evil is to be regarded as non-existent. In God as ¦such, in His character as Substance, tliei^e is no distinction; it is for rnan that this distinctioji exists, as does also the distinction between good and evil.

In accordance with that superficiality with which the polemic against philosophy is carried on, it is added, moreover, that philosophy is a system of Identity. It is quite correct to say that Substance is this one selfidentity, but Spirit is just as much this self-identity*


Everything is ultimately identity, unity with itself. But those who speak of the philosophy of Identity mean abstract Identity, unity in general, and pay no attention to that upon which alone all depends; namely, the essential nature of this unityj and whether it is defined as Substance or as Spirit, y The "whole of philosophy is nothing else than a study of the nature of different kinds of unity; the Philosophy of Eellgiou, too, is a succession of unities; it is always unity, yet a unity which is always further defined and made more specific.,'^

In the physical world there are many kinds of unity: when water and earth are brought together, this is a unity, but it is a mixture. If I bring together a base and an acid and a salt, a crystal is the result. I have water too, but I cannot see it, 'and there is not the slightest moisture. The unity of the water with this material is, therefore, a unity of quite a different character from that in which water and ear.th are mingled. What is of importance, is the difference in the character of the unity. The Unity of God is always Unity, but everything depends upon the particidar nature of this Unity; this point being disregarded, that upon which everything depends is overlooked.

What we have first is this divine Universality - Spirit in its entirely undetermined Universality - for which there exists absolutely no element of diSerence. But upon this absolute foundation (and this we state for the moment as fact) there now appears that element of distinction which, in its spiritual character, is consciousness, and it is with this distinction that religion, as such, begins. When the absolute Universality advances to the stage of judgment, that is to say, when it proceeds to posit itself as determinateness, and God exists as Spirit for Spirit, we have reached the standpoint from which God is regarded as the object of consciousness, and Thought, which at the beginning was universal, is seen to have entered into the condition of relation and differentiation.




In the doctrine of God we have God before us as object, simply by Himself. The relation of God to man, it is truBj has a place in it as well; and while, according to the prevailing ideas of earlier times, this relation did not appear to form an essential part of the doctrine, modem theology, on the other liand, treats more of religion than of God. All that is required of man is that he should be religious; this is the main point, and it is even regarded as a matter of indifference whether a man knows anything of God or not; or it is held that religion is something entirely subjective, and that man has really no knowledge of the nature of God. In the Middle Ages, on the contrary, it was the essential Being of God that was principally considered and defined. \\ We have to recognise the truth which is involved in the modern view, namely, that God is not to be considered apart from the subjective spirit; this, however, not on the ground that God is an Unknown, but because God is essentially Spirit, exists as Spirit which knows. We have here thus a relation of Spirit; to Spirit. This relation of Spirit with Spirit lies at the foundation of religion/^

If, accordingly, we should consider ourselves as exempted from the necessity of beginning with the proof of the existence of God, it would still remain for us to prove that religion exists, and that it is necessary; for philosophy cannot assume its object as given.

It might, indeed, be said that such proof is needless, and it might be asserted in support of this that all peoples are religious. But this is only of the nature of an assumption, and the expression " all " at once involves us in certain difficulties. For there are peoples of whom it can scarcely be said that they have a religion; their Highest, which they worship in a way, is the sun, the


moon, or whatever else may strike them as remarkable in material nature. We have besides, the phenomenon of a very "advanced" form of culture which denies the Being of God altogether, at the same time denying that religion is the truest expression of the Spirit. Thinkers of this extreme sort have even seriously maintained that priests, in instilling a religion into men, are no better than deceivers, their sole object being to make men subject to themselves.

A further attempt which has been made to prove the necessity of religion does not get beyond establishing an external conditional necessityj in which religion is made a meansj and something practised with a definite end in view. But religion is thereby degraded to the condition of something contingent, which has not value on its own account, but may either be discarded by me or made use of by me for some definite purpose. The true view, which represents the real state of the case and the false one, are here very close together, and the obliquity or error in the latter appears to be only a slight displacement, so to speak, of the former.

Both in ancient and modern tim^s you find the idea given expression to, that a town, state> family, or individual has been doomed to destruction because they despised the gods; that adoration of the gods, on the other hand, and reverence towards them preserve states, and make them prosperous; and that the happiness and advancement of individuals are furthered by their being religious.

\^ Undoubtedly it is only when religion is made the foundation that the practice of righteousness attains stability, and that the fulfilment of duty is secured.

It is in religion that what is deepest in man, the conscience, first feels that it lies under an absolute obligation, and has the certain knowledge of this obligation; therefore the State must rest on religion, for it is in religion we first have any absolute certainty and security as regards the dispositions of men, and duties they owe to


the State. From every other kind of obligation it is possible to find a way of escape by means of excuses, exceptions, or counter reasons. Obligations other than the religious one may be evaded by disparaging the laws and regulations of the state, or by belittleing the individuals who govern and who are in. authority, and by regarding them from a point of view from which they are iio longer necessarily objects of respect. For all these particular obligations have not only an essential existence as law, but have at the same time a finite existence in the present. They are so constituted as to invite the investigation of reflection, and to allow it either to find fault with or to justify them, and they thus awaken the criticism of the individual, who can in turn grant himself a dispensation from them. It is only religion which suppresses all this subjective criticism and weighing of reasons, annihilates it, and brings in this infinite, absolute obligation of which we have spoken. Iashort,reverence for God, or for the gods, establishes and preserves individuals, families, states; while contempt of God, or of the gods, loosens the basis of laws and duties, breaks up the ties of .

the family and of the State, and leads to their destruction. ^

These are undoubtedly considerations: of the highest truth and importance, and contain the essential, substantial connection between religion and morality.- Now if a deduction be made from the proposition beTore us stating as the result of experience that religion is therefore necessary, this would be an external kind of conclusion. Possibly, however, it might only be faulty in respect of the subjective act of apprehension, no false or misleading turn being given to the content or matter of the assertion. If, however, the conclusion be now stated thus: " therefore religion is useful for the ends set before them by individuals, governments, states," &c., then an attitude is at once taken up by which religion is treated as a means.

But in religion we have to do with Spirit, which is many-sided in its activities. Even the animal organism,


when attacked by any disease, though its reaction to a remedy is determined by definite laws, is yet indifferent to many of its particular properties, so that a choice ot" remedies is possible. Still more does Spirit degrade what it employs as means to a mere matter of detail.

It is then conscious of its freedom to use either one particular means or some other.

Thus if religion be a means, the spirit knows tliat it can make use of it; knows, too, that it can, however, have recourse to other means. Indeed the spirit stands in such a relation to religion that it may, if it likes, resolve to trust to its own resources. Further, the spirit has the freedom of its aims - its power, its cunning, the control of the opinions of men; these are all means, and just in the very freedom of its aims, which implies in so many words that its aims are to be the ultimate standard, and religion is to be only a means, it has the freedom to make its own power and authority its object, and thus to set ends before itself in pursuit of which it can either dispense with religion or even act in direct opposition to its behests. The point of importance, on the contrary, is that the spirit should resolve upon such aims, or should know its obligation to pursue such as are of value objectively in:and for themselves, to the disregard of others which are more enticing, and at the sacrifice of particular ends in general. Objective aims demand the giving up of subjective interests, inclinations, and ends; and this sacrifice or negation is involved in the statement, that the worship of God lays the foundation of the true wellbeing of individuals, peoples, and states. Even though the latter be the consequence of the former, yet it is the former which is the principal thing; it has its own determination and deterrainateuess, and it regulates the purposes and opinions of men, which as particular things are not what is primary, and ought not to be allowed to determine themselves.

Thus a slight turn given to the position of reflection


alters and entirely destroys its first meaning above referred to, and makes out of the necessity a mere utility which, as being contingent, is capable ot- being perverted.

Here we are concerned, on the contrary, with the inner necessity, which exists in and for itself; a necessity to which, indeed, there is no doubt that caprice - evil - is able to oppose itself; but in this case this caprice belongs to a sphere outside, attaching itself to the Ego, which, as free, is able to take its stand oh the summit of its own independent individuality.

Such caprice is no longer connected with the necessity of which we speak; it is no longer the perversion of the very notion of necessity, as is the case so long as necessity is understood merely as utility.


\' Tiie general necessity of the Notion accordingly develops itself in this wise. Eeligion is (i) conceived of as result, but (2) as a result which at the same time annuls itself as result, and that (3) it is the content itself which passes over in itself and through itself to posit itself as result. That is objective necessity, and not a mere subjective process. It is not we who set the necessity in movement; on the contrary, it is the act of the content itself, or, the object may be said to produce itself. Subjective deduction and intellectual movement occur, for example, in geometry; the triangle does not itself go through the process that we follow out in the intellectual act of demonstration. // \ Eeligion, however, as something essentially spiritual, is by its very existence itself this process and this transition. In the case of natural things, as, for example, the sun, we are in presence of an immediate existence at rest, and in the mental picture or idea we form of it there is no consciousness of an act of passing over, or transition. The religious consciousness, on the other hand.


is in its very essence the parting from and forsaking of what is immediate, what is finite; it is a passing over to the intellectual, or, objectively defined, the gathering up of what is perishable into its absolute substantial essence.

Eeligion is the consciousness of what is in and for itself true, in contrast to sensuous, finite truth, and to sense perceptions. Accordinglyj it is a rising above, a reflecting upon, a transition from what is immediate, sensuous, individual (for the immediate is what is first, and therefore is not exaltation), and is thus a going out and on to an Other. This does not mean, however, a going on to a Third, and so on, for in that case the Other would be itself again something finite, and not an Other. Consequently it is a progress onward to a Second, but of such a kind that this progress, this production of a Second, annuls and absorbs itself, and this Second is rather the First, that which is truly unmediated and unposited or independent. The standpoint of religion shows itself in this transition as the standpoint of truth, in which the whole wealth of the natural and spiritual world is contained.

Every other manner in which this wealth of being exists must prove itself to be, in comparison, an external, arid, miserable, self-contradictory, and destructive mode of reality which involves the ending of truth, and has in it the note of untruth, a mode of reality which only returns to its foundation and its source as the standpoint of religion. By this demonstration, then, it is made clearly apparent that Spirit cannot stop short at any of these stages, nor can it remain there, and that it is only religion which is the true reality or actuality of selfconsciousness.

So far as the proof of this necessity is concerned, the following remarks may be sufficient.

\v.When it has to be shown in regard to anything that it is necessary, it is implied that we start from something else, from an Other. What is here the Other of the true divine existence is non-divine existence, the


finite world, finite consciousness. Now if we are to begin from this as tlie immediate, the finite, the untrue, and in fact as an object of our knowledge, and as immediately apprehended by us in its definite qualitative existence, if we begin in this manner from what is First, we find that it shows itself, as we proceed, not to be what it directly presents itself as being, but is seen to be something which destroys itself, which appears as becoming, as moving on to something else. Therefore it is not our reflection and study of the subject, our judgment, which tells us that the finite with which we begin is founded on something that is true. It is not we who bring forward its foundation. On the contrary, the movement of the finite itself shows that it loses itself in something other, in something higher than itself. We follow the object as it returns of itself to the fountain of its true being. ^^

Now, while the object which forms the starting-point perishes in this, its true Source, and sacrifices itself, this does not mean that it has vanished in this process. Its content is, on the contrary, posited in its ideal character.

We have an example of this absorption and ideality in consciousness. \u relate myself to an object, and then contemplate it as it is. The object, which I at once distinguish from myself, is independent; I have not made it, it did not wait for me in order to exist, and 'it remains although I go away from it. Both, I and the object, are therefore two independent things, but consciousness is at the same time the relation of these two independent things to each other, a relation in which they appear as one. In that I have knowledge of the object, these two, I and the Other, exist for me in ^this my simple determinate character. If we rightly grasp what takes place here, we have not only the negative result that the oneness and independence of the two is done away with.

The annulling which takes place is not only empty negation, but the negation of those two things from which I


started. The non-existence here is thus only the nonexistence of the independence of the two - the non-existence in which both deterrainatipns are abrogated, yet preserved and ideally contained.

Should we now desire to see how in this manner the natural universe and the spiritual universe return to their truth in the religious standpoint, the^ detailed consideration of this return would constitute the whole circle of the philosophical sciences. We should have to begin here with Nature; it is the immediate; Spirit would in that case be opposed to Nature, an^d both, in so far as they confront one other as independent, are finite.

We may here, accordingly, distinguish between two ways of considering the matter.

In the first place, we might consider what Nature and Spirit are in themselves, or ideally. This would show that potentially they are identical in the one Idea, and both only reflect what is one and the same, or, we might say, that they have their one root in the Idea. But this would still be an abstract way of looking at them, being limited to what these objects are ^potentially, and not implying that they are conceived of according to the Idea and reality. The distinctions which essentially belong to the Idea would be left unregarded. This absoFute Idea is the element of necessity, is J^he essence of both Nature and Spirit, and in it what constitutes their difference, their limit and finiteness, drops away. The Essence of Spirit and of Nature is one and the same, and in this identity they are nothing more than what they are in their separation and qualitative existence. It is, however, our act of knowledge which, in this way of looking at them, strips these two of their difference, and does away with their finiteness. It is outside of these limited worlds that they are limited, and that their limit disappears in the Idea which is their unity. This disappearance of the limit is an abstracting from it which takes place in our act of cognition ^or knowledge. We


do away witli the form of its finiteness, and come to its truth. This way of conceiving of the matter is so far rather of a subjective kind, and that which presents itself as being the truth of this finiteness is the selfexisting Idea - the Substancej according to Spinoza, or the Absolute, as it was conceived of by Schelling.

\\Both natural things and the spiri^tual world are shown to be finite, so that what is true is the vanishing of their limits in Absolute Substance, -and the recognition of the fact that this substance is the absolute identity of the two, of Subjective and Objective, of Thought and Being. But Substance is merely this identity. The specific form and quality is taken away by us, and does not appear in Substance, which is therefore rigid, cold, motionless necessity, in which knowledge, subjectivity, cannot find satisfaction, because it does not recognise in it its own vitality and distinctions^ This phenomenon is seen in all ordinary acts of devotion. We rise above finiteness, we forget it; but yet it is not truly done away with simply because we have forgotten it.^^

The second method consists in a recognition of the necessity by which the self -abrogation of the finite, and the positing of the Absolute, take place objectively.

It must be shown of Xature and "Spirit that they^ in accordance with their notion, abrogate or annul themselves, and their finiteness must not be taken from them merely by a subjective removal of their limits. Here then we have the movement of thought, which is likewise the movement of the thing itself, or true reality, and it is the very process of Nature and of Spirit out of which proceeds the True.

a. We have now, therefore, to consider ISTature as it really is in itself - as the process of which the transition to Spirit is the ultimate truth, so that Spirit proves itself to be the truth of iTature. It is the essential character of Nature to sacrifice itself, to consume itself, so that the Psyche comes forth out of this burnt-offerin

and the Idea rises into its proper element, into its own ethereality. This sacrifice of Kature is its process, and it appears in a more definite form as an advance through a series of graduated stages, in which the differences are present in the form of mutual Exclusion, The connection is something purely internal. The moments, through which the Idea runs its course in the web or garment of Nature, are a series of independent forms.

Nature is the Idea potentially, and „only potentially, and the peculiar mode of its existence is to be outside of itself, in perfect externality. The nature of its progress is, more chiefly speaking, this, that the Notion which is enclosed in it breaks through its covering, absorbs the outer crust of its externality, idealises it, and while rendering the coating of the crystal transparent, is itself revealed to view. The indwelling Notion becomes external, or conversely, Nature immerses itself in itself, and what is external constitutes itself a mode of the Notion. Thus an externality comes into view which is itself ideal, and is held in the unity of the Notion* This is the truth of Nature, namely. Consciousness. In consciousness I am the Notion; and that which is for me, of which I liave a consciousness, is, in short, my existence. In nature, what exists is not consciously known; it is merely something that is external, and it is Spirit which first knows the externality and posits it as identical with itself. In sensation, which is the culminating point and the end of Nature, an independent existence, a being for self, is already inherent, so that the definite character, which a thing has, is at the same time ideal, and is taken back, into the Subject. The qualities of a stone are mutually exclusive, and the notion or conception we form of it 'is not in the stone.

Jn sensation, on the other hand, external qualities do not exist as such, but are reflected into themselves, and here Soul, subjectivity, begins. And liow the identity, which as gravitation is only impulse and a striving after some


tiling which ought to be, has come into existence. In gravitation there is always an element of mutual exclusion still remaining, the different points repel one another, and this one point, namely, sensation - the being in self - does not come forward into existence. But the whole force and life of ISTafcure is ever pressing on towards sensation and towards Spirit. While, however, in this progress Spirit appears as necessary through Nature, and as mediated through Nature, yet this mediation is of such a kind that it at once abrogates itself. What proceeds out of the mediation shows itself as the foundation and the truth of that out of which it has proceeded.

To philosophical knowledge the advance is a stream going in opposite directions, leading forward to what is Other than itself, but at the same time working backwards in such a way that that which appears as the last, as founded on what precedes, shows itself rather to be the first - the foundation.

&. Spirit itself is, to begin with, immediate; it is in the process of coming to itself that it becomes for itself, or self-conscious, and it is its very life to become for itself, or self-conscious, by means of itself. In this process it is essential to distinguish between two aspects presented by Spirit; first, what Spirit is in and for itself, and, secondly, its finiteness.^ Eirst of all, Spirit is without relation, ideal, enclosed in the Idea;.^in its second aspect, Spirit in its finiteness is consciousness, and since what is Other than itself exists for it, stands in an attitude of relation./^ Nature is only appearance; it is when we think and reflect that Nature is for us Idea; therefore this which is its own transfiguration, that is, Spirit, is something found outside of it. The essential nature of Spirit consists, on the contrary, in this, that tlje Idea lies in Spirit itself, and that the Absolute, that which is true in and for 'itself, exists for Spirit. In its dmmediacy Spirit is still finite, and this finiteness is characterised by the fact that in the first place what it is in and for itself, or


essentially, is distinguislied from tLat which is present to its consciousness. But its essential nature and its infinitude consist in this, that its "consciousness and its Idea absolutely correspond. This perfecting of Spirit, and this effacing. of tlie differences of that relation, may be conceived of in accordance with the twofold aspect of its essential existence and of its actual consciousness.

At first thC' two are distinguished; what it is essentially does not exist for consciousness, and this its essential existence still wears for Spirit an ££spect of otherness or strangeness. But the two stand in a relation of reciprocity, so that the advance of the one is at the same time the perfecting of the other. In the " Phenomenology of Spirit," Spirit is considered in its phenomenal existence as consciousness, and the necessity ^of its advance till it reaches the absolute standpoint is demonstrated. The forms assumed by Spirit, the stages which it produces, are there treated of as they present themselves in its consciousness.VWhat, however. Spirit knows, what Spirit as consciousness is, is one thing; the necessary nature of that which Spirit knows, and which exists for Spirit, is another./'^ The former, namely the fact that its woild exists for Spirit, is, as the word implies, a mere fact of existence, and appears therefore as contingent. The latter, the necessity, namely, by which this world has arisen for it, does not exist for Spirit at this stage of consciousness. So far as Spirit is concerned it takes place secretly, it exists only for philosophical contemplation, and belongs to the development of that which Spirit is according to its notion or conception. In this development a stage is now reached where Spirit attains to absolute consciousness, at which rationality exists for it as a world; and while on the other hand as consciousness it develops itself towards a consciousness of the essential nature^ of the world, it is here the point is reached, where the two modes, which were at first different,

' An-und Fiirsichseyns.


coincide. The perfect form of consciousness is reached when it becomes conscious ^of the 'true object, and the object, what is substantial, Substance, reaches its perfect or completed stage when it exists for itself, that is, when it distinguishes itself from itself and ^has itself as object.

Consciousness forces itself on to consciousness of the Substantial, and this 'latter, which is the notion of Spirit, forces itself on to phenomenal existence and to a relation in which it exists as self-conscious or for itself. This final stage, where the movement of both sides is brought into harmony, is the moral world, the State. Here the freedom of the Spirit, which proceeds on its way independent as the sun, exists as a present, realised object, as a necessity and a concretely existing world. Here consciousness likewise attains its perfect state, and each man finds himself provided in this world of the State with all he needs, and has his freedom in it. Consciousness, or being-for-self, and the essential being of Spirit have thus attained the self-same -goal.

c. But this manifestation of the Divine Life is itself still in the region of finiteness, and the abrogation of this finiteness constitutes the religious standpoint, where God is Object of consciousness as absolute Power and Substance into which the whole wealth of the natural as of the spiritual world has returned. The religious point of view, as representing the unfolding of the natural and spiritual universe, shows itself in this progressive movement as the absolutely true and primary, which has nothing lying behind it as a permanent presupposition, but has absorbed everything into itself. The requirements of necessity indeed imply that this entire wealth of the natural and spiritual world should bury itself iu its truth, namely, in the Universal which exists in and for itself. But this Universal, since it is essentially determined to particularity, and as -concrete, as Idea, is essentially self-repulsion, develops particularity or determinateness out of itself, and posits itself for consciousness.

VOL. I., H


The forms of this development and self-determination of the Universal are the principal moments in logic, and these likewise constitute the form of the whole abovementioned sphere of being. \^The development of God in Himself is consequently the same logical necessity as ¦that of the Universe, and this latter is only in so far inherently divine as it is at every stage the development of this form.

To begin with, this development is, it is true, different in each case in respect of the matter (Stoff), since, when it proceeds in an element of pure universality, it yields only Divine forms ^ and moments; while in the region of finiteness^ on the other hand, it yields finite forms ^ and finite spheres of existence. Thus this matter and its forms are so far quite different, regardless of the fact that the form of the necessity is the same. Further, ¦however, these two elements (Stoffe), the development of God in Himself and the development of the Universe, are not absolutely different. The Diving Idea signifies that it is the Absolute Subject, the truth "of the unimrsiim of the natural and spiritual world, and not merely an abstract Other. Therefore the matter is the same in both cases, It is the intellectual divine world, the divine life in itself, which develops itself; but the spheres of its life are the same as those of the world life. This latter, which is the divine life in the mode of Appearance, or phenomenal existence, in the form of finiteness, is looked at in that eternal life in its eternal form and truth, suh specie cei-erni. Thus we have finite consciousness, finite world, nature, that which presents itself in the phenomenal world. It is this, in fact, which constitutes the antithesis of the Other and the Idea. The Other of the simple Idea which exists as yet in its substantiality, appears, too, in God, but there retains His attribute of eternity, and continues to abide in love and in the divine condition.

¦ This Other, which remains in the condition of what has

^ Geataltungen.


idependent essential being, hein^ in and for self, is, howver, the truth of the Other as it appeurs in the form of tie finite world, and as finite consciousness. The elelent or matter, the necessity of which we have conidered, is therefore essentially the same, whether it resents itself in the Divine Idea as existing absolutely, r whether it appears as the wealth of the finite world;:r the finite world has its true and ideal existence only 1 that world of the Idea.

\The necessity which appeared to lie behind and outide of the religious standpoint, when the latter was ediiced from the preceding stages of the natural and piritual world, we now see to be inherent in itself, and: is thus to be set down as its own inner form and deelopment. In passing on to this development, we acordingly begin again with the form of Appearance or henomenal existence, and in the first place we shall onsider Consciousness as it here appears in a condition f relation, and fashions and develops the forms of this elation until the inner necessity develops and attains ompleteness in the notion itself.^

11. - The Forms of Religious Consciousness.

What we have first to consider in the sphere in which lie religious spirit manifests itself is the diversity of )rm assumed by the religious attitude. These forms, eing of a psychological kind, belong to the region of nite spirit. What is common to all these, to begin rith, is the consciousness of God; and this is not condousness only, but is, more correctly ospeaking, certainty DO. The more definite form assumed by this certainty; faith - ceitainty, that is, so far as it is present in faitli, r so far as this knowledge of God is feeling, and exists 1 feeling. This has reference to the subjective side.

In the second place, we have to consider the objective [de, the mode of the content or object. The form iu


which, in the first instance, God exists for us, is the mode of sense-perception, of idea, oj" ordinary thought, finally, the form of thought as such.

What comes first, therefore, is the consciousness of God in general - the fact that He is an Object to us, that in short we have ideas of Him, But this consciousness does not only mean that we have an object and an idea, but also that this content exists, and is not merely an idea. That is the certainty of God.

The term idea, or the fact that a thing is an object in consciousness, means that this content is in me, is mine.

I may have ideas of objects which are wholly fictitious and fanciful; what constitutes the idea here is in such a case my own, but only my own; it exists merely as an idea; I am at the same time aware that the content here has no existence. In dreams, too, I exist as consciousness, I have objects in my mind, but they have no existence.

<>^But we so conceive of the consciousness of God that the content is our idea, and at the^ same time exists; that is, the content is not merely mine, is not merely in the subject, in myself, in my idea and knowledge, but has _ an absolute existence of its own, exists in and for itself^' This is essentially involved in the content itself in this case. God is this Universality which has an absolute existence of its own, and does not exist merely for me; it is outside of me, independent of me.

"x^There are thus two points bound up together here.

This content is at once independent and at the same time inseparable from me; that is, it "is mine, and yet it is just as much not mine.^/

Certainty is this immediate relation between the content and myself. If I desire to express such certainty in a forcible manner, I say " I am as certain of this as of my own existence." Both (the certainty of this external Being and the certainty of myself) are one certainty, and I would do away with my own Being, I should have no knowledge of myself if I were to do away with that


Being. This unity thus involved in the certainty is the nseparability from me of this content which yet is differ'ent from me and myself; it is the inseparability of two;hings which are yet distinguished from one another.

It is possible to stop here, and it has even been mainiained that we are compelled to stop at this certainty.

k distinction, however, at once suggests itself to people's ninds here, and it is one which is made in connection ff'ith everything. A thing, it is said, may be certain, but ":t is another question whether it is tTnce. The truth is lere opposed to the certainty; from the fact that a thing s certain, it does not necessarily follow that it is true.^

The immediate form of this certainty is that of faith.

^'aith, indeed, directly involves an antithesis; and this Lutithesis is more or less indefinite. It is usual to put 'aith in contrast with knowledge. Now, if it be wholly )pposed to knowledge, we get an empty antithesis. What '. believe, I also know; it is contained in my consciousless. Paith is a form of knowledge, .but by knowledge s usually understood a mediated knowledge, a knowedge involving clear apprehension.

To put it more definitely, certainty is called faith, )artly in so far as this is not an immediate, sensuous icrtainty, and partly, too, in so far as this knowledge is lot a knowledge of the necessity or necessary nature of, content. What I see immediately before me, that I:qow; I do not believe that there is a sky above me; I ee it. On the other hand, if I have rational insight into he necessity of a thing, in this case, too, I do not say '' I lelieve," as, for example, in the theorem of Pythagoras, n this case it is assumed that a person does not merely, ccept the evidence of a thing on authority, but that he Las seen into its truth for himself.

In recent times, faith has been taken to mean a cerainty which stands in contrast with the perception of he necessary nature- of an object. This, especially, is he meaning attached to faith by Jacobi. Thus, says


Jacobi, we only believe that we have a body, we do not know it. Here knowledge has the more restricted meaning of knowledge of necessity .„ When I say " I see this," - '' this/' says Jacobi, is only a belief, for I perceive, I feel; and such sensuous knowledge is entirely immediate and unmediated, it is no reasoned principle.

Here faith has in fact the meaning of immediate certainty.

Thus the expression *' faith " is principally used to express the certainty that a God exists, in so far as we do not have any perception of the neeessity of what constitutes God. In so far as the necessity of the content, its proved existence, is called the Objective, objective knowledge, or cognition, so far is faith something subjective. We believe in God in so far as we have not a perception of the necessity of this content which implies that He is what He is.

It is customary to say that we must believe in God, because we have no immediate or sensuous perception of Him. ' We speak, it is true, of grounds or reasons for belief, but language of this sort is inappropriate; for if I have grounds, and in fact objective, proper grounds, then the existence of the object is for me proved. The grounds themselves, however, may be of a subjective kind, and in this case I simply let my knowledge pass as proved knowledge, and in so far as these grounds are subjective, I speak of faith:^/

The first, the simplest, and as yet most abstract form of this subjective method of proof is this, that in the being of the Ego, the being of the object, too, is contained. This proof and this mode: of the object's appearance is given as the first and, immediate form, in PeelinfT.

I. The Form of Feeling.

In regard to this, we find, to begin with, that the following conclusions hold good.


a. We have knowledge of God, and, in. fact, immediate knowledge. We are not to seek to comprehend God, it is saidj we are not to argue about God, because rational knowledge has proved of no use here.

h. We must ask for a support for this knowledge.

We have this knowledge only in ourselves, thus it is only subjective knowledge, and therefore a foundation is asked for. Where, it is asked, is the place in which divine Being is, and in reply to this,'it is said, "God is in reeling." Thus feeling gets the position of a basis or causal ground in which the Being -oi God is given.

These propositions are quite correct, and are not to be denied, but they are so trivial that it is not worth while to speak of them here. If the science of religion be limited to these statements, it is not worth having, and it is not possible to understand why theology exists at all.

a. We have immediate knowledge of the fact that God is. This proposition has, in the first instance, a quite simple and ingenuous meaning; afterwards, however, it gets a meaning which is not ingenuous or without a suggestion of bias, namely this, that this so-called immediate knowledge is the only knowledge of God; and in taking up this position modern theology is in so far opposed to revealed religion, and likewise to rational knowledge, for it, too, denies this praposition.

The element of truth in this must be considered more closely. We know that God is, and this we know immediately. What does " to know " ^ mean ? It is different from cognition or philosophical apprehension.^ We have the expression '^ certain '' (gewiss), and we are accustomed to oppose certainty to truth. The term " to know"^ expresses the subjective manner in which a thing exists for me in my consciousness, so that it has the character of somethincr existent.


Knowledge,^ therefore, essentially means this, that the

1 Wissen.., " Erkennen.


object, the Other, is or exists, and that its existence is linked with my existence. I may also know what it is, either by immediate sense-perception, or as the result of reflection; but when I say " I know it," I know only its being or bare existence. This existence is not, it is true, empty existence;. I have a knowledge also of more definite characteristics, qualities of the object, but of these, too, I know only that they are. Knowing is also used in the sense of having an idea, but it is always implied that the content is or exists. Such knowledge thus implies an abstract attitude and an immediate relation; whereas the expression "Truth" suggests a severance between certainty and objectivity, and the mediation of the two. On the other hand, we speak of " Cognition " or philosophical knowledge, when we have knowledge of a Universal, and. at the same time comprehend it in its special definite character, and as a connected whole in itself.

We comprehend or cognise Nature, Spirit, but not a particular house or a particular individual. The former are Universals,. the latter are particulars, and we comprehend or cognise the rich content of those Universals in their necessary relation to one another.

Considered more closely, this knowledge is consciousness, but purely abstract consciousness, that is to say, abstract activity of the Ego; while consciousness proper contains fuller determinations of content, and distinguishes these from itself, as object. This knowledge therefore merely means that such and such a content is or exists, and consequently it is the abstract relation of the Ego to the object, whatever the content is; or to put it otherwise, immediate knowledge is! nothing but thought taken in a quite abstract sense. Thought, however, too, means the self-identical, activity of the Ego, and therefore, taken generally, is immediate knowledge.

To speak more precisely, thought is that in which its object has also the character of something abstract, the


activity of the Universal. This thought is contained iu everything, however concrete the relation in any particular case may be; but it is only called thought in so far as the content has the character of something abstract, of a Universal.

Knowledge is here accordingly i^ immediate knowledge of a corporeal object, but knowledge of God; God is the absolutely universal Object; He is not any kind of particularity, He is the most universal Personality.

Immediate knowledge of God is immediate knowledge of an object which is absolutely universal, so that the product only is immediate. Immediate knowledge of God is therefore a thinking of God, ior Thought is the activity for w^hich the Universal is.

God has here no other content, no further meaning; He is merely nothing that belongs to the sphere of sense; He is a Universal of which we know only that it does not come within the sphere of immediate sense-perception.

It is, in fact, as a movement of mediation that thought first attains its complete- state, for it begins from what is " other than itself," permeates it, and in this movement changes it into what is' Universal. But, here thought has the merely Universal for its object, as the undetermined or indeterminate Universal; that, is, has a quality, a content, which it itself is, in which it is, in fact, in immediate or abstract contact with itself. It is the light which illumines, but has no other content than just, light. It is just such an immediateness as is implied when I ask what feels feeling ? what perceives perception ? and am merely answered, leeling has feeling, perception perceives. In view of this tautology, the relation is an immediate one..

Thus knowledge of God means nothing more than this,

I think God. V' But now it is to be added further that this

content of thought, this product, i^, it is something

-existent. God is not only thought by us, but lie is;

He is not merely a determination of tlie Universal. We


must proceed to ascertain by examining into the Notion (Begriff) itself, how far the Universal receives the determination or attribute of Being or existence.

" We must turn to logic for a definition of Being. Being is Universality taken in its empty and most abstract sense; it is pure relation to self, "without further reaction either in an outward or an inward direction. Being is Universality as abstract Universality. The Universal is essentially identity with itself; Being is this too, it is simple. The determination of the Universal, it is true, directly involves the relation to particulars; this particularity may be conceived of as outside the Universal, or, more truly, as inside it; for the Universal is also this relation to itself, this permeation of the Particular.

Being, however, discards all relation, every determination which is concrete; it is without further reflection, without relation to what is other than itself. It is in this way that Being is contained in the Universal; and when I say " the Universal is,'* I merely express its dry, pure, abstract relation to itself, this barren immediateness which Being is. The Universal is no Immediate in this sense; it must also be a Particular; the Universal must come to be in the Particular itself; this brin^infT of itself to the Particular does not represents what is abstract and immediate. By the term " Being," on the contrary, we express the abstract Immediate, this barren relation to ¦self. V^Thus when I say "This object is," I express the utmost extreme of arid abstraction; it is the, emptiest, most sterile determination possible.

To know is to think, and this is the Universal, and has in itself the characteristic of tbe abstract Universal, the immediateness of being:. this is the meaning of immediate knowledge.

We are thus in the region of abstract logic; it always happens so when we think we are on concrete ground, the ground of immediate consciousness. But this latter ifi the very poorest possible soil for thoughts, and those.


contained in it are of the very baldest and emptiest kind.

It is a proof of the grossest ignorance to believe that immediate knowledge is outside the region of thought. We fight "with such distinctions, and when they are considered more closely they simply vanish. Even according to the very poorest definition of " immediate knowledge,'* namely, that given above, religion belongs to the sphere of thought.

We, accordingly, go on to inquire m"ore precisely wherein it is that what I know in immediate consciousness is different from other things that I know. I know as yet nothing but that the Universal is; what further content God has is to be discussed in the sequel. The standpoint -of immediate consciousness gives nothing more than the form of Being referred to. That man cannot know what God is, is the standpoint of " enlightenment," and this coincides with that of the immediate knowledge of God.

But further, God is an Object of my consciousness, I distinguish Him from myself. He is something different from me, and I from Him. If we compare other objects in accordance with what we know of them, we find we know of them this too, tliat they are, and are something other than ourselves, they exist for themselves, an.d further they are either universal or they are not, they are something universal and at the same time something particular; they have some sort of definite content. The wall is; it is a thing. Thing is a Universal, and thus much I know too of God, We know far more of other things, but if we abstract from all their definite characteristics, we only say, as we said just now of the wall, " It is,'' thus we know just as much of it as we do of God. And thus God has been called an abstract Utis. But his ens is the very emptiest form of existence compared with which other entia show themselves to have a far fuller existence.

We have said that God is in immediate knowledge; we are too; this immediateness of Being belongs to the Ego too. All other concrete, empirical things are or exist also, they are identical with themselves, this is


abstractly their Being as Being. TMs Being exists in common with me, but the object of my knowledge is so constituted that I can also withdraw its Being from it; I represent it to myself, believe in it, but this in which I believe is a Being in my consciousness only. Consequently, universality and this quality of immediateness fall asunder, and must of necessity do so. This reflection must necessarily occur to one, for we are. two, and must be separate; otherwise we would be one; that is, a characteristic must be attributed to the one which does not belong to the other. Such a characteristic is Being; ** I am; " the Other, the object, therefore is not. I take Being to myself, to my side; I do not doubt my own existence, and on that account it drops away in the case of the Other. Since the Being here is only the Being of tlie object in such a way that the object is only this definitely known Being, there is wanting to it essential Being, Being in and for itself, and it receives this only in consciousness. It is merely known as known Being, not as having Being in and for itself., The Ego only exists, not the object.\ I may indeed doubt everything, but my own existence I cannot doubt, for " I " is that which doubts, " I " is the doubt itself. If the doubt becomes the object of doubt, the doubter doubts of doubt itself, and thus the doubt vanishes. /"I" is immediate relation to oneself;; Being is in the " I." Immediateness thus gets a fixed place over against Universality, and is seen to belong to my side. In- the " I," Being is simply in myself; I can abstract from everything, but I cannot abstract from thought, for the abstracting is itself thought, it is the activity of the Universal, simple reference to self. Being is exemplified in the very act of abstraction. I can indeed destroy myself, but that is the liberty to abstract- from my existence. " I am," - in the "I" tlie "am" is already included.

ll^ow, in the act of exhibiting the Object - God - as He who is Being, we have taken Being to ourselves, the


"I " has vindicated Being for itself, Eeing has dropped away from the object. II the object is notwithstanding to be spoken of as possessed of Being, a reason or ground must be given for this. It must be: shown that God is in my Being, and thus - since we are now in the region of experience and observation - ^the demand sounds as if we were asked to point to the state or condition in which God is in me, in which we are not two; something observable, where the separateness drops away, where God is in this Being which remains to me in virtue of the fact that I am; a place in which the Universal is in me as possessed of Being, and not separated from me.

This place is Feeling.

h. Eeligious feeling is commonly .spoken of as that element in which faith in God is given to us, and as that inmost region in which it is for us absolutely certain that God is. Of certainty we have already spoken.

This certainty means that two different kinds of Being are posited in reflection as One Being. Being is abstract relation to self; there are, however, two things possessed of Being, but they are only one Being, and this undivided Being is my Being; this is certainty. This certainty, with a content in a more concrete form, is feeliD£r, and this feeling is set forth as the ground of faith and of the knowledge of God. What is in our feeling, that we call knowledge, -and so, accordingly, God exists. In this way feeling is regarded as 'that which is the basis or causal ground. The form of knowledge is what is first, then come the distinctions, and with these enter the differences between the two, and the reflection that the Being is my Being, that it belongs to me. And here accordingly is the need that the object, too, should be in this Being which I assume as mine; and this is Peeling.

In this way we refer or appeal to feeling.

" I feel something hard; " when I thus speak, " I " is


the One, the Other is that "something;" there are two of them. The expression of the consciousness - what is common to the two - is the hardness. There is hardness in my feeling, and the object, too, is hard. This community exists in feeling, the object touches me, and I am filled with its specific quality. When I say " I " and "object," the two still exist independently; it is only in feeling that the double Being vanishes. The specific character of the object becomes mine, and indeed so much mine that at first reflection in reference to the object, entirely drops away; in so far as the other remains independent, it is not felt, or tasted. I, however, since I get a determinate character in feeling, take up an immediate attitude in it. In feeling I am this single empirical I, and the determinate character of my feeling belongs to this particular empirical self-consciousness.

A distinction is thus implicitly contained in feeling.

On the one side am I, the Universal,; the Subject; and this transparent, pure fluidity, this immediate:reflection into myself, becomes disturbed by an '' Other; " but in this " Other " I keep myself entirely with myself, I preserve completely my self-centred existence. The extraneous quality becomes, so to speak, fluid in my universality, and that which is for nie an " Other," I make my own. When another quality has been put into what is lifeless, this particular thing has acquired another quality too. But I, as feeling, maintain myself in that "Other" which penetrates me, and continue to be, in the determinateness, I. The distinction in feeling is, in the first place, an inner one in the Ego itself; it is the distinction between me in my pure fluidity, and me in my definite character. But this inner distinction, owing to the fact that reflection enters into it, is none the less also posited as such. I separate myself from my definite character of determinateness, place it as "Other" over against me, and subjectivity comes to exist on its own account merely in relation ta objectivity.


^^It is usual to say that feeling is something purely subjective; but it is in reference to an object of perception, or of which I form an idea, that I first become subjective by placing some "other" over against me. It would consequently appear that feeliog cannot be termed something subjective, since in it the distinction of subjectivity and objectivity has not as yet appeared. This division, however, namely, that I as subject exist in reference to objectivity, is in reality a relation and identity, which is at the same time distinguished from this distinction, and it is just here that Universality ¦begins. "While I stand in relation to another, and in perception, or in forming ideas, distinguish the object from myself, I am the mutual reference of these two, myself and the other, and I am making a distinction in which an identity is posited, and. my attitude with regard to the object is that of a grasping over (iibergreifen) or bridging over of the difference. In feeling, as such, on the contrary, the Ego exists in this immediate simple unity, in a condition in which it is wholly filled with determinate character, and does not go beyond this character. Thus I am, as feeling, something entirely special or particular; I am thoroughly immersed in determinateness, and am in the strict sense of the word subjective only, without objectivity and without universality. '.

V Kow, if feeling be the essential religious attitude, this attitude is identical with my empirical self. ^ Determinateness, representing the eternal thought of the Universal, and I as wholly empirical subjectivity, are in me comprised and comprehended in feeling. I am the immediate reconciliation and resolution of the strife between the two. But just because I thus find myself determined on the one hand as a particular empirical subject, and am on the other raised into a wholly different region, and have the experience of passing to and fro from the one to the other, and have the- feeling of the relation of the two, do I


find myself determined as against myself, or as distinguished from myself. That is to say, in this very feeling of mine I am driven by its content into contrast or opposition - in other words, to refleetion and to the distinction of subject and object.

This transition to reflection is not peculiar to religious feeling only, but to human feeling generally. For man is Spirit, consciousness, idea; there is no feeling which does not contain in itself this transition {o reflection. In every other feeling, however, it is 'only the inner necessity and nature of the process which impels to reflection, namely, the necessity whereby the Ego distinguishes itself from its determinate state. Religious feeling, on the contrary, contains in its content, in its very determinateness, not only the necessity but the reality of the opposition itself, and consequently contains reflection.

For the substance or content of the religious relation is just the thought of the Universal, which is itself, indeed, reflection, and therefore the other moment of my empirical consciousness, and the relatioif of both. Therefore in religious feeling I am alienated -from myself, for the Universal, the Thought which has an absolute existence, is the negation of my particular empirical existence, which appears in regard to it as a ^nullity which has its truth in the Universal only. ^ The religious attitude is unity, but it involves the power of judgment or differentiation.^ /'In feeling the moment of empirical existence, I feel the universal aspect, that of negation, as a determinateness which exists entirely outside of me; or, to put it otherwise, while I am in t-ljis last I feel myself estranged from myself in my empirical existence, I feel I am renouncing myself and negating my empirical consciousness.

Now the subjectivity which is contained in religious feeling, being empirical and particular, exists in feeling in the shape of some particular interest, or in some

1 '^Iti-aftdesUrtheils.''


particular determinate form in fact. Eeligious feeling contains just this definite (twofold) character, that of empirical self-consciousness, and that of universal thought, and their relation and unity. It therefore hovers between their opposition and their unity arid harmony, differing in character with the attitude of individual subjectivity to the Universal, as it determines itself in accordance with the particular shape assumed by the interest in which I happen at the time to be absorbed. Accordingly the relation of the Universal and the empirical self-consciousness may be of a very varied kind. There may be the utmost tension and hostility of the extremes, or the most entire unity. When the condition is that of separation, in which the Universal is the Substantial in relation to which the empirical consciousness feels that it exists, and at the same time feels its essential nothingness, but desires still to cling to its positive existence and remain what it isj we have the feeling of fear. When we realise that our own inner existence and feeling are null, and when self-consciousness is at the same time on the side of the Universal and condemns that existence, we get the feeling of contrition, of sorrow on account of ourselves.

The empirical existence of self-consciousness feels itself benefited or furthered, either as a whole, or in some one or other of its aspects. Feeling that it has hardly been thus benefited by its own self-activity, but owing to combination and a power „ lying outside of its own strength and wisdom, which is conceived of as the absolutely existing Universal, and to wMch that benefit is ascribed - it comes to have the feeling of gratitude, and so on. The higher unity of my self-consciousness generally with the Universal, the certainty, assurance, and feeling of this identity, is love, blessedness.

c. But if with this advance of feeling to reflection, and this distinguishing between the "I " and its determinate state, which thus appears as content and object, such a position be given to feeling that it becomes in its,

VOL. I. ' I


very self the justification of the content and the evidence of its Being or truth, it is necessary to make the following remarks: -

\ The matter of feeling may be of the most varied character. We have the feeling of justice, of injustice, of God, of colour, of hatred, of enmity, of joy, &c. The most contradictory elements are to be found in feeling; the most debased, as well as the highest and noblest, have a place there. Experience proves that the matter of feeling has the most accidental character possible; it may be the truest, or it may be the worst. God, when He is present in feeling, has no advantage over the very Avorst possible thing. // On the contrary, the kingliest flower springs from the same soil and side by side with the rankest weed. Because a content is found in feelino:, it does not mean that this content is in itself anything very fine. For it is not only what exists that comes into our feeling; it is not only the real, the existent, but also the fictitious and the false. All that is good and all that is evil, all that is real and all that is not real, is found in our feeling; the most contradictory things are there. All imaginable things are felt by me; I can become enthusiastic about what is most unworthy.

I have hope; hope is a feeling; in it, as in fear, we have to do with the future; that is, in so many words, with what does not yet exist, with -what perhaps indeed will, perhaps never will, be- Likewise I can become enthusiastic about the past; but also for such things as neither have been, nor will be. I can imagine myself to be a great and able, a noble-minded, most superior man, to be capable of sacrificing everything for j^^stice; for my opinion; I can imagine myself to have been of great use, to have accomplished much; but the question is, whether it is true, whether as a matter of fact I act so nobly, and am in reality so excellent as I imagine myself to be, "Whether my feeling is of a true sort, whether it is good, depends upon its content. The mere fact that there is


a content in feeling does not decide the matter, for the very worst elements are there too. In like manner the question as to the existence of the content does not depend upon whether or not it is in feeling, for things which have been imagined merely, which have never existed, and never will exist, are found there. Consequently, feeling is a form, or mould, for every possible kind of content, and this content receives no determination therefrom which could affect its own independent existence, its being in-and-for self. Feeling is the form in which the content appears as perfectly accidental, for it may just as well be posited by bay caprice, or good pleasure, as by Nature. The content as it exists in feeling thus appears as not absolutely determined on its own account, as not posited through the Universal, through the Notion. Therefore it is in its very essence the particular, the limited; and it is a matter of indifference whether it be this particular content, since another content may just as well be in my feeling. Thus when the Being of God is shown to be present in our feeling, it is just as accidental there as all else to which this Being may belong. This, then, we call Subjectivity, but in the worst sense. Personality, self-determination, the highest intensity of Spirit in itself is subjectivity too, but in a higher sense, in a freer form. Here, however, subjectivity means mere contingency or fortuitousness.

^ ^It frequently occurs that a man appeals to feeling when reasons fail. Such a man must be left to himself, for with the appeal to his own feeling the community between us is broken off. In the sphere of thought, on the contrary, of the Notion, we are in that of the Universal, of rationality; there we have the nature of the real object^ before us; we can comerto an understanding concerning it; we submit ourselves to the object, and the object is that which we have in common. But if we pass over to feeling, we forsake this common ground; we

^ Natur der Sache.


withdraw ourselves into the sphere of our contingency, and merely look at the object as it is there. In this sphere each man makes the object his own affair, somethhig peculiar to himself; and thus if one person says you ought to have such feelings, another may reply, I simply have not those feelings; as a matter of fact, I am not so constituted. For what is really in question in this demand is merely that contingent existence of mine, which takes this or the other form indifferently, 'x

Purther, feeling is that which man has in common with the lower animals; it is the animal, sensuous form.

It follows, therefore, that when what belongs to the category of justice, of morality, of God, is exhibited to us in feeling, this is the worst possible way in which to draw attention to the existence of a content of such a kind.

God exists essentially in Thought. The suspicion that K He exists through thought, and only in thought, must occur to us from the mere fact that man alone has religion, not the beasts/V

\ . All in man, whose true soil or element is thought, can be transplanted into the form of feeling. Justice, freedom, morality, and so on have their roots in the higher destiny of mau, whereby he is not beast, but Spirit. All that beloDgs to the higher characteristics of humanity J can be transplanted into the form of feeling; yet the feeling is only the form for this content, which itself belongs to a quite different region. Thus we have feelings of justice, freedom, morality; but it is no merit on the part of feeling that its content is true. The educated man may have a true feeling of justice, of God; he does not, however, derive this from feeling, but he owes it to the education of thought; it is only through thought that the content of the idea, and thus the feeling itself, is present. It is a fallacy to credit the true and the good to feeling//

Yet not only may a true content exist in our feeling, it otiglit to exist, and must exist; or, as it used to be put,


we must have God in our heart. Heart is indeed more than feeling. This last is only momentary, accidental, transient; but when I say " I have God in my heart," the feeling is here expressly represented as the continuous,' permanent manner of my existence. The heart is what I am; not merely what I am at this moment, but what I am in general; it is my character. The form of feeling as something universal thus means the principles or settled habits of my existence, the fixed manner of my way of acting.

In the Bible, however, evil, as such,, is expressly attributed to the heart, and the heart - this natural particularity of ours - is, as a matter of fact, the seat of evil.

But goodness, morality, do not consist in the fact that a man enforces the claims of his particularity, his selfishness, or selfness. If he does so, he is evil.\vThe element of self is the evil element which we generally call the heart. Now when it is said, as above, that God, justice, &c., must exist in my feeling, in my heart, what is meant is only that these are not to be merely something of which I form ideas, but are to be inseparably identical .with me, I, as actual, as this definite individual, am to be so determined completely and entirely; this definite nature is to be my character, is to constitute the whole .manner of my actual existence, and thus it is essential that every true content should be in feeling, in the heart.

Such is the manner in which religion is to be brought into the heart, and it is here that the necessity for the -religious education of the individual comes in. The heart, feeling, must be purified, educated; and this education means that another, a higher mode of feeling is the true one, and comes into existence with the individual. Yet the content is not true, not self-existent, good, inherently excellent, simply because it is in feeling.

If what is in feeling be true, then all must be true; as, for example, Apis-worship. I'eeling is the central point of subjective, accidental Being. wTo give his feelings a


/ true content, is therefore tlie concern of the individual; '

but a theology which only describes feelings does not get beyond the empirical, the historical, and such contingent particulars^ and has not yet to do with thoughts that have a content.

The ideas and knowledge of an educated man do not exclude feeling and emotion. On the contrary, feeling nourishes itself, and gives itself permanence by means of ideas, and by means of ideas renews and kindles itself afresh. Anger, resentment, hatred, show just as much activity in keeping themselves alive by representing to themselves the various aspects of tbe injustice sustained, and the various aspects in which they view the enemy, as do love, goodwill, joy, in giving themselves fresh life by figuring to themselves the equally manifold relations of their objects, \ If we do not think, as it is called, of the object of hatred, anger, or of love, the feeling and the inclination become extinct. If the object fades out of the mind, the feeling vanishes too, and every external cause stirs up sorrow and love afresh.,^ To divert the mind, to present other objects to it to exercise itself upon, and to transplant it into other situations and circumstances in which those various relations are not present to the mind, is one of the means of weakening sensation and feeling. The mind riiust forget the object; and in hatred to forget is more than to forgive, just as in love to forget is more than to be unfaithful, and to be forgotten is worse than to he only disregarded. Man, as Spirit, since he is not merely animal, in feeling essentially exercises knowledge; he is consciousness, and he only has knowledge of himself when he withdraws himself oat of immediate identity with the particular state of the moment. Therefore if religion is only to exist as feeling, it dies away into something void of ideas, and equally void of action, and loses all definite content.

\^ In fact, it is so far from being the case that in feeling alone we can truly find God, that if we are to finA this


content there, we must already Icaoiv it from some other source* And if it be affirmed that we do not truly know God, that we can know nothing of Him, how then can we say that He is in feeling ? We must first have looked around us in consciousness in search of characteristics belonging to the content which is distinct from tlie Ego, and not till then shall we be in a position to point to feeling as religious, that is, in so far as we rediscover those characteristics of the content in it.

In more recent times it has been ^customary to speak of conviction, and not of the heart, the " heart" being the expression still used for any one's immediate character.

When, however, we speak of acting according to convictioUj it is implied that the content, is a power which governs me 5 it is my power, and I belong to it; but this power rules me from within in a fashion which implies that it is already mediated by thought and intellectual insight.

In regard further to what has special reference to the idea that the heart is the germ of this content, it may be freely conceded that the idea is correct, but this does not carry us far. That the heart is the source, means nearly this' - that it is the first mode in which any such content appears in the subject; it is its first place, or seat. A man begins by having religious feeling or wanting it; in the former case the heart is undoubtedly the germ; but as a vegetable seed-corn represents the undeveloped mode of the plant's existence, so feeling, too, is this hidden or undeveloped mode.

That seed-corn, with which the life of the plant begins, is only in appearance, in an empirical fashion, what is first; for the seed-corn is likewise a product, a result, is what is last. It is the result of the fully developed life of the tree, and incloses this perfect ^development of the nature of the tree in itself. The pri&iariness is therefore only of a relative character. In a similar way in our subjective actuality, this entire content exists in an


undeveloped form in feeling; but it 4s quite another thing to say that this content as such belongs to feeling as such. Such a content as God, is a content which is selfexistent and universal; and in like manner the content of right and duty is a characteristic of rational "will.

I am will, I am not desire only; I have not only inclination; - "I" is the Universal. As will, however, I am in my freedom, in my Universality itself, in the Universality of my self-determination; and if my will be rational, then its determining is in fact an universal one, a determining in accordance with the pure Notion. The rational will is very different from the contingent will, from willing according to accidental impulses or inclinations. The rational will determines itself in accordance with its notion or conception; and the notion, the substance of the will, is pure freedom. And all determinations of the will which are rational are developments of freedom, and the developments which result from the determinations are duties.

This is the content which belongs to rationality; it is determination by means of, in accordance with, the pure Notion, and therefore belongs in like manner to thought.

V Will is only rational in so far as it involves thought.

The popular idea that will and intelligence represent two different provinces, and that will can be rational, and so moral, without thought, must therefore be relinquished x;; As regards God it has already been observed that this content in like manner belongs to thought, that the region in which this content is apprehended as well as produced is thought.

Now, though we have designated feeling as the sphere in which the Being of God is to be immediately exhibited, we have not in that region found the Being, the Object - God - in the form in which we sought for it; that is to say, we have not found it there as free, independent Being, Being in and for self. God is, He is independent and self-existent, is free; we do not find this independence,


this free BeiDg, in feeling; nor do we find the content as a self-existent content; on the contrary, any kind of particular content may be in feeling. \ If feeling is to be of a truthful, genuine cliaracter, it must be so by means of its content; but it is not feeling which, as such, renders its content true.

Such is the nature of this sphere of feeling, and such 'are the characteristics which pertain to it. It is feeling of any kind of content, and simultaneously feeling of self, \V In feeling we thus as it were have the enjoyment ..of our own selves, of oicr realisation of the object. The reason why feeling is so popular, is just because in it a man is in presence of his particularity or particular existence. ^ He who lives in the object or actual fact itself, in science, in the practical, forgets himself in it; it involves no feeling so far as feeling is recollection of his individual self, and in that forgetting of himself he is as regards his particular existence a minimum. Vanity, self-satisfaction, on the other hand, which likes nothing better than self, and the possession of self, and only desires to remain in the enjoyment of self, appeals to personal feeling, and therefore does not arrive at objective thinking and acting. \A man who has to do with feeling only is not as yet complete; he is a beginner in knowledge, in action, &c.

We must now therefore look around us for another basis for God. In feeling, we have not found God either in accordance with His independent Being, or in accordance with His content. In immediate knowledge^ the Object was not possessed of Being; on the contrary, its Being was found in the knowing subject, which discovered the basis of tliis Being in feeling.

In regard to the determinate character of the Ego, which constitutes the content of feeling, we have already seen that it is not only distinct from the pure Ego, but must also be distinguished from feeling in its own peculiar movement in that the E^o finds itself determined as


against itself. This distinction is now, too, to be posited as such, so that the activity of the Ego comes into operation, and sets its determinate character at a distance, so to speak, as not its own, places it outside of itself, and makes it objective. And further, we saw that the Ego is in feeling potentially estranged from itself, and has potentially in the Universality which it contains, the negation of its particular empirical existence. Now, in putting its determinateness outside of itself, the Ego estranges itself, does away, in fact^ with its immediacy, and has entered into the sphere of the Universal,

At first, however, the determinateness of Spirit appears as the external object in general, and gets the entirely objective character of externality in space and time. And the consciousness which places it in this externality, and relates itself to it, is perception, which we here have to consider in its perfect form as Art- perception,

2. Perception.

Art had its origin in the feeling of the absolute spiritual need that the Divine, the spiritual Idea, should exist as object for consciousness, and in the first place for perception in its immediate form. The law and content of art is Truth as it appears in mind or Spirit, and is therefore spiritual truth, but spiritual truth in such a form that it is at the same time sensuous truth, existing for perception in its simple form. Thus the representation of truth is the work of man, but it appears fn an external fashion, so that it is produced under the conditions of sense. When the Idea appears immediately in Nature and in spiritual relations too, when the True shows itself in the midst of diversity and confusion, the Idea is not yet gathered into one centre of manifestation; it still shows itself in the form of externality, or mutual exclusion. In immediate existence the manifestation of the Notion does not yet appear in harmony with truth. That sensuous perception to


which art gives occasion is, on the contrary, something which is necessarily the product of Spirit, not something which appears in an immediate or sensuous shape, and it has the Idea as its life-giving centre.

In what may .be regarded as constituting the entire sphere of art, there may be other elements included than those which have just been alluded to. For truth has here a double meaning, and first of all that of accuracy, by which is meant, that the representation should be in conformity with the otherwise known object. In this sense art is formal, and is imitation of given objects, whatever the content may be. Here its law is not beauty.

But in so far also as beauty is its law, art can be still taken as involving form, and have, moreover, a limited, well-defined content, as much as the literal truth itself.

-But this last in its true sense is correspondence of the object with its conception or notion, namely, the Idea.

And this, as the free expression of the notion unhindered in any way by contingency or caprice, is the self- existent content of art, and is a content indeed which has to do with the substantial universal elements, the essential qualities, and powers of nature and of Spirit.

The artist, then, has to present truth, so that the reality, in which the conception or notion has power, and in which it rules, is at the same time something sensuous. The Idea exists consequently in a sensuous form, and in an individualised shape, which cannot miss having the contingent character attaching to what is sensuous. The work of art is conceived in the mind of the artist, and in his mind the union of the notion or conception and of reality has implicitly taken place. But when the artist has let his thoughts emerge into externality, and the work is completed, he soon retires from it.

Thus the work of art is, so far as perception is concerned, in the first instance, an external object of a quite ordinary sort, which has no feeling of self, and does not know itself. The form, the subjectivity, which the artist


has given to his work, is external only; it is not the absolute form of what knows itself, ^of self-consciousness.

Subjectivity, in its complete form, is wanting to the work of art. This self-consciousness belongs to the subjective consciousness, to the perceiving Subject. In relation to the work of art, therefore, which in itself is not something having knowledge, the element of self-consciousness is the Other, but an element, too, which belongs to it absolutely, and which knows the object represented, and represents it to itself as the substantial truth. The work of art, since it does not know itself, is essentially incomplete, and (since self-consciousness belongs to the Idea) it needs that completion which it acquires by the relation to it of what is self-conscious. It is in this consciousness that the process takes place by which the work of art ceases to be merely object, and by which self-consciousness posits that which seems to it as an Other, as identical with itself. This is the process which does. away with that externality in which truth appears in art, and which annuls these lifeless relatiouB of immediacy, and it is through it that the perceiving subject gives itself the conscious feeling of having in the object its oton essence.

Since this characteristic, which is a going into itself out of externality, belongs to the subject, there exists a separation between the subject and the work of art; the subject is able to contemplate the work in a wholly external manner, to take it to pieces, or he can make smart, aesthetical, and learned remarks upon it; but that process which is the essential one for perception, that necessary completion of the work of art, in turn does away with this prosaic separation.

In the oriental idea of the substantiality of consciousness, its unity with the one Absolute Substance, this separation has not yet been reached, and therefore artperception is not brought to a perfect state either, for this last presupposes the higher freedom of self-consciousness, which is able to place its truth and substantiality


freely over against itself. Bruce, wliea iu Abyssinia, showed a painted fish to a Turk, but the remark which the latter made was this; " At the last day the fish will lay it to your charge that you gave it no soul." An oriental does not desire mere form; ou the contrary, for him the soul remains absorbed in unity, and does not advance to the condition of separation, nor reach the process in which .truth stands on the one side as embodied without a soul, and on the other the perceiving self-consciousness, which again annuls this separation.

If we now look back upon the progress which the religious attitude has made in its development up to this point, and\\i.f we compare perception with feeling, we shall see that truth has indeed definitely appeared in its objectivity; but we see too that the defect, or deficiency, in its manifestation is, that it remains in sensuous, immediate independence, that is to say^ in that independence which in turn annuls itself,, does not exist on its own account, and which likewise proves itself to be the product of the subject, since it only attains to subjectivity and self-consci6usness in the perceiving subject. In perception the elements of the totality of the religious relation - namely;, the object, and self-consciousness - have got separated . The religious process belongs, indeed, to the perceiving subject only, and yet it is not complete in the subject, but needs the object perceived by sense. On the other hand, the object is the truth, and yetMt needs, in order to be true, the seH-consciousness which lies outside of it. '

The advance now necessary is this, that the totality of the religious relation should be actually posited as such, and as unity. Truth attaii^ to objectivity^ in which its content as existing on its own account is not merely something posited, but exists essentially in the form of subjectivity itself, and the entire process takes place in the element of self-conscious'ness.

In accordance with this, the religious attitude is in the first place that of the general idea of ordinary thought.


3. Idea, or Ordinary "Thoioght}

We can very easily distinguish between a picture (Bild) and an idea (Vorstellung). Something different is meant when we say "We have an idea," from what is meant when we say, "We have a picture of God; " the same difference exists with regard to sensuous objects. A picture derives its content from the sphere of sense, and presents it in the immediate mode of its existence, in its singularity, and in the arbitrariness of its sensuous manifestation. But sinoe the infinite number of individual things, as they are present in immediate, definite existence; cannot, even by means of the most detailed or ample representation, be rendered as a whole, the picture is necessarily always something limited; and in religious perception, which is able only to present its content as a picture, the Idea splits up into a multitude of forms, in which it limits itself and renders itself finite. Tlie universal Idea (Idee), which appears in the circle of these finite forms, and only in these, and which is merely their basis, must as such remain concealed.

General idea or ordinary thought (Vorstellung), on the other hand, is the picture, lifted up^ into the form of Universality, of thought, so that the one fundamental characteristic, which constitutes the essence of the object, is held fast, and is present before the mind which thus forms the idea. If, for instance, we say " world," in this single sound we have gathered together and united the entire wealth of this infinite universe. If the consciousness of

^ JN^OTE. - Throughout this section Vorstellung is generally translated as " idea," with a small i, and without the article to distinguish it from the Idea [die Idee) which represents, to use the deiinition of Professor Wallace, thought in its totality as an organisation or system of reason, but this rendering has not been strictly adhered to here or elsewhere, and general idea, ordinary thought, popular conception, and other ec^uivaleuts have been employed. - E. E. S.


tlie object be reduced to this simple^ specific form of thought, it is then idea, which needs nothing but the word for its manifestation - this simple utterance or outward expression which remains within itself. The manifold content which idea simplifies may be derived from the inner life, from freedom, and then we have ideas of right, of morality, of wickedness. Or it may be derived from external phenomena, too, as, for instance, we may have ideas of battles, or of wares in general.

Religion, when lifted up into the form of idea, directly involves a polemical element. The content is not grasped in sensuous perception, not in a pictorial and immediate manner, but mediately, after the fashion of Abstraction. What is sensuotis and pictorial is lifted up into the Universal, and with the elevation into tliis sphere there is necessarily linked a negative attitude towards what is pictorial. But this negative attitude does not merely concern the form (in which case the distinction between sense-perception and idea would lie in that only), but it also touches the content. The Idea (Idee) and the mode of presentation are so closely' related for senseperception, that the two appear as One, and pictorial art implies that the Idea is essentially linked with it, and could not be severed from it. On the contrary, general idea (Vorstellung) proceeds on the supposition that the absolute, really true Idea cannot be grasped by means of a picture, and that the pictorial mode is a limitation of the content; it therefore does away with that unity of perception, rejects the unity of the picture and its meaning, and brings this meaning into prominence for itself.

Finally, then, religious idea or general conception, is to be understood as embodying truth, objective content, and is thus meant to be antagonistic not only to the pictorial mode of representing truth, but also to otlier modes of subjectivity. Its content is that which has validity in and for itself, which remains substantially fixed as against individual suppositions and opinians, and


is inflexible as contrasted with the fluctuations of indi* vidual desires and likings.

This has reference to the essence of idea in a general sense* With regard to its more specific form, we have to make the followinfr remarks: -


a. We have seen that in idea the essential content is posited in the form of thought, but this does not meati that it is already posited as thought. When, therefore, we said that idea takes up a polemical attitude to the sensuous and pictorial, and assumes a negative attitude with regard to it, this does not imply that idea has freed itself absolutely from the sensuous, and posited the latter ideally in a complete and perfect way. It is only in actual thought that this is accomplished, which lifts up the sensuous qualities of the content to the remon of universal thoufiht-determinations, to the inward moments, or to the determinateness as peculiar to the Idea itself. Since idea is not this concrete elevation of the sensuous to the Universal, its negative attitude towards the sensuous means nothing more than that it is not truly liberated from the sensuous. General idea or ordinary thought is still essentially entangled with the sensuous; it requires it, and Tequires to enter on this contest with the sensuous in order to exist. The sensuous element, therefore, belongs essentially to idea, although idea never permits the Isensuous to enjoy an independent validity. Further, the Universal, of which idea is conscious, is only the abstract Universality of its object^ only its undetermined Essence, or approximate nature. In order to give a determinate character to that essence, it again requires what is determined by Sense, the pictorial; but to this as being .^sensuous it gives the position of something which is separate from what is signified by it, and treats it as a point at which it is not permissible to remain, as something which only serves to represent the proper or true content which is separate from it.


Oil this account, then, idea is in a state of constant unrest between immediate sensuous; perception on the one hand, and thought proper on the other. Its detetminateness is of sensuous kind, derived from what is sensuous, but thought has introduce itself; in other words, the Sensuous becomes elevated into thought by the process of abstraction. But these two, the Sensuous and the Universal, do not interpenetrate one another thoroughly; thought has not as yet completely overcome the sensuous determinateness, and although the content of idea is also something universal, yet it is still encumbered with the determinateness of the Sensuous, and needs the form of the natural (Natlirlichkeit). But it is not the less true that this moment of the Sensuous does not possess independent validity.

\\ Thus there are many forms in religion, regarding which we know that they are not to be taken in their strict sense. For instance, " Son," or " Begetting " is only a figure derived from a natural relation, regarding which we know quite well that it is not intended to be understood in its immediate sense, but that what is indicated is rather a relation which is only approximately the one here described, and that this sensuous relation has in it what corresponds most nearly to that relation which is taken in the strict sense in regard to God.

And further, when we speak of the wrath of God, of His repentance, or His vengeance, we know at once that the words are not meant to be taken in the strict sense, but merely as implying resemblance, likeness. Then, too, we meet with figures worked out in detail. We hear, for instance, of a tree of knowledge of good and evil.

With the eating of the fruit, it already begins to become doubtful whether what is said of this tree is to be taken strictly as a narrative as a historical truth - and so, too, of the eating - or whether this tree is not rather to be taken as a figure. When mention is made of a tree of knowledge of good and evil, such opposite elements are involved'



ill the conception that we very soon come to perceive that the fruit is no sensuous fruit, and that the tree is not to be taken in the strict sense.

h. What is not merely to be taken as a figure, but rather in the sense of something historical as such, belongs also, in respect to the sensuouB element in it, to the mode of the general idea. Somethiag may be stated in a historical way, but we do not take it .seriously as such, we do not ask if it is meant to be taken seriously. Such, for instance, is our attitude toward what Homer tells us of Jupiter and the other gods.

But then besides this there is something historical which is a divine history, and of such a nature that it is regarded as in the strict sense a history, the history of Jesus Christ. This is not taken merely as a myth in a figurative way, but as somethipg perfectly historical.

That accordingly is something which belongs to be sphere of general ideas, but it has another side as well.

It has the Divine for its content, divine action, divine timeless events, a mode of working that is absolutely divine. And this is the inward, the true, the substantial element of this history, and it is just this that is the object of reason. In every narrative, in fact, there is this double element; a myth, too, has a meaning in itself. There are, it is true, myths in which the external form in which they appear is of the most importance, but usually such a myth contains an allegory, like the myths of Plato.

Every narrative in fact contains this external series of occurrences and actions, but these are occurrences it must be remembered in the life of. a man, a spirit. The history of a state is that of the mode of working, the actions, the fate of a universal spirit, the spirit of a people.

Anything of this kind has already on its own account and in itself a universal element. Looking at the matter in a superficial sense, it may be said that it is possible to draw a moral out of every bit of history.


The moral which is drawn from ifc contains at all events the essential moral forces which have been at work in it, which have produced it. These are its inner, its substantial element. The narrative thus presents the aspect of something which is broken up into detail, it possesses this detached or isolated characterj and is individualised to the utmost possible degree; but universal laws, moral forces are recognisable in it too.

These do not exist for idea or ordinarj thought as such.

What concerns idea or ordinary thought is the narrative as it historically develops itself in the phenomenal sphere.

In an historical narrative of this kind, there is something even for the man whose thoughts or conceptions have not as yet been definitely formed and cultivated. He feels these forces in it, and has a dim consciousness of them.

Such is the essential form which religion takes for the ordinary consciousness, for consciousness in its ordinary state of cultivation. It is a content which at fi.rst presents itself in a sensuous manner, a succession of actions, of sensuous determinations, which follow each other in time, and are, further, side by side in space. The content is empirical, concrete, manifold, but it has also an inner element. There is spirit in it which acts upon spirit; the subjective spirit bears witness to the Spirit which is in the content, at first through dim recognition without this Spirit being developed for consciousness.

c. All spiritual content, all spiritual relation in general is finally idea when its inner characteristics come to be conceived of simply as self-related and independent.

If we say, " God is all-wise, good, righteous," we have a definite content; but each of these- determinations of the content is single and independent; " and," " also," are the links which' belong to the general idea. "Allwise," " supremely good," are conceptions too: they are no longer imagery, do not belong to ^ense or history, but are spiritual determinations. They are not, however, as yet actually analysed; the distinctions are not yet


posited in their mutual relations, but are merely taken in an abstract simple self-reference. In so far certainly as the content already has manifold relations in itself, but a relation which is only external, there is posited thereby an external identity. When we say a thing is this, then that, and then so and so, these determinations have to begin with the form of contingency.

Or if idea contain relations which are nearer to thought, as for instance, that God created the world, the relation is still grasped by idea in the form of contingency and externality. Thus, in the idea of the creation, God remains on the one side apart, and the world on the other, but the connection of the two sides: is not posited under the form of necessity. This connection is either expressed according to the analogies of natural life and natural events, or, if it be designated as creation, it is treated as a connection to be regarded as quite peculiar and incomprehensible. If, however, the word " Activity " be used as expressive of that which produced the world, it is indeed a more abstract term, but it is not as yet the notion. The essential content stands fast by itself in the form of simple universality, in which it lies concealed and undeveloped, and its transition by its own act into another, its identity with that other, has not yet been reached; it is merely identical with itself.

The bond of necessity and the unity of their difference are wanting to the individual points.

'^ As soon, therefore, as idea or ordinary thought attempts to conceive an essential connection^ it leaves the connection in the form of contingency, and does not go on to its true essence and to its eternal interpenetrative unity. Thus in idea the thought "of providence and the movements of history are embraced in and grounded on the eternal decree of God. But here the connection is at once transplanted into a sphere where it is said to be incomprehensible and inscrutable for us . The thought of the universal, therefore, does not become


determined ia itself, and is no sooner expressed than ib is immediately cancelled.

Having seen what is the general character of idea, or ordinary thought, it is now time to touch upon the pedagogic question of recent timeSj namely, whether religion can be taught. Teachers who do not know how to set about teaching religion, hold that instruction in the doctrines of religion is out of jllace. But religion has a content or substantial element, which must be capable of being placed before the mind in an objec"tive manner. This involves the possibility of communicating the content so represented to the mind, for ideas are communicable by words. To warm the heart, to excite emotions, is something different. That is not to teach, that is to interest my subjectivity in something, and an eloquent sermon may produce the effect without containing doctrine or instruction. If, indeed, we make feeling our point of departure, if we posit it as that which is primary and original, and then say that religious ideas spring from feeling, that is, in one aspect of the matter, true, in so far as the original determinateness belongs to the nature of Spirit itself. But, on the other hand, feeling is so indeterminate that anything may be in it, and the knowledge of what lies in feeling does not belong to feeling itself, but is supplied only by the culture and instruction which ordinary thought communicates. The instructors referred to do not wish that children and mankind generally should go beyond their subjective emotions of love, and they represent the love of God as being like that of parents to their children, who love them, and should love them just as they are: they pride themselves on abiding in the love of God, and while they tread all divine and human laws under foot, they think and say they have not injured love.

But if love is to be pure, it must first renounce selfishness, it must have freed itself, and Spirit is only freed when it has come outside of itself and has once beheld the


Substantial as Another and a Higher over against itself.

It is only when it has taken up a definite position toward the absolute power, toward the awe-inspiring Object, and thereby has come outside of itself in it, freed itself from itself and yielded itself up, that Spirit truly returns to itself. That is to say, the fear of God is the presupposition of true love. What the essentiaUy True is must reveal itself to the h-eart as an independent existencBj in relation to which it renounces itself^ and only through tliis mediation, through the restoration of itself, wins true freedom.

V "When the objective truth exists for me, I have emptied myself of myself, I have kept nothing for myself, and have at the same time conceived of this truth as 77iine.

I have identified myself with it, and have maintained myself in it, but as pure passionless self-consciousness.

This relation - Faith - as the absolute identity of the content with myself, is the same thing as religious feeling, but with this difference, that it at the same time expresses that absolute objectivity which the content has for me. The Church and the Eeformers knew perfectly well what they meant by faith. They did not say that men are saved by feeling, by sensation (alaOtjai?), but by faithj so that in the absolute object I have freedom, which essentially includes the renunciation of my own will and pleasure, and of particular conviction. ''

Now since, as compared with feeling, in which the content exists as a specific state of the subject, and consequently as contingent, idea implies that the content is lifted np into objectivity, it is in connection with the latter of these that the content should justify itself on its own account on the one hand, and on the other, that the necessity of its essential connection with self-consciousness should be explained.

It is to be observed here, however, in reference to what primarily concerns the content itself, that the value which it has in idea is that of something given, of which


all that is known is that it is so; then over against this abstract immediate objectivity, the connection of the content with self-consciousness appears, to begin with, as one which has still a purely subjective character. The content, it is then said, commends itself to me for its own sake, and the witness of the Spirit teaches me to recognise it as truth, as my essential determination. And, - undoubtedly, the infinite idea of the Incarnation for example - that speculative central point - has so great a power in it that it penetrates irresistibly into the heart which is not as yet darkened by reflection. But here my own connection with the content is not yet truly developed, and it appears only as something instinctive.

The Ego, which turns itself in this manner to the content, does not require merely to be this simple and ingenuous Ego, it can be worked upon and inwardly moulded in various ways. Thus incipient reflection, which goes beyond adherence to what is given; ^ may already have perplexed me, and perplexity in this region is all the more dangerous and serious, that, owing to it, morality .and every other stay in myself and in life, in action and in the state, become unstable. The experience, accordingly, that I cannot help myself by means of reflection, that I cannot, in fact, take my stand upon myself at all, and the circumstance that I still crave after something that stands firm - all this forces me back from reflection and leads me to adhere to the content in the form in which it is given. Yet this return tp the content is not brought about by means of the form of inward necessity, and is only a result of despair, in that I know not where to turn, nor how to help myself in;any other way than by taking that step. Or it may be that we reflect on the wonderful way in which religion has spread, and how millions have found comfort, satisfaction, and dignity in it. To cut oneself off from this authority is declared to be perilous, and the authority of private individual opinion is laid aside in its favour, ^ut here too a false


turn is taken, in that personal conviction is subjugated to general authority, and in relation to it is silenced. The consolation lies only in the supposition that the manner in "which millions have regarded the matter must probably be right, and the possibility remains*that, on being looked at once more, it may turn out to be otherwise.

All these aspects of thought may be put into the form of evidences of the truth of religion, and they have had this form given to them by apologists. But this only introduces mere arsruinfr and reflection, a form of reasoninfr which does not take to do with the content of truth in its essential nature, which only brings forward credibilities or probabilities, and instead of contemplating the truth in its essential nature is only able to conceive of it in connection with other circumstances, occurrences, and conditions. ('And besides, although Apologetics, with its mere arguings, passes over into the region of thought and the drawing of conclusions, and seeks to bring forward grounds or reasons which are supposed to be different from authority, yet its principal ground is again a mere authority, namely, the divine one that God has revealed to man what he has to represent to himself in the form of an idea. Without this authority apologetics cannot stir for a single moment, and this perpetual mixing up and confusion of thought, or syllogistic reasoning and authority, is essential to the standpoint. - But since from this point of view it is inevitable that the arguing process should go on ad infinitum, that supreme divine authority is in turn seen to be one which itself stands in ueed of proof and rests upon an authority. Por we were not present, and did not see God when He gave the revelation. It is always others only who tell us of it, and assure us of the fact, and the very witness of these others, who lived through the history, or who at first. learned it from eyewitnesses, is, according to those apologists, to b^ the means of uniting our conviction with a content which is separated from us as to time and space. Yet even this


mediation is not absolutely secure, for we are dependent here on the constitution of the mediuiu -which stands between us and the content, namely the perception of others. The power of perceiving the meaning of events demands prosaic understanding and its culture, and therefore conditions which were not present among those of olden times, for they lacked the capacity to grasp the history on its Jlnite side, and to draw out of it the inner meaning which it contains, since the antithesis of poetry and prose was not as yet defined with absolute distinctness. And if we place the divine in the historical, we continually get into the element of instalDility and want of fixed character which essentially belong to all that is historical. The prosaic understanding and unbelief took up a position of antagonism to the miracles of which the apostles tell us, and, regarding the matter from the objective side, there is the further objedtion of the want of proper proportion between miracle and the Divine.

But even if all these ways of bringing about the connection of the content of idea or ordinary thought with self-consciousness for once attain their end, if the apologetic style of argument with its reasons has brought some to conviction, or if I with the needs, impulses, and sorrows of my heart have found comfort- and tranquillity in the content of religion, it is a mere accident that this has taken place. This result depends on the fact that this very standpoint of reflection and inner feeling has not as yet been disturbed and has not yet aroused in itself the presentiment of the existence of a Higher Being. It is therefore dependent on an accidental sense of defect.

I, however, do not consist merely of this heart and feeling, or of this good-natured reflection which shows itself compliant to the apologetics of the understanding, and naively welcomes it and is only too glad when it perceives reasons which are adequate, and suitable to it, but I have other and higher needs besides. I am also concretely determined in an entirely simple and universal


way, so that the determinateness in me is pure simple determinateness. That is to say/ 1 am the absolutely concrete Ego, thought determining itself in itself; I exist as the Notion. This is another mode of my being concrete; here I do not only seek satisfaction for my heart, but the Notion seeks satisfaction, and it is as compared with the Notion that the religious content in the mode of idea or ordinary thought keeps the form of externality.

Although many a great and richly endowed nature, and many a profound intelligence has iound satisfaction in religious truth, yet it is the Notion, this inherently concrete thought, which is not as yet satisfied, and which asserts itself to begin with as the impulse of rational insight. If the as yet indefinite expression, " reason, rational insight," be not reduced merely to this, that something or other is certain for me as an external specific fact; if, on the contrary, thought have so determined itself that the object stands firm to me on its own basis, and is founded in itself, then it is the Notion which as universal thought differentiates itself in itself and in the differentiation remains identical with itself. Whatever further content in regard to the will or intelligence I may have in what is rational, the essential matter is always that such content should be known by m^e as founded in itself, that I have in it the consciousness of the Notion; that is to say, not conviction -merely, certainty, and conformity with principles which are otherwise held to be true, and under which I subserve it, but thatun it I have the truth as truth, in the form of truth - in the form of the absolutely concrete, and of that which absolutely and perfectly harmonises with itself.

And thus it is that idea melts iuto the form of thought, and it is this quality of form which philosophic knowledge imparts to truth. From this it is clear that nothing is further from the aim of philosophy than to overthrow religion, and to maintain iorsooth that the content of religion cannot for itself be truth. On the contrary, it is


just religion which is the true content, only in the fonii of idea or ordinary thought^ and it is philosophy which must first supply substantial truth, -nor has mankind had to wait for philosophy in order to receive the consciousness of truth.

TIT. - Thk Nbcesstty and Mrdiation of the Religious Attitude in the Form of Thought.

That inner connection and absolute necessity into which the content of idea is transplanted in thought is nothing else but the Notion in its freedom, in such a form that all content comes to be determination of the Notion, and is harmonised with or equalised with the Ego itself. The determinateness is here absolutely my own; in itj Spirit has its own essential nature as object, and the given character, the authority and externality of the contentj vanish for me.

Thought consequently gives to self-consciousness the absolute relation of freedom. Idea or ordinary conception still keeps within the sphere of outward necessity, since all its moments, while bringing themselves into relation with each other, do this without in any way yielding up their independence. The relation of these elements in thought, on the contrary, is that of ideality, and this means that no element stands apart or is independent of the rest, but each rather appears as something that is a show or semblance (Schein) in relation to the others. Thus every distinction, every definite element, is something transparent, not existing on its own account in a dark and impenetrable fashion. This implies that the objects distinguished are not independent, and do not offer resistance to each other, but are posited in their ideality. The relation or condition of the absence of freedom, both that of the content -and of the subject, has now vanished, because we have now absolute corjespondence of the content with the. form. The content


is iu itself free, and its inherent appearance is its absolute form; and in the object the subject has before it the action of the Idea, of the Kotion which exists in and for itselfj which it itself is.

In describing thought and its development, we have now to observe in the first place how it shows itself in relation to idea or ordinary conception, or rather as the inner dialectic of idea; then, secondly, how as Eeflection it seeks to mediate tlie essential moments of the religious attitude; and finally, how as speculative thought it completes itself in the notion or conception of religion, and does away with Eeflection in the free necessity of the Idea.

I . The Dialectic of Idea,

a. What we have here to notice first of all is that thought dissolves this form of simplicity in which the content exists in idea. And that is the very charge which is so often brought against philosophy, when it is said that it does not leave the form ^ of idea or ordinary thought untouched, but that it altei-s it, or strips off it the content. ^ And then, since for the ordinary consciousness the truth is bound up with that form, it imagines that if the form be altered, it will lose the content and the essential reality, and it interprets that transformation as destruction. / If philosophy changes what is in the form of the ordinary idea into the form of the Kotion, we are undoubtedly met with the ¦difficulty of how to separate in any content what is content as such, which is thought, from what belongs to the ordinary idea as such.

But to break up the simplicity of idea or ordinary thought only means to begin with, to get the idea of distinct characteristics, as existing in this simple subjectmatter, and to exhibit them in such a way that it is recognised as being something which is inherently manifold. This process is directly involved in the question: '' What is that? " Blue, for instance, is a sensuous idea.


If it be asked, " What is blue ? " blue is perhaps pointed out in order that the perception of it may be acquired; in the general idea, however, this perception is already included. What is sought after in this question, when seriously put, is rather the knowledge of the Notion; it is to know blue as a relation of itself within itself, to know determinations in their distinctness and in their unity. Blue, according to Goethe's tlieory, is a unity of light and dark, and of such a kind ^that in it the dark element is the foundatiou, and what disturbs this darkness is somethinfT different, a liirht-j^ivinfr element, a medium by means of which we see this darkness. The sky is darkness, is obscure; the atmosphere clear; through this clear medium we see the blue.

Thus God, as the content of idea, is still in the form of simplicity. Now, when we think this simple content, distinct characteristics or attributes have to be indicated, whose unity, so to speak, whose sum,- or, more accurately, whose identity, constitutes the object. Orientals say God has an infinite number of names, that is, of attributes; to pronounce -exhaustively what He is would be impossible.

If, however, we are to grasp the notion of God, He must have* distinct attributes, and these have to be reduced to a narrow circle, in order that by means of these and the unity of the attributes, the Object may be complete.

h. A more definite category is the following. In so so far as a thing is thought of, it is posited in relation to an Other. Either the object is known in itself as the mutual relation of elements which are distinguished, or as the relation of itself to an Other which we know outside of it. In idea, or ordinary conception, we always have qualities which are distinct, whether they belong to a whole or are arranged separately.

In thought, howevei;, we become conscious of the contradiction of those elements which are at the same time supposed to constitute One. If they contradict each other, it does not seem as if "they could belong to what is


One* '^ If, for instance, God is kind and just too, the kindness contradicts the justice. In like manner, God is almighty and wise. He is therefore on the one hand the power before which everything vanishes- is not; but this negation of all that has a definite existence is in contradiction with His wisdom. ' This last demands something which is 'definite, it has ah aim or purpose, it is the limitation of that indefinite element, which power is. " In idea, each element has its place, and all rest quietly side by side: man is free and also dependent; there is good and there is evil, top, in the world. In thought the various elements are brought into mutual relation, and then the contradiction becomes apparent.

There is someihing quite characteristic about the action of reflecting thought, when it appears as the abstract understanding and takes to do with idea, when the latter expresses inner qualities and relations in a sensuous, natural, or, to speak generally, in an external shape. As the reflecting understanding, besides, always has pre-suppositions of finitude, as it gives these absolute validity, and makes them the rule or standard, overthrowing the Idea and absolute truth if these are opposed to thenv so, too, it turns sensuous and natural specific forms, in which, after all, idea seeks to recognise the thought of the Universal, into quite definite finite relations, holds fast this finiteness, and then declares idea, or ordinary thought, to be in error. To a certain degree, it is still the dialectic of idea itself which is contained in this activity of the understanding, and hence the enormous importance of the A^t/Hdrung, which that action of understanding was, for the clearing up of thought. To a certain extent, however, it is the case that "here the dialectic of idea is driven beyond its true compass, and transplanted into the territory of formal arbitrariness or caprice.

Thus, for instance, in the popular conception or idea of original sin, the inner relation 6i thought is at the same time conceived of in the specific form of what is


natural; but yet, by using the expression '' sin," it means to raise into the sphere of: the universal the "natural element Tvhich lies in the couceptiou of inheritance. The understanding, on the bontrary, conceives of the relation in finite fashion, abd thinks only of natural possessions or of hereditary disease. It is freely conceded that here, so far as the children are concerned, it is a matter of accident that parents should have property or should be tainted with disease; children may inherit noble rank, property, or evil "^Vithout either merit or blame. li', then, we further reflect on the fact that the freedom of self-consciousness is superior to these conditions of chance, and that in the absolutely spiritual sphere of goodness each one has in tliat which he does his oivn deed, or, it may be, Ms oivn sin, it is easy to point out the contradiction involved if that which belongs absolutely to my freedom be supposed to have come upon me from elsewhere in a natural way, unconsciously and from the outside.

It is much the same when understanding attacks the idea of the Trinity. In this idea, too, the inner thoughtrelation is conceived of in an external fashion, for number is thought in the abstract form of externality. But here understanding holds fast the externality onlifj keeps to numeration, and finds each of the Three externally complete in relation to the Others. Now, if this quality of number be made the foundation oi the relation, it is undoubtedly a complete contradiction that those who are perfectly external in relation to one- another should at the same time be One.

c. Finally the category of necessity too comes in. In ordinary thought space exists, there is space. Philosophic thought desires to know the necessity of this. This necessity lies in the fact that in thought a content is not taken as being, as existing in simple determinateuess, in this simple relation to self merely, but essentially iu relation to an " Other," and as a relation of elements which are mutually distinct.


Wl at we call " necessary " is this, that if the one is, the other is thereby posited too, the first is only determined in so far as the second exists, and conversely.

For idea or ordinary thought the finite exists, the finite is. For philosophic thought, the finite immediately becomes something which does not exist on its own account, but which requires for its existence something else, only is in fact through an Other. For thourrht in
Immediacy is the leading category of idea or ordinary conception where the content is known in its simple relation to self. For thought, that only exists in whicli mediation is essentially present. These are the abstract, general characteristics which belong to this abstract distinction between religious idea or conception and thought*

If, in relation to the question beTore us, we consider this point more closely, all forms of immediate knowledge, faith, feeling, &c., are seen to belong in this respect to the category of idea or ordinary thought. And here the question arises, " Is religion, the knowledge of God, an immediate or a mediated knowledge;? "

2. The Mediation of the Religious CoTiscioiisness in itself.

In passing on to consider what is essentially involved in thought and necessity, and consequently to mediation, the demand for such a mediated knowledge comes into opposition with immediate knowledge, and it is in this aspect of opposition that we have in the first place to consider it.

(a.) Immediate knowledge and mediation.

It is a very general opinion, and it is generally asserted that the knowledge of God exists only in an immediate fashion; it is a fact of our consciousness, it is so. We have an idea of God and the conviction that this idea is not only subjective in us but that God also ^'5. It is said that religion, the knowledge of prod, is faith only,


that mediated knowledge is to be excluded, and that it destroys the certainty, the security of faith, and what really constitutes faith. Here we have this antithesis between immediate and mediated knowledge. Thought, concrete thought, philosophic comprehension, is mediated knowledge. But immediacy and mediation of knowledge are one-sided abs-tractions, and the one is this as much as the other. What is meant, or presupposed, is not that correctnes,s or truth is to be ascribed to the one to the exclusion of the other, to one or the other by itself, to one of the two as isolated. Further on we shall see that true thought or philosophical comprehension unites both in itself, and does not exclude either.

(a.)\To mediated knowledge belongs "the deduction of tlie one from the other, the dependence, conditionality of one determination on another, what we call Eeflection.

Immediate knowledge discards all differentiations; it puts away these modes of connection, and has only what is simple, one mode of connection, one knowledge, the subjective form, and then, "it is." In so far as I know certainly that God is, knowledge is a connection between myself and this content; as certainly as I exist, so certainly does God exist. My being and the being of God are thus connected together in one^ and the relation is Being. This Being is simple, and at the same time double, or twofold./'

In immediate knowledge this connection is entirely simple; all modes involving relation are obliterated. To begin with, let us also conceive of it in an empirical manner, that is, let us place ourselves at the same standpoint as that occupied by immediate knowledge. What speaking generally we call empirical knowledge, amounts just to this: I simply know it, this is a fa.ct of consciousness; I find in myself tlie idea of God and that He is.

This standpoint is, that what is empirical only is to be regarded as valid, that man is not to go beyond what he



finds in consciousness. It is not asked why it is found, ov how it is necessary. This would lead to cognition or philosophical knowledge, and that i-s just the evil which is to be guarded against. The emj)irical question then is, " Is there, an immediate knowledge ? "

To mediated knowledge belongs knowledge of necessity.

What is necessary has a cause, it must be. The existence of something else or an Other, through which or through the existence of which it itself exists, is essential to such knowledge. In it there is a connection of what is differentiated. The mediation can only be merely finite mediation. The effect, for example, is taken as something standing on the one side, the cause as something on the other.

It is the very nature of the finite to be dependent on an Other; it does not exist independently, in and for itself, or through itself; something else is necessary to its existence, Man is physically dependent; he needs external nature, external things. These are not produced by his act; they appear as self-existent in relation to him; he can only prolong his life in so far as they exist and are of use to him.

The higher mediation of the Notion, of reason, is a mediation with itself. To mediation belongs this differentiation, and essential connection of Two; such connection, namely, that the One only is, in so far as the Other is. Now in immediacy this mediation is excluded. ¦

(/3.)^' But even if we take up an empirical, an external attitude, it will be found that there is nothing at all that - is immediate, that there is nothing to wliich only the quality of immediacy belongs to the exclusion of that of mediation, but that what is immediate is likewise mediated, and that immediacy itself is essentially mediated.//

It is the nature of finite things to be mediated; finite things are created, begotten, as a star, or an animal. The man who is a father, is as much begotten,


mediated, as the son. If we start from the father, then the father is, ia the first instance, what is immediate, and the son, as the one begotten, is what is mediated.

Everything that lives, however, inasmuch as it is a begetter, and is determined accordingly as something which begins, something immediate, is also something begotten.

\ ^ Immediateuess means, in fact. Being. It means this simple reference to self; it is immediate, in so far as we put the relation out of sight. If we define this existence as being one of the related sides in the relation - as effect - then what is without relation is recognised as something mediated.// _In like manner the cause only exists in virtue of having an effect, for otherwise it would be no cause at all. Only iu this relation, and therefore only in this mediation, is it a cause. Everything that exists (we do not as yet speak of mediation with self), since it requires an Other for its being, that i-s to say, for its immediacy, is in so far mediated.

The sphere of Logic is that of the Dialectic in which Being is considered as that which, if taken as something immediate, is untrue. The truth .of Beinoj is Becoming; Becoming is a single determinatioUj self-related; it is a something immediate, an entirely simple idea, but it contains both determinations - -Being and !N"ot-Being.

There is no Immediate; the truth rather being that it is a mere scholastic notion. Only in this bad sense is there any such thing as immediacy.

\ It is just the same with regard to immediate knowledge, which is a particular mode, a kind of immediacy; there is no immediate knowledge. " Immediate knowledge *' exists where we have not the consciousness of mediation; all the same, it is mediated. '' "We have feelings, and this is something immediate; we have perception, and that appears under the form of immediacy.

When, however, we have to do with thought-determinationSj with the categories of thought, we must not stop


short with kaowing how auything first presents itself, ¦but find out whether this is achially its nature.

If, for instance, we consider a perception, we see that J am the knowledge, the perception, and that further there is an Other, an object; or, if it is not conceived of as objective, but as subjective, there is at least some determinateness or conscious state present for me. In sensation, I am thus mediated only by means of the object, by means of the definite character of my sensation. It is always a content; two 'elements go to the making of it. Knowledge is absolutely simple, but I must know something; if I am mere knowledge, I know nothing at all. It is the same with pure seeing. In pitre seeing I see nothing at all. Pure knowledge may be called immediate, it is simple; but if knowledge be actual, be real, we have then what knows and what is known, we have relation and mediacy.

Speaking more definitely, religious ^knowledge is essentially a mediated knowledge, but all the same it is not admissible to look in a one-sided way upon mere mediated knowledge as being real and true. To whatever religion a man may belong, every one knows that he was brought up in it, that he received instruction in it. This instruction, this up-bringing, supplies me with my knowledge; my knowledge is mediated through doctrine, education, &c.

Besides, if it be positive religion 4hat is in question, it is revealed, and that in a manner external to the individual; there the faith in the religion is essentially mediated through revelation. Thes^ circumstances and doctrines, and this revelation, are not of a chance character, they are not accidental, but "are essential; they undoubtedly have to do with an external relation, but this relation is not non-essential on account of its being external,

If we now turn our attention to: the other side, the inner side, and forget that faith, conviction, has this


rnediated character, we are then in apposition to consider it as independent. It is just here for the most part that the assertion of immediate knowledge comes in; we have immediate knowledge of God it is said; tliis is a revelation in us. This is a great principle, which it is essential we should hold fast; it involves the truth that positive revelation cannot supply a religion in such a way ihat it could have the character of something mechanically produced, of sometliing effected from the outside, and set up within man by an external agency.

Here the old saying of Plato is in place, that man learns nothing, he only remembers; the truth is something which man originally carries within himself; expressed in an outward, and not in a philosophical way, it is his remembering a content which was known in a preceding state. Here it is represented mythicallyj but it involves the thought that religion, justice, morality, all that is spiritual, is only aroused in man; he is potentially Spirit, the truth lies in him, and what has to be done is merely to bring it into consciousness.

Spirit bears witness to Spirit; this witness is the peculiar inner nature of Spirit. In this the weighty idea is involved that religion is not brought into man from the outside, but lies hidden in himself, in his reason, in his freedom, in fact. If we abstract from this relation, and consider what this knowledge is, how this religious feeling, this self -revelation in the Spirit is constituted, it is seen to be immediacy indeed, like all knowledge, but immediacy which likewise; contains mediation in itself. For if I form an idea of God, this directly involves mediation, although the reference to God is quite direct and immediate. I exist as knowledge, and then there is an Object, namely, God, and therefore a relation, and knowledge as representing this relation is mediation. I as one having knowledge in a religious way have this character only by means of this content which is in my knowledge.


(y.) If we look at religious knowledge more closely, it shows itself not only to be the simple relation of myself to the object, but to be knowledge of a much more concrete kind. This purely simple relation, the knowledge of God, is inner movement, or to put it more accurately, it is a rising up or elevation to God. We describe religion as being essentially this passing over, or transition from one content to another, from the finite to the absolute, infinite content.

This transitionj in which the characteristics peculiar to mediation are definitely pronounced, is of a twofold kind. In its first form it is a passing over from finite things, from things of the world, or from the finiteness of our consciousness, and from this finiteness in general which we call " ourselves,'' - " I," this particular subject - to the infinite, to this infinite more strictly defined as God. The second mode of the transition has aspects of a more abstract kind, which are related in accordance with a deeper, more abstract antithesis. Here the one side is determined as God, the infinite generally, as something known by us; the other side, to which we pass over, is, to use a general term, determinateness as something objectivCj something existent. In the former transition what the two sides have in common is Beingj and this content of both sides is set down as finite and infinite; in the latter what the two have in common is the infinite, and this is stated in the form of the subjective and objective.

We have now to consider the relation of knowledge of God within itself. Knowledge is relation within itself, it is mediated; either mediated through what is Other than itself or within itself, but it is mediation, because in it the reference of myself to an -object takes place - a reference to God, who is an ^* Other."

I and God are different from one another; if both were One, there would then be immediate relation, free from any mediation; relationless unity, that is to say.


unity without differentiation. Because the two are different, One is not what the Other is; if, however, they are related, if they have identity at the same time with their difference, then this identity is itself different from their difference; it is something different from both of these, because otherwise they would not be different.

Both are different, their unity is not themselves; that wherein they are One, is that wherein they are different; they are, however, different, therefore their unity is different from their difference. And this implies that mediation takes place more strictly in a Third as contrasted with the elements of difference, and thus we have a svllogism; we have Two who are different, and a Third which brings them together, in which they are mediated, are ideuticah

Thus it is not merely indirectly suggested by, but is actually involved in, the very object with which we are dealing, that in so far as we treat of the knowledge of God we are directly concerned with what has the form of a syllogism. The two are different, and there is a unity, in which they are put into One through a Third; that is the syllogism. Therefore we have to consider more closely the nature of the knowledge of God, which is essentially mediated in itself. The knowledge of God presents itself in its more precise shape under the form of the Proofs of the existence of God. Here the knowledge of God is represented as a mediated knowledge.

^^That only which is One, abstractly One, is unmediated.' The Proofs of the existence of God represent the knowledge of God, because it contains mediacy within itself.

Eeligion itself is knowledge of God. oThe explication or unfolding of this knowledge, which. is mediated, is an unfolding of religion itself. But this form of proof undoubtedly goes somewhat on wrong lines when this knowledge is represented as the proof of the^ existence of God. Criticism has been directed against dt, but the one-sided moment of form which characterises this


mediated knowledge, does not invalidate the whole procedure.

What has to be done, therefore, is to restore the proofs of the existence of God to their place of honour, by divesting them of what is inadequate in them. We have God and His existence (Dasein); existence is determinate finite Being; the Being of God is not in any way whatever a limited Being; existence (Uxistenz) too is taken in the sense of specific existence. We thus have God in His Being, actuality, objectivity, and the process of proof has for its object to point out to us the „ connection between the two determinations, because they are diiFerent, and not immediately One.

Everything is immediate in its relation to itself - God as God, Being as Being. To prove is to show that those elements which are to begin with in a condition of difference have also a connection, an identity - not a pure identity, for that would be immediacy, sameness. To exhibit a connection means, in fact, to prove; this connection may be of different kinds, and so far as the process of proof is concerned, the kind of connection which is in question is left undecided.

There is connection which is of an entirely external, mechanical kind. For example, we see that a roof is necessary to the walls; the house has this roofed form as protection against the weather, &c. It may be said, it is proved that a house must have a roof; the object is the combination of the walls with the roof. This is certainly a case of one thing matching with another; it is connection, but at the same time we have the consciousness that this connection does not concern the being of these ohjects. That wood and tiles constitute a roof, does not affect their being; so far as they are^ concerned, the connection is merely an external one. In this case, proof consists in pointing out a connection between entities for which the connection is itself external.

There are accordingly other forms of connection which


are inherent in the object, in the content itself. This is the case, for example, as regards geometrical axioms. Given a right-angled triangle, you have at once given a certain relation between the square of the hypothenuse and the squares of the containing sides. That is essential necessity; here the relation is not one of those in which the connection is external; on the contrary, here the one cannot be without the other; along with the one the other is given too.

But in this necessity, the mode in which we perceive the necessity is different from the connection of the determinations in the actual thing itself. The course which we follow in the process of proof is nDt the course of the object or actual thing itself; it is .one different from that which is involved in the nature of the object. It is toe who draw auxiliary lines; it would not occur to any one to say, that a triangle in order to have its three angles 'equal to two right angles takes the plan of extending one of its angles, and only thereby acquires the property in question. Here our perception of what is necessary, the intermediary process which we go through, and the process in the object itself, are different from one another.

The construction and the demonstration are only undertaken on behalf of our subjective apprehension. It is not objectively the case that the triangle attains by this process to the relation or property in question; it is only we who get to see the truth through this process, and that is merely subjective necessity, not a connection, not a process in the object itself.

This kind of demonstration, these connections, are at once seen to be unsatisfactory as regards the knowledge of God, the inherent connection of the attributes of God, and the connection of our knowledge of God and of His attributes.

The unsatisfactoriness takes, more strictly speaking, the following form: - In the course followed by subjective necessity, just referred to, we set out from primary,


certainly known, determinations, from such things as are already known to us. We- have presuppositions here, certainly known conditions, implying that the triangle, the right-angle exists. Certainly known connections are presupposed, and in such demonstrations we point out that, if such and such a determination exist, then such and such another must also exist; that is to say, we make the result dependent on given conditions which are already present.

The attitude assumed is that the result we aim at is represented as something dependent upon presuppositions.

Geometrical proof, as simply the work of the understanding, is undoubtedly the most perfect kind of proof; the proof of the understanding, in which a thing is shown to be dependent upon something else, is carried through with the utmost consistency and thoroughness. But when we apply this to the Being of God, the inadequacy involved in attempting to exhibit such a connection in regard to God becomes evident at once. And it indeed appears especially in that first movement which we called rising up to God, for when we conceive of this in the form of proof, what is implied is that the finite becomes the foundation or basis upon which the Being of God is demonstrated.

In this connection, the Being of God appears as an inference, as dependent on the Being of .the finite.

^ And thus the inadequacy of this process which we call proof to exhibit that which we represent to ourselves under the name of God, becomes apparent. For we conceive of Him precisely as that wHich is undeduced, underived, absolutely existent in and^for itself. That, then, is the perversion above referred to. But if it be thought that in consequence of an observation of this kind, this movement has been shown to be futile, such an idea would in turn imply a one-sidedness which would at once be found to be in contradiction with the universal consciousness of man.

\ Man contemplates the world, and because he is a tHinking, rational being, since he finds no satisfaction in


the chance nature of things, lie rises from the finite to absolute necessity, and says, " finite being is contingent, there must therefore be a self-existent necessity, which is the basis of this contingency." That is the course which human reason, the human spirit follows, and this proof of the existence of God is nothing but the description of that act of rising up to the infinite.-:''r

In like manner the following more concrete line of thought will always be adopted, "Since living things exist in the world, which in virtue „of their life, and as essentially organised, constitute a harmony of diverse component parts, and further, since these living things stand in need of external objects, such as air, &c., which are yet independent of them, men will always argue that there must be an inner ground for the harmony which exists between things which are not self-evidently dependent on one another.

This harmony does actually exist, and it presupposes an activity which has produced it, and has been exercised in accordance with ends. To contemplate this is to admire the wisdom of God in Nature-, as it is termed, this marvel presented by the living organism, and the harmony of external objects with it. From this harmony man rises to the consciousness of Gqd. ' If any one supposes that in case of the form of the proofs of the existence of God being disputed these ^proofs are rendered obsolete as regards their content also, he is mistaken.''

But undoubtedly the content is not represented in its purity. This deficiency may be made plain, as follows: - It is said that in proving anything a man remains cold; he has to do with an objective content. He may indeed perceive that such-and-such a thing exists, but the knowledge thus reached is external, the ^insight thus gained remains something merely external. Such a process of thought, it is said, is too objective; it is cold conviction; this kind of insight is not in the heart, and it is in the heart and its feelings that convictions must exist.


In this charge of deficiency it is implied that this very process of thought is to be our own elevation; that we are not to behave as if we were contemplating a connection of external determinations^ but that it is the feeling, believing spirit, Spirit in fact, which is to rise or be elevated. Spiritual movement, the movement of our self, of our knowledge, is to be in it too, and we miss that when we speak of it as an external connection of determinations.

The elevation and the movement of the objective content, however, actually come to form one process, namely, in Thought. I, in so far as I think, am myself this passing over, or transition, this spiritual movement, and as this movement we have now to consider Thought. To begin with, however, it is empirical observation and reflexion.

(b.) Mediated knoioledge as Observation and as Reflection.

Those who take up this standpoint, which indeed is peculiar to the present time, proceed in accordance with the methods of empirical psychology, accept what is found in ordinary consciousness, and accept it as it is found there, observe the phenomena, and place outside of consciousness what is the Infinite in consciousness.''

Eeligion, from this point of view, is the consciousness men have of a Higher, of something beyond the present, outside of themselves, and existing above themselves • that is to say, consciousness finds itself dependent, finite, and in this its experience it is in so far consciousness, that it -presupposes an Other, on which it is dependent, and which is held by it to be its true Essence, since it is itself characterised as the negative or finite.

This observation or reflection, if we look at it in the first place in its general form, is seen to develop itself in the following shape: -

In consciousness, in so far as I have knowledge of an object, and am reflected into myself as in contrast to it, I


know the object as the Other of myself, and consequeutly know myself by means of the object as limited and finite, "We find ourselves to be finite; that is the leading thought here: as to this, there seems to be nothing further to say; everywhere we find an end, the end of one thing is there where an other begins. Already, in virtue of tlie fact that we have an object, we are finite; where that begins I am not, and thus am finite. We know ourselves to ba finite under many and various aspects. In its physical aspect, life is finite; as having life w^e are externally dependent upon others, we have wants, &c., and have the consciousness of this limitation. We have this feeling in common with the lower animals. Plants, minerals, too, are finite, but these have no feeling of their limitation; it is the prerogative of what is living to know its limitation, and still more is it a prerogative of the Spiritual.

What has life has experience of fear, dread, hunger, thirst, &c. There is an interruption in its feeling of self, a negation; and the feeling of this is actually ^present. If it be said that religion is based upon this feeling of dependence, then the lower animals too must have religion.

For man this limitation only exists in so far as he goes ^-^ above and beyond it; the feeling, the consciousness of limit, implies that he is above and l)eyond it. This feeling is a comparison of his nature ^(Natur) with his existence (Dasein) in this moment; his^ actual existence does not adequately correspond to his nature.

For us who are above and beyond its mode of existence, a stone is limited; for itself, it is not so; it is immediately identical with that which it is. That which constitutes its determinate being is not for it Not-Being.

An animal's feeling of limitation is a comparison of its universality with its actual existence" in this definite moment. An animal, as living, is for itself something universal; it feels its limitation as negated universality, as want. In like manner, man is essentially negative unity, identity with Mmself, and he haa the certainty of


unity with himself, the feeling of himself, of his relation' to himself. The feeling of a negation in himself contradicts this. The subject^ too, feels itself to be a power as against its negation, and removes this accidental element, that is, satisfies its want. All impulses in man, as in the lower animals, are this affirmation of the self, and the animal thus places itself in opposition to the negation in itself. Life consists in the abolition of limitation, and in this it reconciles itself with itself. This need in itself at the same time appears as an object" outside of it, over which it obtains mastery, and thus reinstates its Self.

Tims the limitation of finiteness only exists for us in so far as we are above and beyond it.-'^ This reflection is too abstract to be made from the standpoint of consciousness, which we are now considering, where consciousness, on the contrary, remains within its liroitation. The object is its Not-Being. That the object is thus set down as different from the Ego, implies that it is not that which the Ego is. I am the finite. Thus the infinite is what is above and beyond the limits; it is something other than the limited; it is the unlimited, the infinite. Thus we have finite and infinite.

This already implies, however, that the two sides are in relation with one another, and it remains to be seen how this relation determines itself. This is done in quite a simple way.

This infinite, as being my object, is the Not-finite, Notparticular, Not-limited, the Universal; the finite in relation to the infinite is posited as the negative, dependent, that which melts away in relation to the infinite. When the two are brought together, a unity^comes into existence through the abolition and absorption of the finite, in fact, which cannot maintain itself as against the infinite.' Expressed in terms of feeling, this condition is that of fear, of dependence. Such is the relation of the two, but it has another characteristic besides.

On the one hand, I determine myself as the finite; on


the other, I am not annihilated in the relation, I relate myself to myself. I am, I subsist; I am also the Affirmative. On the one side I know myself as having no real existence; on the other, as affirmative, as having a valid existence, so that the infinite leaves me my own life. This may be called the goodness of the infinite, as the abrogation of the finite may be called its justice, in accordance with which the finite must be manifested as finite.

Such is consciousness in this specific form, beyond and above which observation does not go. It is accordingly maintained that if we go thus far, the whole of religion is contained in what we have here. We can, however, go further; we can know that man can know God, but here we are arbitrarily, as it were, brought to a halt; or, since we wish to observe and nothing more, it is supposed that we must continue to remain in this particular phase of consciousness. Observation can only exercise itself on the subject, and cannot go further, since it purposes to go to work only empirically, to adhere to what is immediately present, to what is given, and God is not anything that permits of being made the subject of observation. Here, therefore, the object can only be what is in its as such, and what we are as finite beings. From this point of view God determines himself as the Infinite only, as the Other of the finite, as what is beyond it. In so far as He i^, I am not. In so far as He touches me, the finite shrinks into nothing.

God is thus characterised as involving an antithesis which seems absolute. The finite, it is said, cannot grasp, attain to, or understand the Infinite. Beyond this standpoint, it is said, we cannot go. We are told that in it we have everything that we need to know concerning God and religion, and what is beyond that, is " of evil." It might, indeed, be stated in reply, as matter of observation, that we can know God, that we have some knowledge of a rich manifestation of His life and spiritual


nature. That, however, according; to the view just indicated, would be "of evil.*'

If a man has placed himself at the standpoint of empirical procedure, of observation, it is quite true that he cannot go further, for to observe means to keep the content of observation before one in an external way.

But this externality or limitation is the finite^ which is external in reference to an Other, and this Other is as the Infinite, what is beyond and above it. If I now go furtherj and begin to consider the matter from a spiritunlly higher standpoint of consciousiiess, I find myself no longer observing, but I forget myself in entering into the object; I bury myself in it, while I strive to know, to understand God; I yield up myself in it, and if I do this, I am no longer in the attituiie of empirical consciousness, of observation. If God be no longer to me a something beyond and above me, I am no longer a pure observer. In so far, therefore, as a man intends to observe, he must remain at this standpoint. And this constitutes the entire wisdom of our time.

Men stop at the iiniteness of the subject; this ranks here as what is highest, the ultimate, as what is immovable, unchangeable, hard as brass; and then over against it there is an Other, at which this subject finds its end. This Other, called God, is a something beyond the present, after which we search owing to the feeling of our finiteness, but we do nothing more, for our finite^ ness is fixed and absolute.

The fact of our being above and beyond the limit is, it is true, conceded; this going out of ourselves is, however, merely something attempted, a mere yearning which does not attain to that which it seeks. To reach the object, to know it, would mean, in fact, to give up my finiteness. But this is what is ultimate, and is not to be given up, and in it we are complete, satisfied, and are reconciled to it.

This entire standpoint must now. be looked at more


narrowly, and we must see what cojistitutes its general character, and estimate what is essential in it.

There is in it the determinateness of my finiteuess, of my relativity. The infinite stands over against it, but as something beyond. My affirmation j my determination as existing, alternates with the negation which I am essentially determined as being. v^We shall see that both neo-ation and affirmation come to coincided and the absoluteness of the Ego will be seen to issue as the result.

1, There is here on the one hand a going out of my finiteness to a Higher; on the other, T am determined as the negative of this Higher. The latter remains an Other, which cannot be determined by me, which is unattained by me, in so far as determination is -to get an objective sense. What is present is only this going out on my part, this aiming to reach what is remote; I remain on this side, as it were, have a yearning after what is beyond the present and actual,

2. It is to be remarked that this reaching out towards something beyond the actual is absolutely and solely mine. It is my deed, my aiming, my emotion, my desire and endeavour. If I make use of the predicates all-good, almighty, as characterising that something beyond, they have a meaning in 7m only, they have a subjective and not an objective meaning, and they belong absolutely and solely to that aiming of mine. My absolute fixed finiteness hinders me from reaching that something beyond. To relinquish my finiteness and to reach it would be one and the same thingi The interest or motive not to reach that something beyond, and the interest I have in maintaining myself^ are identical.

3* It becomes clear from this that the twofold negativity, that of myself as finite and that^of an Infinite over against me, has its seat in the Ego itself, and is only, on the one hand, a division in myself^the fact, the determination that I am the negative; on the other hand,



however, the negative is determined as an "Other'' in regard to me. This second determination belongs to me likewise; they represent different tendencies; one going toward myself and one toward what is outside myself - ^the latter of which, however, likewise belongs "to lue; my tendency to reach out toward what is beyond and my fi nitendss, are determinations in me; in them I remain self-contained or at home with myself. Thus, in this way the Ego has become affirmative in regard to itself, and it is this which constitutes the other side of this standpoint. My affirmation expresses itself thus: " I am,'' This is something distinct from my finiteness, arid is the annulling of my finiteness. In respect of the sense of yearning, endeavour, the feeling of obligation generally, it means, " I am what I ought to be; " that is to say, " I am good by nature; " that is to say, " I am, and that inasmuch as I am immediately good." In this respect, my sole concern is to maintain myself in this state. There is, it is true, also a possibility in me of entering into relation to what is other than myself, a possibility of sin, of faults, &c.

This, however, directly assumes the character of something which is subsequent, something external and accidental.

"I am," that is a relation to myself, an affirmation; "I am as I ouojht to be," the faultiness is, what the Ec^o is not; and that is not in what constitutes the root of my nature, but is in fact an accidental complication.

This point of view of affirmation tnay therefore be considered, doubtless, as implying that I stand related to an external element, and that my goodness may be tarnished.

My affirmation in relation to such wrongdoing as is here implied, then, becomes a mediated one too. It becomes affirmation which recovers itself put of such isolation, being mediated through the removal of a faultiness which in itself is only accidental. The goodness of my nature has returned to identity with itself. This reconciliation eliminates nothing intrinsic, it does not touch what belongs to my inmost nature, but only does away with what


is external. The world, the finite, reconciles itself in this way with itself. If the truth has hitherto been expressed by saying that God has reconciled the world with Himself, this reconciliation is now seen to take place in me as finite. I, as an individualj am good; when I have fallen into error I only need to cast^what is accidental from me and I am reconciled with myself. The inner life is only disturbed on the surface; this disturbance does not reach to its foundation; the spirit has not formed any relation with it; it keeps outside of it, and is not implicated ia it. The inner life, the spirit, is what is originally good, and the negative does not get its specific character within the nature of the spirit itself.

'^' In the older theology, on the contrary, you had the idea of eternal damnation. This presupposed that the will was absolutely free. According to this, what I am depends not upon my nature, but upon my self-conscious will: lam guilty through the will. -Thus my nature, what I originally am, is not goodness; I can attribute no goodness to myself outside of my will: that quality pertains only to my self- conscious spirit. Here, on the other hand, ic is the goodness of the original state only which is assumed, and the effects produced on it by what is other than itself are done away with through the restoration of what is original. To this goodness of the original state nothing further can be added than the knowledge of it - the conviction of the belief in one's goodness; and that reconciling mediation consists merely in this consciousness, this knowledge that I am by nature good, and is consequently a worthless and empty see-saw system. I swing myself, so to speak, over into a longing for and in the direction of the '' Beyond," or, it may be, into a recognition of the faults I have committed; and again I swing myself within the limits of this longing and emotion which have their place purely within me, back to myself, and in all this I never travel beyond myself.

V' This is the abstract characterisation of this attitude.


Were it further developed, all the views characteristic of the present time would coincide with it, as, for example, that goodness exists only in my coaviction, and that upon this conviction my morality is based; and again, that what is good rests or depends entirely upon my nature.

My conviction is sufficient so far as I am concerned.

That I know the action to be good is enough, so far as I am concerned. There is no need for having a further consciousness of the substantial or essential nature of the action. If, however, it depend upon that consciousness alone, I can, strictly speaking, commit no fault at all, for to myself I am only affirmative, while the division or dualism remains formal, a semblance of division, which does not disturb my essential inner life. My yearning, my emotion, is what is substantial. This point of view embraces all the opinions of recent times since the Xantian philosophy, which was the iirst to advance this belief in goodness.

Such is the standpoint of subjective consciousness.

This consciousness develops the antitheses which concern consciousness, but which remain in it, and which it holds under its control, because it is the Affirmative.

We have now to consider wbat finiteness itself is, and what true relation the finite has to the infinite. That the human spirit is finite we hear daily affirmed. We shall speak of finiteness in the popular sense first, the sense suggested when it is said that man is finite, and then we shall use it in the true sense, which represents the rational view of it.

There are three forms in which finiteness appears, namely, in sensuous existence, in reflection, and in the mode in which it exists in Spirit and for Spirit,

(a.) Finiteness in Sensnons JSxistence.

That man is finite means, in the first place, that I as man stand in relation to wbat is other than myself. There is actually present an Other, the negative of myself, with which I am in connection, and that constitutes my finite


ness. We are mutually exclusivej and are independent in relation to each other. Such I am in virtue of njy having sensuous experience; all that is living is thus exclusive.

In hearing and seeing I have only what is individual before me, and in my practical relation to things I have always to do with what is only single or individual; the objects which give rrie satisfaction are in like manner individual. This is the standpoint of natural Being, of natural existence. According to this I exist in manifold relations, in external Being of a manifold kind, in the region of experiences, needs, practical and theoretical relations, all of which, according to their content, are limited and dependent, finite, in short. The annulling of what is finite is already found to have its place within this finiteness; every impulse as subjective relates itself to what is Other than itself, is finite; but in satisfying itself it annuls this relation, this finite character. This return into its affirmation is its satisfaction. On the other hand, however, it remains finite, for the satisfied impulse reawakens, and the annulling of the negation again becomes a sense of need. Satisfaction, this infinitely recurring feelings is only an infinitude otforvi^ and therefore is not a truly concrete infinitude. The content remains finite, and thus the' satisfaction remains finite too, just as the need as such involves defect and is finite.

According to the former side, however, the need annuls its finiteness when it satisfies itself. The satisfaction of hunger is an annulling of the separation between me and my object, it is an annulling of finit-eness, yet only a formal annulling.

Nature is not complete and independent, does not exist in and for itself; on the contrary, it is just this fact of its being something which is not self-posited which constitutes its finiteness. Our sensuous consciousness, too, in so far as we have to do in it with singulars or particulars, belongs to this natural finiteness, and this latter has to manifest itself. The finite, is determined as


the negative, it must free itself from itself. This first natural, simple self-emancipation of the finite from its finiteness is death. This is the renunciation of the finite, and here what natural life is itself implicitly is made explicit really and actually. The sensuous life of what is individual or particular has its end in death. Particular experiences or sensations as particular are transient; one supplants the other, one impulse or passion drives away another. In its annihilation, this sensuous element makes its true nature actually explicit. In death the finite is shown to be annulled and absorbed. But death is only the abstract negation of what is implicitly negative; it is itself a nullity, it is revealed nullity. But explicit nullity is at the same time nullity which has been done away with, and is the return to the Positive.

Here cessation, liberation from finiteness comes in. Death does not present itself to consciousness as this emancipation from finiteness, but this higher view of death is found in thought, and indeed even in popular conceptions, in so far as thought is active' in them.

(/3.) Finiteness from the 'point of Diew of Reflection, We now rise out of immediate consciousness to the level of Reflection - and here we have again to do with a finitude which appears in definite contrast to infinitude.

This antithesis has different forms, and the question is what these are. There is an emancipation from finiteness here, but in this sphere the true infinity is as yet only abrogated or annulled finiteness. And, therefore, the question arises, Does reflection get the length of positing the finite as something which is in itself null, or does reflection accomplish as much as nature ? Can reflection make that die which is mortal, or is that which is null immortal to it ? Since it is null we ought to cause it to vanish, for what is possible to nature must be yet more possible to infinite spirit. Thus reflection, like nature, exhibits the flnite as null. But nature always falls back again into the finite, and in like manner what constitutes


-the standpoint of reflection is that it persists in holding fast the antithesis, the finiteness, as .against infinitude.

It is just the mutual relation of these two which constitutes the standpoint of reflection; both of them belong to

"the antithesis which characterises this standpoint. That is to say, advance is made to the infinite only as the abstract negation of the finite, as thfe not-finite, which, however, as not containing the finite «in itself as part of itself, remains over against the finite 'as an Other, and so itself a finite, which finite again advances to an infinite, and so on ad infinitum.

(a.a,) The externality or mutual e^jqchcsion of finiteness and universality.

If we consider the first antithesis of finite and infinite

-in Eeflection, finiteness is a varied, m„anifold externality, of which each component part is particular or limited.

In contrast to this, the manifoldness determines itself in its universality, its unlimitedness, as the Universal in this multiplicity. This form presents itseif thus in a concrete shape in our consciousness.

We have knowledge of many things, but always of single things only. As desiring or willing, the spirit is determined in accordance with particular ends and interests. But in both relations, whether forming ideas or willing, the spirit behaves as exclusive particularity, and, therefore, stands in connection with other independent things. Here, too, the element of ^contrast comes in, for the spirit compares its actually existing singularity with its singularity as universally determined or conceived.

I compare the stores of knowledge which I actually possess with the mass of knowledge of wfuch I form an idea. I find that these two, namelj my actuality, and the universality of which I form a conception, do not correspond with each other, and it is made imperative that the actual quantity of knowledge should be further advanced and perfected, made exhaustive, and brought to universality In like manner, it is possible in prac


tical life to plan to reach a universality of satisfaction, corapleteness of impulse and of enjoyment, and then to name this felicity. The one totality is called universality of knowledge, the other totality that of possession, of satisfaction, of desire, of enjoyment. But here the totality is thouglit of as multiplicity and allness only, and it, therefore, remains in contrast with the finiteness, which cannot possess all. Thus the Ego is still something exclusive over against something exclusive, and, therefore, the many is absolutely exclusive in relation to another many; and all is merely an. abstraction which we apply to much or the many, but which remains external to it. Thus it is found that the range of knowledge has no limits, and that the flight from star to star is limitless. It may indeed be supposed that natural science may get to know all animals, yet not so as to be able to penetrate into their most subtle characteristics. It is the same with the satisfaction of impulses: man may attain to many interests and ends, but not to all or not to happiness itself; allness is an id'eal which cannot be reached. This finiteness remains, just because it is a something that is true. The untrue is the unity or universality; the multiplicity w^ould have to yield up its character, in order to be posited under unity. The ideal is, therefore, unattainable, just because it is untrue in itself, .a unity of many, which are at the same time to remain manifold and separate. Further, the end, the ideal, on this side of which a man stops short, is itself something essentially finite, and for this very reason I must stop short on this side of it, for in reaching it I should still only reach wliat is finite.

(/8.^.) The antithesis of the finite and the infinite.

We liave now to consider the form of the antithesis of the finite and infinite, as it is seen in Eeflection as such. This is finitude in contrast to infinitude, each being posited for itself, posited independently, not merely as predicate, but as an essential antithesis, and in such


a \vay that tlie one is determined as the other of the other. And here, too, finiteness remains, and just for this reason, that the infinite which stands over against it is itself a finite, and a finite in fact which is posited as the other of the first or finite. Only the true infinite, which posits itself as finite, overlaps itself so to speak as its Other, and remains in it, because it is its own other in nnity with itself. But if the one, the infinite, be only defined as the not-many, not-finite, it remains on the other side beyond the many and the finite; and thus the many of the finite itself is likewise left standing on its own account without being able to attain to its something beyond.

It is now time to inquire whether this antithesis has truth in it, that is to say, whether these two sides drop apart, and exist as mutually exclusive. With regard to this it has been said already that when we posit the finite as finite, we are above and beyond it. In the limitation we have a limit but only inasmuch as we are above and beyond it, it is no longer the affirmative.

Just because we are at it, conscious of it, we are no longer at it.

The finite relates itself to the infinite; each is exclusive with regard to the other. Considered more closely, the finite is regarded as that which is lin^^ited, its limit being the infinite.

Under the first form one Particular gave limits to an other; here the finite has its limit in the infinite itself.

Now if the finite is limited by the infinite and stands on one side, the infinite itself is something limited too; it has its boundary in the finite; it is that which the finite is not; it has something which is on the yonder side of it and is thus finite, limited. Thus we have, instead of the Highest, something which is a Finite.

We have not what we desire, we have in this infinite only a finite. Or if it be said, on the other liand, that the infinite is not limited, then the finite, too, is not


limited. And if it be not limited, then it is not different from the infinite, but merges in it, is identical with it in infinitude, as it was before in finitude. Such is the abstract nature of this antithesis. It is necessary to retain this in the mind; to hold it fast is of absolute importance all through in regard to all forms of reflective consciousness and of philosophy. The antithesis itself vanishes when the two sides are absolutely opposed; both sides of the relation vanish into « empty moments and that which is and remains is the unity of the two, in which they are abrogated and preserved.

The finite conceived of in its more concrete form is the Ego, and the infinite is at first what is beyond this finite, its negative. As the negative of the negative, however, the infinite is the affirmative. Consequently it is to the infinite that we ascribe affirmation, that which has being, what is beyond in relation to the Ego, to my self-consciousness, to my consciousness, as power, as will.

But it has been remarked that it is the Ego itself which has here to begin with defined what is beyond as the affirmative; with this, however, that Ego is placed in contrast, the Ego, that is, which we before defined as the affirmative, in short, " I am immediate; I am one with myself."

If consciousness determines itself as finite, and if beyond it is the infinite, this Ego makes the same reflection which we have made, namely, that that infinite is only a vanishing infinite, only a thought posited by myself. I am the one who produces that something beyond, and I determine myself by means of it as finite. Both are my product, in me they vanish; I am lord and master of this determination, and thus the second fact is posited, namely, that /am the affirmative which is placed beyond, I am the negation of the negation, I am that in which the antithesis vanishes, I am the act of reflection which annihilates both. The Ego thus, by means of its own act of reflection, destroys those self-dissolving antitheses.


('y.y.) The absolute maintenance of the Jinite in reflection.

Having now reached this point, we desire to see how it fares with the finite, whether it is possible to get away from it in a real and actual way, and whether it secures its right, the right, namely, to become truly abrogated and absorbed, to divest itself of finiteness, or whether it remains in its finiteness, and gets the ^form of the infinite merely because the infinite is a finite as contrasted with it.

It would seem here as if reflection did not mean to leave standing what is for it a nonentity, and as if self-consciousness meant to deal seriously with its finiteness, and really to divest itself of it. That, however^ is precisely what does not happen here. It makes a mere show of doing this. What occurs here is rather that the finite maintains itself; I cling to myself, I d_o not give up my nullity, but make myself infinite therein, constitute myself an active operative infinite. "What we have therefore here is that the finite Ego, inasmuch as it is the positing of an infinite beyond itself, has posited the infinite itself as a finite, and is therein identical with itself as that which is in like manner finite, and now as being identical with the infinite becomes infinite itself.

This is the culminating point of subjectivity, which clings fast to itself, the finiteness which remains and renders itself infinite in its very finiteness, -the infinite subjectivity, which has done with all content. But this very subjectivity, this culmination of finiteness still maintains itself; in it all content evaporates, and is rendered vain; the only thing that does not vanish, however^ is this vanity. This culmination has the appearance of being a renunciation of the finite, but it is just in it that finiteness, as such still maintains itself. Speaking more definitely, abstract self-consciousness, pure thought, is as it were the absolute power of negativity to make short work with everything, but the power which still maintains itself as this definite Ego, while it yields up the


^vllole of finitude, and yet expresses this finite as infinitude, as the universal affirmative. What is wanting here ¦is objectivity. In true renunciation all depends on whether this culmination of subjectivity still has an object.

The standpoint which has been considered is reflection in its completeness J the abstract subjectivity, the Ego, the absolute idealiser, that for which all distinction, determination, content is annulled, or exists only as posited by it. I am tliat which determines, and I alone, and I am this as the individual unit, as the immediate self, as I, who am immediate.

In all content I am immediate relation or reference to myself, that is to say, I am Being, and this I am as particularity, as the relation of negativity to itself. That which is posited by me is posited as distinct from me - as the negative, and thus as negated, as only posited. I am, consequently, immediate negativity. Thus I, this exclusive Ego, in my state of immediacy, that is to say, in my feelings, opinions, in the caprice and contingency of my feeling and willing, am the affirmative in general, am good. All objective content, law/truth, duty vanish for me. I recognise nothing, nothing that is objective, no truth. God, the Infinite, is for me something beyond this world, something held aloof from me. I alone am the Positive, and no content has value on its own account, it has no longer affirmation in itself, but only in so far as I lay it down. The True and the Good exist in my conviction only, and all that is needful in order that a thing be good is this <;onviction, this recognition of mine. In this ideality oj all determinations or categories I alone am the Eeal. This attitude at first gives itself out to be that of humility, and what such humility consists in is this, that the Ego shuts out from itself the Infinite, the knowledge and rational apprehension of God, renounces it, and characterises itself in reference to it as finite. But in so doing this humility contradicts itself; it is pride rather, for I shut out the


truth from myself, and take up the position that I as this particular unit actually here, am alone the affirmative, and am what has absolute Being, in presence of which all else vanishes away. True humility, on the contrary, renounces itself, renounces its particular existence and its claim to be the affirmative, and recognises the True, that which has absolute Being, as alone the affirmative. In contrast to this, that false humility, * while it recognises the finite as the negative, the limitedj makes it at the. same time the only Affirmative, Infinite, and Absolute. I, this particular unit, alone am the sole essentiality,-^ that is to say, I, this finite, am the infinite.

The infinite, declared to be what is beyond the present and actual, is posited only through me. In this determination the unity of the finite and infinite is contained, but a unity of such a kind that the finite is not merged in it, but has become what is fixed, absolute, perennial. This unity being posited by means of the finite Ego, the unity itself becomes a finite unity. The Ego simulates humility, while in fact it is inflated beyond measure with vain and empty pride.

On the other hand, since the knowledge of something higher disappears, and only subjective emotion, mere good pleasure is left, there is no objective common element to bind individuals together, and in presence of the unlimited diversity in their fueling, their mutual attitude is one of enmity, hatred, and contempt.

The difficulty of getting a grasp of this point of view is owing to the fact that in this aspect of it, the extreme, culminating point of finite subjectivity, which is devoid of all content, posits itself as absolute.

The first difficulty which presents itself is, that it is just such an abstraction as has been described; the second lies in the fact of its approximation to the philosophical Notion. It borders on the philosophical standpoint, for it is the highest point of reflection. It contains expressions which, regarded superficially, appear to be the same

^ Wesealiafte.


as those which belong to philosophy. It contains ideality, negativity, subjectivity, and all this is, considered in itself, a true and essential moment of freedom and of the Idea.

Further, it contains the unity of the finite and infinite; and this is true also of the Idea. It is undoubtedly subjectivity, which develops all objectivity out of itself, and consequently transmutes itself as form into content, and only becomes true form by means of its true content.

Notwithstanding this, what thus seems to approach most nearly to the Idea is furthest off from it. This ideality, tliis fire in which all determinations consume themselves, is at this point of view still uncompleted negativity. '' I," as immediate, as this unit, am the sole reality; all remaining determinations are posited as i9eal, are burnt up. I alone maintain myself, and all determinations are valid, only if I will it so. The only determination which possesses validity is that of myself, and that everything is posited and exists only through me. The Ideality is not thoroughly carried through; this last culminating point still contains what must be negated; it must be shown that I, as this unit, am not possessed of truth, of reality.

I myself alone remain positive, notwithstanding that everything is to become affirmative through negation only. And thus this position contradicts itself, for it posits ideality as a principle, and that which brings about the ideality is itself not ideal.

The unity of the finite and infinite, which is made explicit in reflection, is undoubtedly a definition of the Idea, but of such a kind that the infinite, is the positing of itself as what is finite, while the finite is the finite of itself, and is owing to this abrogation, the negation of its negation.

Consequently, it is the infinite, but it is this infinite only as the positing of itself within itself as the finite, and the abrogation of this finiteness as such. From the subjective point of view, on the contrary, this unity is still posited in one-sidedness, for it is posited by the finite itself, and is still under the form of finiteness. I, this finite unit, am the


infinite. Consequently this infinitude is itself finitude.

This particularity of my finite being^my immediate personality - has yet to be separated from^ this affirmation, from this infinite. It is Eeflection itself which is par excellence what separates; but here it neglects its function of separating and distinguishing, and arrives at a unity ¦which is, however, only a finite unity. Eeflection here fails to disjoin the immediate particularity of the Ego, of the individual unit, from the Infinite and Affirmative.

And instead of merging the individual, which in itself is without support, in universality and^ getting a grasp of affirmation in its absolute universality in which it includes the individual, it conceives of particularity itself as being in an immediate way the universal. Here lies the deficiency of tbis point of view. Contradictions can only be criticised if we trace them back to the ultimate thought on which they rest.

Such is the standpoint of the present time, and philosophy enters into a peculiar relation with it. If we compare this point of view with the religious ideas of earlier times, we easily observe that this religious consciousness had formerly a content existing on its own account, a content which defined the nature of God. It was the point of view of truth and of dignity. The highest duty was to know God, to worship Him in spirit and in truth; and the salvation or perdition, the absolute worth or worthlessness of man was bound up with his knowledge of this content, and his acceptance of it as true, Af the present day to know truth, to know God, is not regarded as man's highest endeavour, and consequently right and duty are unknown.

All objective content has evaporated,: and all that is left is this pure, formal subjectivity. This point of view expressly implies that I am by nature good; not that I am good by means of my own act, or by means of my will, but that I am good in being unconscious. The opposite position implies en the contrary that I am only good by means of my self-conscious spiritual activity, by my free


dom. It is not originally and by nature that I am good; on the contrary, my goodness must arise in my consciousness; it belongs to my spiritual w6rld; the grace of God has its work here, but my co-operation as consciousness as my exercise of will is also necessarily involved. According to the prevalent view, my being good is a matter of my caprice and pleasure, for everything is posited through me.

In contemplating this remarkable contradiction in religious opinion, we have to recognise the fact that a tremendous revolution has taken place in the Christian world.

An entirely new self-consciousness in reference to the True lias appeared. All duty, all that is right, depends upon the innermost consciousness, upon the point of view of religious self-consciousness, springs from the root of the spirit, and this is the basis of all adtuality. Yet it is only when it is the form for an objective content that the selfconscious spirit has truth. From this point of view, on the contrary, which has no content in it, no religion whatever is possible, for it is I who am the affirmative, while the Idea which has absolute Being must in religion be established purely through itself and not through me.

Here, therefore, there can be no religion, any more than from the standpoint of sensuous consciousness.

Philosophy is in this connection regarded as something special. If general culture is given a place in consciousness, then philosophy is a special calling or business, a manner of regarding things which is outside of ordinary interests, it is a calling which has a special place of its own. And thus the Philosophy of PLcligion too, according to the prevalent view, is something which cannot have a meaning for society iu general, but must rather expect to meet with opposition and enmity from every side.

If accordingly the first relation of the finite to the infinite was the natural and untrue one, because the multitude and multiplicity of particularity were held fast


as against universality, and if we have seen, further, that the second relation is that found £n reflectioUj where finiteness lies in the wholly completed abstraction of pure thought, which does not really get to conceive of itself as universal, but remains as " 1/' as " this unit; " we have now to consider that relation as it reveals itself in reason.

(y.) The rational way of looking at finiteness.

This position is to be considered in the first place in its relation to- the form of Reflection at its climax. The transition from that standpoint must by its very nature be dialectical, and must be so made. This, however, belongs to logic. We shall proceed to present it in a concrete manner, and as regards the necessity of the transition shall only appeal to the consequences which follow from this standpoint. According to it, I as ^finite am a nullity, which is to be annulled, but yet this "annulling is all the same not effected or completed if this immediate individuality at the same time remains, and remains in such a way that this " I " alone becomes the affirmative, in the form given to it by the standpoint of Eeflection. The finite, which exalts itself to the infinite, is mere abstract identity, inherently empty, the supreme form of untruth, falsehood, and evil. A standpoint must therefore be shown where the Ego in this individuality renounces itself in deed and in truth. I must be particular subjectivity which is in very truth annulled, and thus something objective must be recognised by me which is actually regarded by me as true, and which I recognise as the Affirmative, posited for me, in which I am negated as this particular Ego, but in which ray freedom is at the same time maintained. The freedom of reflection is of such a kind that it permits of nothing originating in it, and since it must allow of origination, it proceeds when it posits anything, without law and order; that is. to say, permits nothing objective to originate. If something objective is to be really recognised, it is requisite that I should be

VOL. r. N


determined as universal, and should maintain myself, reckon myself as universal only. I^ow this is none other than the point of view of thinking reason, and religion itself is this action^ this activity of %he thinking reason, and of the man who thinks rationally, - who as individual posits himself as the Universal, and annulling himself as individual, iinds his true self to be the Universal. Philosophy is in like manner thinking reason, only that this action in which religion consists appears in philosophy in the form of thought, while religion as, so to speak, reason thinking naively, stops short in the sphere of general ideas or ordinary thought.

The general characteristics, the more precise forms of thought belonging to this point of view, have now to be noticed.

It is said first of all that subjectivity relinquishes its individuality in the object in recognising an Objective in general. This object cannot be anything sensuous. I know the sensuous object; no doubt in sense the thing is for me something which persists objectively, but my freedom is not in it as yet. The untrue nature of the sensuous consciousness must be taken for granted here. The necessary determination is that this Objective as true, and affirmative, is determined as an universal. In this recognition of an Object, of an Universal, I renounce my iiniteness, I renounce myself as this individual unit. What is valid for me is the Universal, and a universal would not exist 'if I were maintained as this individual unit. Tliis is ' apparent, too, in immediate knowledge of God; I have a knowledge of the objectively universal, which has an absolute essential existence; but since there is only an immediate relation here^ and reflection does not yet enter in, this Universal, this object of the Universal, is itself something merely subjective, to which that essential and independent objectivity is wanting. The reflection finally arrived at accordingly is only this, that these determinations are planted in feeling aloue, and are locked up in


tlie subjective consciousness, which ha-^ not as yet renounced its immediate particularity, so tlmt this determination of the objective Universal, as such, is not as yet adequate. In order to this, it is requisite that the abstract Universal should ha/e a content as well, should have determinations or attributes in itself. Not till then can it be present to me as essentially existing. If it be empty, the determinateness exists only in my supposition; ¦ it belongs to me, all content, all activity, all vitality remain .in myself, the determining and the objectifying are mine alone. I have only a dead, an empty God, a so-called Highest Being, and this emptiness, this idea, remains subjective only, and does not attain to true objectivity. At this last standpoint we get certainty only, there is no truth; and I may perfectly well remain here characterised as this unit, as the finite. The objectivity in that case is a mere semblance of objectivity.

It is not for philosophy alone that the object is fullof content. This feature is common to both philosophy and religion; here there is as yet no difference in their point of view.

Closely connected with this is the question: How is the subject determined here ? The subject is characterised, in relation to the recognised object, as thinking.

Thought is the activity of the Universal, having an Universal as its object. By the Universal here is meant the purely absolute Universal. The relation to such an object is therefore the thought of the subject; the object is the Essence, that which exists for the subject. The .thought is not merely subjective, but also objective.

In thinking, reflecting about the true object, I am subjective, I have my thoughts about it. But equally iu thinking the object, thinking the thought of it, the relation of my personality towards it as something particular is got rid of, and I assume an objective attitude; I have renounced myself as an individual, renounced my particularity, and am universal. To do this -and to think that


the Universal is my object, are one and the same. Here I renounce myself actually and really. Working and living in objectivity is the true confession of finiteness, is real humility.

It may be remarked that it is an essential characteristic of thought that it is mediated action or activity, mediated Universality, - which as negation of negation is affirmation. It is mediation by the annulling of mediation. Universality, Substance, for instance, are thoughts which exist only through negation of the negation. Thus the mode of immediacy is contained here, but no longer it only. And hence the expression that we have immediate knowledge of God: knowledge is pure activity, and only negates the impure, the immediate. We can know God in an empirical manner; this universal Object is then immediately before me without deraonstration. This immediacy in the empirical subject is itself partly a result of much mediation, and partly it is only one phase of this activity. A difficult piece of music can be played with ease after it has been gone through by frequent repetition of single passages; it is played with immediate activity as the, result of so many mediatory actions. The same is the case with habit, which has become like a second nature to us. The simple -result seen in the discovery of Columbus was the consequence of many detached acts and deliberations, which had preceded it.

The nature of such an activity is different from its outward appearance. Thus the: nature of thought is this identity with itself, this pure transparency of the activity, which in itself is negation of the negative.

Thought is the result which renders itself immediate, which appears as immediate.

I am therefore determined in relation to the object as thinking; and not in philosophy merely, but also in religion in its affirmative form, in devotion, which has its origin in thinking and in what is thought, does God exist for me. This thinking of the Universal, then, is a


definite mode of my existence as pure thinking. What is further to be observed is that in devotion, in this relation to the universal Substance, I am reflected upon myself. I distinguish myself from this Object, and it from myself, for I have to yield myself up. In this lies the consciousness of myself; and in so far as I merely perform the act of devotion in yielding myself up to God, I am at the same time only as it were a reflection out of God into myself. How then am I determined in this respect, " I," who again appear ? Here I am determined as finite in the true manner, finite as distinguished from this Object, as the particular over against the universal, as the accidental in reference to thjs Substance, as a "moment, as something distinguished, which at the same time is not independent, but has renounced itself and knows itself to be finite. Thus therefore I do not go beyond the consciousness of myself, and this arises from the fact that the universal Object is now potentially thought and has the content within itself; it is substance in motion within itself, and as an inward process in which it begets its content, is not empty, but is absolute fulness. All particularity belongs to it; as universal it " overlaps or includes me in itself, and thus I look upon myself as finite, as being a moment in this life, as that which has its particular being, its permanent existence in this substance only, and in its essential moments.

And thus I am not only potentially but also actually and really, posited as finite. Por that very reason I do not preserve myself as immediate, as affirmative.

Having hitherto considered, in a concrete way, the attitude of the Ego to the universal Substance, what now remains to be considered is the abstract relation of the finite to the infinite generally.

\Nln Reflection, the finite stands opposed to the infinite in such a way that the finite is doubled. What is true is the indissoluble unity of the two. This it is which we have just considered in a more concrete form as the


relation of the subjective Ego to the Universal. The finite is but an essential Tuomenb of the infinite, the infinite is absolute negativity, that is, affirmation, which however is mediation within itself. The simple unity, identity, and abstract affirmation of the infinite is, in itself, no truth, but rather is it essential that it should differentiate or break itself up within itself In this process it is in the first place ^affirmation, and then secondly, distinction; thirdly, the affirmation appears as negation of the negation, and thus for the first time as the True. Nor does the standpoint of the finite represent any more that which is true. On the contrary it must annul itself, and it is only in this act of negation that we have what is true. The finite is therefore an essential moment of the infinite in the nature of God, iind thus it may be said it is God .Himself who renders Himself finite, who produces determinations within Himself. Now this might at first appear to us to be something unlike a Divine process, but we already have it in tlie ordinary ideas about God; for we are accustomed to believe in Him as the Creator of the world. God creates a world, God determines; outside of Him there is nothing to determine. He determines Himself when He thinks Himself, places an Other over against Himself, when He and a world are two. God creates the world out of nothing; that is to say, besides the world nothing external exists, for it is itself externality. God alone is; God, however, only through mediation of Himself with Himself. He wills the finite; He Himself posits it as an Other, and thus Himself becomes an Other than Himself - a finite - for He has an Other opposed to Himself. This " otherness," however, is the contradiction of Himself with Himself.

He is thus the finite, in relation to that which is finite.

But the truth is that this finiteness is. only an appearance, a phenomenal shape in which He has or possesses Himself.

Creation is activity. In this is involved differentiation,


and in this again the moment of the finite, yet this _separate existence of the finite must in: turn annul itself.

For it is God's; it is His Other, and exists notwithstanding in the definite form of the Other of God. It is the Other and the not Other; it dissolves or cancels its own self; it is not it itself, but an: Other, it destroys itself. By this means, however, the '* otherness " has wholly vanished in God, and in it God recognises Himself; and in this way He maintains Himself for Himself as His own result through His own act.

In accordance with this way of regarding the matter, the two infinites may now be distinguished, tianiely, the true infinite from the merely bad one of the understanding. Thus, then, the finite is a moment of the Divine life,

(c.) The transition to the speculative conception of religion.

For the logically developed and rational consideration of the finite, the simple forms of a proposition have no longer any value. God is infinite, I am finite; these are false, bad expressions, forms which do not adequately correspond to that which the Idea, the nature of the real object, is. The finite is not that which is, in like manner the infinite is not fixed; these determinations are only moments of the process. It is equally true that God exists as finite and the Ego as infinite. The *' is" or exists, which is regarded in such propositions as something firmly fixed, has, when understood in its true sense, no other meaning than that of activity, vitality, and spirituality.

"Nov are predicates adequate for definition here, and least of all those which are one-sided and transient.

But, on the contrary, what is true, what is the Idea, exists only as movement. Thus God is this movement within Himself, and thereby alone is He the living God.

But this separate existence of the finite must not be retained; it must, on the contrary, be abrogated. God


is movement towards the finite, and owing to this He is, as it were, the lifting up of the finite to Himself.

In the Ego, as in that which is annulling itself as finite, God returns to Himself, and only as this return is He God. Without the world God is not God.

We meet with these abstractions especially among the ancients; they are products of the beginnings of reflecting abstract thought. Plato, however, already recognises the infinite as the bad, and the determinate as what is higher - he looks on the limit limiting itself in itself as higher than the Unlimited. What is true is the unity of the infinite, in which the finite is contained.

The result of all this is, that we must get rid of this bugbear of the opposition of finite and infinite. It is customary to frighten us out of the wish to know God and to have a positive relation to Him, with the bugbear that to seek to take up any such attitude towards God is presumption, while the objections are brought forward with much unction and edifying language, and with vexatious humility. This presumption, however, is undoubtedly an essential part of philosophy as well as of religion. From this point of view it is a matter of indifference whether I know through thought the content, namely God, or accept it as true on authority, or with the heartj by inner enlightenment, or in any other way. If you take any of these ways, you are met by this bugbear that it is presumptuous to wish to know God, and to comprehend the infinite by means of the finite. We must rid ourselves completely of this opposition of finite and infinite, and do it by getting an insight into the real state of the case.

The man who does not rid himself of this phantom steeps himself in vanity, for he posits the Divine as something which is powerless to come to itself, while he clings to his own subjectivity, and, taking his stand on this, asserts the impotence of his knowledge. This is surely subjective untruth in its real form, the hypocrisy


¦whicli retains the finite, which acknbwledges the vanity of the finite, but yet retains this whibh it confesses and knows to be vain, and makes it into the Absolute, while in so doing it holds aloof from rational knowledge, and from substantial objective religion and religious life, and either destroys them, or prevents theui from making their influence felt.

' In losing ourselves in the true object itself, we escape from this vanity of the self-maintaining subjectivity, from this Ego, and make serious work with vanity. This follows as a consequence of what was accomplished in the science of logic, j

The negative relation of consciousness to the Absolute is commonly based upon observation 5 for consciousness, it is said, only the finite exists. The infinite, on the other hand, is devoid of determinate character (and consequently, as we have seen, is implicitly only, subjective), and consciousness has a merely negative relation to it.

Because there is only this relation in observation, it is now argued that it is impossible to:know the Absolute, the Truth. A few remarks must be made upon this position.

If possibility and impossibility be, taken in so far as they have a definite meaning, they both have reference to the kernel, to the !N"otion of an object, that which it essentially is. Their meaning must therefore be decided by the nature of the Notion itself. From the point of view of consciousness as observing- -^from this point of view of observation - the inner nature, the Notion, cannot be discussed, for that point of view renounces the knowledge of what concerns the kernel or inner element of the object; it has only before it that which is included in the sphere of external consciousness as such. Thus possibility and impossibility have no place in this sphere of thought.

Those who occupy this position, liowever, assert that it is just what is, that is to say, what enters into this


particular perceiving consciousness, which gives the standard of possibility, and that from this we get the conception of possibility or impossibility. What contradicts experience is impossible.

In regard to this it is to be remgirked that this observation limits itself arbitrarily to the sphere of the finite consciousness. There are, however, other spheres besides which may be observed; not merely those whose content is only finite in relation to what -is finite, but those too where the Divine is in consciousness as something existing in and for itself. The affirmative consciousness of the Absolute in the form of simple, natural religious life, of devotion, or in the form of philosophical knowledge, may also be observed, and yield a quite different result from that supplied by the position of finite consciousness, whether the observing subject observe these higher forms of consciousness in others or in himself. For wrong as this point of view is, it may well be that religious experience is more affirmative and more full of content than consciousness; there may be more in the heart than in the consciousness, in so far as it is definite, rational, observing consciousness; the two may be distinct. All depends on the adjustment of the rational or cognitive element in consciousness to what I am in my true essential nature as Spirit.

But the conviction that the spirit has only a negative relation to God, ruins and destroys feeling, devotion, the religious attitude, in fact. For thought is the source of the Universal, the region in which the Universal generally - - in which God - is; the Universal is in thought and for thought. Spirit in its freedom only, that is, as thinking, has the content of Divine truth, and supplies it to experience; its content constitutes the worth of experience in respect of all true devotion and piety. If a man in the exercise of conscious thought holds fast to the position tliat no affirmative relation to God exists, then all content at once goes out of experience; as that sphere


makes itself empty, so experience becomes hollow too, just as I cannot see without light from outside. If the content be negated or driven away from this region, there is no longer present tliat which can supply the true qualities of experience. If, therefore on the one hand, it must be conceded, as above, that there may be more in devotion than, in religious consciousness, it is on the other hand an evidence of caprice or clumsiness when that which is present in a man himself or in others, is not observed.

Properly speaking, however, this caprice, this clumsiness or want of skill, does not make its first appearance here, for if a man is only to observe, observation thereby is limited to the field of finiteness. To observe means, to place oneself in relation to something external, which is in observation to remain external, and this is only posited in so far as it is external to oneself, and is thus finite.

Therefore, if any one occupy such a standpoint, he has before him only what is worthy of this standpoint, and appropriate to it.

If observation would observe the infinite in accordance with its true nature, it must itself be infinite; that is, it must no longer be observation of the true object, but the object itself. Speculative thought may be observed too, but this observation is only for the thinker himself. In like manner, religion is only for the religious man; that iSj for him who at the same time ^s what he observes.

There is no such thing as mere observation here: the observer is, on the contrary, in such a relation to the object, that his observation is not purely external; he is not a simple observer, is not merely in a negative relation to that which he observes.

From this it follows that in order to find the true seat of religion we must relinquish the attitude of the observer; we must abandon this empirical point of view, for the very reason that it is only empirical, and because it has, as we saw, annulled itself by its own act. Eeflection possesses, it is true, the relation of the finite toHhe infinite; this,


however, is only posited as a negation. Eeflection proceeds, indeed, to advance a claim to posite the finite as infinite, but it has been shown that this claim must only be in relation to the affirmative; that is to say, in observation the finite is made infinite, although ii still remains, and is firmly retained, as finite. And yet at the same time the demand is made that the finite shall be abrogated.

Now, however, that the finite and the standpoint of reflection have annulled themselves, we have reached the standpoint of infinite observation and of the speculative Notion, namely, the sphere in which the true notion or conception of religion will unfold itself before us.

3 . The Speculative Notion or Conception of Religion.

Eeason is the reirion in which alone relij^ion can be at home. The fundamental conception here is the affirmative attitude of consciousness which is only possible as negation of negation, as the self-abrogation of the determinations of the antithesis, which are taken by Eeflection as persistent. The basis of religion is'in so far this rational, or to speak more precisely, this speculative element.

Eeligion, however, is not merely something so abstract; it is not merely such an affirmative attitude towards the Universal, as it is at present defined to be. If it were only this, all further content would be found to be outside of religion, would come in to It from without; or if the content did actually exist, this would imply that there existed yet another reality outside of religion.

The standpoint of religion is this, that the True, to which consciousness relates itself, has all content in itself, and consequently this condition of relation is what is highest of all in it, is its absolute Btandpoint,

Eeflection is that form of mental activity which establishes the antitheses, and which -goes from the one to the other, but without efl'ecting their combination and


realising their pervading unity. The true home of religion, on the contrary, is absolute, consciousness, and this implies that God is Himself all content, all truth and reality. An object such as this cannot be adequately expressed by mere Eefiection,

If we have hitherto made use of the expression *" consciousness," it will be understood that this only expresses the aspect of the outward manifestation of Spirit, the essential relation of knowledge and its object. " I " am thus determined as relation, but it is the essential nature of Spirit not to be merely in relation; „finitude belongs to consciousness, and the object remains in consciousness as something independent. Spirit is not merely an act of knowledge in which the existence of the object is separate from the processof knowing it, it does not merely exist as something related, it is not merely the form of consciousness. We abstract from this relation and speak of Spirit, and consciousness then comes to be included as a moment in the being of Spirit; and this at once implies an affirmative relation of the spirit to absolute Spirit. It is only when we have arrived at this identity, where knowledge posits itself for itself in its object, that we are in presence of Spirit, Eeason, which exists objectively for itself. \^-Eeligion is therefore a relation of the spirit to absolute Spirit: thus only is Spirit as' that which knows, also that which is known. This is not merely an attitude of the spirit towards absolute Spirit, but absolute Spirit itself is that which is the self-relating element, which brings itself into relation with that which we posited on the other side as the element of difference. \^ Thus when we rise higher, religion is the Idea of the Spirit which relates itself to its own self - it is the self-consciousness of absolute Spirit. Of this, its consciousness which was before defined as relation, forms a part. Consciousness, as such, is finite consciousness, it is the knowledge of something other than the Ego. Eeligion, too, is consciousness, and consequently has finite consciousness as


an element in it, but a consciousness which is cancelled as finite; for the Other, which absolute Spirit knows, it itself is, and it is only absolute Spirit in knowing itself. The finiteness of consciousness comes in here, since Spirit by its own movement differentiates itself; but this finite consciousness is a, movement of Spirit itself, it itself is self-differentiation, self-determination; that is to say, positing of itself as finite consciousness. Ey means of this, however, it is only mediated through consciousness or finite spirit in such wise that it has to render itself finite iii order to become knowledge of itself through this rendering of itself finite. '' Thus religion is the Divine Spirit's knowledge of itself through the mediation of finite spirit. Accordingly, in the Idea in its highest form, religion is not a transaction of man, but is essentially the highest determination of the, absolute Idea itself.

Absolute Spirit in its consciousness is knowledge of itself. If it has knowledge of what is other than itself, it then ceases to be absolute Spirit. In accordance with this description, it is here maintained that this content^ which the knowledge of absolute Spirit has of itself, is the absolute truth, is all truth, so that ;his Idea comprehends the entire wealth of the natural and spiritual world in itself, is the only substance and truth of all that constitutes this world, while it is in the Idea iilone that everything has its truth, as being a moment of its essential existence.

The proof of the necessity that this content of religion should thus be absolute truth, in so far as it starts from what is immediate, and exhibits that content as the result of another content, has been discussed, and already lies behind us. When this proof was given above in its proper place, we saw at once how the one-sidedness of its procedure by which tlie content appears not as absolute, but as a result, annuls itself. For that which appears as First, whether it be the logical abstraction of Being, or the finite world - this First, this Immediate, this which appears unposited, is eventually itself posited as some


thing posited, and not immediate - it is degraded from being immediate to being posited, so that absolute Spirit is in reality the True, the positing of the Idea, as well as the positing o£ Nature and of finite Spirit; in other words, absolute Spirit self-conscious of itself is the First and the alone True, in which the finite world which is thus something posited exists as a moment.

This procedure, therefore, which, to begin with, showed itself as a procedure prior to religion, and in which the beninnino- was made from the immediate, without reference to God, so that God only comes into being by means of it, is now seen to be rather a moment within religion itself, but in a shape and form different fr©iu that in which it -first appeared, in which its relation to God is, as it were, of a merely natural and naive kind. Here, on the other hand, God is absolutely the Pirst, and that procedure is the active play and movement of the Idea of absolute Spirit within itself. Spirit is for itself or self-couscious, that is to say, makes itself an object, has independent existence over against the Notion, as" that which we call " the world," " Nature." This diremption, or separation, is the first moment. The other consists in the movement of this object back to this its source, to which it continues to belong, and to which it must return. This movement con.stitutes the Divine life. Spirit as absolute is, in the first place, manifestation or appearance to self, the self-existent Being-for-self. Manifestation, as such, Is Nature; and Spirit is not only that which appears, not only that which is for beholders, but is Being-for-itself, what exists on its own account, manifestation to itself, and the fact that it is such makes it consciousness of itself as Spirit. Thus the moment which was at first considered as necessity is seen to be within Spirit itself, and we have that necessity so far as its essence is concerned within religion too; not, however, as immediate determinate Eeing, but: as manifestation of the Idea; not as Being, but as manifestation of the Divine.

The concrete fiUing-up of the notion or conception of


religion accordingly is its production by means of itself.

It is it itself wliicli renders itself concrete, and perfects itself by attaining to the totality of its distinctions, so that the Notion, since it exists only by means of these distinctions, becomes object to itself. . The Notion, which we have thus put on a firm basis, is the self-consciousness of Absolute Spirit, it is the self-con.sciousness which implies that it exists for itself. For itself it is Spirit; that in which there is a distinction between itself and Spirit is the moment of Nature. The meaning of this in popular language is that God is the unity of the Natural and Spiritual; Spirit is, however, lord of Nature, so that the two do not occupy a position of equal dignity in this unity, the truth being rather that the unity is Spirit; Spirit is no third something in wHich the two are neutraHsed, but, on the contrary, this indifference of the two is itself Spirit/ At one time Spirit represents the one side, and at another is that which overlaps, which reaches over to grasp the other side, and is thus the unity of both. It is in this further concrete determination of Spirit that the process takes place by which the notion of God perfects itself by attaining to the Idea.

The Spiritual is the absolute unity of the Spiritual and Natural, so that this last is only what is posited, sustained by Spirit. In this Idea are found the following moments; ¦ - a. The substantial, absolute, subjective unity of the two moments, the Idea in its affirmation in which it is identical with itself, h. The differentiation of Spirit within itself, so that it now posits itself as existing for what is thus differentiated, posited as the latter is by Spirit itself, c. This differentiation itself being posited in that unity of affirmation, becomes negation of the negation, affirmation as infinite, as absolute Being-for-self. '^

The first two moments are those of the Notion, representing the way and manner in which the relation of the Spiritual and Natural is contained dn the Notion. What is further to be observed is, that they are not merely


moments of the Notion, but are tliemselves the two sides of the difference. In Spirit the moment of differentiation is that which is termed consciousness. Differentiation is the positing of two, which have no other quality attaching to their difference than just those moments themselves. The differentiation, which thereby becomes a relation, has therefore the following as its two sides: as the one side it has just that solid substantial unity of the Idea, God as existent, as unity relating itself to itself; and as the other the differentiation, which, as consciousness, is the side for which the solid unity exists, and which therefore determines itself as the finite side.

Thus is God determined as existing for consciousness, as Object, as appearing or manifesting Himself. Essentially, however, He is as spiritual unity in His substantiality, not merely determined as appearing, but as appearing to Himself, therefore so appearing to what is other than Himself, that in that appearing He manifests Himself to Himself

This differentiation is therefore itself to be conceived of as returning into absolute affirmation, or abrogating itself, as differentiation which just as eternally abrogates itself and becomes the truch of manifestation.

We first of all distinguished the substantial unity from the differentiation itself, and then designated the return of the second moment into the first as the third moment.

Now, however, those two moments themselves (in accordance with the character of the content of the relation) are only to be taken as one side of the relation, so that the two only make up the one determinate character of that relation, and the second moment becomes that which appeared as the third. It is these two moments which, from the point of view of the notion, constitute that which in a general way is to be considered as the reality of the Idea; the one as the relation, into which the notion divides itself up, the consciousness, the appearing of God; and the other as the self-abjogation of this only



relative attitude of opposition. In the first, that is, the attitude of relation, the finite consciousness is the one side, and the mode in which its finiteness is determined is the mode in which it itself reveals to us how its object is determined for it. Here we have the manner of the divine manifestation, that is to say, the world of general ideas, or the theoretical side. In the other relation, the practical, being that of the active process in which the division annuls itself, it is, on the contrary, in consciousness that the activity makes its appearance. To this side accordingly belongs the form of freedom, subjectivity as such, and it is here that self-consciousness is to be considered in its movement. This is manifestation as worship.



The separation of subject from object makes its first actual appearance in the Will. In willing I am an actual being and a free agent, and I place myself over against the object as an Other,in order to assimilate it to myself by bringing it out of that state of separation. In the theoretical relation, this immediate unity, immediate knowledge, is still presentjVBut in worship I stand on the one side and God on the other, my purpose being to unite myself closely with God, and God with myself, and so to bring about a concrete unity .

relation. Here, then, the aspect of freedom, of subjectivity^ is to be considered, as contradistinguished from the first aspect, which is that of Being. Thus it might be said that the first is God in His Being, the second the subject in its subjective Being. God is, is present; that is to say, has a relation to consciousness. Thus worship is itself in the first place theoretical, in as far as it itself, after doing away with the antithesis, quits the region of idea or ordinary thought likewise. As determine'd, God is not as yet the true God. In as far as He is no longer determined and lunited in His actually existing manifestation, is He, Spirit, manifestation which exists in and for itself. The Being of God therefore involves a relation to consciousness; only as an abstract God does He exist for consciousness as a something beyond the present, as " Other." Inasmuch as He is in His manifestation as He is potentially, He has an absolutely realised existence; therefore consciousness, and essentially self-consciousness, belong to His manifestation, for every form of consciousness is selfconsciousness. Thus God is essentially self-consciousness. The characteristic of consciousness is included in the first aspect as well, and that which we have termed the general idea of God may likewise be called the Being of God.

Thus knowledge has its place as associated with worship, and the general form in which it appears as belonging to it is what we call Paith.

I. - Of Faith.

I. Faith belongs to this practical relation on its subjective side. It belongs to the knowing subject, in as far as in it self-consciousness not only has a knowledge of its object as theoretical, but has certain knowledgeof it - a knowledge of it, in fact, as something which is a^bsolutely Existent, and alone True. In this certainty it has relinquished its independent Being, which is the element of truth in its


formal knowledge of itself. Since faith must be defined as the witness of the spirit to absolute Spirit, or as a certainty of tlie truthj it involves relation in respect of the distinction of Object and Subject, a mediation in fact, but a mediation within itself; for in faith as it is here defined, external mediation and that particular mode of it have already vanished. This mediation therefore belongs to the essential nature of Spirit, and is the substantial unity of Spirit with itself, which infinite form likewise essentially is. To express this in more concrete language, the certainty faith has of the truth, or, this uniting of the absolute content with knowledge,Js that absolute, divine connection itself, in accordance with which the knowinc: subject, the self-consciousness, in^so far as it knows the true content, as free, as laying aside all peculiarities of its particular or individual content, has knowledge of itself, though of its essence only. In this its free, absolute certainty, it has the very certainty of the truth. As knowing, it has an object, and this as being the Essence is the absolute Object. It is at the same time no foreign object, no object which is for consciousness something other than and beyond it, but it is its own Potentiality, its Essence.

Eor consciousness, as absolutely c-^tain, is identical with this certainty. This content is the potentiality of self-consciousness, and in this character exists for us, having in as far as it is essential being only, objectivity for self-consciousness, or to put it otherwise, it constitutes its aspect as consciousness. This is the innermost, abstract point of personality, which can be understood in a speculative way only as this unity of self-consciousness and consciousness, or of knowledge and its essence, of infinite form and absolute content. This unity exists simply and solely as the knowledge of it in an objective form, as being the Essence which is my Essence.

In this exposition so much depends on each individual moment, and at the same time on the essential combinationof these in unity, that if one only of these moments be held


fast while we abstract from the others, or even if they be grasped in a more complete way, yet apart from their identity, this conception may easily seem merely to result in those one-sided forms of reflection which have already been considered, and may be confounded with them. This may all the more easily appear to be the case, since those very forms of reflection are none other than- the single moments of the expounded conception held fast in a one-sided manner. The explanation of this distiuctibn will help towards a fuller elucidation of the true conception, as also of those forms of reflection.

It having thus been shown that tlie Truth itself is contained in the certainty of spiritual, -pure self-consciousness, and is inseparably identical with it, it may easily appear as if this determination were .the same with the idea of the immediate knowledge of God, in which as immediate the Being of G-od is just as certain for me as I myself am, as my certainty of myself. Such an assertion^ however, would essentially imply a persistent adherence to the immediacy of. knowledge as such, and as excluding a perception of the truth that knowledge as such is in fact mediation in itself, an immediate affirmation, which is this simply and solely as negation of the negation. This would imply, further, that the immediacy of the knowing subject does not disappear, but that the latter persists in its finite independent Being, and therefore, together with its object, remains devoid of Spirit, so that it is only the speculative nature of the two moments and of the spiritual Subsjyance which is not grasped in thought and directly treated of. In the act of devotion wliich rests on faith, the individual is oblivious of self, and is filled with his object. He yields up his heart, and does not keep his immediate character. Even if tlie subject, in the fire and warmth of devotion, buries itself in its object, it is, all the same, itself still present. It is precisely the subject which possesses itself in this devotional exercise; it is the subject which prays,


speaks, forms ideas, and which has to do with this its exaltatioD. But in devotion the: subject does not maintain itself in its particularity, but only in its movement in the Object, and only as this individual self-moving spirit. The further development of the immediacy which has not been abrogated accordingly presents us with the infinitude of the vain subject as vain, and this culmination of vanity remains. If this be taken as also the unity of the certain knowledge of itself with the contentj then this unity would be one in which vanity as such would be defined as representing what is true and absolute. That subjectivity, on the contrary, is destined to be the true subjectivity only in so far as it is knowledge which is emancipated and free from immediacy, as likewise from the Being-for-self which reflects itself into itfelf, and holds itself fast as agaihst Substance - that is, only in so far as it is this negative unity of infinite Form with Substance, as against its individual particularity.

In connection with the conception just indicated, we niay perhaps be reminded of another idea, or of the bald accusation of Pantheism which is brought against that conception even by theologians themselves. For there are theologians who, while they snppose that they have gone a long distance from the beaten track of the ordinary forms of the reflection which charsicterises the culture of our time, are so restricted to it that if they do not find God spoken of and defined as something absolutely supersensible, they in their thinking cannot get any further than the conception of such an affirmative relation as mere ordinary abstract identity. People do not know how to get a knowledge of God as Spirit: Spirit is an empty idea to them, having merely the same meaning as motionless abstract Substance. Pantheisrn sees and knows God in the sun, in a stone, a tree, an animal, in so far only as the sun as sun, the tree or animal as such, is and continues in this immediate natural existence. The sun, the air, and such like, are, it is true, universal matter,


and still more are plants and animals, life in fact. If we know of no higher characteristic of God than that of universal Being, of universal life, universal substance, and the like, then such forms of existeneS certainly contain this so-called divine Essence, and contain it as a Universal which is devoid of Spirit. In like manner, if the individual self-consciousness be defined as a natural simple Thing, which is ordinarily understood as being the definition of the soul, then from the pantheistic point of view it too is taken as a divine esisfence. But so too, although self-consciousness be of the true kind, understood not indeed as a natural Thing, yet as a reality so far as immediateness is concerned sp that it exists as knowing immediately, just as it is in accordance with its purely original character what thinks, and even although in this sense it be thus taken as a divine reality, - it also is still conceived of from that pantheistic point of view.

And from such a definition of individual self-consciousness it is not possible for the pantjieistic idea to free itself. " I am: I am thinking: " this form of immediate Being is regarded from the pantheistic point of view as that which constitutes the ultimate definition and the persistent form of what thinks. Although the latter be also termed Spirit, this remains a meaningless expression, since that " I " which was merely Being, that knowledge which is merely immediate - knowing immediately anything whatever, including even God - is nothing but Spirit devoid of Spirit. The two assertions that man can only know God in an immediate raannerj and that man as he is originally and by nature is good, have their source in this conceiving of Spirit as devoid of Spirit, Or conversely, if these two assertions be made, it follows that Spirit is to be taken only as th-e existent " I/' and this existent " I " as the ultimate and "true determination of self-consciousness, and even as absolute eternal Beingf.

Spirit becomes Spirit as concrete freedom only, as somethinfT which allows its naturalness or immediateness to


flow into its universality, or more accurately, into its essence as its object - as something -which merges its natural singularity, "whicli determines itself as finite in the essential object, that is here, in the absolute content, which determines itself as object. If in connection with the inimediateness thus relinquished, what is thought of ¦ be the merely bodily immediateness, then this yielding up presents itself partly as natural death, by means of which man may be united with God - partly, however, as Thought, which abstracts from sensuous life and sensuous ideaSj and is a withdrawal into the free region of the supersensuous. But if thought here adheres to its form as abstract thought, it retains the reflected vanity of simple, immediate Being-for-itself\ of the cold and reserved isolation of the existent " I," which takes up au exclusive attitude towards its Essence, and negates its own essence in itself. With justice is it said of this " I " that God would not be in it, nor would -it be in God, and that it would have to do with God in an outward fashion only, and further, that it would be the pantheistic point of view, and unworthy of God, if this "I" should be taken as an actual existence of God, since God must at least abstractly be defined as the absolutely universal Essence.

But the relation of self-consciousness to God as Spirit is wholly different from this pantheistic mode of conceiving the relation, since in such a relation it is itself Spirit, and since by the renunciation of the exclusive character which it possesses as immediate oneness or isolation, it places itself in an affirmative relation, in a spiritually- vital attitude toward God. If theologians see Pantheism in this attitude, and consequently even count the spirit among the All, the all things among whiSh indeed they reckon the soul and that "I" which is reflected into its Bein^r o

for-self, and which they then are justified in excluding from God in respect of their individual actuality in which they are finite, and if they know Spirit only as negation of God, they not only forget the doctrine that man was


created in the image of God, but emphatically forget the doctrine of the grace of God, of justification through Christ, and, above all, the doctrine of the Holy Spirit, who leads the church into all truth, and abides for ever in His church. The grand present day cry raised against this truth is - Pantheism. If, however, the " I " be knowledge of the infinite content, in such sort that this form itself belongs to the "infinite content, then the content is directly adequate to the form. It is present, not iu fin^e existence, but in absolute manifestation of itself, and this is not Pantheism, for it has before it the existence of the divine in a particular form. If man, on the other hand, be immediately God, that is to say, if he as this individual unit knows God, that? is the doctrine of Pantheism. The Church, on the con^trary, declares that it is only through the abrogation of this naturalness (which abrogation, in its natural form, is seen in natural death) that man becomes united with God. If we grasp what is taught by the Church, in theXotion, in thought, the speculative determinations which .have been specified will be found to be involved in it; and if there are theologians who cannot, by grasping them in thought, follow out such doctrines which undoubtedly have to do with the innermost depths of the divine Essence, they ought in that case to let them alonS. Theology is the comprehension or understanding of religious content.

Such theologians ought therefore to acknowledge that tliei/ cannot comprehend it, and should not seek to criticise the comprehension of it, and least of all should they apply to it such terms as Pauthtism, &c.

The older theologians had the most thorough grasp of this divine depth, while among the Protestants of the present day, whose entire resources consist of criticism and history, philosophy and science have been wholly neglected. Meister Eckardt, a Dominican monk, in speaking of this innermost element, says, in one of his sermons, among other things, the following: " The eye


with which God sees me is the eye with which I see Him; my eye and His eye are one. By a righteous standard I am weighed in God, and God in me. If God were not, I would not be; if I were not; then He were not. It is, however, not needful to know this, for there are things which are easily misunderstood and which can only be thoroughly understood in thought."

2. Faith must now get what is essentially the form of mediation. It itself is already this form implicitly, for it is knowledge of God and of His character, and this knowledge is in itself a process, ^a movement - is life, mediation. It is involved in the very nature of the freedom which is the inner characteristic of faith, that it should not be what we at first called substantial, solid unity, that it should not be idea: in freedom I exist on the contrary as that activity in afifirmation which is infinite negation in itself. Now if we should wish to give to mediation the form of an external mediation as the foundation of faith, then such a form would be a wrong one. This mediation, of which the basis is something external, is false. The content of faith may indeed come to me by means of instruction, miracle, authority, &"c.

These may be the foundation of faith as subjective faith.

But it is just in giving this position to the content whereby it assumes the character of a basis^for me, that we go on a wrong track; and when faith is reached, this externality must drop away. In faith I make that my own which comes to me thus, and it ceases to be for me an Other.

Immediate faith may be so defined as being the witness of the Spirit to Spirit, and this implies that no finite content has any place in it. Spirit witnesses only of Spirit, and only finite, things are mediated by means of external grounds. \ xThe true foundation of faith is the Spirit, and the witness of the Spirit is inherently living. Verification may at first appear in that external formal manner, but this must drop away./S It may "thus happen that faith in a religion has its commencement from such testimony,


from miracles, that is in a finite content. Christ Himself, however, spoke against miracles, He reproached the Jews for demanding them of Him, and said to His disciples, " The Spirit will guide you into all truth," Faith which begins in such an external manner is as yet formal, and the true faith must come in its .place. It is essential to mark this distinction between the two kinds of faith, for if this is not done, men are required to believe things which at a certain level of culture they can no longer believe. Miracles, it is said, are to be believed in this way, and this belief is to be a means of faith in Christ; it may indeed be a means, but yet it is always required on its own account as well. The faith thlis demanded is faith in a content which is finite and contingent, that is to say which is not the true content. Jor true faith has no accidental content. This requires especially to be pointed out in view of the '^ Aufklarung." It has gained the mastery over this formal faith, and if orthodoxy demand faith of this kind, it becomes impossible for it, in presence of certain ways of looking at things common among men, to maintain it, because it is faith in a content wrhich is not divine, which is not the witness of God to Himself as Spirit in the Spirit The following is to be specially noted in regard to miracles. "Whether at the marriage at Cana the guests got a little more wine or a little less is a matter of absolutely no importance; nor is it any more essential to determine whether or not the man who had the withered hand was healed; for millions of men go about with withered and crippled limbs, whose limbs no man heals. In like manner it is related in the Old Testament, that at the time of the flight out of Egypt red marks were made at the doors of the Jewish houses in order that the angel of the Lord might recognise those dwellings. Would this angel not have known them without those marks ? This faith has no real interest for Spirit. Voltaire's bitterest attacks are directed against the demands of a faith of this kind. Amoncr other things


he says that it would have been better if God had given the Jews some definite instruction regarding the immortality of the soul, rather than to have taught them to go

to the (aller k la selle). Lutrince thus become a

content of faith (Deut. xxiii. 13- i„S).

\ The non-spiritual, from its very nature, is not a content which can belong to faith. If God speaks, it is spiritually, for Spirit reveals itself to Spirit alone/"

In like manner theology has in recent times laid stress in connection with exegesis on the number of codices in which this or that disputed passage is to be found. Thus there is a passage in the New Testament which, according to the Greek text, reads, "God (6?) blessed for evermore; " au old fragment of parchment found in Oxford, on the contrary, reads, " Who (Christ) blessed for evermore," a difference occasioned by the stroke in the 0. Now, however, it has been pointed out that the stroke shows through from the other side, &c.

If criticism of what we know cdncerning the nature of God takes to do with such things, then these are testimonies which are no testimonies at al].\ The content of religion is the eternal nature, of God, not accidental and external things of this kind.

When Mendelssohn was asked to come over to the Christian religion, his reply was that his own religion did not require of him a faith in eternal truths, but only in certain laws, modes of action or ceremonial observances, and that he looked upon it as ah advantage possessed by the Jewish religion that in it eternal truths are not presented for our acceptance, since for the finding of these reason is sufficient; those positive statutes he said had been established by God, whereas these eternal truths are the laws of nature, mathematical truths, &c.

We must indeed concede that they are eternal, but they are of very limited content, and are no content of eternal Spirit in and for itself. Eeligion, however, must contain nothing else but religion^ and it should contain


as such only eternal truths of the Spirit. This represents the essential characteristic of religion, and for the rest, whether those positive statutes have to do with the external modes of worship, or whether such commands of God relate to moral actions, it- is "again the spiritual element, the disposition of mind which is the principal thing. ' But this religion of commands in its fully developed form is harsh in the extreme, and may become irreligious, and enter into relation with a limited content.

What is to be believed must, however, possess a religious, spiritual content//

3. We have now defined faith, tend attestation as mediation, to be the inmost element in the conception of worship, or as the first moments in it., \ In worship, God is on the one side, I am on the other * and the essential characteristic here is that I enclose< myself with God within myself, know myself in God as my truth, and God in me. The essential thing is this concrete unity// Theoretical consciousness, too, is concrete -in our way of looking at it, but only implicitly. When it becomes concrete for the subject too, it then is practical. Worship is the act of giving to oneself this highest, this absolute enjoyment - there is emotion in it; I am present in it with my individual personality. Thus it is the certainty or sure knowledge of the absolute Spirit in His Church, the Church's knowledge of its own Essence; this is the substantial unity of Spirit with itseM which is essential and infinite form, knowledge in itself. -Thus to put it more definitely, subjective self-consciousness is, to begin with, contained in it, but this consciousness, however, is still subjective in a formal manner only, for the consciousness which has reached knowledge of the absolute content is free. That is to say, it divests itself of the reserve and isolation of Being-for-self, which as a unit is exclusive in relation to its object. Tims it knoWs its Essence, and that this is its Essence; it bears witness of this to the object, and this witness is thus the testimony of Absolute


Spirit, which in like manner only in thus witnessing produces itself as Absolute Spirit. As knowledge, selfconsciousness has an object; as essence it is Absolute Object, and for self-consciousness in so far as it is free this is none other than the witness of the Spirit. Spirit becomes known to self-consciousness only in its freedom, therefore only in so far as this knowledge is free knowledge is the unity of self-consciousness present, and the absolute content is substantial unity, and this means that singularity is simply abrogated, or rather deterpained as universal in opposition to what is singular, so that the latter exists as a mere semblance only. "I" - this empirical existence - from which Essence is still certainly different, is just what is void of essence.

Subjective consciousness itself, =however, is a limited, determinate consciousness, Spirit ^as particular, or in a special form. For Spirit in this special form, for Spirit with a determinate character, truth too exists only in this definite mode. According as the subjective spirit is constituted, so too is objective truth constituted for it.

But in God consciousness and knowledge are inherent.

These are a content, and the form which implies that this content is the object of consciousness is inseparable from it. Here we have to do with Spirit in a particular or special form, and at the progressive stages of the development of Spirit faith modifies itself and adopts a different kind of content. Thus we do right to speak to a child of God its Creator, and in this way the child forms an idea of God as of some Higher Being; this is grasped by the consciousness in early years, but only in a limited manner; and the foundation thus laid is thenfurther extended and broadened. The One Spirit is in fact the substantial foundation; this is the spirit of a people, as it takes a definite shape in the individual periods of the history of the world. It is the national spirit. This constitutes the substantial foundation in the individual; each person is born in his own nation and belongs to the


spirit of that people. This spirit is ia fact the substantial elementj and as it were the identical element of nature; it is the absolute foundation of faith. It is the standard which determines what is to be regarded as truth. This substantial element exists in this way independently in contradistinction to individuals; it is their power in reference to them as units, and is in this relation to them their absolute authority. Each individual as belonging to the spirit of his people is born in the faith of his fathers, without his fault and without his desert, and the faith of his fathers is a sacred thing to the individual and is his authority. This constitutes that basis of faith afforded by historical development.

And here the question arises as to how a religion is founded, that is to say, in what manner the substantial Spirit comes into the consciousness o nations. This is something historical; the beginnings are invisible; those who are capable of expressing that Spirit are prophets, poets. Herodotus says. Homer and Hesiod made their gods for the Greeks. Homer and Hesiod have here an authority, but for this reason only, that their utterances were in conformity with the Greek spirit. And besides, the thoughts of these poets were preceded by still earlier beginnings, which were the first glimmerings of the Divine, for it will hardly be maintained that the stage of culture which appears in the works of Homer represents what has existed from the very first. Dread of the supersensuous expressed itself in the earliest times in a crude and primitive manner. Pear is' the beginning, and in order to remove it and to render "that supersensuous power propitious, recourse was had to incantations, and prayers were offered up in the form of hynms. Thus by degrees consciousness develops itself, and the few who in this state of things know what the Divine is are the Patriarchs, the Priests, or it may hp that a caste or a particular family is marked off to teach doctrine and to conduct the worship of God. Each individual lives into


the spirit of these ideas and experiences^ and thus a spiritual contagion is spread abroad among the people, and education, too, bears its part, bo that the individual breathes in the atmosphere of his people. The children too go in festival attire with their elders to worship, take part in the religious functions, or liaVe something to do in connection with this divine worship. In any case, they learn the prayei's, hear repeated the beliefs of the church and of the nation, enter into these and accept them in the same direct way in which uniformity in dress and the customs of everyday life are propagated.

Such is natural authority; but its power is greatest in spiritual matters. However independent the individual may imagine himself to be, it is impossible for him to get beyond this spirit, for it is what is substantial, it is his special nature itself.

^ This authority is, to begin with, something entirely natural, and has a sure place amongst a people on its own account, without hinting at any prohibition of what is contrary to it. Under such conditions, individuals as units are neither free nor are they in bondage, for there is here no kind of opposition of reflection and subjective thought.

We say, such and such peoples have believed this, but they themselves do not call it " believing," if you understand by belief or faith what involves the consciousness of opposition.

But now different forms of faith make their appearance, different religions, which can come into collision with one another. Tliis collision may take place in the sphere of ordinary thought and of reflection, and the defence may be based on reasons and evidences of truth, but it may also take the form of .one people compelling otliers to conform to their faith, and thus faith becomes compulsory State-authority, enforced partly within the State itself and partly outside of it. This kind of collision has given rise to countless wars. Under this head we may rank the wars of the Mohammedans, the religious


wars between Catliolics and Protestants, the Inquisition too, and the battles in India between worshippers of Siva and Vishnu. In such conflicts the combatants fight for the glory of God, they fight in order that God may be recognised in consciousness, and that what is truth for the nation may receive recognition. Freedom of faith in the general sense revolts ragainst such compulsion; this freedom, however, can further take up a position of impartiality relatively to the various forms of belief which assert themselves to be the truth. Thus this freedom is formally the same as freedom of faith as such, in which what is believed is not to be brought into question. Sach then is the formal demand of freedom which does not criticise the truth of faith, and is concerned with subjective freedom only, whatever may be the nature of the content. It is here that the distinction enters between the inner life, the place of conscience, in which i am, so to speak, at home with myself, and the essential content. The inner life is the holy place, the seat of my freedom, and it is to be held in respect. This demand is an essential one, which is made by a man in proportion as the consciousness of freedom awakens within him. Here the basis is no longer the substantial content of faith, but its formal character.

But now the freedom of faith directly appears as a contradiction in itself if the matter be regarded from the point of view of abstract thought. For in the very act of believing, a man accepts something given, something already present. Freedom, on the other hand, requires that this should be posited, produced by myself. But in this demand of freedom, faith is really conceived of as my personal faith, as an inmost certainty which is absolutely and exclusively my own. In this certainty of my own, in this my conviction, my faith has its source and its place, I am free and independent with regard to others, whatever the faith itself may happen to be; or, in other words, the definite reasons, reflections, and feelings

VOL. T. p


upou which it is built are of no importance here.

Clearly faith is in itself, as far as the content is concerned, still in bondage, and it is Thought which first seeks to be free in respect of the content also.

Here, accordingly, where freedom brings itself into relation with the content as well, is' it that the breach between thought and faith makes its appearance, that breach which we already see among the Greeks in the time of Socrates, Thought implies a new relation towards faith; that is to say, the aspect of' Form enters into relation with the substantial element of truth. In the Christian religion this principle is present from the beginning. ^Regarded in one aspect, that religion starts, it is true, from an external history which is made a matter of faith; but this history at the same time professes to be the explication of the nature of God, Christ, in accordance with the distinction which directly enters here, is not merely a man, who experienced a particular fate, but He is also the! Son of God. The explication of the history of Christ, the unfolding of its meaning, is thus the deeper lying element. This has been given in thought, and it has produced Dogmatics - the doctrine of the Church. With "this there co-exists a demand for "inwardness," for thought. The breach between thought and faith then develops itself further.

Thought knows itself to be free, not only so far as the form is concerned, but in respect of the content also.

In thought, however, freedom does Tiot exist altogether apart from authority; it has certain principles, which are really its own, and to which it reduces everything.

But these principles themselves belong to development; a given period has certain principles, and so far authority, too, is present in it. It is the ultimate analysis only, where no assumed principles any longer exist, which constitutes the advance to philosophy.

The as yet religious mediation ofjaith as it appears in worship, is the active process of bringing forward


into reality the previously determiaed unity, and the enjoyment of it; so that what is potentially in faith may also be realised, felt, enjoyed. When will appears in this form, worship is practical, and' this active process has to begin with the form of limitation and particularity. It is frequently said that in his will man is infinite; while in his understanding,, his power of knowledge, he is finite. To say this is childish; the opposite is much nearer the truth. In willing, a man confronts an Other, he isolates himself as an individual, he has in himself a purpose, an intent with Tegard to an Other, he behaves as if separated from that Other, and thus linitude comes in. In his acts man has an end before him, and such action essentially requires that the content, the end, should exist, should lose the form of an idea, or in other words, that the end in view being, to begin with, subjective, should have this subjectivity taken away from it, and thus at length attain to objective existence.

In so far as, worship, too, is an aqt, it has an end in itself, and this, which is faith, is the implicit concrete reality of the Divine and of consciousness. \^ What worship has to accomplish is not the separation of anything from the Object, or the alteration of anything in it, nor the establishing of its own claims with regard to it. Its end, on the contrary, is essentially absolute reality, '/and this end is not one which has still to be produced, or created, but one which is only to have actuality in me; it is, therefore, opposed to me, opposed to my particular subjectivity. This last is the husk, which is to be stripped off; I am to be in the Spirit, and the Object is to be in me as Spirit.

Here then is a twofold act, the grace of God and the sacrifice of man. In connection with the act, which we call the grace of God, the mind gets into a difficulty ou account of the freedom of man. \ But the freedom of man just consists in the knowledge and willing of God, and exists only through the annulling of human knowledge


and will./ Man is not like a stone here, so that it is not a case of grace only operating in a practical way, while man forsooth is the passive material, without participating in any way in what goes on. The end to be reached rather is that through me the Divine should come to be in me, and that toward which the action, which is my action, tends, is the renunciation in general of that self of mine, which no longer retains itself for its own sake. Such is the twofold active movement which constitutes worship, and thus is its end the existence of God in man.

I am to make myself such that the Spirit may dwell in me, that I may be spiritual. This is my work, the human work, and that same work is God's, regarded from His side. He moves toward man, and is in man through man's exaltation of himself. What seems to be my act is then God's, and conversel}', too, what seems His is mine. This, it is true, runs counter to the merely moral standpoint of Kant and Fichte; there goodness still remains something which has yet to be brought forth, to be realised, and continues, too, to be something that ought-to-be, as if it were not already essentially there. Here, then, is a world outside of me, which as forsaken of God waits for me to bring the end, the good into.it. The sphere of moral action is limited. \ In religion, on the contrary, goodness, reconciliation, is absolutely complete, and exists on its own account; the Divine unity of the spiritual and the natural world is presupposed- the particular self-consciousness being regarded as belonging to the latter - and the whole question concerns only myself and has reference to myself, and centres in this, that I lay aside my subjectivity and take and have my share in that work which eternally completes itself. According to this, goodness is in no sense something which merely ought to be, an ideal, but is, on the contrary. Divine power, eternal truth.' '

In like manner, if in the present day it is felt to be


supremely necessary to bring faith near to men, and if religious talk is constantly directed toward producing a sense of wretchedness, and together with this the belief that God exists, this is not only not worship, but this persistent effort, implying thac religion has first to be created, is something outside of religion, v The truth rather is that worship is within religion, and the knowledge that God and reality exist is the ftindamental truth which I have only to assimilate to myself. Oh, unhappy age, which must content itself merely with being continually told that there is a God ! /

Since the truth rather is that worship presupposes the essential existence of the final purpose of the world, and yet sets out from this presupposition to oppose empirical self-consciousness and its particular interests, a negative moment or stage is contained in it, but of such a kind that it is really the practical activity of the subject itself, by which it discards particular subjectivity. Such, then, is the notion or conception of worship in general, whose foundation is the determination of what is known as faith.

11. - The Definite Character and Special Forms of Worship or Cultus.

In faith is contained the notion or conception of absolute Spirit itself.

To begin with, this content exists as^ the Notion for us; we have conceived of it as such, but that does not imply that it is already posited in existence as such. The Notion is the inner, the substantial element, and as such it is through us that it is present in us in the knowledge which grasps its object. The Idea, however, does not as yet possess this shape and content in existing self-consciousness generally. At first, therefore, the Idea is like the Notion, like the Substance which is identical with subjective self-consciousness, so that subjective self-consciousness has its Essence, its truth in the object. In the Idea


the subject is essentially conceived of as free, but at first possesses relative freedom only, freedom of the subject in relation to its universal Esseirce, so that it does not separate itself from that Essence, nor persist in keeping to a form which is antagonistic to this its Universality, but continues to exist only in unbroken continuity with its Object. Or, to express it otherwise, freedom is merely this formal freedom of the subject, in which the consciousness of the subject is adequate to its notion. ' As hitherto defined, however, true faith presupposes the selfconsciousness of the absolute freedom of the spirit - the consciousness that man is free in his own nature, by virtue of his fundamental nature, and knows himself as infinite Personality..-^^. ISTow, if such self-consciousness be still immediate, it is, to begin with, only formally free, and labours under the defect of having a merely natural character, and is not man's consciousness of his infinite freedom. God Himself does not exist as Spirit in an immediate manner, and the same is the case as to our consciousness regarding Him. Consequently, freedom itself, and reconciliation in worship or devotion, are in the first instance formal reconciliation and freedom: if the subject is to be adequate to its conception or notion, it is necessary that its notioUj that absolute Spirit, be for it Object as Spirit, for only by bringing itself into relation with its Essence in that absolute content can the subjective spirit be free in itself. The truth is that it remains absolute for itself, and as infinite subjectivity has the consciousness that it has infinite worth for itself, or on its own account, and is the object of the infinite love of God.

\vWe find that worship also develops in conformity with the idea of God which has just been unfolded. At one time God is thought of as thd unity of the natural and spiritual, at another as the absolute unity, which itself is spiritual. The definite aspects of worship correspond with these different ideas of God.-/

I. God is immediately determined as an abstraction,


and as having a merely natural character, not as absolute, infinite Spirit. In as far as this natural character is posited in Him, and He has it in Himself in an affirmative manner, He is indeed the Unity of this and the Spiritual; but in so far as the natural character is something permanent, the unity of the two is immediate also, a unity which indeed is merely natural, and not truly spiritual. As regards man, the body is just as much an affirmative ingredient as the soul if any one says he consists of body and soul; and as thus conceived, the unity of the two is also a natural immediate unity only.

Now, in worship, too, man is determined in the same way, as having an immediate natural character, or as being in the unfreedom of freedom. ^N^To say that man is simply naturally free (a definition which really contradicts itself) implies also that his relation to his object, his essence, his truth, is such a natural unity, and his faith, his worship, is therefore essentially an immediate relation, or an original state of reconciliation with his object. This is a characteristic of worship in all those religions in which the absolute essential nature of God is not as yet revealed.

Here man in his freedom has not yet attained to freedom.

"Such, for instance, is heathen worship, which has no need of reconciliation. Here worship is already that which man represents to himself as the ordinary mode of life; he lives in this substantial unity, worship and life are not separated, and a world of absolute finit^ude has not as yet placed itself over against an infinitude. Thus a consciousness of their felicity prevails among the heathen, a consciousness that Grod is near to them as the God of the nation, of the State - the feeling that the gods are friendly toward them, and bestow upon them the enjoyment of all that is best. If Athene was known to the Athenians under this guise as their divine power, they knew themselves to be originally one with her, and knew the divine to be the spiritual power of their nation itself. At the first stage of the immediate unity of the finite and infinite.


self-consciousness has not as yet attained to development into Totality. The distinction is not in so far taken seriously. !N"egativity must, it is true, present itself, but not being the product of consciousness itself, the negative is shut out from the inner relation of subjectivity. It has its place outside, and is, as it were, a realm of darkness and of evil to be separated off from the immediate unity. Conflict and strife with that negative may even arise, but it is of such a kind that "it is thought of more as an external conflict, and the enmity and return out of it are not regarded as essential moments of self-consciousness. In this stage there is therefore no real reconciliation, for this presupposes an absolute dualism or division in the inner life.

Here, therefore, the essential note of worship is that it is not something peculiar, not anything set apart from the rest of life, but rather a continuous life in the realm of light and in the Good. The temporal life with all its needs - this our immediate life- - is itself worship, and the subject has not as yet separated its essential life from the maintenance of its temporal life, and from the occupations belonging to immediate, finite existence.

At this stage, an express consciousness of its God as such must indeed spring up in the subject; there must be a rising up to the thought of the absolute Being, and there must be adoration and praise of Him. But this is to begin with an abstract relation of a separate and independent character into which concrete life does not enter. So soon as the relation of worship takes on a more concrete stape, it takes up the entire external actual existence of the individual into itself, and the whole compass of ordinary daily life, eating, drinking, sleeping, and all actions connected with the satisfaction of natural necessities come to have a reference to worship, and the engaging in these actions and occupations constitutes a holy life.

"While, however, externality and^need are necessarily inherent in such occupations, they must, if they are to be


lifted up into that essential unity, have special attention directed to them, and be engnged in with circumspection and sobriety, to the exclusion of all caprice. In this way solemnity and dignity rule in the most ordinary dealings of life. The concrete existence of finite life is not as yet esteemed a matter of indifference; it is not as yet degraded by freedom to externality, because the freedom of the inner life has not yet given itself an independent sphere. The acts of daily and ordinary life are, therefore, still regarded all through in relation to religion, and have the value of substantial acts. In order that this action, which is regarded by us as action of a contingent kind, may be congruent to the form of substantiality, it is essential that it be carried out with solemnity, repose, and becoming regularity and order.

Consequently, all this is arranged in g, general manner by means of rules, and that appearance of contingency is not present here, since in the process of becoming finite the subject has not cast itself loose from the Infinite, and given itself free play. An oriental who occupies this standpoint does not consider his body, nor finite occupations and the act of engaging in these as his own, but rather as being in the service of an Otlier, of the universal -essential Will. For that reason he must engage in the most insignificant affairs with dignity and sober-mindedness, so that he may accomplish them in a becoming manner, in a manner suitable to that: universal Will.

That solemnity is a mere form notwithstanding, and the content is limited to the range of the finite, and therefore the opposition is not truly done away with.

.Consequently, the orderliness with which the actions of everyday life are performed being only an external form belonging to that finite content, the actual distinction between external life and that which:the absolute Object is for consciousness, is still present here. Subjective existence must therefore be definitely and openly annulled, and the mode in which this takes place here is connected


with reflexion upon finitude and on its opposition to the Infinite. But the negativity of the finite can only come about in a finite manner. Now this is what is generally designated as sacrifice.

Sacrifice directly involves the renunciation of an immediate finitude in the sense of being a testifying that this finitude is not to be my own possession, and that I do not desire to have it for myself. From this standpoint of the religious consciousness, sacrifice is therefore sacrifice in the strict and proper sense. Negativity cannot here reveal itself in an inward process because we are not yet in presence of the depths of the inner life of thought and feeling. Sacrifice does not consist in a " conversion " of the inner life, of the heart and of the natural inclinations, rendering it necessary that these should be broken. On the contrary, what the subject is for itself or in its independent condition, such is it when in immediate possession, and the yielding up of its finitude in worship is only the renunciation of an immediate possession, and a natural existence. In this sense, sacrifice is not any longer present in a spiritual religion, but what is there designated sacrifice can only be such in a figurative sense.

Sacrifice, to speak more precisely, can at this stage be merely a sacrifice of adoration, of praise, the act of testifying that I have nothing peculiar to myself but that I relinquish it in thinking of myself in relation to the Absolute. He to whom the possession is yielded up, is not to be made richer by means of it; all that happens is that the subject in this renunciation gets for itself the consciousness of tbe removal of separation, and its action is in so far purely joyous action. This too is the general signification of gifts in Eastern countries, subjects or vanquished enemies bring presents to the king, not that he may be made richer, for everything is already assigned to him, and everything belongs to him.

^Further, too, sacrifice may assume the character of a


sacrifice of purificationj having reference to a specific defilement. !From the point of view which we are considering, sin, in the strict sense, has not been committed; the special sacrifices of purification group themselves round all finite action generally. They represent no repentance, no punishment; they have no spiritual change as their aim, and they do not involve the endurance of any kind of loss or damage. It is not considered that a man has done some evil deed for which he must endure an evil in return. All such categories as those just mentioned would include the idea of a justification of the subject; but that is an idea which does not as yet in any sense enter in here. 'Erom our standpoint, such sacrifices would be regarded as losses, since something we possess is relinquished by means of them. Such a view is meanwhile wholly absent from the minds of those who occupy the standpoint above referred to; their sacrifice is, on the contrary, essentially symbolical. A defilement has occurred, and this must be got rid of in a similarly immediate manner. The subject, however, cannot make what has happened into something ^which has not happened, nor can it repent that it has acted as it did. For this reason there must necessarily be an exchange or substitution, and something must be relinquished other than that existence which was really in question. What is offered up may be much more insignificant as regards intrinsic value than what I receive, what I have acquired for myself. Thus I actually take possession of the harvest which I have won, of the animal which I have slaughtered, and then if it is to be shown that I do not seriously take this possession as mine, this is done in a symbolical manner. It is not as if what I do ought not to take place, for such: actions are necessary; through the act of sacrifice it is only this becoming finite generally, this independent existence of mine which is once more annulled.

The general characteristic which marks these acts


of devotion, is what \\'e call Ceremonial. It consists in this, that everyday common actions (as ^'c regard them) are at the same time necessary actions, and are prescribed by rule. We have the right to act here in accordance with our fancies, or to follow habit in an unconscious way; in like manner we do not hold a purification to be necessary in the same degree in which such actions as the gathering of the harvest and the slaughtering of an animal, are necessary. And since, further, in the case of these offerings and purifications there is an actual reference to the religious aspect of life, no distinction presents itself here to which an importance would not be attributed. Thus the different means of sustaining life are not looked upon in relation to taste and to health merely. "We have accordingly here the combination of different elements in connection with sacrifice and purification. That action by means of which purification from another action is got, can have no necessary relation to the latter, and for this reason the combination can only be an ^accidental and external one. Hence arises the painful element in this Ibrm of worship. If a meaning lies or has lain in these ceremonies and combinations, yet it is a trivial and a superficial one, and in becoming a matter of habit, such actions lose even the little meaning which may once have lain in them.

At this point, accordingly, definite punishment comes in, in so far as a deed which is opposed to some prescribed rule has to be annulled, and in so far as it is a question of a transgression. The punishment of such a transgression is in turn an injury, and something is relinquished - life, property, and so forth. But the meaning attached to this punishment here is that of a purely barren, formal punishment, like civil punishment. This latter, however, does not necessarily concern itself with the improvement of the delinquent, while ecclesiastical repentance or penance is in our view a punishment of which the essential


purpose is the improvement and conversion of the person punished. To those occupying this standpoint, punishment cannot have any such moral, or rather religious, meaning. Civil laws, and the laws of the State are here in fact identical with religious laws. The law of the State is the law of freedom; it presupposes personality, the dignity of man, and has essential reference to the "Will, a sphere of discretion being left for the exercise of judgment regarding unimportant and indifferent matters. But for those who occupy the standpoint of which we are treating such a separation does not as yet exist, and the general condition is one of mere necessity.

From that finite form of existence and action which the religious worship just described brings into relation with what has essential being, there is further to be distinguished a more specific form of action which is in accordance with ends. The performance of such actions as Lave immediate reference to our necessities or requirements does not take place in accordance with an end, but is regulated in an immediate way. This action^ on the other hand, which is in accordance with an end, is not mere action prompted by necessity or habit, but determines itself in accordance with ideas. Thus it still, it is true, is finite action, in so far as it has a finite end; but since the leading principle here is that the finite should be lifted up to the infinite, the finite ends too are to be extended into an infinite one. In this way religious work or labour makes its appearance, and this produces works of devotion which have not reference to a finite end, but which are meant to be something which exists for its own sahe. This work is here itself worship.

Such works and such productions are not to be regarded as corresponding with our ecclesiastical buildings, which are only undertaken because they are required. This labour, on the other hand, as pure production and as perennial work, is its own end, and is consequently never completed.

Now, this religious -woxk is of diverse kinds and cf


various degrees, from the mere bodily movement of the dance up to the erection of enormous colossal structures.

The latter are principally of the nature of monuments, and are endless in number, for a fresh beginning must continually be made as each generation completes its own work.

The determininsj a^ent in connection with such works is not yet the free imagination;, on the contrary, what is produced has the character of something enormous and colossal. The production of such things is still essentially chained to what is ]!^atural and Given, and the discretion left to active effort is limited merely to this, that the dimensions be on an exaggerated scale, and the actual forms be characterised by proportions of the " enormous " order.

All these works too fall within the sphere of sacrifice^ for in these, as in sacrifice, the end is the Universal, as against which what is peculiar to self and the interests of the subject must be relinquished. All activity, in fact, is a relinquishment, no longer, however, of a merely external thing, but of inward subjectivity. This renunciation or sacrifice which is involved in activity, in virtue of its character as activity, produces at the same time an object, brings something into existence, yet not in such a way that the Being which is: created merely issues from myself, but rather so that the act of production takes place in accordance with an end which is full of content. The labour of man by which the unity of the finite and infinite is brought about only in so far as it is penetrated throughout by Spirit and wrung out of the action of Spirit, is, however, already a deeper sacrifice, and an advance on that form und*er which sacrifice ori^i o

ually makes its appearance merely as the renunciation of an immediate finitude; for in this act of production the sacrifice is a spiritual deed, and is the effort which, as negation of particular self-consciousness, holds fast the end which has its life within the inner region of thoughts


and ideas, and brings it forth in an outward way for sense-perception.

Hitherto we have considered the worship which beJongs to this standpoint as it proceeds from tlae assumed unity of self-consciousness and the Object. A falling away from this original unity notwithstanding, often makes its appearance here, a deviation from this state of reconciliation, or from the' sense of 'defect which gives rise to the need for that state. This falling away has its root partly in the freewill of the subject, in the enjoyment which the individual has in his''world, - for he is not spiritually self-conscious, and is thus still inclination, desire, - or it comes in from another side, from the power of JSTature, from the misery of man, of the individual, of peoples, or states. After a disturbance of this kind, whereby the unity is interrupted, theire is. constant need of stern negation to restore it again.

Here we have the severance of the Divine and human, and the meaning of worship is not the enjoyment of this unity, but the abrogation of the separation. Here, too, we have the presupposition of a reconciliation which exists on its own account.

2. This severance or separation is, to begin with, one which presents itself in the natural world, and it appears here as some external disaster which "falls upon a people.

Ood is here the substantial power, the power in the spiritual as in the natural world. Now, if death, adverse fortunes in war, pestilence, and other calamities weigh upon a land, the direction which worship takes is that of seeking to regain the goodwill of the. gods, originally enjoyed. It is the calamity which here constitutes the severance; it has reference to the natural sphere only, the external state in respect of bodily existence, these outward conditions not being such as the demand for happiness requires. The assumption here is that this natural state is not an accidental one, but depends upon a hif^her Power, which determines itself as God: God


has laid down those conditions, has created them. A further leading idea is that this Will which decrees the calamity, acts in accordance with the moral connection which implies that it goes well or ill with a man or with a people hecaicse that man or that people has merited what happens as their desert. The coui^e of ISTature is on this account interrupted in reference to the purposes of men, and thus Nature appears as antagonistic to their advantage and prosperity. In the case of such severance, what is requisite is the re-establishment of the unity of the divine "Will with the ends of mem Worship thus takes th6 form of propitiation or atonement. This is brought about by means of acts of repentance and expiation, by sacrifice and ceremonies, in which ^an makes it manifest that he is in earnest as regards the renunciation of his particular will.

The view that God is the ruling power over Nature - » that Nature depends upon a higher Will - is what really lies at the basis of this standpoint. The only question which presents itself here is as to how far the divine Will is represented in natural events - as to how it is to be recognised in these. It is taken for granted from this point of view that the power of Nature is not natural only, but contains within itself purposes which, as such, are foreign to it - namely, purposes of goodness, which concern the welfare of man, and that that welfare is de'pendent upon these purposes. We too recognise this as true. But the well-being is of iin abstract, universal sort. When people speak of their "well-being, they have particular ends which are wholly their own as apart from others, and thus they comprise their well-being within limited, natural existence. But if a man descends in this manner from the divine Will to particular ends, he descends into. the realm of finiteness and contingency. The religiouS: feeling, the pious thought that individual misfortune is dependent upon the Good, rises also, it is true, direct from the individual up to God, to the Universo],


and thus the sovereignty of the Universal over the Particular is acicnowledged. But what next follows is the application of this Universal to the Particular, and here the defectiveness of this conception becomes evident.

Nations which are visited by calamity search after some transgression as its cause, and then fly for refuge to a

-Power which determines itself in accordance with ends.

Even although the presence of this Universal be conceded here, its application to the Particular "leads, on the other hand, to a disparity or false relation.

In the disturbed relations which we find at this first stage, uuity appears as limited in character. It is capable of being rent asunder; it is not absolute, for it is an original and unreflected unity. Thus, over this presupposed, immediate, and consequently destructible harmony, and over the celebration and enjoyment of it, there still broods a Higher, a Supreme. Por the original unity is mere natural unity, and in being such is limited for Spirit. P>eing encumbered with a natural element, it has not that reality whicli it ought in accordance with its notion to possess. This disunion must necessarily come to be present for consciousness, for consciousness is implicitly thinking Spirit. Tliere must arise in consciousness the need, of an absolute unity which hovers over that satisfying fruition, a unity which, however, remains abstract only, since that original harmony is the complete, concrete, and living foundation. Over this sphere there hovers a sense of division which is not resolved and harmonised, and thus through the gladness of that living unity there sounds a jarring and unresolved tone of mourning and of pain; a fate, an unknown power, a coercive necessity, unknown but recognised^ without reconciliation, to which consciousness submits, but only by the negation of itself, broods over the heads of gods and men. This is an element which is bound up with the particular form of self- consciousness under con. sideration. >



Now it is just here that a special aspect of worship presents itself. For in that first unity the negation of the subject is superficial and accidbntal, and what broods over the subject is only the feeling of sadness, the thought of necessity, which is a negative element as opposed to that living unity. But this negativity has also to become actual, and prove itself to be a higher power over tbat unity. This necessity does not remain merely an idea or general conception; the lot of man becomes a stern one, the natural man passes away, death makes serious work with him, fate devours him, and he is comfortless, for the very reconciliation, the unity, is not that of what is deepest and most inward; but, on the other hand, the natural life is still an essential moment, and is not relinquished. The division has not as yet gone so far as this; a unity of the natural and spiritual has, on the contrary, remained, in which the former maintains an affirmative character. This destiny has now to be transformed for ordinary thought and in a subjective manner, into the affirmative, and thus the spirits of the dead are regarded as the unreconciled element which has to be reconciled: they must be avenged for the injustice of their death. Here, accordingly, we have that service in honour of the dead, which is an essential part or aspect of worship.

3. The higher attitude, then, .as compared with this last stage of worship, is that where subjectivity has arrived at the consciousness of fts intrinsic infinitude.

It is here that religion and worship enter completely into the domain of freedom. The subject knows itself to be infinite, and knows itself to be &uch in its character as subject. In this it is involved that what was formerly the Unrevealed or Undisclosed Las the moment of individuality in itself, so that individuality. by this means acquires absolute value. But now individudity has value as being this absolute and consequently purely universal singularity or individuality. Here the individual exists only through


the abrogation of his immediate individuality, through which abrogation he produces absolute individuality in himself, and is consequently free in himself. This freedom exists as the movement of absolute Spirit in him by the abrogation of the natural and finite. Man, in arriving at a consciousness of the infinity of his spirit, has brought into view the element of division in its most extreme form iu regard both to Nature generally and to himself: it is in this division that the domain of true freedom has its origin. Through this 'knowledge of absolute Spirit the opposition between infinite and finite has entered in in its most extreme form, and this division is the bearer of reconciliation. It is no longer asserted here that man is good and is reconciled with absolute Spirit.

from his birth, that is, in accordance with his immediate nature; but, on the contrary, that just^because his conception is the absolutely free unity, that natural existence of Jiis directly proves itself to be iu a state of opposition, and consequently to be something which is to be abrogated and absorbed, I^ature, the heart in its immediate state, is what has to be relinquished, because that moment does not leave Spirit free, and as natural spirit it is not posited by its own act. If the natural ellment be retained, the spirit is not free. Accordingly, what it is, it is not by its own act, or on its own account, but it finds itself so. In that higher sphere, on the other hand, all that man ouiiht to be lies involved in the domain of freedom.

Here, then, worship essentially passes over into the region of inner life; here the heart must break, that is to say, the natural will, the natural consciousness is to be relinquished. On the one hand, too, there are actual sins, of which man has to repent, sins which, as single acts, have a contingent character, and do not concern human nature as such. But, on th^ other hand, in the abstraction of finitude and infinitude - in that general opposition - ^the finite, as such, is reputed to be evil.

That separation which is originally inherent in man has


to be annulled. And assuredly the natural will is not the ¦will as it ought to be, for it ought to be free, and the will of passion is not free. By nature Spirit is not as it ought to be; by means of freedom only does it become such.

That'the will is by nature evil is 'the form under which this truth is presented here. But man is only guilty if he adhere to this his natural character. Justice, morality, are not the natural will, for in it a man is selfish, his desire is only toward his individual life as such.

It is by means of worship, accordingly, that this evil element is to be annulled. Man is not innocent in the sense that he is neither good nor bad. What results from the freedom of man is not natural inpocence of this kind.

But man becomes educated to freedom, which has an essential character only when it wills the essential will and this will represents what is good, right, moral.

Man is to become free, that is to say, upright and moral, and he is to become such by the way of education.

According to the view here referred to, this kind of education is expressive of the overcoming of the evil element, and as thus regarded it is posited in the sphere of consciousness, while education takes place in an unconscious manner. The abrogation of the antithesis of good and evil has its place in this form of worship; tlie natural man is represented as evil, but the evil element is the aspect of separation and estrangement, and this estrangement is to be negated. There is also present the assumption that reconciliation is potentially accomplished; in worship a man creates this assurance for himself, and lays hold upon the potentially completed reconciliation.

It is, however, already perfected in and through God, and it is this divine reality whiclrman is to take to himself as his own.

But this appropriation of reconciliation takes place by the negation of the estrangement, .and therefore by means of renunciation. And now the question arises, What then actually is it that man is to renounce ? Man is to


renounce his particular will, his passions and natural impulses. This may be understood a^ if the impulses of nature were to be eradicated, not merely purified - as if the vitality of the will were to be slain. This is wholly a mistake. What is true is that it is only the impure content that is to be purified; in other words, its content is to be made conformable to the nxoral will. It is a false demand, on the contrary, that is made when the renunciation is conceived of iu an abstract way as if the impulse of vitality in itself were to, be annulled. Possession, personal property, is likewise a part of what pertains to man; it is his by his own will; therefore it might now be demanded of him thafhe should relinquish his possession; celibacy is a demand of this kind. Freedom, conscience, belong also to man; iu the same sense it may be required of him that he should give up his freedom, his will, in which case he sinks down into a gloomy, will-less creature. This is the extreme form of such a demand. Connected with this part of the subject is the idea that I should undo my deeds, and suppress the woikincrs of evil action. Eenunciation means here


that I do not desire to regard certain^ deeds which I have committed as being my own, that I regard them as not having taken place, that is, I desire to repent of them.

As regards time, it is true the action has passed by, so that it is nullified by time. But as to its inner content, in so far as it belonns to my will, it is still preserved in the inner sphere, and the destruction of it then means, relinquishment of the state of mind in which it exists ideally. If punishment be the destruction of the evil element in the sphere of reality, this destruction in the inner life is penitence and contrition, and the Spirit is able to accomplish this renunciation, since it has the energy to efiect a change in itself, and to annul in itself the maxims and intentions of its will. If in this manner a man renounces his selfishness and the separation between himself and goodness, he then- has become a par


taker of reconciliation, and by ineaiis of this iuternal process has attained to peace. And thus it comes to pass that Spirit here manifests itself in the subject as it truly is in its essential nature, and in. conformity with its content, and that this content is no longer something beyond this worldj but that free subjectivity has in it its own Essence as its object. Worship is thus finally the presence of the content which constitutes absolute Spirit, and this makes the history of the divine content to be essentially the history of mankind as well - the movement of God toward man, and of man toward God.

Man knows himself to be essentially included in this history, woven into it. While in contemplating it he immerses himself in it, his immersion in it is the active intermingling of this content and process, and he secures for himself the certain knowledge -and enjoyment of the implied reconciliation.

This working out of subjectivity, this purification of the heart from its immediate natural character - if it be thoroughly carried out^ and create fe, permanent condition which corresponds with the universal end of subjectivity - assumes a complete form as morality, and by this path religion passes over into established custom, into the State.

Thus it is that that essential connection known also as the relation of religion to the State makes its appearance. With regard to this, we have now to speak with greater detail.

III. - The E.ELAT10N OF Eeugion to the State.

I. The State is the true form of reality. In it the true moral will comes into the sphere of reality, and Spirit lives iu its true nature. Eeligion is divine knowledge, the hnowledge man has of God, the knowledge of himself in God. This is the divine wisdom, and the field of absolute Truth. But there is besides a second


wisdom, the wisdom of the world, aud the question arises as to the relation in which it stands to that divine wisdom.

In a general sense, religion and the foundation of the State are one and the same; they are in their real essence identical. In the patriarchal condition, in the Jewish theocracy, the two are not as yet separated, and are still outwardly identical. But yet they" are diiicrent, and in the further course of events they are sharply separated from one another, and then again are posited in true identity. From what has just been: said, the reason of the existence of the essentially existing unity is already clear. A Eeligion is the knowledge of the highest trath, and this truth more precisely defined is free Spirit. lu religion man is free before God; in that he brings his will into conformity with the divine will, he is not in opposition to the supreme will, but possesses himself in it; he is free, since in worship he has attained to the annulling of the division. The State is only freedom in the world, in the sphere of actuality. "^/Everyching essentially depends here on the conception of freedom which a people bears in its own self-consciousness, for in the State the conception of freedom is realised, and to this realisation the consciousness of freedom which exists in its own right essentially belongs. Such nations as do not know that man is free in his own right, live in a condition of torpor, both as regards their form of government and their religion. There is but one conception of freedom in religion and the State. This one conception is man's highest possession, and it is realised by man.

A nation which has a false or bad conception of God, has also a bad State, bad government, bad laws.

The detailed consideration of this essential connection between the State and religion belongs properly to the Philosophy of History. It is only to be considered here in the definite form under which it appears to ordinary thought, and as it gets involved in contradictions in this form, and, finally, as it arrives at the opposition between


the two created by the interests of modern times. "We therefore, first of all, consider this connection as it is ordinarily conceived.

2. Men are distinctly conscious of this connection, not, however, in its true character as 'absolute, and. as it is known in philosophy, but rather they know and conceive of it in a general way only. The mode in which the idea of this connection finds expression is in the tracing of laws, authority, and the coustitution of the State to a divine origin. They are considered as deriving their authorisation from this source, and, in fact, from the highest authority which can be conceived of. These laws are the development of the conception of freedom, and this latter, reflecting itself thus upon actual existence, has the conception of freedom as it appears in religion for its foundation and truth.

To say this implies that these laws of morality, of right, are eternal and unchangeable rules for the conduct of man, that they are not arbitrary, but continue to exist so long as religion itself continues to exist. We find a general conception of this connection among all nations.

It may be taken as meaning that man obeys God in the act of conforming to the laws, to the ruling authority, to the powers which hold the State together. This way of stating the matter is in one aspect correct enough, but in this form the thought is exposed to the risk of being taken in a wholly abstract sense, inasmuch as nothing is determined regarding the explanation of what is involved in the laws, nor as to what laws are fitted to form the fundamental statutes. Expressed in this formal manner, the meaning of the proposition is that men are to obey the laws whatever they may happen to be. In this way the act of governing and the giving of laws are abandoned to the caprice of the governing power. This condition of things has actually existed in Protestant States, and it is only in such States that it can be found, for it is in these that that unity of religion aiid the State actually


exists. The laws of the State are regarded as rational and as having a divine character in v-irtue of this assumed original harmony, and religion has not principles peculiar to itself which contradict those which prevail in the State.

While, however, formal principles are adhered to, free scope is given to caprice, to tyranny, and to oppression.

This state of things presented itself in a marked manner in England (under the last kings of the House of Stuart) when a passive obedience was demanded, and it was an accepted principle that the ruler was responsible for his actions to God only. This also involves the assumption that it is the ruler alone who knows for certain what is essential and necessary to the State; for in him and in his will is contained the principle; in its more precise form that he is an immediate revelation of God. This principle, however, when further logically developed, reaches the point at which it turns round into its direct opposite, for the distinction between priests and laymen does not exist among Protestants, a,nd priests are not privileged to be the sole possessors -of divine revelation, and still less does there exist any such privilege which can belong exclusively to a layman. To the principle of the divine authorisation of the ruler there is accordingly opposed the principle of this same authorisation which is held to be inherent in the laity in general. Thus there arose a Protestant sect in England, the members of which asserted that it had been imparted to them by revelation how the people ought to be governed, and in accordance vpith the directions thus received from the Lord, they raised the standard of revolt, and beheaded their king. But even supposing that the general principle at least has been established that laws exist through an act of the divine will, still there is another aspect of the matter which is just as important, namely, that we should have a rational knowledge of this divine will, and such knowledge is not anything particular or special, but belongs to alL To know and recognise what is rational is accordingly


the business of cultured thought, and is specially the business of philosophy, -which may, perhaps, in this sense be termed worldly wisdom. It is a matter of no importance under what external forpa true laws have succeeded in establishing themselves, and whether they have been extorted by threats out of rulers or not; the cultivation and development of the conception of freedom, of right, of humanity, is on its own account necessary to mankind. With regard to the truth that laws are the divine will, it is therefore of the utmost moment to determine what these laws are. Principles as such are mere abstract thoughts, which only attain their truth in being unfolded and developed; held fast in their abstract state, they represent what is wholly untrue.

3. Finally, the State and religion may be severed from one another, and may have different laws. What is worldly and what is religious stand on a different basis, and a distinction in regard to principle also may make its appearance here. Eeligion does hot merely keep to its own proper sphere, but concerns the subject too, prescribes rules in reference to his religious life, and consequently in reference to his active- life also. Those rules which religion makes for the individual may be different from the fundamental principles of right androf morality which prevail in the State. The form in which this contradiction expresses itself is that the demancJs of religion have reference to holiness; those of the State, to right and morality: what is in view on the one side is Eternity; on the other, Time and temporal welfare, which must be sacrificed to eternal well-being. In this way a religious ideal is set up - a heaven upon earth; in other words, the abstraction of Spirit as against the substantial element of the actual world. Kenunciation of this actual world is the fundamental principle which appears here, and with it appear conflict and flight. Something quite different, which is to be regarded as higher, is set in opposition to the substantial foundation, to the True.


The primary moral relation in the substantial world of reality is marriage. The love which God is, is in the sphere of reality, conjugal love. As the primary manifestation of the substantial will in the concretely existing world, this love has a natural side; but it is a moral duty as well. To this duty, renunciation - celibacy^is opposed as something holy.

Secondly, as a unit, man has to engage in a conflict with, the necessity of nature; for him it is a moral law, that he should render himself independent by means of his activity and understanding, for in his natural aspect man is dependent on many sides. By his spiritual nature, by his sense of honesty, lie is placed under the necessity of earning his livelihood, and thus setting himself free from that necessity of nature. This is man's honesty or integrity. A religious duty which has been placed in opposition to this worldly one requires that man should not exercise activity in this fashion, and should not trouble himself with such cares as these. The entire sphere of action, of all that activity which connects itself with gain, with industries, and such like, is consequently abandoned.

Man is not to take to do with such ends. Want, however, is more rational here than such religious views. On the one side the activity of man is represented here as something unholy; on the other, it is even demanded of ..him, if he have a possession, not only that he should not increase it by his activity, but that he should give it away to the poor, and especially to the Church - that is to say, to those who do nothing, do not work. Thus, what in life is highly esteemed as integritj" is consequently repudiated as unholy.

Thirdly, the highest morality in the -State is based upon the carrying into effect of the rational universal will; in the State the subject possesses his freedonS, this being realised or actualised in the State. In opposition to this a religious duty is set up, in accordance with which man is notpermitted to make freedom his object and end. On the contrary, he


is to subject himself to a strict obedience; he is to abide in the condition of will-lessness; and more than this, he is to be selfless in his conscience too; in his faith, in his deeper inner life, he is to renounce himself and cast away his self.

When religion lays its arrest on the active lii'e of man in this manner, it can prescribe peculiar rules to him which are in opposition to the rationality of the world. In contrast to this action of religion, worldly wisdom, which recognises the element of truth in the sphere of reality, makes its appearance, the principles of its freedom are awakened in the consciousness of the Spirit, and here the demands of -freedom are seen to enter into conflict with the religious principles which required that renunciation.

Such is the relation in which religion and the State stand toward one another in Catholic States when subjective freedom awakes in men.

In connection with this contradiction, religion expresses itself in a negative way only, and. requires of man that he should renounce all freedom; put in a more definite form, this contradiction means that man in his actual or secular consciousness generally is essentially without rights, and religion recognises no absolute rights in the domain of actual or secular morality. So enormous is the change which has in consequence of this made its appearance in the modern world, that it is even asked whether the freedom of man is to be recognised as something which is really and essentially true, or whether it; may be repudiated by religion.

It has been stated already that it is possible that there should be harmony between religion and the State. This is the case in a general sense in Protestant States so far as the principle is concerned, though indeed the harmony is of an abstract kind; for Protestantism demands that a man sliould only believe what he knows, that his conscience should be regarded as a holy thing that is not to be touched or interfered with. In connection with the working of divine grace man is no passive being i he him


self plays an essential part, and co-operates with God by exercising his subjective freedom, and;in his acts of knowing, willing, and believing, the presence of the moment of subjective freedom is expressly required. In States where different religions prevail, it may happen, on the other liaud, that the two sides do not agree, tliat the religion is different -from the principle of the State. We see this to be the case over a very widely extended area: we iind, on the one side, a religion which does not recognise the principle of freedom; on the other, a constitution which makes that principle its basis. If it be said that man is in his true nature free, then this certainly expresses a principle of infinite value. But if an abstraction of this*kind be adhered to, it effectually prevents the development of any kind of organically-constituted government, for this demands a systematic organisation in which duties and rights are limited. That abstraction permits of ^ no inequality, and inequality there must necessarily be if an organism, and with it true vitality, are to exist.

Such principles as these are true, but they must not be taken in their abstract meaning. The knowledge of the truth that man is free in virtue of his real nature, that is, in virtue of his true conception, belongs to modern times. Now whether the abstraction be adhered to or not, it may in either case happen that to these principles a religion stands opposed, which does not acknowledge them, but regards them as illegitimate, and holds that freewill or caprice alone is legitimate. This necessarily gives rise to a conflict which does not permit of adjustment in a true way. Eeligion demands the annulling of the will; lhe worldly principle, on the contrary, takes it for its starting-point. If such religious principles succeed in establishing themselves, it cannot but happen that the government should proceed by force and suppress the religion which is thus opposed to it, or else treat those who belong to it as a faction. Eeligion, in the form of the Chiirch, may indeed act discreetly here, and be out


wardly compliant, but in such a "case the feeling of inconsistency enters into the minds of men. The community clings to a definite religion, and cleaves at the same time to principles which are in opposition to it; in so far as people carry these out, while at the same time they wish to continue to belong to that definite religion, they are guilty of grea.t inconsistency. Thus for example, the French who hold fast to the principle of worldly freedom, have as a matter of fact ceased to belong to the Catholic religion, for that religion can relinquish nothing, but consistently' demands unconditional submission to the Church in everything. In this way religion and the State come to be in contradiction to each other, and religion is in this case left to get along how it can.: It passes for being something which is merely the affair of^ individuals, about which the State has no occasion to concern itself; and then it is further asserted that religion is not to be mixed up with the constitution of the State. The laying down of those principles of freedom goes on the assumption that they are true because they are in essential connection with the inmost consciousness of man. If, however, it be really reason which finds these principles, the verification it gives of them, so far as they are true and do not remain formal, consists in this only, that it traces them up to the rational knowledge of absolute truth, and this is just the object of philosophy. This tracing up, however, must be accomplished in a complete manner, and carried to the ultimate point -of analysis '; for if rational knowledge does not attain completeness in itself, it runs the risk of becoming the one-sidedness of formalism; but if it penetrate to the ultimate ground, it reaches that which is recognised as the Highest - as God. It may perhaps be affirmed with regard to this, that the constitution of the State ought to remain on the one side, and reliftion on the other. But here there is a danger that such principles may remain infeQted with one-sidedness.


At the present day we see the world full of the principle of freedom, and we see that principlefbrought into special relation with the constitution of the State. These prin-ciples are correct, but when infecled with formalism they are assumptions or presuppositions, since rational knowledge or cognition has not penetrated to the ultimate ground. It is there alone that reconciliation with what is absolutely Substantial is to be found.

The other aspect of the matter which falls to be considered in connection with the separation just spoken of is this - that if the principles of actual freedom are made the basis, and these develop into a system of Eight, then, given positive laws consequently come into existence und these acquire the general form:of judicial laws in relation to individuals. The upholding of the existing legislation is handed over to the courts of justice; whoever transgresses the law is brought up for trial, and the existence of the community as a whole is made to rest on laws in this legal form. Over against this, however, stands that subjective conviction, that inner life which is the very home of religion. In this way two sides, both of which pertain to the actual world, are mutually opposed, namely, positive legislation, and the subjective disposition or feeling in reference to this legislation.

As regards the constitution of the State, there are two systems here - the modern system in which the essential characteristics of freedom and its whole structure are upheld in a formal manner to the disregard of subjective conviction. The other system is that of subjective conviction - which represents, speaking generally, the Greek principle, and which we find developed in a special way in the Eepublic of Plato. Here simply a few orders constitute the foundation, while the State as a whole is based upon education, upon culture, which is to advance ¦to science and philosophy. Philosophy is to be the ruling power, and by means of it man is to be led to morality: -all orders are to be partakers of the (ro)(ppoo-vpt].


The two sides - the subjective conviction and that formal constitution - are inseparable, and neither can do without the other; bat in recent times a one-sided view has made its appearance, according to which the constitution is to be self-sustaining, and subjective disposition or private conviction, religion, conscience, are to be set aside as matters of indifference, it being no concern of the government what may be the sentiments or private convictions of individuals, or what form of religion they profess. \^How one-sided this is, however, is clearly seen when we consider that the administration of the laws is in the hands of judges, and hence everything depends upon their uprightness, as also upon their insight, for the law does not rule, but men have to make it rule.

This carrying of the law into effect is something concrete; the will of men, and their power of insight, too, must contribute their share. The intelligence of the individual must therefore often decide, because although civil laws are very comprehensive, yet they cannot touch each special case. But subjective conviction by itself is onesided, too, and the Eepublic of Plato suffers from the defect which this implies. At the present day men will not rely at all upon intelligence, but insist on everything being deduced in accordance with positive laws, A striking example of this one-sidedness has been given us in connection with the most recent contemporary history. We have seen a religious sentiment or conviction taking its place at the head of the French Government, a conviction for which the State generally was something illegitimate and devoid of rights, ^Yhile it itself took up an antagonistic attitude to all that was actually established, to justice, and morality. The last revolution was thus the result of the dictates of a religious conscience, which contradicted the principles of the constitution, and yet, according to that same conistitution, it is not of any importance what religion individuals may profess. The two elements which occ'ai


sion this collision are still very far from being brought into harmony.

This private sentiment or subjective conviction does not necessarily assume the form of religion; it may also continue in a more indefinite state. But amongst what we call " the people/' ultimate truth. does not exist in the form of thought and principles. On the contrary, what will pass with the people as right or justice can hold this position only in so far as it has a definite, special character.

Now this definite character of justice and morality has its ultimate verification for a people only in the form of an actually existing religion, and if this last is not essentially in harmony with the principles of freedom, there is always present a rent, and an uufesolved division or dualism, - an antagonistic relation which ought not to exist in the State, of all places. Under Eobespierre terror reigned in France, and this " terror " was directed against those who did not hold the sentiments of freedom,'because they had fallen under suspicion - that is to say, because of the existence of this conviction or sentiment.

In the same way the Ministry of Charles X. fell under suspicion. According to the formal principles of the constitution, the monarch was responsible to no one, but this formal principle did not hpld its ground, and the dynasty was hurled from the throne. It thus becomes evident that even in the form ally- matured constitution the ultimate sheet-anchor is still the general sentiment or feeling which has been;put on one side in that constitution, and which now asserts itself in contempt of all form. It is from this, contradiction, and from the prevailing insensibility to ft, that our age is sufFerini^.

Transition to the Following Section.

We have distinguished definite, limited worship from worship in the element of freedom, and thus have found VOL. I. u


the same distinction which is, in fact, involved in the idea of God.

\ MThe two aspects of Spirit- - of Spirit in its objectivity, when it is pre-eminently known as God, and of Spirit in its subjectivity, - constitute the reality of the absolute notion or conception of God, who, as the absolute unity of these His two moments, is Absolute Spirit. The determinate character of any one of these aspects corresponds with the other aspect; it is the all-pervading universal form in which the Idea is found, and which again constitutes one stage in the totality of its development^^.

As regards these stages of realisation, the following general distinction has already been established in what has gone before, namely, that according to the one form of reality, Spirit is confined to a certain specific form in which its Being and self-consciousness appear, while according to the other, again, it is its absolute reality, in which it has the developed content of the Idea of Spirit as its object. This form of reality is the true religion.

In accordance with this distinction, definite religion will in the foUowin": section be treated of first of all.





When we speak of definite religion, it is implied, in the first place, that religion generally is taken as a genus, and the definite religions as species^ This relation of genus to species is, from one point of view, quite legitimatCj as, for instance, when in other sciences we pass over from the universal to the particular; but there the particular is only understood in an empirical manner; it is a matter of experience that this or the other animal, this or that kind of justice exists; In philosophical science it is not allowable to proceed in this way. The particular cannot advance towards the universal ] on the contrary, it is the universal itself which resolves upon determination, upon particularisation; the ]N"otion differentiates itself, makes a determination which originates with itself or is its own act. Simultaneously with determinatcness in general, existence or definite Being and essential connection with an "Other" are posited. That which is determined is for an " Other," and what is unde_ termined is not there at all. That for which religion exists - the definite existence of religion - is consciousness, Eeligion has its reality as consciousness. What is to be understood by the realisation of the Notion is that the content is determined by means of it, both as regards the fact and the manner of its existence for consciousness. Our course of procedure is as follows: We

began with the consideration of the notion or conception



of religion, of what religion implicitly is. That is what it is /or us, as we have seen it. Eor it to attain to consciousness is, however, quite another matter. Or, to put it in other words, as we considered the conception of religion, this w^as our thought, it existed in the medium of our thought, toe thought the conception, and it had its reality in our thought. But religion is not merely this subjective element, but is essentially objective; it has a mode of existence of its own, and the first form of this existence is that of immediacy, where religion has not as yet itself advanced to thought, to reflection. This immediacy, however, by its own onward impulse moves toward mediation, because it is potentially thought, and in true religion it becomes for the fir^t time known what it essentially is, what its notion or conception is. True or actual religion is adequate to its notion or conception.

We now have to consider the course by which true religion takes its rise. In its notion or conception religion is no religion as yet, for it is essentially present as such in consciousness only. This is tl e meaning of what we are here considering, namely, the self-realisation of the Notion. The progress of the realisation has been already indicated in a general way: the Notion is, as it were, a capacity in Spirit; it constitutes uts inmost truth; but Spirit must attain to the knowledge of this truth; not till then does true religion become real and actual. It may be said of all religions that they -are religions, and correspond with the notion or conception of religion. At the same time, however, in being still limited, they do not correspond with the notion, and yet they must contain it, or else they would not be religions. But the notion or couception is present in them in different ways. At £rst they contain it implicitly only. These definite religions are but particular moments^of the notion, and for that very reason they do not correspond with it, for it does not exist in an actual shape in them. In like manner, man certainly is implicitly free, but Africans and


Asiatics are not free, because they -do not possess the consciousness of that which constitutes the notion or conception of man. Eeligion is now to be considered in its determinate character. The highest that is or can be attained to is that the determinateness should be the Notion itself, where the limits are therefore annulled, and the religious consciousness is not. distinguished from the Notion. This is the Idea, the perfectly realised Notion, but this does not come before us until we reach the concluding division of our subject.

It has been the work of Spirit throughout thousands of years to work out the notion or conception of religion, and to make it the subject of consciousness. In this work the movement begins from immediacy and nature, and these must be overcome. Immediacy is the natural element; consciousness, however, is elevation above nature; natural consciousness is sensuous consciousness, as the natural will is passion; it is the individual which wills itself in accordance with its naturxilness, its particularity ^it is sensuous knowing and sensuous willing.

Eut religion is the relation of Spirit to Spirit, the knowledge by Spirit of Spirit in its trutb, and not in its immediacy or naturalness. The determination or characterisation of religion is the advance from naturalness to the notion; this latter is, to begin withj the inner element only, the true essence or potentiality, not the outer element of consciousness. Eegardingthis ambiguity, namely, that the notion exists primarily or originally, while at the same time its first existence is not its true primariness or originality, some further remarks will be made later.

We have first to give the division- of the subject, and to indicate the particular forms of these definite religions which have to be considered. To begin with, however, this must be done in a general manner only.

The sphere we have first to deal with contains, accordingly, definite religion, which, so far as its content is concerned, does not as yet go beyond determinateness.


In the active process of emerging from immediacy, we do not yet find the freedom which has been truly conquered, but only liberation, wliich is still entangled in that from which it frees itself.

What we have now to consider first is the form of natural, immediate religion. In this primal natural religion consciousness is still natural Iconsciousness, the consciousness of sensuous desire. It is thus immediate.

Here there does not as yet exist any division of consciousness within itself, for this division or dualism implies that consciousness distingnishes its sensuous nature from what belongs to its essential Being, so that the natural is known only as mediated through the Essential. It is here that it first becomes possible for religion to originate.

In connection with this rising up to the Essential we have to consider th-e conception of this exaltation in general.

Here the object is defined in a positive way, and this true element from which consciousness distinguishes itself is God. This exaltation or rising up is exactly what appears in a more abstract form in the proofs of the existence of God. In all these proofs there is one and the same exaltation; it is only the point of departure and the nature of thi-s Essence which are different. But this rising up to God, however it may be defined, is only the one side.

The other is the reverse process. God, in whatever way He may be defined, brings Himself into relation with the subject which has thus lifted itself. Here then comes in the question as to the manner in which the subject is characterised or defined; it, however, knows that it itself is what God is determined to be.

Tlie conscious turning of the subject toward this Essence has to be treated of likewise, and this introduces the aspect of Worship, - the close union of the subject with its Essence.

The division of the subject takes, therefore, the foUowinfj form: - ¦


1 . NaHral Beligion. - This is the unity of the spiritual and natural, and G-od is here conceived of in this aspect as yet natural unity, Man in his immediacy represents merely sensuous natural knowledge and natural volition.

In so far as the moment of religion Is contained in this, and the moment of elevation is stilLshut up within the natural state, there is something present which is to he regarded as higher than anything merely immediate.

This is magic.

2. We have the division or dualism of consciousness within itself. This implies that consciousness knows itself to he something merely natural, and distinguishes from this the True, the Essential, in which this naturalness, this finiteness has no value, and is known to be a nullity.

While in natural religion Spirit still lives in neutrality with nature, God is now defined as the absolute Power or Substance in which natural will - the subject - is something transient, accidental, selfless, and devoid of freedom. Here it is man's highest dignity that he should know himself to be a nullity.

At first, however, elevation of spirit above the natural is not carried through in a consistent manner. On the contrary, there is still a frightful inconsistency here, as is shown in the way in which the different spiritual and natural powers are mixed up with one another. This intrinsically inconsistent elevation has an historical existence in the three Oriental religions of Substance.

3. But the entanglement of the natural and spiritual leads to the conflict of subjectivity, Jfox the latter seeks to reinstate itself in its unity and universality, and this conflict again has had its historical existence in three rehgious, which constitute the religions of the transition to the stage of free subjectivity. Since, however, in these too, as well as in the previous stages. Spirit has not as yet completely subjected the natural element to itself, they constitute, together with the preceding ones, the sphere -




In contrast with this, the second stage of definite religion, at which the elevation of Spirit is carried through in a consistent manner in relation to the natural element, is -



It is here that the spiritual independent existence of the subject begins. Here thought is what rules and determines^ and the element of naturalness being merely a moment preserved within the process, is degraded to the state of what is a mere show or semblance, and is regarded as something which is accidental relatively to the Substantial. Its relation to the latter is such that it is only natural life, material form for the subject, or, in other words, is under the absolute determination of the subject.

And here apain, too, we get three forms: - I. Inasmuch as the spiritual being-for-self or independent existence thus brings itself into prominence, it is that which is held fast as reflection into itself, and as negation of the natural unity. There is thus One God only who is, in thought, and natural life is merely a posited life, standing as such over against Him, having no substantial character of its own in relation to Him, and existing only through the Essence of thought. This is the spiritually One, God, who is in Himself eternally unchangeable, in relation- to whom what is of nature, of the world, of the finite generally, is posited as something having an unessential character, and devoid of substantiality. But this God thereby openly shows Himself^ since it is only by the positing of the unessential th^t


He is the essential, since it is only through that positing that He even is at all; and this unessential, this semblance or show of existence, is not a manifestation of Him. This is the Eeligion of Sublimity.

2. The Natural and the Spiritual are united, still they are not in immediate union, but in a unity which implies that the Spiritual is what determines, and is so united with the bodily element that "this last does not stand over against it, but is merely an organ, is its expression, in which it outwardly presents itself. This is the religion of divine outward maBifestation, of divine corporeality, materiality, naturalness, and this is of such a kind that it is the appearing of subjectivity, or else the selfmanifestation of subjectivity is present in it, not appearing for others only, but appearing to itself. Thus this spiritual individuality is not the limitless individuality of pure thought; it has a spiritual character only. Thus on the one hand the Natural is, as it were, the body of the Spiritual, and owing to the fact that the Spiritual thus makes use of a body, the subject is on the other hand determined as finite. This is the Eeligion of Beauty.

In the religion of sublimity the one God is the Lord, and individuals stand related to Him as servants. In the religion of beauty, too, the subject has purified itself from its mere immediate knowing and willing, but it has also retained its will and knows itself as free, and knows itself thus because it has completed the negation of its natural will, and as moral has a free affirmative relation to God. But the subject has not as yet passed through the consciousness, and through the opposition of good and evil, and so is still affected with naturalness. If, therefore, the religion of beauty forms the stage of reconciliation as contrasted with the sphere of sublimity, this reconciliation is still immediate reconciliation, because it is not yet mediated through consciousness of the opposition.

3. The religion in which the notion, the independent,


self-determined, concrete content, has its beginning, and is the end or purpose which the universal powers of nature or the gods of the religion of beauty serve, is the Eeligion of External Utility or Conformity to an End. We have here a concrete content which comprises determinate characteristics within itself, implying that the hitherto separate individual powers are made subservient to one single end or purpose. The -particular subject has hitherto been something other than these divine powers; these constitute the divine content generally, and the particular subject is human consciousness, the finite end.

The divine content is now of use to that culminating point of subjectivity which was wanting to the content in the religion of beauty, as a *means whereby it can fully develop itself. Thus the form under which religion here presents itself is that of outward finite purpose, or adaptation to an end. The idea of Spirit determines itself on its own account and by its own act; it is clearly itself the end, and this end is just the notion or conception of Spirit, the notion which realises itself. Here the Spiritual too is an end, has the intrinsically concrete determinations within itself, but here too these are still finite and represent a limited end, which consequently is not as yet the relation of Spirit to itself. In its gods the particular spirit seeks its own subjective end only; it seeks itself, not the absolute content.

The religion of utility or adaptation to an end, in which an end is posited in God, though not yet as the absolute end, may also be called the Eeligion of Eate, because that end itself is not as yet a pure spiritual end, but is in its form as a particular end forthwith posited in God. This particular end, when treated thus, is void of rational character as against other ends which would have just as much right to exist as it.

This division of the subject must not be taken in a merely subjective sense; it is, on the contrary, the necessary one in the objective sense of the nature of Spirit. Spirit,


in the particular form in which it appears in religion, is first of all natural religion. What next takes place is that reflection enters, Spirit becomes free within itself, becomes the subjective generally, which notwithstanding issues out of the unity of nature, and is still related to it This is conditioned freedom. The third stage is represented by the willing of Spirit to determine itself -within itselfj and this accordingly appears in the form of an end, of adaptation to an end on its own account. This, too, is at first still finite and limited. Such are the fundamental determinations, which are the moments or stages of the development of the Notion, and at the same time of concrete development.

These stages may be compared to those of the ages of man. The child is still in the primal immediate unity of the will with nature, as representing both his own nature and the nature which surrounds him. The second stage, adolescence, when individuality is in process of becoming independent, is the living spirituality, the vitality of Spirit, which, while setting no end before it as yet, moves forward, has aspirations, and takes an interest in everything which comes in its way. The third is the age of manhood; this is the period of work for a particular end, to which the man makes himself subservient, to which he devotes his energies, finally, old age might be considered as a last stage, which having the Universal before it as an end, and recognising this end, has turned back from the particular interests of Jife and work to the universal aim, the absolute final end, and has, as it were, gathered itself together out of the "wide and manifold interests of actual outward existence and concentrated itself in the infinite depths of its inner life. Such are the determinations which follow in a logical manner from the nature of the !N"otion. At the close it will become apparent that even the original immediacy does not exist as immediacy, but is something posited. The child itself is somethinfr beo;otten.





Immediate religion is what has in recent times been called natural religion. It coincides with the religion of nature in so far as thought is brought into prominence in the latter.

What in recent times has been understood by '¦' the religion of nature '' is what man is capable of discovering and knowing of God by his own unassisted powers, by means of the natural light of his reason. Thus it has been customary to contrast it with revealed religion, and to maintain that what he has in his reason can alone be true for men. But natural reason is a wrong expression; for what we understand by " natural " is the natural as sensuous, the Immediate. The nature of reason is rather the notion or conception of reason. It belongs to' the very essence of Spirit to rise above nature. Natural reason in its true meaning is Spirit, reason according to the Notion, and this is in no kind of opposition to revealed religion. G-od, the Spirit, can only reveal Himself to Spirit, to reason.

Merely metaphysical religion, to speak more precisely, has in recent times been called natural religion, in so far as metaphysic has conveyed the same meaning as thoughts of the understanding, "ideas formed by the understanding. This is that modern religion of the understanding which is known asoDeism, the result of Enlightenment - that . knowing of God as an abstract something, to which abstraction all attributes of God, all faith, are reduced. This cannot be properly called natural religion; it is the ultimate point reached by the extreme development of the abstract understanding, as the result of the Critique of Kant.


• It remains for us uow to refer to a popular conception which, because of the sense attached in it to " natural religion," ujakes a definite claim upon our consideration here. What we refer to is the idea that immediate religion must be the true, the finest, the divine religion; and further, that it must, too, have been historically the first form of religion. According to the division we have made, it is the most imperfect, and, for that reason the iirst; and according to this other idea, it is the first, too, but also the truest religion. Natural religion is, as already remarked, so characterised that in it the Spiritual is in this original, untroubled, undisturbed unity with the Natural, This characterisation. is, however, taken here as the absolute and true one, and this religion therefore is regarded as the divine religion. "Man, it is said, had a true original religion in the state of innocence, before that division or separation which is known as the Fall had as yet appeared in his intelligence* Tliis is founded a priori on the idea that spirits were created by God as the absolutely Good, as images of Himself, and these being in conformity with God, stood jn an absolute and essential connection with Him. Under these conditions, Spirit too lived ia unity with nature; it was not as yet reflected into itself, had not as yet designed this separation from nature. As regards its practical side, as regards its will, it still remained in the region of happy faith, was still in the state of innocence, and was absolutely good.

It is with free-will that guilt first takes its rise, and this means that passion establishes itself in a freedom of its own, that the subject takes out of itself merely such qualities as it has distinguished from what belongs to nature. Plants are in this state of unity; their life is lived in this unity of nature. The individual plant does not become untrue to its nature; -it becomes what it ought to be; in it Being and destined character are not different. This separation in anything between what ought-to-be, and its nature, first makes its appearance


with free-will, and this last is first found in reflection; but this very reflection and division was not present, we are told, originally, and freedom was as identical with law and rational will as the individual plant is identical with its nature.

In like manner people imagine that in the state of innocence man is perfect in regard to his theoretical consciousness. He seems to determine himself here as identical with nature and the true conception of things; his own true being and that of the things have not as yet separated from each other;:he sees into their very heart; nature is not as yet a negative element to him, not something obscured. Not until separation. appears does the sensuous rind which separates him from them grow around these things; nature in this way sets up a wall of partition against me. Thus it is said that in such a relation Spirit knows the universal true nature of things, having an immediate knowledge, understanding of them in perception or picture-thQught, just because perception is a knowing, a seeing clearly, which may be compared with the state of somnambulism, in which the soul or life returns to this unity of inwardness with its world. Thus the nature of things had, it is supposed, lain open to that original perceiving understandings because for it that nature is emancipated from the external conditions of space and time, from the character ascribed to things by the understanding. It follows from this that in this unity Spirit, in the exercise of free imagination, which is no kind of caprice, sees things according to their notion, according to their true nature, and the things seen are determined throhgh the notion, appear in everlasting beauty, and stand above that stuntedness which conditions phenomena. In short, Spirit has had before it and has beheld the Universal in the Particular in its pure outward shape, and the Particular, the Individual in its universality as a divine, god-like vitality.

And man^ in having thus grasped nature iii its inmost


Character, and recognised its true relation to the corresponding side of his own nature, has [taken up a relation to nature as to something which is an adequate garment for Spirit, and one which is not destructive of organisation. With this general conception the idea is bound up that Spirit has consequently been in possession of all art and science, and it is further imagined that if man is found within the universal harmony, he beholds harmonious substance - God Himself - in an immediate manner; not as an abstraction of thought, but as a definite Bein^.

Such is the general idea given of that primitive religion which is supposed to be the immediate religion, and historically the first. Perhaps, too, an attempt is made to confirm this idea by appealing to one aspect of the Christian religion. We are told in the Bible of a Paradise; many peoples have the idea of 3uch a Paradise as lying behind them, and lament over it as a lost one, thinking of it as the goal for which man yearns, and to which he will attain. Such a Paradise, whether it belong to the past or be looked for in the future, is then filled up with moral or unmoral content, according to the stage of culture which has been reached by the peoples in question.

In reference to the criticism of sudi a general conception as this, it must be stated, in the first place, that such a conception is, as regards its essential substance, a necessary one. The Universal, the inner element, is the divine unity in a human reflex, or, in other words, the thought of the man who stands within this unity as such a reflex. Thus men have the idea that Being-in-and-foritself, true Being, is a harmony which has not as yet passed over into division or dualism,:which has not yet broken up into the dualism of good „and evil, nor into the subordinate dualism represented by the multiplicity, intensity, and passion of human n-eeds. This unity, this condition in which the contradictions are resolved,

VOL. I. s


undoubtedly contains truth, and is in entire agreement with the Notion. But the more precise shape under which this unity is represented as a condition in time, as a unity which ought not to have been lost, and which was only lost by accident, is somethiug altogether different.

This is a confounding of what is first as representing the Notion with the reality of consciousness, as this reality is adequate or proportionate to the Notion.

We must therefore do this general conception justice.

It contains in itself the necessary Idea of the divine selfconsciousness, of the serene untroubled consciousness of the absolutely divine Essence. In it this fundamental determination must not only be allowed to be correct, but also to be a true idea from which to start. This idea is that man is no merely natural being as such, no mere animal, but Spirit. In so far as he is Spirit, he has, in short, this universality within himself, the universality of rati-onality, which is concrete thought in its activity.

He has the instinct, too, to know the universal, to know that nature is rational; not, indeed, that it is conscious reason, but that it has reason within itself.

Thus the spirit knows, too, that God is rational, is absolute reason, the absolute activity of reason; and thus it has instinctively the belief that it must know God as well as nature, must find its essence in God, if it takes up toward Him an attitude of rational investigation.

This unity of man with God, with nature in the general sense as Potentiality, is undoubtedly the substantial, essential determination. Man is reason, is Spirit; by means of this quality or capacity he is implicitly the True. That, however, is the Notion, Potentiality, and in forming an idea of what the Notion, the Potentiality is, people usually end in representing it to themselves as something belonging either to the past or else to the future, not as being an inner element which exists on its own account, but in external, immediate existence, iu £ome shape or other, as a state or condition. It is thus


the form of the existence, or the mode of the state only, which is in question. The Notion is the inner element, the Potentiality, which has not yet, however, entered upon existence. The question therefore presents itself, What is there to prevent us from believing that the Poteutiality has been present from the beginning as actual existence ? "What prevents this is the nature of Spirit. Spirit is only what it makes itself become. This bringing out of that which it potentially is, is the positing of the Notion in existence.

The Notion must realise itself, and the realisation of the Notion, the active processes by ^means of which it actualises itself, and the shapes and manifestations of this actualisatiou which are at hand, have an outward appearance which is something different from what the simple Notion is within itself. The Notion, the Potentiality, is not a state, an existence. On the contrary, it is to the realisation of the Notion that states, existence, are due, and this realisation must be of a quite different kind from what is contained in that description ^of Paradise.

Man exists essentially as Spirit; Spirit does not, however, exist in an immediate manner. It is, on the contrary, its essential nature to be for itself, or self-conscious, to be free, to place the natural over against itself, to escape from its immersion in nature, to sever itself from nature, and only through and as following on this severance, to reconcile itself with nature, ajid not with nature alone, but with its own Essence too, with its truth.

It is this unity, which thus springs from division or dualism, which is alone self-conscious, true unity; it is' not that state of natural unity which is a oneness noc ¦ worthy of Spirit, not the unity of Spirit.

If that state be designated the st^te of innocence, it may appear objectionable to say that man must come out of the state of innocence and become guilty. The state of innocence is that state in which there is nothing good and nothing evil for man: it is the condition of animals,


of unconsciousness, where man does not know either good or evil, where that which he desires is not determined as either the one or the other; for if he has no knowledge of evil, he has no knowledge of good either.

The state of man is the state of imputation, of liability to imputation. Guilt is in the general sense imputation.

By guilt we usually understand that a man has done evil; the term is taken in its evil sense. Guilt in the general sense, however, means that man may have something attributed or imputed to him, that what is done is his act of knowledge and of will.

The truth is that that original natural unity in its form as existence is not a state of innocence, but rather of barbarism, of passion, of savagery or wildness, in fact.

Animals are not good, nor are they evil; but man in an animal condition is wild, is evil, is as he ought not to be.

As he is by nature, he is as he ought not to be; what, on the contrary, he is, he must be by« means of Spirit, by the knowing and willing of that which is right. This principle, that if man is in accordance with nature only, he is not as he ought to be, has been expressed by saying that man is evil by nature.

It is implied by this that man ought to contemplate himself as he is, so far as he merely lives in accordance with nature and follows his heart, that is to say, follows ¦ what merely springs up spontaneously.

We find in the Bible a well-khown conception, called in an abstract fashion the Fall, and expressed in an outward and mythical shape. This idea is a very profound one, and represents what is not merely a kind of accidental history, but rather the everlasting necessary history of mankind.

If the Idea, that which has „an absolute essential existence, be represented in a mythical way, in the form of an occurrence, inconsistency is unavoidable, and thus it could not fail to be the case that this representation too should have elements of inconsistency in it. The Idea


in its living form can be grasped and presented by thought alone.

That representation, then, is not without an element of inconsistency, but the essential outlfnes of the Idea are contained in it, namely, that man, since he is implicitly this unity, and because he is Spirit, comes out of the natural, out of this Potentiality into differentiation, and that the act of judgment, the judicial trial in reference to himself and the natural, must come in.

It is thus that he comes to know of God and of goodness. If he has a knowledge of them, he has them as the object of his consciousness; if he has them as the object of his consciousness, then the individual distinguishes himself from them.

Consciousness contains a double element within itself, namely, this division or dualism. IlTow it is true that it is sometimes said that this ought not-to have been. But it is involved in the conception of man that he should reach rational knowledge, or, in other words, it is the very nature of Spirit to become that consciousness. In so far as the division and reflection represent freedom, implying that man has a choice between the two sides of the antithesis, or stands as lord over Good and Evil, we have a point of view that ought not to exist, that must be absorbed iu something higher. It is not, however, one which should not make its appearance at all, the truth rather being that this standpoint of dualism, in conformity with its own nature, terminates in reconciliation. And both aspects are included in the narrative, namely, that reflection, consciousness, freedom, contain evil, wickedness within themselves - that which ought not to be - but that they likewise contain the principle, the source of healingj namely, freedom.

The one aspect of the truth, namely, that the standpoint of reflection is not to be permanent, is directly im plied in the statement that a crime has been committed, denoting something which is not to" be, not to remain,


Thus it is said that the serpent beguiled man with its lies.

The pride of freedom is here the attitude which ought not to be.

The other side, namely, that that severance or division is to exist, in so far as it contains the well-spring of his healing, is expressed in the words of God: " Behold ! Adam is become as one of us." It is thus not only no lie of the serpent's, but, as a matter of fact, God Himself corroborates it. This, however, is usually overlooked, and not mentioned at all.

We may therefore say that it is: the everlasting history of the freedom of man that he should come out of this state of dulness or torpor in which he is in his earliest years; that he should come, in fact, to the light of consciousness; or, to put it more precisely, that both good and evil should exist for him.

If we draw out what is actually implied in this representation, we find it to be the very same as what is contained in the Idea, namely, that man. Spirit, reaches the state of reconciliation, or, to put it superficially, that he becomes good, fulfils his destiny. For the attainment of this reconciliation, this standpoint of consciousness, of reflection, of division or dualism, is just as necessary as the abandonment of it.

That in this state man has had the highest knowledge of nature and of God, has occupied the highest standpoint of philosophical knowledge, is an absurd idea, which, moreover, proves itself historically to be wholly unfounded.

It is imagined that this natural unity is the true attitude of man in religion. Yet he must have already been struck by the circumstance that this Paradise, this age of Saturn, is represented as something that is lost.

This alone is sufficient to indicate that such an idea does not contain the Truth, for in divine history there is no past, and no contingency. If the existing Paradise has been lost, in whatever way this may have happened, it is


sometliing accidental, something arbitrary, which must have come into the divine life from the outside. That this Paradise is lost proves that it is not absolutely essential as a state. The truly Divine, that which is in conformity witli its essential nature, is riot capable of being lost, is everlasting, and by its very nature abiding. This loss of Paradise must rather be considered as a divine necessity, and as included in the necessity that this state should cease; that imagined Paradise sinks to the level of a moment, or element in that divine totality - a moment which is not the absolutely True.

The unity of man with nature as a favourite and pleasant -sounding expression. Bightly understood, it means the unity of man with his own nature. But his true nature is freedom, free spirituality, the thinking knowledge of the absolutely existing Universal; and as thus fixed this unity is no longer a natural, immediate unity.

Plants are in this condition of u-nbroken unity. The spiritual, on the contrary, is not in immediate unity with its nature; the truth rather is, that in order to attain tothe return to itself, it has to work its way through its infinite dualism or division, and to win the state of accomplished reconciliation by wrestling for it. This is by no means a state of reconciliation wliich is there from the outset, and this true unity is attained to- by spirit only by separation from its immediate: character. People speak of innocent children, and lament that this innocence, this love, this trust get lost; or they speak of the innocence of simple peoples, who are, however, rarer than is generally thought. But this innocence is not the true position of man; the morality which is free is not that of the child; it stands higher than the innocence just spoken of, it is self-conscious willing; and in this the true attitude is for the first time reached.

In his original dependence upon nature man may either be gentler or more barbarous. Within a temperate zone -


and tliis is the principal agent in deciding the matter - ^ where nature bestows upon him the means of satisfying his physical wantSj his natural character may remain gentle, benevolent, and his natural state be marked by simple needs and conditions, and ^travellers' descriptions supply us with pleasant pictures of such a state of things.

But these gentle habits are either linked with barbarous, horrible customs, and with a state of complete brutishness, or else such states of simplicity depend upon accidental circumstances, such as climate or an iusular situatiou.

In every case, however, they are witliout that universal self-consciousness and its results which alone constitute the glory of Spirit. Besides, the observations and descriptions, such as we have, of those reputedly innocent peoples, have reference merely to the outward goodhumoured conduct of men toward strangers, but do not enter into the inner phases of their life constituted by their mutual relations and actual circumstances. Over against all the opinions and desires of a sickly philanthropy, which wishes men back again in that state of original innocence, stands reality itself, and in essential contrast to all such views stands the real truth of things, namely, that such naturalness is not that for which man is destined. And as to the state of childhood, well, passion, selfishness, and evil exhibit themselves there too.

But if it be said that man originally found himself in the centre of nature, saw into the heart of things, and so forth, we reply that these are mistaken ideas. Two kinds of elements are to be distinguished in things: first, their definite character, their quality, their special character in relation to other things. This is the natural side, the finite aspect. In this their special character things may be more familiar to a man in his natural state; he may have a much more definite knowledge of their particular qualities than in the civilised state. This is an aspect which was discussed even in the philosophy of the Middle AgeSj in the Signatura rerum, the external quality through


"U'hicli the special peculiar nature of a thing is indicated, so that the specific peculiarity of its nature is at once siig^^ested by this external quality. This may be found in men in the natural state, and in the animal too this connection between itself and external quality is much more marked than in educated men.. An animal is driven by instinct toward that which it requires for its sustenance; it consumes only certain things, and leaves all else untouched. Its relation to things consists in this, that it places itself over against its other only, not what is other in general, and does away with the opposition. Thus ib has an instinct for the herbs, by means of which it is cured when ill. In the same way the deadly look, the smell of plants are, for the natural man, indications of their hurtfulness, of their poisonous character.

He is more sensitive to anything harmful than the civilised man is, and the instinct of animals is still surer than the natural consciousness of man, for this last impairs animal instinct. It may thus be said that the natural man sees into the heart of things, apprehends their specific qualities more correctly; This, however, is the case only with reference to such 'specific qualities as are wholly and exclusively of a finite character. This instinct sees into the heart of particular things, but into the source of the life of things generally, into this divine heart, its glance cannot penetrate. The very same conditions are found in sleep, in somnambulism. Experience shows that men have a natural consciousness of this kind. The natural consciousness has become quiescent here, and, on the other hand, the inner sense has awakened, and of this latter it may be said that its knowledge is far more in identity with the world and with surroundintj thinf^s than that of the wakiner state. Thence it comes that this condition has been held to be higher than the healthy one. It can actually happen that men may have a consciousness of things which take place a thousand miles away. Among bar


barous peoples such knowledge and such presentiments are to be found in far greater degree than among civilised nations. Such knowledge, however^ is confined to special or single occurrences and the fate of individuals. The connection of this definite individual with definite things, which form a part of his consciousness is awakened, but these are in this case merely single or individual things and occurrences.

But all this is not yet the true heart of things. That is only to be found in the IsTotion, the law, the universal Idea; it is not the slumber of Spirit which can reveal the true heart of the world to us. The heart of a planet is the relation of its distance from the sun, of its orbit, &c. This is the truly rational element, and is only attainable for the man of scientific culture, who is free from bondage to the immediate sensuous experience of sight, hearing, &c., who has withdrawn his senses into himself, and approaches the objects before him in the exercise of free thought. This rationality and this knowledge are a result only of the mediation of thought, and only occur in the final and spiritual stage of the existence of man. That instinctive knowledge of nature is explained as sense-perception, and this is nothing else but immediate consciousness. If we ask, " What has been perceived ? " it is not sensuous nature superficially considered (a kind of perception which may also be attributed to animal^), but it is the essential being of Nature, But the Essence of nature as a system of laws is nothing else than the Universal. It is nature looked at in its universality, the system of self-developing^ life, and it is this development in its true form, not nature in its individual form, in which it exists for sense-perception or pictorial thought. The form of the Natural is nature as permeated by thought. But thinking is not something immediate: it begins indeed from data, but raises itself above the sensuous manifoldness of what is given, negates the form of particularity, forgets what takes place under sensuous conditions, and produces the Uni


versal, the True. This is not action of an immediate kind, but is the work of mediation; it is the going out of finitude. It is of no avail to contemplate the heavens, however piously, innocently, and believingly we may do it; it is hy thinking alone that the essential element can be reached. Accordingly, that assertion of the existence of a direct sight or vision of things, of an immediate consciousness, proves itself to be worthless whenever we make inquiries regarding what ought to be seen. The knowing of nature in its truth is a mediated knowledge, and not immediate. It is the same wjth the will. The will is good in so far as it wills that which is good, right, and moral; but this is something quite other than the immediate will. This latter is the will which confines itself to the sphere of particularity and finitude, which wills individual things as such. The Good is, on the contrary, the Universal. In order .that the will may attain to the willing of good, a process of mediation by which it shall have purified itself irom. such finite willing must necessarily have taken place. Such purification is the education and work of mediation, and this cannot be something immediate and primary. For the rational knowledge of God this is equally essential. God being the centre of all truth - the pure truth without any kind of limitation- in order to arrive at Him, it is still more imperative that man should have laboured to free himself from his natural particularity of knowing and of willing.

Moreover, what has been asserted all along applies specially to the idea that the true consciousness of God lay in this natural unity of man, in this unity as yet unbroken by rellection. Spirit exists only for Spirit; Spirit in its truth exists for the free Spirit only, and it is this latter which has learnt to disregard immediate perception, which abstracts from understanding, from this reflection, and the like. In theological language, this is spirit which has come to the knowledge of sin; in other words, to the consciousness of the infinite separation of


its independent being from niiity, and wliich has returned out of that state of separation to unity and reconciliation. Natural immediacy is therefore not the true form of religion, but it is rather its lo^^est and least true stage.

Ordinary thought sets up an Ideal, and it is necessary that it should do so. In so doing, it gives expression to what the True essentially is; but-what is defective here is that it gives that ideal the character of something pertaining to the future and the past, thereby rendering it something which is not present, and so directly giving it the character of ^finite element. The empirical consciousness is consciousness of the finite; what exists on its own account or in and for itself is the inner element.

Reflection distinguishes the one from the other, and with justice; but what is defective here is that reflection takes up an abstract attitude, and yet at the same time requires that that which has essential existence should manifest itself and be present iu the world qf external contingency.

Eeason grants their sphere to chance, to arbitrariness, but knows that the True is still present even in this thoroughly confused world, as it appears to external observation and upon the surface. Tlie ideal of a state is quite sound, only it is not realised. If we conceive realisation to mean that all things-^the general conditions, the developments of justice, of politics, of practical needs ¦ - are to be commensurate with the Idea, we find that such a sphere is inadequate to the ideal, and yet the substantial Idea is nevertheless actual and present within it. It is not the confused state of existence alone which constitutes the Present, and this definite existence is not totality. That by means of which the ideal is determined may be present, but the actual presence of the Idea is not as yet recognised, because the Idea is contemplated with finite consciousn-ess only. It is quite possible to recognise the substantial kernel of actuality through this outer rind, but for this severe labour is


requisite. In order to gather the rose in the cross of the Present, v:e must take that cross itself upon us.

Finally, it has been sought to establish the existence of the Idea historically by going back to a beginning of the human race marked by the features above indicated.

Among many peoples, remains and in'dicatious have been found which present a contrast to the other elements which constitute these ideas, or, it may be, we come upon scientific knowledge which does not seem to be in harmony with their present state, or wliich could not have been parallel with their initial state of culture. The remains of such a better condition of existence have been made the basis of conclusions as to a previous state of perfection, -a condition of complete morality. Among the people of India, for example, great wisdom and varied knowledge have been found, to which their present state of culture does not correspond. This and many other similar circumstances have been looked upon as traces of a better past. The writings of the monks of the Middle Ages, for instance, have certainly often not come out of their own heads, but are remnants of a better past.

At the time of the first discovery of Indian literature, much was heard of the enormous chronological numbers; they seemed to point to a very long duration of time, and to yield wholly new disclosures. In recent times, however, it has been found necessary to give up these numbers entirely, for they express no prosaic conditions whatever as regards years or recollection of the past. Further, the Indian peoples are said to possess great astronomical knowledge; they have formulae in order to calculate the eclipses of the sun and moon, which, however, they use in a wholly mechanical way, without any foreknowledge or investigation of the presuppositions, or'the method and the formula they employ. Quite lately, „ however, the astronomical and mathemathical knowledge of the Indian peoples has been more thoroughly examined into, and an original state of culture is undoubtedlv to be recofrnised


in it. In these branches of knowledge they had not, however, got nearly so far as the Greeks. The astronomical formulae are so needlessly involved that they are far behind the methods of the Greeks, and still further behind our own; and true science is precise^ly that which seeks to reduce its problems to the simplest elements. Those complicated, formulae point, no doubt, to a praiseworthy diligence, to painstaking effort with regard to the problems in question, but more than that is not to be found in them: long-continued observations lead to such knowledge. So then this wisdom of the Indian peoples and the Egyptians has diminished in proportion as further acquaintance has been made with it, and it still continues to diminish day by day. The kn<)wledge reached is either to be referred to other sources, or is in itself of very trifling import. Thus the whole idea of the paradisiacal beginning has now proved itself to be a poem of -which the Notion is the foundation i^ only, this state of existence has been taken as an immediate one, instead of its being recognised that it appears for the first time as mediation.

We now proceed to the closer consideration of the religion of nature. Its specific character is in a general sense the unity of the Natural and Spiritual, in such wise that the objective side - God^ - is posited as something natural, and consciousness is limited to the determinateness of nature. This natural element is particular existence, not nature generally viewed as a whole, as an organic totality. Ideas such as these would already be universal ideas, which do not as yet actually appear at this first stage. Nature, as a whole^ is posited as units or particulars; classes, species, belong to a further stage of reflection and of the mediation of thought. This particular natural object, this heaven, this sun, this animal, this man - these immediate natural forms of existence are known as God. The question as to what content is found in this idea of God may here be lef-t undetermined to


b'bgia with, and at this stage it is something indefinite, an xindefined power or force which cannot as yet be filled up. But since that indefiniteness is not as yet Spirit in its true character, the determinations in Spirit in this form are contingent, they become true only when it is true Spirit, which is consciousnesSj and which posits them.

The first determination, the beginning of the religion of nature, therefore, is that Spirit is found in an immediate, particular mode of existence.

The religion of nature from the first contains in it the spiritual moment or element, and therefore essentially involves the thought that what is spiritual is for man what is highest. This at once excludes the idea that the religion of nature consists in worshipping natural objects as God; that, indeed, plays a part here, but it is a subordinate part. Yet in the very worst religion the Spiritual is to man as man higher than the Natural: the sun is not higher for him than what is spiritual.

The religion of nature, in this its' commencement as immediate religion, means that the Spiritual, a man, even in the natural mode of existence, ranks as what is hiirhest.

That religion has not the merely external, physicallynatural element as its object, but the spiritually-uatural, a definite man as this actual present ^man. This is not the Idea of man, the Adam Kadmon, the original man, the Son of God - these are more developed couceptions, which are present only through thought and for thought; and therefore it is not the conception of man in his universal essentiality, but of this definite actual natural man; it is the religion of the Spiritual, but in its condition of externality, naturalness, immediacy. We have an interest in getting acquainted with the religion of nature for this reason also, in order that we may even in it bring the truth before consciousness that God has at all times been to man something belongiug to the Present, and in order that we may abandon the conception of God as an abstract Being beyond the present.


Witli reference to this stage of the religion of nature - which we cannot hold to be worthy of the name of religion - we must, in order to understand it, forget the ideas and thoughts which are, it may be, thoroughly familiar to us, and which even pertain to the superficial nature of our education and culture.

For natural consciousnesSj which is what we have here before us, tlie prosaic categories, such .as cause and effect, have ns yet no value, and natural things are not yet deixraded into external thinsrs.

Eeligion has its soil in Spirit only. The spiritual Jcnows itself as the Power over the natural, and that ..nature is not what exists on its owU: account, or in and "for itself. Those categories just spoken of are the categories of the understanding, in which nature is conceived of as the Other of Spirit, and Spirit as the True. It is' from this fundamental determination that religion has its 'first be^innincr.

Immediate religion, on the contrary, is that in which Spirit is still natural, in which Spirit has not as yet made the distinction of itself as the universal Power from itself as what is particular, contingent, transitory, and accidental. This distinction, namely, the antitheses of universal Spirit as universal Power and essential Being, and subjective existence with its contingency, has not yet appeared, and forms the second stage within the religion of nature.

Here in the primal immediate religion, in this immediacy, man has as yet no higher Power than himself.

There is perhaps a power over contingent life and its purposes and interests, but this is no essential power in the sense of being inherently universal, being rather found in man himself. The Spiritual here exists in a particular and immediate form.

We may indeed be able to understand and think this form of religion, for in this case we still have it before our thoughts as an object. But it is not possible for us


to enter into the experience of it, into the feeling of it; just in the same way as we may perhf^ps understand a dog without being able to enter experimentally into its sensations. For to do this would mean to fill up entirely the totality of the subject with a similar particular determination, so that it would become our determinateness.

Even into religions which approach more nearly to our modes of thought we cannot enter experimentally in' this way; they cannot become for a single moment so much our own particular religion that we should be able, for example, to worship a Grecian statue of a god, however beautiful that statue might be. And, moreover, the stage of immediate religion lies at the farthest distance from us, since, even in order to make it intelligible to ourselves, we are obliged to forget all the forms of our own culture.

We must regard man immediately, as he exists for himself alone upon the earth, and thus at the verybeginniijg, as wholly without reflection or the power of rising up to thought. It is with the entrance of thought that more worthy conceptions of God first appear.

Here man is seen in his immediate personal strength and passion, in the exercise and attitude of immediate willing. He asks no theoretical questions yet, such as '* Who made that ? " &c. This separation of objects into a contingent and an essential side^ into that of causality and that of what is mei'ely dependent, merely an effect, does not as yet exist for him.

It is the same with the will. This dualism or division is not as yet present in it, there is as yet no repression of itself within it. In willing, the theoretical element is what wc call the Universal, right, law, established determinations, boundaries for the subjective will. These are thoughts, universal forms which belong to thought, to freedom.

These are distinguished from subjective caprice, passion, inclination; all this is repressed, dominated by

VOL. r. T


_ means of this Universal, trained into harmony with this Universal; the natural will becomes transformed into a willinfT and actinc: in accordance with such universal points of view.

Man is therefore still undivided as regards his willing: here it is the passion and wildness of his will which holds sway. In the formation of his ideas, likewise, he is pent up in this undivided state, in this state of .torpor and dulness.

This state is only the primal uncivilised reliance of Spirit upon itself: a certain fear, a consciousness of negation is indeed present here, but pot as yet, however, the fear of the Lord, that of contincjencv, rather, of the powers of nature, which show themselves as mighty against him.

Fear of the powers of nature, of the sun, of thunderstorms, &c., is here not as yet fear which might be called religious fear, for this has its seat in freedom. The fear of God is a different fear from the fear of natural forces.

It is said that '' fear is the beginning of wisdom: " this fear cannot present itself in immediate religion. It first appears in man when he knows himself to be powerless in his paiticularity, when his particularity trembles within him, and when he has accomplished in himself this abstraction from that particularity in order to exist as free Spirit. When the natural element in man thus trembles, he raises himself above it, he renounces it, he has taken higher ground for himself, and passes over to thought, to knowledge. It is not, however, fear in this higher sense only that is not present here, but even the fear of the powers of nature, so far as it enters at all at this first stage of the religion of nature, changes round into its opposite, and becomes magic.

(a.) Magic.

The absolutely primary form of religion, to which we give the name of magic, consists; in this, that the Spiritual


is the ruling power over nature. This spiritual element does not yet exist, however, as Spirit; it is not yet found in its universality, but is merely the, particular, contingent, empirical self-consciousness of man, which, although it is only mere passion, kuows itself to be higher in its self-consciousness than nature - knowp that it is a power ruling over nature.

Two different things are to be remarked here: -

1. In so far as immediate self-consciousness knows that this power lies within it, that ic is the seat of this power, it at once marks itself off in that state in which it is such a power from its ordinary condition.

The Tuan who is occupied with ordinary things has, when he goes about his simple business, particular objects before him. He then knows that he lias to do with these only, as, for example, in fishing or the chase, and he limits his energies to these particular objects alone. But the consciousness of himself as a power over the universal power of nature, and over the vicissitudes or changes of nature, is something quite different from the consciousness of that ordinary manner of existence with its occupations and various ^activities.

Here the individual knows that he must transplant himself into a higher state in order to have that power.

This state is a gift belonging to particular persons, who have to learn by tradition all those means and ways by which such power can be exercised. A select number of individuals who are sensible of the presence of this sombre subjective quality within themselves, repair for instruction to the older ones.

2. This power is a direct power over nature in general, and is not to be likened to the indirect power, which we

..exercise by means of implements over natural objects in their separate forms. Such a power as this, which the educated man exercises over individual natural things, presupposes that he has receded from this world, that the world has acquired externality in relation to him, - au


-externality to which he concedes an independence relatively to liimself, peculiar qualitative characteristics and laws; and it presupposes further that these things in

_ their qualitative character are relative in regard to each other, standing in a manifold connection with one another.

This power, which gives the world a free standing in its qualitative character, is exercised by the educated man by means of his knowledge of the .qualities of things, that is to say, of things as they are in regard to other' things; another element thus makes its influence felt in them, and their weakness at once shows itself. He learns to know them on that weak side, and operates on them by so arming himself that he is 'able to attack them in their weakness and to compel them to submit to him.

For the accomplishment of tliis it is necessary that man should be free in himself. Not« until he is himself free does he allow the external world, other people, and natural things to exist over against him as free. To the man who is not free, others are not free either.

On the other hand, any direct influence exercised by man, by means of his ideas, of his will, presupposes this mutual unfreedom, since power over external things is indeed attributed to man as representing what is Spiritual, but not as being a power which acts in a free manner, and which just on that account does not bring itself into relation to what is free, and as something which mediates; on the contrary, here the power over nature acts in a direct way. It thus is magic or sorcery.

As regards the external mode in which this idea actually appears, it is found in a form ^ which implies that this magic is what is highest in tlie self-consciousness of those peoples. But in a subordinate way magic steals up to higher standpoints too, and insinuates itself into -higher religions, and thus into the popular conception of witches, although in that form it is recognised as something which is partly impotent, and partly improper and godless.


There has been an inclination on the part of some (as, for example, in the Kantian philosophy) to consider prayer too as magic, because man seeks to make it effectual, not through mediatiorij but by starting direct from Spirit.

The distinction here, however, is that,;nan appeals to an absolute will, for which even the indievidual or unit is an object of care, and which can either grant the prayer or not, and v/hieh in so acting is determined 'by general purposes of good. Magic, however, in the general sense, simply amounts to this, - that man has the mastery as he is in his natural state, as possessed of passions and desires.

Such is the general character o£ this primal and wholly immediate standpoint, namely, that the human consciousness, any definite human being, is recognised as the ruling power over nature in virtue of his own will.

The natural has, however, by no means that wide range which it has in our idea of it. For here the greater part of nature still remains indifferent to man, or is just as he is accustomed to see it. Everything is stable.

Earthquakes, thunderstorms, floods, animals, which threaten him with death, enemies, and the like, are another matter. To defend himself against these recourse is had to magic.

Such is the oldest mode of religion, the wildest, most barbarous form. It follows from what has been said that God is necessarily of a spiritual nature. This is His fundamental determination. Spiritual existence, in so far as it is an object for self-consciousness, is already a further advance, a differentiation of' spirituality as that which is universal and as definite individual empirical self-consciousness; it is already a breaking off of the universal self-consciousness from the empirical spirituality of self-consciousness. At the begimiing this does not yet exist.

The religion of nature as that of magic, begins from iinfree freedom, so that the single or individual self-con


sciousness kno^vs itself as something which is higher than natural things, and this knowledge is, to begin with, unmediated.

By recent travellers, such as Captain Parry, and before him Captain Ross, this religion has been found among the Esquimaux, wholly without the element of mediation and as the crudest consciousness. Among other peoples a mediation is already present.

Captain Parry says of them: "The/^re quite unaware that there is any other world; they live among rocksj ice and snow, upon rye, birds and fish, and do not know that nature exists in any other form. The English had an Esquimaux with them, who had lived some time in England, and he served as interpreter. Through him they obtained some knowledge regarding the people, and learned that they liave not the slightest idea of Spirit, of a higher existence, of an essential substance as contrasted with their empirical mode of existence, of the immortality of the soul, of the everlasting duration of spirit, of the evil independent existence of the individual spirit. They know of no evil spirit, and they liave, it is true, a great veneration for the sun and moon, but they do not adore them; they worship no image, no living creature. On the other hand, they have amongst them individuals whom they call Angekoks, magicians, conjurers. Those assert that they have it in their power to raise a storm, to create a calm, to Jjring whales near, &c., and say that they learnt these arts from old Angekoks. The people regard them with fear; in every family, however, there is at least one. A young Angekok wished to make the wind rise, and he proceeded to do it by dint of phrases and gestures. These phrases had no meaning and were directed toward no Supreme Being as a medium, but were addressed in an immediate way to the natural object over which the Angekok wished to exercise powder; he required no aid from any one whatever. He was told of an omnipresent, all good.


invisible Being who had made everything, and he asked where it lived, and when he was told it was everywhere, he at once became afraid, and wished to run away. On being asked where his people would go when they died, he replied that they would be buried; a long time ago an old man had once said that they would go to the moon, but it was long since any Esquimaux, had believed that."

Thus they occupy the lowest stage of spiritual consciousness, but they possess the belief- that self-consciousness is a mighty power over nature,; without mediation, apart from any antithesis between that self-consciousness and a divine Being.

The English persuaded an Angekok to practise magic; this was done by means of dancing,, so that he became frantic with the prodigious amount of exertion; he fell into a state of exhaustion, and gave forth phrases and sounds, his eyes rolling about all the ^hile.

Tins religion of magic is very preyalent in Africa, as also among the Mongols and Chinese; here, however, it is no longer found in the absolute crudeness of its first form, but mediations already come in, which owe their origin to the fact tliat the Spiritual has begun to assume an objective form for self-consciousness.

In its first form this religion is more magic than religion; it is in Africa among the negroes that it prevails most extensively. It was already mentioned " by Herodotus, and in recent times it has been found existing in a similar form. Yet thf, cases are but few in which such peoples appeal to their ^power over nature, for they use very little, and have few requirements, and, in judging of their conditions, we must forget the manifold needs which surround us, and the variously complicated modes we have of accomplishing our ends. Our information regarding the state of these peoples is for the most part derived from the missionaries of past times; the more recent accounts are, on the other hand, but scanty, and therefore some of the narratives of older


date have to be received with suspicion, especially ns missionaries are natural enemies of magic. The general facts, however^ are undoubted, being established by a great variety of accounts.

The charge of avarice on the part-of the priests must be abandoned here, as in the case of other religions.

Offerings, gifts to the gods, become for the most part the share of the priests, but still you can only speak of avarice, and a people are only to be pitied on account of it, when they lay a great stress upon the possession of property. But to these peoples possessions are of no consequence; they know of no better use to which to put what they have than to give it awayiin this manner.

The character of this magic is more accurately shown by the mode and manner of its exercise. The magician retires to a hill, describes circles or figures in the sand, and utters magical words, makes signs toward the sky, blows toward the wind, sucks in his breath. A missionary who found himself at the head of a Portuguese army relates that the negroes who were their allies had brought a magician of this kind with=them. A hurricane rendered his conjuring arts needful, aud, in spite of the strong opposition of the missionary, they were resorted to. The magician appeared in a peculiar fantastical dress, looked up at the sky and the cl9uds, and afterwards chewed roots and murmured phrases. As the clouds drew nearer, he broke out into howls, made signs to the clouds, and spat towards the sky. The storm continuing notwithstanding, he waxed furious, shot arrows at the sky, threatened it with bad treatment, and thrust at the clouds with his knife.

The Schamans among the Mongols are very similar to these magicians. Wearing a fantastic dress, from which depend figures of metal and wood, they stupefy themselves with drink, and when in this state declare what is to happen and prophesy about the future.

In this sphere of magic the m^in principle is the


-direct domination of nature by mea'ns of the will, of self-consciousness - in other words, that Spirit is something of a higher kind than nature. However bad this magic may look regarded in one aspect, still in another it is higher than a condition of dependence upon nature and fear of it.

It is to be observed here that there are negro peoples who have the belief that no man dies a natural death; that nature has not power over him, but that it is he who has power over nature. These are the Galla and Gaga tribes, which, as the most savat^e and most barbarous of conquerors, have repeatedly descended upon the coasts since the year 1542, pouring forth from the interior and inundating the whole country. These look upon man in the strength of his consciousness as too exalted to be capable of being killed by anything so obscure as the power of nature.

"What therefore takes place is, that sick people, in whose case magic has proved ineffectual, are put to death by their friends. In the same way the wild tribes of North America too killed their aged who had reached decrepitude, the meaning of which is unmistakable, namely, that man is not to perish by means of nature, but is to have due honour rendered to him at human hands. There is another people again who have the belief that everything would go to ruin if their high-priest were to die a natural death. He is therefore executed as soon as ever he becomes ill and weak; if a high-priest sliould notwithstanding die of some disease, they believe that some other person killed him by means of magic, and the magicians have to ascertain who the murderer was, when he is at once made away with. On the death of a king in particular, many persons are killed: according to a missionary of older days, it is the devil of the king who is slain.

Such, then, is the very first form of religion, which cannot indeed as yet be properly called religion. To religion essentially pertains the moment of objectivity, and this means that spiritual power shows itself as a mode of the


Universal relatively to self-consciousness, for the individual, for the particular empirical consciousness. This objectivity is an essential characteristic, on which all depends, I^ot until it is present does religion begin, does a God exist, and even in the lowest condition there is at least a beginning of it. The mountaiuj the river, is not in its character as this particular mass of earth, as this particular water, the Divine, but as a mod^ of the existence of the Divine, of an essential, universal Bging. But we do not yet find this in magic as such. It is the individual consciousness as this particular consciousness, and consequently the very negation of the Universal, which is what has the power here; nut a god in the magician, but the magician himself is the conjurer and conqueror of nature.

This is the religion of passion, which is still infinite for itself, and therefore of sensuous partic'ularity which is certain of itself. But in the religion of magic there is already ..also a distinguishing of the individual empirical consciousness of the person dealing iu magic from that person in his character as representing the Universal. It is owing to this that out of magic tlie religion of magic is developed.

(b.) The Objective Characteristics of the Eeligion of Magic.

With the distinction of the singular and universal in general, there enters a relation of self-consciousness to the object, and here mere formal objectifying must be distinguished from the true. Tlie former is that the spiritual Power - God - is known as objective for consciousness; absolute objectifying means that God is, that He is known as existing in and for Himself, in accordance with those characteristics which essentially belong to Spirit iu its true nature.

What we have to consider in the first place here is formal objectifying only. The relation here is of a threefold kind.

I . Subjective self-consciousness, subjective spirituality,


is, and still remains, roaster and lord - this living force, this self-conscious power; the ideality of self-consciousiiess as the force or power is still operative as against feeble objectivity, and maintains the supremacy.

2, The subjective self-consciousness of man is conceived of as dependent on the object. Man, as immediate consciousness, can only conceive himself to be dependent in an accidental manner; only by a deviation from his ordinary state of existence does he reach the condition of dependence. Amongst simple peoples in a state of nature, amongst savages, this dependence is of little importance. They have vphat they want; what they are in need of exists for them, grows for them; they therefore do not reojard themselves as at all in a condition of dependence; their needs are chance. needs only. Kot until consciousness is further developed, when man and nature, losing their immediate validity and positive character, come to be conceived of as something evil, something negative, does the dependence of consciousness come in, in that it shows itself to be negative relatively to its object or *' Other." Not until man is so conceived of as Essence does the Other - nature - essentially become a mere negative.

3. But tliis negativity shows itself to be only a point of transition. Spirituality, too^ as well as the natural will, the empirical, immediate spirit, man, recognises itself in religion to be essential, comes to see that to depend upon nature is not its fundamental characteristic, but to know itself as Spirit, to be free. Although at the lowest stage this is merely a formal freedom, yet man has a contempt for dependence, remains self-contained, asserts himself, casts away the merely natural connection, and subjugates nature to his own power. It is at another stage that what a later religion says holds good: " God thunders with His thunder, and yet is not recognised." God can do something better than merely thunder; He can reveal Himself, Spirit does not permit


itself to be characterised by a natural phenomenon. The higher relation is that of free adoration, where man reveres the ruling power as free, recognises it as Essence, but not as somethinfr which is forei^rn to his nature.

If, therefore, we consider this objectifying process more closely, we find it partly consists in this, that self-consciousness maintains itself as the power over natural things, and partly that in this objectivity not merely natural things exist for it, but that a Universal begins to come into existence in it, towards which it accordingly assumes the attitude of free adoration.

Ifj therefore, we consider the process of the objectifying of the Universal as it goes on when still within the sphere of magic, it will be seen that the consciousness of truly essential objectivity - though as yet undeveloped - now begins within it; the consciousiiess of an essential universal power begins. Magic is ^retained, but it is accompanied by the perception of an independentj essential objectivity; what the consciousness which uses magic knows as the ultimate principle is not itself, but the universal power or force in things. The two are intermingled, and not until free adoration, as the consciousness of free power, appears, do we emerge from the sphere of magic, although we still &d ourselves within the region of the religion of nature. Magic has existed among all peoples and at every period; with the objectifying process, however, a mediation comes in in its higher stages, so that Spirit is the higher notion, the power over it, or the mediatinir af^ent with the made.

Self-consciousness is that relation with the object in which the former is no longer immediate self-consciousness, that which is satisfied within itself, but finds its satisfaction in what is other than itself, by the mediatioa of an " Other,'' and through an " Other '' as its channel.

The infiniteness of passion shows itself as a finite infinity, since it is restrained by means of reflection within the bounds of a higher power. Man unlocks his prison


house, and only by the annulling of his particularity does he create full satisfaction for himself in his Essence, unite himself with himself as Essence, and attain to himself by means of the negative mode of himself.

In mediation, as it at first exhibits itself to us in an external forrii, the mediation takes place, as it ^yere, by means of an Other which remains external. In magic, as such, man exerts direct power ovex nature. Here he exercises an indirect power, by means of an object, of a charm.

The moments of mediation, looked at more closely, are these: - i. The immediate relation here is that the selfconsciousness, as spiritual self-conscigusness, knows itself as the power ruling over natural things. These themselves, again, are a power among themselves. This is already, therefore, a further reflection, and no longer an immediate relation, where the " I " as a unit confronts natural things. The next form of universality reached by reflection is that natural things appear to be within one another, stand in connection with one another, that the one is to be known by means of the bther, has its meaning as cause and effect, so that, in fact, they are essentially in a condition of relation. This connection is already a form of the objectifying of the Universal, for the thing is thus no longer a unit, it goes out beyond itself, it gives itself a valid existence in what is other than itself; the thing becomes broader in this wny. In the first relation " I " am the ideality of the thing, the'power over it; now, however, when thus posited objectively, the things are themselves the power in their mutual relation to one another; the one is that wliich posits the other ideally.

This is the sphere of indirect magic through means, while the magic first referred to was direct magic.

This is a form of objectifying wliich is merely a connection of external things, and means, that the subject does not take to itself the direct power over nature, but only over the means. This mediated magic is present at all


limes and among all peoples. Sympathetic remedies, toOj belong to this kind of magic. They are a contrivance the object of which is to produce a result in something quite different; the subject has the means in its hand; to produce this result is merely its intention, its aim. The " I " is the magician, but it conquers the thing by means of the thing itself. In magic,, things show themselves as ideal. The ideality is thus a characteristic which belongs to them as things; it is an objective quality, which comes into consciousness by menns of the very exercise of magic, and is itself only posited, made use of. Passion seizes on things in an immediate way.

Now, however, consciousness reflects itself into itself, and inserts the thing itself as the destroying agent between itself and the things while it thereby shows itself as stratagem or cunning in not mixing itself up with the things and their strife. The chanjre which is to be broufrhc about may in one sense depend upon the nature of the means employed, but the principal thing is the will of the subject. This mediated magic is infinitely widespread, and it is difhcult to define its limits and determine what is and what is not included in it. The principle of magic is that the connection between the means and the lesult is not known. Magic exists everywhere wheie this connection is merely present without being understood. The same thing holds good, too, of medicines in hundreds of cases, and all we can really do is to appeal to experience. The other alternative would be the rational course, namely, to get to know the nature of the remedy, and thus to deduce the change which it brings about.

But the art of medicine refuses to adopt the plan of calculating the result from the nature of the remedy.

We are simply told that this connection actually exists, and this is mere experience, which, however, contradicts itself endlessly. Thus Brown treated with opium, naphtha, spirit, &c., what was formerly cured by means of remedies of an entirely opposite nature. It is therefore difficult


to state the limits of known and unknown connection* In so far as we are here in presence of effects produced by living agents on what is living, and have no longer to do with the effects produced by what is spiritual on what is bodily, there are connections present which cannot be gainsaid, and which yet, so long as the deeper conception of this relation is unknown, may still appear as inscrutable, as magicj or as miracle. Thus in magnetism everything which is usually called connection ceases; regarded in the ordinary way, it is an incomprehensible connection.

If the sphere of mediation in magic be once entered, the huge gate of superstition is opened,, and then every detail of existence becomes significant, for every' circumstance has results, has ends; everything is both mediated arid mediating, everything governs and is- governed: what a man does depends as to its results upon circumstances; what he is, his aims, depend upon certain conditions.

He exists in an external world, amidsc a variety of connections of .cause and effect, and the individual is only a ruling force to the extent to which he ha-s power over the particular forces thus connected. In so .far as this connection remains undetermined, and the definite nature of things is still unknown, we float about in a condition of absolute contingency. Since reflection enters into this region of relations, it has the belief that things stand to one another in a relation of reciprocity. This belief is quite correct, but the defect in it is that it is still abstract, and consequently the definite special character of action, the precise mode of action, the exact nature of the connection of things with other things is not as yet present in it. Such a connection exists, but its real character is not yet known, and accordingly what is present is the contingent character, the arbitrariness of the means.

Most people are on one side of their nature in this position, and nations occupy this standpoint in a way which shows that this aspect is for them the fundamental one,


the po\ver which rules their wishes, their actual condition^ their mode of existence.

When people act according to an abstract principle, free scope is given to the element of determination. This applies to the endless vtiriety of charms. Many nations use magic in connection with everything they undertake.

Amonof some a charm is made use of when the fonndations of a house are laid, in order that it may be a lucky dwelling, and may be beyond tbe reach of any danger.

The particular quarter of the heavens, the direction, is a matter of importance here. At sowing-time, too, a charm must be used to secure a happy resjilt. Eelations with other men, love, hatred, peace, war, are brought about by the use of such means, and the connection of these with the effects being unknown, either one or other of these means must be taken. Anything rational is not to be met with in this sphere, and therefore nothing further can be said about the matter. It is ^customary to attribute to all peoples great insight into the way in which herbs, plants, &c., act in cases of illness and the like. A true connective relation may exist here, but the connection may just as easily be merely arbitrary. The understanding gets to be conscious that there is a connection, but its precise character is unknown to understanding. It seizes upon the means, and imagination, guided by a true or a false instinct, supplied the deficiency in the abstract principle, introduces a definiteness into it which is not actually inherent in the nature of the things themselves.

2. The content of immediate magic in its earliest form lias to do with objects over which man is able to exercise direct power. This second form, again, is based upon a relation toward objects which are looked upon rather as independent, and thus as power, so that they appear to man as something different from liimself, and which is no longer under his own control. For example, the sun, the .jnoon, the heavens, the sea, are iiidependent natural things


of this kind. They are forces or powers, individual or elemental great objects, which seem to man to confront him in a wholly independent way. If in this sphere natural consciousness still adheres to the standpoint of individual passion, it has, properly speaking, no relation to these objects as parts of universal nature; it has not as yet a perception of their universality, and has to do with units alone. Their course, what they produce, is ijniform, their mode of action is constant. The consciousness, however, which still adheres to the staudpoint of natural unity, and for which what is constant possesses no interest, puts itself in relation with them in accordance with its contingent wishes^ needs, interests only, or in so far as their action appears as contingent. From this point of view tho sun and moon interest man only in so far as they undergo eclipse, and the earth only when there are earthquakes. The Universal does not exist for him, does not excite liis desires, is without interest for him. A river only interests him when he wishes to cross it. Theoretical interest has no existence here, but only the practical relation due to accidental wants. Thinking man, with his higher culture, does not reverence these objects in their aspect as spiritual universalities, nor does he look upon them as representing what is essential.

Man does not reverence them in that first sphere either; because he has not in any way come as yet to the consciousness of the Universal which is in these objects.

At this last standpoint he has not yet arrived at the universality of all that exists; at the former point of view natural existence has no longer any validity for him. But it is in the midst of these two points of view that the powers of nature make their appearance as a Universal, and consequently as having the ruling power in relation to the particular, empirical consciousness.

Such a man may be afraid of them in earthquakes, floods-j or eclipses, and may address prayers or entreaties to them -5 here they appear for the first time as power; for the rest^ VOL. I. u


¦they follow their ordinary course, and then, he does not need to entreat them. But entreaty or supplication of this kind is a species of conjuring too; we use the word to conjure in the sense of entreaty. When a man entreats, he acknowledges that he is in the power of another. It is therefore often difficult to entreat or supplicate, because by that very act I acknowledge the control of the arbitrary will of another in reference to myself. But what is demanded here is that the effect, the entreaty, shall at the same time be the power exercised over the other.

These two interminglcj the acknowledgment of the supremacy of the object, and, on the other Jiand, the consciousness of my own power, in accordance with which I desire to exercise supremacy over this object. Thus we see peoples sacrifice to a river if they wish to cross it, or bring offerings to the sun if it is eclipsed. They make use of the power in this way to conjure; the means are meant to exert a charm over the power of nature - they

-are meant to produce what the subject desires. The reverence thus shown towards such objects of nature is wholly ambiguous; it is not pure reverence, but reverence mixed with magic.

In conjunction with tliis reverence for natural objects, it may happen that these are conceived of in a more essential shape, as Genii; for example, the sun may be thought of as a genius, or we may have the genius of rivers, &c. Tliis is a kind of reverence in which man does not stop short at the particularity of the object; oii the contrary, it is universality which is before the mind, and it is this which is reverenced. But while this universality too is thus conceived of as in a universal shape and appears as power, man may, notwithstanding, preserve the consciousness of being the power even over these

-genii; their content is poorer, is only that of natural existences; it still continues a merely natural one, and self-consciousness is thus able to know itself as a power over it.


3. The next stage in the objectifying process is reached when man recognises and finds an independent power outside of himself in what has life. Life, even the life force in a tree, and still more in au animal, is a higher principle than the nature of the sun or of a river. This is why it has come about that among a very large number of peoples animals have been reverenced as divinities. This appears to us as the least worthy form of worship, but, as a matter of fact, the principle of life is higher than that of the sun. Animal life is a more exalted, a truer form of existence than any such existing natural object, and it is in so- far less undignified to reverence animals as divinities than rivers, stars, &c.

The life of an animal gives token eof an active independence of subjectivity, and it is that which is the main point here. It is his self-consciousness which a man makes objective to himself, and life is the form, the mode of existence, which is undoubtedly the most nearly related to the spiritual one. Animals are still worshipped by many peoples, especially in India and Africa. An animal has the calm independence, the vitality which does not throw itself away, which has a preference for this or for that; it has accidental arbitrary movement; it is not to be understood;' has something secret in its modes of action, in its expressions; it is alive, but not comprehensible as man is to man. This mysteriousness constitutes the miraculous element for man, so that he is able to look upon animal -life as higher than his own.

Serpents were still reverenced among the Greeks; from ancient times they had the prepossession in their favour of being esteemed as good omens. On the west coast of Africa a serpent is to be found in every house, and it is the greatest crime to murder it. On the one hand, animals are thus held in veneration, and on the other hand they are, notwithstanding this, subject to the most capricious treatment in respect of the veneration shown to them. Kegroes use whatever anihial comes first to


hand as tlieir charm, cast it aside when it does not produce the desired effect, and take another.

Such is the essential character of animal-worship; it exists in so far as man and the spiritual in him have not yet ¦ conceived of themselves in their true essentiality.

The life of man is thus mere free independence.

In this sphere of the appetite of individual self-consciousness, which neither in itself nor outside of itself recognises universal objective spirituality, that significance is not as yet given to the living creature, thus reverenced or worshiped, which it acquires later in the idea of the transmigration of souls. This general conception is based upon the idea that the spirit of man is of a durable characterj but that for his existence in that duration he -requires corporeal form, and inasmuch as this is not now a human one, he requires another, and the one most nearly related is accordingly that of the animah In zoolatry, which is bound up with the transmigration of souls, it is an important and essential moment that the idea of an indwelling spiritual element combines itself with this transmuted life, so that it is properly this which is reverenced. Here in this sphere, where immediate self-consciousness is the fundamental element, it is, however, life in the general sense only that is reverenced.

This worship, therefore, is of a contingent character, and connects itself now with this animal,: and now with that other. Almost every unaccomplished: desire is the occasion of a fresh change. Moreover, any kind of thing is to the purpose here, - a manufactured idol, a hill, a tree, &c. Just as children feel the impulse to play, and mankind the impulse to adorn themselves, there is an impulse here too to have something before one as an independent and powerful object, and to have the consciousness of an arbitrary combination which may be just as easily broken up again, as the more precise character of the object appears at first to be of no consequence.


It is in this way that fetish - worship originates.

"Fetish" is a corruption of a Portuguese word, and has the same meaning as " idol." Fetish may mean anything, any carved work, a piece of wood, an animal, a river, a tree, &c. Similarly there are fetishes for whole peoples, atid fetishes for any special individual.

The negroes have a great variety of idols, natural objects which they make into their fetishes. The first stone which comes to hand, locusts, &c., these are their Lares, from which they expect to derive good fortune.

This is thus an unknown indefinite power, which they have themselves created in an immediate way. Accordingly, if anything unpleasant befalls them, and they do not find the fetish serviceable, they make away with it and choose another. A tree, a river^ a lion, a tiger are common national fetishes. If any misfortune occurs, such as floods or war, they change their god. The fetish is subject to being changed, and sinks to a means of procuring something for the individual. The Mle of the Egyptians, on the contrary, is quite different; it is something Divine which they have in common; it is their substantial, unchangeable ruling power, upon which their entire existence depends.

The ultimate form in which independent spirituality is embodied is essentially man himself - a living, independent form of existence which is spiritual. !peverence has here its essential object; and in regard to objectivity the principle makes its appearance that it is not every individual chance consciousness which has power to rule over nature, but that there are some few particular ruling persons who are looked up to and reverenced as embodying spirituality. In the existing self-consciousness which still has power, it is the will, it is knowledge in comparison with and in actual relation to others which is what rules and which shows itself as essentially necessary relatively to the Other, and is a central point among many. Here, therefore, a spiritual power makes its


appearance, which is to be looked upon as objective, and thus the principle appears according to which it is to be a case of one or some as exclusive in reference to the rest. Thus one man is a magician, or some men are magicians; they are looked upon as the highest power which is actually present. These are usually princes, and thus, for instance, the Emperor of China is the individual liaving dominion over men, and at the same time over nature and natural things. Since it is thus a self-consciousness which is reverenced, a distinction at once makes itself apparent here between what an individual is in his essential nature and what he is from the point of view of his external existence. In this latter aspect the individual is a man like other men, but the essential moment or element is spirituality in general; this being for self or independent in contrast to the external contingent mode of existence. A distinction begins to appear here which is of "a higher character, as as we shall see later on, and which comes into prominence in the Lamas. What first takes place is that a distinction is made between individuals as such and as universal powers. Tiiis universal spiritual power, conceived as existing in its own right, supplies the idea of Genius, of a god who has himself again a sensuous shape in the idea formed of him, and the actually living individual is then the priest of such an idol. At'this standpoint, however, the priest and the god often become synonymous. His inner life may become hypostatised; here, however, the essential power of the spiritual and the immediate existence are not as yet separated from one another, and thus this spiritual power is really merely a superficial idea. The priest, the magician, is the principal person, so that they are actually represented sometimes as separate, but if the god comes to express himself outwardly, becomes strong, decides, &c., he only does this as a definite real human being; this reality supplies the god with his strength. These priests sometimes have


actual sovereigns over them too; if the priest and prince are distinguished from one another, the man is on the one hand reverenced as God, and on the other compelled to do what others require of him. The negroes, who have magicians who are not at the same time sovereigns, bind and beat them until they are obedient, if they refuse to use their magical charms or are not disposed to do so.

We shall see how the idea runs through various religions that the Spiritual has its presence in man, and that human consciousness is essentially the presence of Spirit. This idea necessarily belongs to the oldest class of principles. It is present in the Christian religion too, but in a higher form, and, as it were, transfigured. The Christian religion interprets and transfigures it.

In the case of a human being, the mode in which objectivity is attained is of a twofold kind. The first is that in which he takes up a position of exclusiveness as against what is other than himself^; the second is the natural mode, namely, the stripping off of what is temporal from liim; this natural mode is death. Death takes away what is temporal, what is transitory in man, but it has no power or control over that whipli lie essentially is.

That man actually has such a region within himself, since he exists in his own right, cannot at this standpoint as yet come into consciousness; here self-consciousness is not' as yet in possession of the eternal meaning of its spirit. The stripping off referred to ^has to do only with the individual's sensuous existence; the whole remaining contingent mode of his particularity, of his sensuous presence is, on the other hand, retained by him. It is removed into the region of ideas, and is retained there.

This, however, has not the form of truth, but what is thus retained for the individual has still the form of his wholly sensuous existence. Keverence for the dead is therefore still quite feeble, and its content is of an accidental character. The dead are a power, but a feeble power.

The lasting part of the dead, a part which is at the


-same time conspicuously material, what we may call the

immortal material part, is represented by the bones.

Among many peoples, therefore, the bones of the dead are held in reverence, and are used as instruments of magic.

We may in this connection be reminded of relics, and it is the fact that on the one hand missionaries are zealous in opposing this veneration for bones, while on the other hand they ascribe a greater power to their own religion. Thus a monk relates that the negroes have bandages which are prepared with human blood by a magical process, and to which is attributed the power of enabling a man to hold his ground .against wild beasts.

He had often observed that men provided with such

"bandages had been torn by animals, from which those upon whom he had hung relics ha i always remained protected.

As representing this power, the dead therefore demand veneration, and this consists in nt)thing beyond the bestowal of a certain care upon them, and in providing them with food and drink. Most ancient peoples buried food with the dead. Accordingly the idea of what is true, lasting, enduring, is of a very inferior kind. It is also supposed that the dead return to the present world, or it may be they are thought of partly as a power which will avenge neglect of care, partly asicalled up by magic, through the power of the magician, of the actual selfconsciousness, and consequently as being subject to this

* latter. A few examples will illustrate this.

The Capuchin monk Cavazzi {Histo7\ Beschreihung d, drei Konigr. Congo u. s. w., Ifilnchcn, 1 694), who remained for a considerable time in the neighbourhood of the Congo, relates a great deal about these magicians, who are named Singhillu They are held in great repute by the people, and call them together -whenever it pleases them to do so. They always do this from time to time, and state that they are impelled to it by this or that dead person. The tribe must present itself, each man


provided with a knife, the magician hi&self makes his appearance carried in a net, decked with- precious stones, feathers, &c. The assembled people receive him with singing, dancing, and shouts of joy, which are accompanied by a barbaric, deafening, hideous kind of music, which is supposed to occasion the entrance of the spirit which has passed away, into the Singhilli; he liimseK entreats the spirit to enter into him. This accomplished, he rises and gesticulates quite after the manner of one possessed, tears his garments, rolls his eyes, bites and scratches himself; while doing so, he expresses the dead man's desires, and replies to the questions of those who inquire of him about their own affairs. The speaking dead threatens the survivors with distress and misery, wishes them all kinds of mishaps, inveighs against the ingratitude of his blood-relations in having given him no human blood. Cavazzi says, " The working of demoniacal fury shows itself in him, and he yells in a frightful manner, takes the blood by force which is not rendered to him, seizes a knife, thrusts it into some one's breast, cleaves heads, rips up bellies, and drinks the blood which streams forth. He rends the bodies and divides the flesh among those present, who devour it without remorse, although it may be that of their nearest relatives; they know beforehand that this is how the thing will end, but go notwithstanding to the gathering with the greatest rejoicing.

" The Gacjas imacjine that the dead feel hummer and thirst.


If any one becomes ill, or especially if he has visions or sees apparitions and dreams, he sends for a Singhilli and questions him. The latter inquires into„alI the circumstances, and the result is that the apparition proves to be that of one of his deceased relations who is present there, and he is told that he must go to another Singhilli in order to have it driven away, for each Singhilli hag his own special business. This last now conducts him to the grave of the person who appeared tp him, or who is


the cause of the illness. There the dead man is conjured, abused, threatened, until he enters into the Singhilli and discloses what he desires in order to be reconciled. This is the course of procedure when he has been dead for a long time; if he has only recently been buried, the body is dug up, the head cut off" and laid open; the moisture which flows from it must be in part consumed in food by the sick person, and of part of it plasters are made which are laid upon him.

'^ The difficulties are greater when the dead has had no burialj but has been devoured by friend, enemy, or wild beast. The Singhilli then sets about making incantations, and afterwards gives out that the spirit has entered into the body of a monkey, a bird, &c., and manages to effect the capture of the animal or bird. The latter is then killed, and the sick person consumes it, and in consequence of this the spirit loses all right, to be anything.*'

It is clear from the above that in so far as it is a question of duration, no absolute, free, independent power is conceded to the spirit.

It is as dead that the man is represented in this state of duration, as having had his empirical external existence stripped off him. But his wholly contingent nature still remains to him in this sphere; the objectifying has still reference entirely to the external mode of existence, " is still wholly formal. It is not as yet the Essential which is regarded as existent, and what is left behind is still the man's contingent nature. The duration itself which is given to the dead is a superficial quality; it is not his transfif:juration. He continues to be continjrent existence, in the power, in the hands of the living selfconsciousness, of the magician, so that the latter may even cause him to die over again, and therefore to die a second time.

The idea of immortality hangs together with the idea of God. It always corresponds, in, short, with the stage at which the metaphysical conception of God has arrived.


The more the power of spirituality is conceived of in accordance with its content in ari eternal form, the worthier is the idea of God, as well as the idea of the spirit of the human individual and of the immortality of the spirit.

However weak, however powerless men appear here, they appear just the same among the Greeks and in Homer. In the scene of Odysseus at the Styx we see how he calls forth the dead and slays a black goat; by the help of blood only are the shades able to acquire memory and speech; they are - eager for blood, so that vitality may enter into them: Odysseus permits some to drink, and holds the rest back with his sword.

When the idea of the spirit of man is of this material character, the idea of what the ruling power is in its essential nature is equally material.

The example already quoted at once shows us the little value man^ as an individual, has for those at this standpoint. This contempt for man, this making light of man by others, is confessedly present also aiuong the negroes too, in the form of the condition of slavery, which is quite universal among them. Prisoners either become slaves or are slaughtered. With the: idea of immortality the value of life increases; one might, suppose the reverse would take place, and that life would then have less value. On the one hand, such is actually the case too, but, on the other, the right of the individual to life at once becomes so much the greater^ and the right becomes for the first time great when man is recognised as free implicitly or in himself, in his own right. Both determinations, that of subjective finite independent being and that of absolute power, which is afterwards to appear definitely as absolute Spirit, are connected in the very closest manner.

On this account, too, one might suppose that man, since he is of so much value as being this power, would be held in great reverence here, afid would have the


feeling of his dignity. But, on the contrary, man has here complete worthlessness; for man does not possess dignity through what he is as immediate will, but only in virtue of having knowledge of something which exists in-and-for-itself, and of something substantial, and only because he subjects his natural will to this, and brings it into accordance with it. Only by the annulling of natural unruliness, and through the knowledge that a Universal that exists in-and-for-itsel,f is the True, does he acquire a dignity, and then only does life itself too become worth something.

(e.) Worship or Cultus in the Religion of Magic,

In the sphere of magic, where the spiritual element is known as existing in the particular self-consciousfiess only, there can be no question of worship as free reverence for a spiritual being, for what has an absolute objective existence of its own. Here this relation is rather the exercise of lordship over nature, the rule of some few self-conscious beings over the rest - the sway of the magician over those who do not know. The condition of this lordship is sensuous stupor, in which the particular will is forgotten, extinguished, and the abstract sensuous consciousness is intensified to the utmost degree.

The means used for producing this stupor are dancing, music, shouting, gorging, even sexual.intercourse; and it

is these which at a hifrher level become cultus.

^ ii

The way out of this first form of religion is that Spirit gets to be purified from externality, from sensuous imme_diacy, and attains to the idea of Spirit as Spirit in ordinary conception and in thought.

The important element in the advance is just the objectifying of Spirit - that is to say, the fact that Spirit becomes purely objective, and comes to have the signification of Universal Spirit.




The first step in advance is when consciousness of a substantial Power comes in, and of the powerlessness of the immediate will. Inasmuch as God is here known as the Absolute Power, this is not as yet the religion of freedom; for though man does actually rise, by the coming in of that consciousness; above himself, and though the essential differentiation of Spirit is carried into effect, still since this lofty Being is known as power, and is not as yet further characterised, the Particular is merely something accidental, is a mere negative or nullity.

Everything subsists by means of this power, or, in other words, it is itself the subsistence of everything, so that the freedom of a self-dependent existence is not as yet recognised. This is Pantheism.

This power, which is something reached by thought, is not as yet known as such, as implicitly spiritual.

Since it must now have a spiritual mode of existence, but has not as yet in itself freedom in its own right, it has the moment of spirituality again merely in a single human being, who is known as this power.

In the exaltation of spirit with which we have to do here, the point of departure is the finite^ the contingent.

This is defined as the negative, and the universal selfexistent Essence as that in which and by means of which this finite is something negative, something posited.

Substance, on the contrary, is the not-posited, the selfexistent, the power in relation to the finite.

Now, the consciousness which rises up, rises up in its character as thought, but without having a consciousness regarding this universal thought, without expressing it in the form of thought. The rising up is, however, iu: the first place, an upward movement only. The other


movement is the converse one, namely, that this necessary element has returned to the finite. In the first movement the finite forget-s itself. The second is the relation of Substance to the finite. God being only determined here as the Substance of the finite and the power over it, He Himself is still undetermined. He is not yet known as determined within Himself for Himself.

He is not yet known as Spirit.

This is the general foundation of several definite forms of religion, which are progressive efforts to grasp Substance as self-determining.

1. To begin with, in the religion of China, for example, Substance is known as the simple foundation, and is thus immediately present in the finite, the contingent.

What occasions the progressive movement of consciousness is that Spirit, even although Substance is not yet conceived of as Spirit, is nevertheless the Truth which potentially lies at the foundation of all the phenomena of consciousness, so that even at this stage nothing can be wanting of what pertains to the conception of Spirit.

Therefore here too Substance will take on the specific character of a subject, but the question is as to how it does this. Here, accordingly, the characteristics of Spirit which are potentially existent present themselves in an external shape. Complete determinateness, the ultimate reach of definite form, this final culmination of the unit of independent being, is now posited in an external fashion, so that a present human being is known as the universal Power.

This consciousness already shows itself in the Chinese religion, where the Emperor at all events represents what gives effect to the power.

2. In the religion of India Substance is known as abstract unity, no longer as a mere ^foundation, and this abstract unity is more nearly akin to Spirit, since Spirit as " I" is itself this abstract unity. Here, then, man rises up, and in lifting himself up to his inner abstract


'Unity, to the unity of Substance, identifier himself with it, and thus gives it existence. Some by nature share in the existence of this unity; others have it in their power to rise to the attainment of it.

The unity whicli is here the ruling power makes, it is true, au attempt to unfold itself. The true uufolding and the negativity of the combination of differences would be Spirit, which determines itself within itself, and in its subjectivity manifests itself to itself. This subjectivity of Spirit would give it a content, which would be worthy of itj and which would itself also have a spiritual nature.

Here, however, the characteristic of naturalness still remains, inasmuch as an advance is made to differentiation and unfolding only, and the moments or elements remain in an isolated condition alongside of each other. Here the unfolding necessary in the conception of Spirit is consequently itself devoid of Spirit. Accordingly, in the Eeligion of Nature, one is sometimes at a loss to find Spirit unfolded. This is the case, for instance, with the idea of the Incarnation, the Trinity, in the religion of India. Moments or elements will indeed be found which pertain to Spirit, but these are so disposed that they at the same time do not pertain to it. The determinations or characteristics are isolated, and present themselves as mutually exclusive. Thus the triad in Indian religion does not become Trinity, for absolute Spirit alone is the power which rules over its moments.

The general conception of the religion of nature presents great difficulties in this respect; it is everywhere inconsistent, and is inherently contradictory. Thus, on the one. hand, the spiritual, which is essentially free, is posited, made dependent on something else; and then, pn the other, that element is represented in the determinateness belonging to nature, in a condition of individuality, with a content which has .fixed particularity, and which is therefore wholly inadequate to Spirit, since the latter is true Spirit only as free Spirit.


3. In the last form which belongs to this stage of the inner division of consciousness, the Concrete embodiment and presence of Substance exists and lives in one individual, and the formless unfolding of unity which was peculiar to the preceding form is at least in so far done away with in that it is nullified and ^reduced to a volatile state. This is Lamaism or Buddhisii^.

Before proceeding to consider more closely the historical existence of this religion, we have to look at the general definite character of this entire stage and the metaphysical notion or conception of it. To put it more accurately, what is to be defined is the notion or conception of the exaltation of Spirit and the relation of Substance to the Finite.

The Metaphysical Notion or Conception.

In the first place, we must consider the general scope of the metaphysical notion, and explain what is to be understood by it.

Here we have a wholly concrete content, and the metaphysico-logical notion therefore appears to lie behind us, just because we find ourselves in the region of the absolutely concrete. The content is ^Spirit, and a process of the unfolding or development which Spirit is, is the content of the whole Philosophy of Religion. The differ rent stages at which we find Spirit give the different religions. Now this differentiation of determinateness, since it constitutes the different stages, shows itself as external form which has Spirit as its foundation, the differences of Spirit being posited within it in a definite form. And this form, it is certain, is universal logical form. Form is therefore the Abstract, At the same time, however, such determiuateness is not merely this external form;, bnt, as being the logical element, is what is innermost in the determining Spirit. It unites both in itself; it is at once, the inmost element and external form. This is the verv nature of the notion, namelv, to be the essential


element, and the Essence of appearance, of the distinction of form. This logical determinateness is on the one hand concrete as Spirit, and this whole is the simple Substantiality of Spirit; but on the other it is also the external form belonging to Spirit, by means of which it is differentiated from what is other than itself. That inmost specific character, which is the content of each stage in accordance with its substantial nature, is thus at the same time external form. It may well be that when another object, a natural object, is under consideration, the logical element is taken as constituting its inner nature. With so concrete a form of existence as the finite Spirit, this is accordingly the case as well. In the philosophy of nature and in the philosophy of Spirit this logical form cannot be brought into special prominence. In such a content as nature and Spirit it exists in a finite mode, and in such a sphere the exposition of the logical element may be represented as a system of conclusions or syllogisms, of mediations. Without this long explanation, which, however, is alone adequate to our purpose, the statement and consideration of the simple determinateness. of the notion would remain unsatisfactory. But since in these spheres the logical qualities, as being the substantial basis, are veiled or concealed, and are not seen in their simple existence, in which they are adequate to thought, it is not so needful to bring them into prominence on their own account, while in religion Spirit allows the logical element to come forward in a more definite form. Here, it is precisely this element which has withdrawn itself into its simple shape, and can therefore here be more easily considered, and this is the excuse we have to offer should it surprise any one that it is made the subject of special consideration.

In one respect, therefore, we are in^a position to assume the existence of the element referred to, but in another we can discuss it on account of its simplicity, since it possesses interest in virtue of the fact of its having been

VOL. r, X


formerly treated of in natural theology, and as having, in fact, its place in theology as an elebaent in the philosophical knowledge of God. It has, since the time of the Kantian philosophy, been cast aside as meaD, bad, "iinworthy of notice, and for this reason it requires a justification.

Determination of the Notion, of Notion in general, is in its real character by no means something in a state of repose, but is something which moves itself, is essentially a state of activity, and is for this very reason mediation, as thinking is an activity, a mediation within itself, and thus also contains the definite thought of mediation within itself. The proofs of the existence of God are likewise mediation, the notion is to be represented by a mediation.

Thus the same thing is found in both. In the proofs of the existence of God, however, the mediation takes a form which suggests that it has been contrived for the behoof of cognition or reasoned knowledge, in order that for this latter a fixed view or insight might grow up. It is to be proved to me; it is this, accordingly, which constitutes the main interest of my cognition. After what has been said about the nature of the notion, it is clear that we must not so conceive of mediation, nor think of it as subjective, but get to see that what is true is an objective relation of God within Himself, of His logical element within Himself, and only when and in so far as mediation is so conceived of is it a necessary moment. The proofs of the existence of God must show themselves as a necessary moment of the notion itself, as an advanciug movement, as an activity of the notion itself.

The first form of this activity derives its character from the fact, that here we are still entirely at the first stage, which we have described as the immediate one, the stage of immediate unity. It results from this determination of immediateness that we have to do here with wholly abstract determinations, fur immediate and abstract are the same.

The immediate is Being, and so in . thought, too, the


immediate is the abstract which has not as yet buried itself in itself, and has not as yet filled itself up by means of further reflection, has not yet made itself concrete. If we thus divest both these sides - Spirit as object generally, and nature, the mode of its reality - of what is concrete in the content, and hold fast simply the simple thoughtdeterminateness, we have in this way an abstract determination of God and of the finite. „These two sides are now opposed as infinite and finite - the one as pure Being, the other as determinate Being - as substantial and accidental, as universal and as particular. These determinations, it is true, are intrinsically different in some degree; thus the Universal is undoubtedly in itself much more concrete than Substance is; here, however, we can look at Substance as undeveloped, and it is then of no consequence which form we take in order to consider it more closely.

Its relation to what confronts it is the essential thing.

This relation in which they are placed with regard to one another is present in their own nature quite as much as in religion, and is to be taken up in the first place in that aspect of it. In bringing himself into relation to the Infinite, man starts from the finite as his point of departure. Having the world before him, he has a feeling of the unattainable in it, for feeling, too, feels what is thought of, or what is thinkable. It does not suf&ce for what is ultimate, and he finds the world as an aggregate of finite things. In like manner, man knows himself to be something contingent, transient, and in this feeling he goes beyond the Particular and rises np to the Universal, to the One, which exists on its own account, to an Essence to which this contingency and conditioned character does not pertain, which rather is simply the Substance in contrast to this accidental element, and the Power owing to which this contingency is and is not.

Now, religion just means that man seeks the basis of his want of self-dependence: not until he is in the presence of the Infinite does he find tranquillity, If we


speak thus abstractly of religion, we already have the essential relation here, the transition from the finite to the Infinite. This transition is of such a kind that it is essentially involved in the nature of these determinations, in other words, in the Notion, and it may be observed here that it is possible to stop short at this determination. Taken in a strict sense,^ this transition may be conceived of in two different ways. We may regard it first as a transition from the finite to the Infinite as a *' Beyond," which is a more modern way of looking at it.

Then, secondly, we may so conceive of it that the unity of the two is held fast, while the finite^ maintains itself in the Infinite. In the Eeligion of Nature we find that any particular, immediate existence whatever, whether natural or spiritual, becomes a finite infinitely extended beyond its own range, and in the limited sense-perception of such an object the infinite Essence, free substantiality, is at the same time known. What, in fact, is here involved is that in the finite thing, the sun or the animal, and the like, infinitude is at the same time perceived, and that in the external manifoldness of the finite object we at the same time behold the inner infinite unity, divine substantiality. To consciousness the Infinite itself here becomes so really present in finite .existence, the God becomes so present to it in this particularised existence, that this existence is not distinct from God, but rather is the mode in which God exists, implying that natural existence is preserved in immediate unity with Substance.

This advance from the finite to the Infinite is not only a fact, a matter of history in religion, but it is necessitated by the notion involved in the very nature of such a determination itself. This transition is thought itself; this means nothing else than that we know the Infinite in the finite, the universal in the particular. The consciousness of the universal, of the Inffnite, is thought, and as this it is intrinsically mediation, a going forth - in fact, the abrogation and absorption of the external, of the parti


cular. Such, is the nature of thought generally. We think of au object; in doing so, we coine to have its law, its essence, its universal element before us. It is thinking man and he alone who has religion; an animal has none, because it does not think. Accordingly we should have to show in reference to such a determination of the finite, the particular, the accidental, that it is the finite, &c., which translates itself into the Infinite, &c., which cannot remain as finite, which makes, itself infinite, and must in accordance with its Substance return into the Infinite. This determination belongs entirely to the logical consideration of the problem.

The exaltation or rising up of Spirit is not tied down to making the contingency of the world its point of departure in order to arrive at the necessity of the Essence which exists in its own right: we may, on the contrary, determine the world in yet another way. Necessity is the final category of Being and Essence, therefore many categories precede it. The world may be a Many, a manifold. The truth of it is then the One. Just as we pass from the many to the One, from the finite to the Infinite, so too the transition may be made from Being in general to Essence.

The process of transition from the finite to the Infinite, from the accidental to the substantial, and so on, belongs to the active operation of thought in consciousness, and is the inherent nature of these characteristics themselves, - that precisely which they truly are. The finite is not the Absolute; on the contrary, it belongs to its very nature to pass away and become infinite; it belongs to the very nature of the particular to return into the universal, and to that of the accidental simply to return into Substance. This transition is in so far mediation as it is movement from the initial immediate definite state into its Other, into the Infinite, the Universal; and Substance is clearly not something immediate, but something which comes into being by means of this transition,


something self-positing. That such is the' true nature ol these determinations themselves is demonstrated in logic; and it is essential to hold this fast in its true sense, namely, that it is not we in merely external reflection ¦who pass over from such qualities to „that which is their

.. Other, but rather that it is their own essential nature so to pass over. I shall now describe in a few more words this dialectical element in the determination in question here, namely, the finite.

We say, " It is; " this Being is at the same time finite; that wliich it is, it is by means of its end, of its negation, by means of its limits, of the commencement of an Other in it, which is not itself. " Finite " is a qualitative characteristic, a quality generally; the finite

-implies that quality is simply definite character or determinateness, which is identical in an immediate way with Eeing, so that if quality passes away; the something definite passes away too. We say something is red; here " red " is the quality; if this quality cease, the " something " is then no longer this particular thing, and if it were not a Substance which can endure this withdrawal of quality, the " something " would be lost. It is just the same in Spirit; there are human beings possessed of an absolutely definite character; if this be lost, they cease to be. Cato's fundamental quality was the Roman Hepublic; as soon as that ceased, he died. This quality is so bound up with him, that he cannot subsist without it.

This quality is finite, is essentially a limit, a negation.

The limit of Gate is the Eoman republican j his spirit, liis idea, has no greater compass than that. Since quality constitutes the limit of the Something, we call such a thing finite; it is essentially within its boundary, iu its negation, and the particularity of the negation and of the Something is thereby essentially in relation to its Other. This Other is not another finite, but is the Infinite. In virtue of its essentiality the finite is seen to consist in this, that it has its essentiality in its negation.


and this when developed is an Other, and is here the Infinite.

The leading thought is that the finite is something whose nature consists in this, that it has not its Being in its own self, but has that which it is in an Other, and this Other is the Infinite. The very nature of the finite it is to have the Infinite as its truth; that which it is, is not it itself, but is its opposite, the Infinite.

This advance is necessary - it is posited in the notion; the finite is inherently finite - that is its nature. The rising up to God is thus just what we have seen it to be; this finite self-consciousness does not keep itself limited to the finite; it forsakes it, relinquishes it, and conceives the Infinite. This takes place in the process of rising up to God, and is the rational element therein.

This advance is the innermost, thC: purely logical element, yet so conceived it only expresses one side of the Whole: the finite vanishes in the Infinite; it is its nature to posit the Infinite as its truth; the Infinite, which has thus come to be in this manner, is, however, itself as yet only the abstract Infinite; it is only negatively determined as the Not-finite. The essential nature of the Infinite, too, on its 'part, as being this merely negatively determined Infinite, is to annul itself and to determine itself; in fact, to annul and absorb its negation, to posit itself on the one hand as affirmation,, and on the other to annul in like manner its abstraction, and to particularise itself and posit the moment of finitude within itself.

The finite vanishes at first in the Infinite; it is not; its Being is only a semblance of Being. We have then the Infinite before us as an abstract Infl:nite only, enclosed within its own sphere; and it belongs to its real nature to abolish this abstraction. This results from the notion or conception of the Infinite. It is the negation of the negation - the negation relating itself to itself - and this is absolute affirmatii^n, and at the same


time Being, simple reference to itself: such is Being.

Since this is the case, the second element too, the Infinite, is not universally posited, but is also affirmation, and thus its nature is to determine itself within itself, to preserve the moment of finitude within itself, but ideally.

It is negation of the negation, and thus contains the differentiation of the one negation from the other negation. Thus limitation is involved j'n it, and consequently the finite too. If we define the negation more strictly, then we see that the one is the Infinite and the other the finite, and true infinitude is the unity of the two.

It is only these two moments together which constitute the nature of the Infinite, and its true identity; it is this Whole which is for the first time the notion of the Infinite. This Infinite is to be .distinguished from that which was mentioned previously, namely, the Infinite in immediate knowledge or the Thing-in-itself, which is the negative Infinite void of determination, the mere ISTot-finite of the Kantian philosophy. The Infinite is

' now no longer a " Beyond; " it has deter minateness within

. itself.

The religion of nature, however imperfect its representation of the unity of the finite and Infinite, already contains this consciousness of the Divine as being the substantial element, which is at the same time determined, and thus has the form of a natural mode of .existenoe. What is beheld as God: in it is this divine Substance in a natural form. Here, therefore, the content is more concrete and consequently better; it contains more truth than that found in immediate lvnowled<^e, which refuses to know the nature of God, because it holds that He is undetermined. Natural religion really occupies a higher standpoint than this view, which is characteristic of more recent times, though those who hold it still mean to believe in a revealed religion.


If we now consider the transition already specified as it presents itself in the proofs of the existence of God, we find it expressed in the form ot a syllogism to be the Cosmological Proof. In metaphysics the essence of this proof is that contingent Being,^ the contingency of worldly things, is made the starting-point, and then the other determination is not that of infinitude, but that of something necessary in and for itself. This last is indeed a much more concrete determination than that of the Infinite; only, in accordance with the content of the proof, it is not it that is in question here, but it is only the logical nature of the transition which comes under consideration.

If we put the transition in this wa^y into the form of a syllogism, we then say that the finite presupposes the Infinite; the finite is, consequentl]/ there is an Infinite.

If we look at such a syllogism critically, we perceive that it leaves us cold or indifferent; something different from this and more than this is asked for; in religion. From one point of view this demand is right enough; on the other hand, however, such a rejection of proof involves the depreciation of thought, as if we made use of feeling, and had to appeal to popular or pictorial conceptions in order to produce conviction. The true nerve is true thought; only when that is true is feeling too of a true liind.

What is specially noticeable here is that a finite form of Being is accepted as the starting-point, and this finite Being thus appears as that by means of which the infinite Being gets its foundation. A finite Being thus appears as the foundation or basis. Mediation is given a position which implies that the consciousness of the Infinite has its origin in the finite. To speak more accurately, what we have here is that the finite is expressed in terras which imply that it has only a positive relation between the two. The proposition thus means that the Beincr of the finite is the Bein^ of the Infinite*


This relation is at once seen to be inadequate in reference to the two sides. The finite is' the positing agent, it remains the affirmative, the relation is a positive one, and the Being of the finite is what is primarily the basis, which Is the point of departure, and which is the abiding element. It is to be renjarked further, that when we say the Being of the finite is the Being of the Infinite, the Being of the finite, which is itself the Being of the Infinite, is in this way the major premiss of the syllogism, and the mediation between the Being of the finite and that of the Infinite is not shown. It is a proposition without mediation, and that is precisely the opposite of what is demanded.

This mediation contains a further determination besides. The Being of the finite is not its own Being, but that of the Other, that of the Infinite; it is not through the Being of the finite that the Infinite arises, but out of the not-being of the finite; this is the Being of the Infinite. The mediation is of such a kind that the finite stands before us as affirmation. Looked at more closely, the finite is that which it is as negation; thus it is not the Being, but the not-being of the finite; the mediation between the two is rather the necjative nature in the finite, and thus the true moment of mediation is not expressed in this proposition. The deficiency in the form of the syllogism is that this true content, this element -which belongs essentially to the notion, cannot be expressed in the form of a single syllogism. The Being of the Infinite is the negation of the finite; the destiny of the finite is simply to pass over into the Infinite, and thus the other propositions which belong to a s^'llogism do not permit of being superadded. The defect here is that the finite is pronounced to be affirmative and its relation to the Infinite is declared to be positive, while it is yet essentially negative, and this dialectic escapes the form of the syllogism of the understanding.

If the finite presupposes the Infinite, the following


principle, although not dfstincLly expressed, is implied in this. The finite is what posits^ but as something which presupposes or preposits the existence of something else, so that the Infinite is the first and the essential element.

When the presupposition is more fully developed it involves the negative moment of the finite and its relation to the Infinite, What is implied in religion is not that the affirmative nature of the finite, its immediacy, is that on account of which the Infinite exists; neither is the Infinite the self-annulling of the finite. The proof, the form of the relation of the finite to the Infinite - the thought - takes a wrong direction, owing to the form of the syllogism. Eeligion, however, contains this Thinking, this passing over from the finite to the Infinite, a passing over which is not of a chance character, but is necessary, and which the very conception of the nature of the Infinite brings with it. This thought, which essentially belongs to the substance of religion, is not correctly laid hold of iu the syllogistic form.

The deficiency in the mediation of the proof is this, that the Unconditioned is expressed as conditioned by means of another form of Being. The simple determination of negation is let go. In the true mediation the transition is also made from the Many to the One, and in such a manner too that the One is expressed as mediated.

But this defect is amended in the true exaltation of the Spirit, and, in fact, in virtue of its being stated that it is not the Many that exist, but the One. Through this negation the mediation and the condition are done away with, and that which is necessary in and for itself is now mediated through negation of mediation. God creates: here, then, we have the relation of two and mediation.

This, however, is a judgment, a differentiation: God is no longer the dark Essence existing in a state of torpor; He manifests Himself, He reveals Himself, He posits a distinction and is for an Other. This distinction in its highest expression is the Son. The Son is by means of


the Father, and conversely in Him only is God revealed. But in this Other God is at home with Himself, does not go outside of Himself; He relates Himself to Himself; and since this is no longer a relation toward what is other than Himself, mediation is done away with.

God is therefore that which is inherently and absolutely necessary - ^necessary in and for itselfof this determination is the absolute foundation. If even this be not sufficient, God must be conceived of as Substance.

We now come to the other aspect of the subject; it is the converse one, the relation in which Substance stands to the finite. In the act of rising up from the finite to Substance there is a mediation which was done away with in the result, posited as non-existent. In the turning round of Substance toward the many, the finitCj and so forth, this annulled mediation is to be taken up again, but in such a way that in the movement of the result it comes to be posited as null; that is to say, it is not only the result which must be apprehended; but in that result the Whole and its process. Now when the Whole is apprehended in this manner, it is said that Substance has accidents, has the infinite manifoldness which belongs to this Substance as a form of Being which passes away.

That which is perishes. But death is just as much again the beginning of life; the perishing or passing away is the beginning of the rise of existence, and there is only a veering round from Being into Not-Being, and vice mrsd. This is the alternation of accidentality, and Substance is now the unity of this alternation itself.

What is perennial is this alternation; what is thus alternation and at the same time unity is the substantial elementj the necessity which translates the origination into passing away, and mce versd. Substance is the absolute power or force of Being; Being belongs to it of right; but it is likewise the unity of the act of veering round, when Being veers round into ISTot-Being; it is again, how


ever, the dominating power over the process of perishing, so that the perishing perishes.

The defect attaching to this oriental Substance, as well as to that of Spinoza, lies in the categories of origination and perishing. Substance is not conceived of as the active agent within itself, as subject and as activity in accordance with ends; not as wisdom, but only as power.

It is something devoid of content;' specific character, purpose is not contained in it; the specific character which manifests itself in this originating and perishing is not grasped in thought. It is essentially purposeless empty power, which merely staggers about, so to speak. Such is the system which is called Pantheism. God is here the absolute Power, the Being in all determinate Being, the purification of Himself from determinateness and negation. That things are^ is owing: to Substance; that they are not, is likewise owing to the power of Substance, and this power is immediately immanent for the things.

We have an example of this Pantheism also in the expression of Jacobi: " God is Being in all determinate Being; " and we undoubtedly get from him in this connection very brilliant definitions of God. This determinate Being contains Being in an immediate manner within itself, and this Being in determinate Being is God, who is thus the Universal in determinate Being. Being is the most arid possible determination of God, and if He is to be Spirit it is supremely unsatisfactory; wlien used in this way as the Being of determinate Being in finite reality we have Pantheism. Jacobi's system was far removed from Pantheism, yet the latter is involved in that expression, and Science is not concerned with what a person thinks in his own mind; on the contrary, it is what is expressed that it considers to be of importance.

Parmenides says, Being is everything. This seems to be the same thing, and thus to be Pantheism too; but this thought is purer than that of Jacobi, and is not Pantheism. For he says expressly that Being alone is,


aud all limitation, all reality, all definite modes of existence come to be included in Not-Being; this latter, ac-cordingly, is not at all, but it has Being only. "With Parmenides that which is known as determinate Being is no longer present or existent at all. By Jacobi, on the "Contrary, determinate Being is regarded as affirmative, although it is finite, and thus it is affirmation in finite existence. Spinoza says, What is is the absolute substance; what is other than this are mere mod% to which he ascribes no affirmatiooj no reality. Thus it cannot perhaps be said even of the Substance of Spinoza that it is so precisely Pantheistic as that expression of Jacobi, for particular things still remain as little an affirmative for Spinoza as determinate Being does for Parmenides, which, as distinguished from Being, is for him mere ISTot-Being, and is of such a character that this Kot-Being is not at all.

If the finite be taken as thought, then all that is finite is understood to be included, and thus it is Pantheism.

But in using the term finite it is necessary to draw a distinction between the finite as represented merely by this or that particular object, and the finite as including all things, and to explain in which sense we use the word. Taken in the latter sense, it is already a progressive movement of reflection, which no longer arrests itself at the Particular; " all that is finite " pertains to reflection. This Pantheism is of modern date, and if it be said that " God is Being in all determinate Being," this expresses a form of Pantheism found among Moham-inedans of modern times, especially the Pantheism of the Bechelaleddin-Eumi, Here this everything as it is is a Whole, and is God; and the finite is in this determinate ^ Being as universal finitude. This Pantheism is the product of thinking reflection, which extends natural things so as to include all and everything, and in so doing con..ceives of the existence of God not as true universality of thought, but as an allness; that is to say, as being in all individual natural .existences, .


' It may be remarked further in passing, that the definition given by more r'ecent philosophical systems, according to which Spirit is unity with itself, and comprises the World as something ideal within itself, is called Pantheism, or more precisely the Pantheism of Spiritualism, But here the category of unity is understood in a one-sided manner only, and the category of Creatiou, in which God is cause, and the separation is so patent that the creation is independent relatively to Him, is placed in contrast to it. But it is precisely the fundamental characteristic of Spirit that it is this differentiation and positing of the difference; and that is the very creation which those who bring*the charge of Pantheism always want to have. The next thing indeed is that the separation does not remain permanent, but is annulled; for otherwise we would find ourselves in dualism and Manicheeism.

We now return to the conception in accordance with which Substauce, as the universal ruling power of thought, is brought into prominence on its own account.

This exaltation, this knowing, is not, however, as yet religion, for there is wanting to it the moment or element which is indispensable in religion as the fully developed idea, namely, the moment of Spirit. The position given to this moment here results from Substance not being as yet determined within itself as Spirit - that is, from Spirit not being as yet determined as Substance. Thus Spirit is outside of Substance, and is outside of it in the sense of being different from it.

We have now to consider the fundamental character of Pantheism in its more definite fprms and under its religious aspects.

I. The Chinese, Beligion^ or the Eeligion of Measure,

(a.) The General Character of this Eeligion. - In the first place, Substance continues to be thought of under


that aspect of Being which does indeed come nearest to Essence, but yet still pertains to the immediateness of Being; and Spirit, which is different from it, is a particular, finite Spirit, is Man. This Spirit is, viewed from one side, that which is possessed of authority - it is what carries that power into effect; viewed from the other side, it is, as subjected to that power, the accidental element. If man be conceived of as this power, so that it is looked upon as acting and working in him, or else that he succeeds by means of worship in positing himself as identical with it, the power has' the form of Spirit, but of the human finite spirit; and here enters in the element of separation from others 'over whom he has power.

(b.) The Historical Existence of this Religion.- - We have, it is true, emerged from that immediate religion in which we were at the stage of magic, since the particular spirit now distinguishes itself from SubstancCj and stands in such a relation toward it that it regards it as the universal Power. In the Chinese religion, which represents the earliest historical form of this substantial relation, Substance is thought of as representing the entire sphere of essential Being or measure; measure represents what exists in-and-for itself, the Unchangeable, and T'ien, Heaven, is the objective material representation of this essentially existing element. Notwithstanding this, the element of magic still intrudes itself into this sphere, in so far as in the world of reality the individual man, the will and empirical consciousness, are what is highest. Nay, the standpoint of magic has here broadened out into an organised monarchy, which presents the appearance of something imposing and majestic.

T'ien is the Highest, but not iu the spiritual, moral sense alone; T'ien rather denotes wholly indeterminate abstract universality; it is the wholly indeterminate sum of all physical and moral connection whatsoever. Along


"witli this conception, however, we have the other idea that it is the Emperor who is sovereign upon earth, and not the Heavens. It is not Heaven whi^h has given laws or gives them, laws which the people respect, divine laws, laws of religion, of morality. It is not T'ien who governs nature; it is the Emperor who governs everything, and he only is in connection with this T'ien.

It is the Emperor alone who brings offerings to T'ien at the foar principal festivals of the year. He also confers with T'^ien, offers his prayers to him; he alone stands in connection with him, and governs everything on earth. The Emperor has in his hands, too, authority over natural things and their changes, and rules their forces.

We distinguish between the world, the phenomena of the world, and God, in a way which implies that God also rules outside of this world. «Here, however, the Emperor alone is the one who rules. The Heaven of the Chinese - T'^ien - is something entirely empty; the souls of the departed exist, it is true,^ in it, they survive the separation from the body, but they also belong to the world, since they are thought of as lords over the course of nature. And they too are under the rule of the Emperor; he instals them in their offices and deposes them. If the dead are conceived of as directors of the realm of nature, it might be said that they are thus given an exalted position; but the fact of the matter is that they are degraded into genii of the 'natural world, and therefore it is right that the self-conscious Will should direct those genii.

The Heaven of the Chinese, therefore, is not a world which forms an independent realm above the earth, and which is in its own right the realm of the Ideal, like the heaven we conceive of, with angels and the souls of the departed; nor is it like the Greek Olympus, which is distinct from life upon earth. Here, on the contrary, everything is upon earth, and all that has power is subject to the Emperor; it is this individual self-con VOL. I. Y


sciousness whicli in a conscious way exercises complete sovereignty. As regard the element of Measure, there are established typical forms which are called Eeason (Teio). The laws of Tao, or Measures, are determinations, figurations; not abstract Being nor abstract Substance, but figures or signs of Substance, which may either be understood in a more abstract sense, or else are to be taken as the determinations for nature and for the spirit of man, the laws of his will and of his reason.

The detailed statement and development of these measures would comprise the entire philosophy and science of the Chinese. Here we have only to treat of the principal points.

The measures in abstract Universality are quite simple categories: Being and Not-Being, One and Two, which is .equivalent in general to the Many. The Chinese represent these universal categories by -lineal figures; the

fundamental figure is the line; a simple line ( )

signifies the one, and affirmation or " yes; " the interrupted line (- - ) two, division, and- negation or "no." These signs are called Kud, and the Chinese relate that these signs appeared to them upon the shell of the tortoise. There are many different combinations of these, which in their turn give more concrete meanings of those original typical forms. Among these more concrete meanings we may specially remark the four quarters of the world and the centre; four mountains which correspond to these regions of the world and one in the middle; five elements, earth, fire, water, wood, metal.

In the same way there are ^yq fundamental colours, of which each belongs to an element. Each ruling dynasty in China has a special colour, an element, and so on. In like manner there are also five keynotes in music; five fundamental determinations for the actions of man in his relations to others. The first and highest is that of children to their parents, the second is reverence for deceased ancestors and the dead, the third obedience to the Emperor, the fourth ihe


mutual relations of brothers and sisters, the fifth the attitude to be assumed towards other, men.

These determinations of Measure constitute the basis - Keason. Men have to guide themselves in conformity with these, and as regards the natural elements, it is laid down that their genii are to be reverenced byman.

There are people who devote themselves exclusively to the study o£ this Eeason, who hold aloof from all practical life and live in solitude; yet what is always of most importance is, that these laws should be brought into use in practical life. When these are maintained intact, when duties are observed by men, then everything is in order in nature as well as in the empire; it goes well both with the empire and the individual. There is a moral connection here between the action: of man and what takes place in nature. If misfortune overtakes the empire, whether owing to floods or earthquakes, conflagrations, dry weather, and the like, this is regarded as entirely the result of man*s not having been obedient to the laws of Eeason, and as having happened because the rules of Measure have not been maintained in the empire. Owing to this, universal Measure is destroyed, and misfortune of the kind just described enters the land.

Thus Measure is known here as Being-in-and-for itself.

This is the general foundation.

What comes next has to do with the giving effect to Measure. The maintenance of the laWs belongs of right to the Emperor, to the Emperor as the Son of Heaven, which is the whole, the totality of Measure. The sky, as the visible firmament, is at the same time the power of Measure. The Emperor is the Son of Heaven (T'ientsze); he has to honour the laws and to promote their recognition. The heir to the throne is made acquainted ¦with all the sciences and with the laws by means of a careful education. It is the Emperor alone who renders


-honour to the law; bis subjects have only to give the bomage to himself which he renders to the law. Tbe Emperor brings offerings. This means nothing else than that tbe Emperor prostrates himself "and reverences the law. Among the few Chinese festivals, that of agriculture is one of the principal. The Emperor presides over it; on the day of the festival he himself ploughs the field; the corn which grows upon this field is used for offerings. The Empress has the rearing of silk-worms under her direction, for this supplies the material for clothing, just as agriculture is the source of all nourishment. When floods, drought, and the like lay waste and scourge the country, this concerns the Emperor alone; be recognises bis officials, and especially himself, as being tbe cause of misfortune; if he and his magistrates had properly maintained the law, the misfortune would not have taken place. The Emperor, therefore, commands the officials to examine themselves, and to see wherein they have failed in duty; and he in like manner devotes himself to meditation and repentance on account of his not having acted rightly. Upon the fulfilment of duty, therefore, depends. the prosperity both of the empire and the individual. In this way the entire worship of God reduces itself for the subjects to a moral life. The Chinese religion jnay thus be called a moral religion, and it is from this point of view that it has been found possible to hold that the Chinese are atheists. These definite laws of nieasure and specific rules of duty are due for the most part to Confucius; bis works are principally occupied with moral questions of this kind.

This power of the laws and of the rules of Measure is an aggregate of many special rules and laws. These special rules must now be known as activities too; in this particular or special aspect they are subjected to the universal activity, namely, to the Emperor, who is the power over the collective activities. These special


powers are accordingly represented as human beings, and especially as the departed ancestors of existing persons.

For a man is specially known as a power when he has departed - that is to say, when he is no longer entangled in the interests of daily life. One, however, who of his own will withdraws himself from the world, sinks into himself and directs his activities toward the Universal alone, and towards the gaining of a knowledge of these powers, renouncing the associations of daily life, and holding himself aloof from all enjoyments, may also be regarded as having departed, for in such a case a man has passed away so far as concrete human life is concerned, and he too, therefore, comes to be recognised as a special power.

Besides this there are creatures of imagination who hold this power in trust, and these constitute a very fully developed realm, which consists of special powers of this kind. The entire body of these is subject to the Universal Power, namely, to that of the Emperor, who instals them and gives them commands. The best way in which to set a knowledfi^e of this extensive realm of popular conception is to study a section of Chinese history as we have it in the information given by the Jesuits in the learned work Mdmoiress sur les Chinois.

In connection with the inauguration of a new dynasty we find, among other things, the followi ig description.

..About the year 11 22 B,d, a time which is still pretty accurately determined in Chinese history, the Chau dynasty came to the throne. Wu was the first Emperor of this dynasty; the last of the preceding dynasty, Sh^u, had, like his predecessors, governed badly, so that the Chinese imagined that the evil genius which had embodied itself in him must have been reicrn o

ing. With a new dynasty everything on earth and in heaven must be renewed, and this was accomplished by the new Emperor with the help of the commander-inchief of his army. New laws, new music, new dances.


new officials, were introduced, and therefore both the living and the dead had to be placed under new directors,

A point of great importance was the destruction of the graves of the preceding dynasty - that is to say, the -destruction of the worship of ancestors, who had hitherto been the powers ruling over families and over nature generally. Since there were in the new empire families w^ho were attached to the old dynasty, whose relations' had held the higher offices, and particularly military posts, yet to offend whom would have been impolitic, a means had to be found by which the dead relatives of these families should continue to enjoy the respect and reverence in which they had hitherto been held. Wu accomplished this in the following way. After the flames had been extinguished in the capital (it was not as yet Pekin), the flames, namely, which the last prince had had kindled in order to destroy the Imperial Palace Vith all its treasures, women, &c., the empire and its government were brought under Wu's authority, and the moment had arrived for liim to make his entrance as Emperor into the Imperial city, to present himself to the people, and to give laws.

He nevertheless announced that he could not do this until everything was brought into proper order between himself and Heaven. With regard to this imperial constitution between himself and Heaven, it was given out that it was contained in two books which were deposited upon a mountain in the care of a venerable sage. Of these two books, one contained the new laws, and the other the names and offices of the genii, called Ch'i, who were the new directors of the empire in the world of nature, in the same way as the mandarins are in the world of every-day life. Wu's general was sent off to fetch these books; this man was himself already a Ch'i,^ a present genius, to which dignity he had attained

^ " spirits generally, and especially those whose seat is referred to heaven, are called ShUn; those whose influence is in and over the earth are


during his lifetime by more than forty years of study and exercise. The books were brought. The Emperor purified himself and fasted three days; on the fourth day at sunrise he appeared in imperial array with the book of the new laws; this was laid upon 'the altar, offerings were presented, and thanks given to Heaven for the book. Upon this the laws were proclaimed, and, to the supreme astonishment and satisfaction of the people, it turned out that they were absolutely the same as the former ones. It is generally the case that at a change of dynasty the old laws remain in force with but little alteration. The second book was liot opened, but the general was sent with it to a mountain, in order, to promulgate it to the Shan, and to impart the commands of the Emperor to them. In this book their installation and degradation were contained. The story goes on to say that the general had called the Shan together on the mountain; this mountain lay in the region which was the original home of the new dynasty. The departed had assembled themselves on the mountain in accordance with the higher or lower rank which tliey held, while the general sat upon a throne in the midst of them, which had been erected for this purpose. He was splendidly attired and decorated with the eight K%ui; the imperial standard and the sceptre, the staff of command over the Shan, lay upon an altar before him, and likewise the diploma of the sage who thereby authorised the general to make known the new commands to the Shan. The general read the diploma; the Shan who had ruled

simply styled Ch'i, - and another character altogetherj is em ployed for the spirits or manes of departed men." - Religiuns of Ohina^ p. 13. This other character is " Kwei." "Wt have seen," it is added farther on, "that Kioti was the name for the spirit of departed men, and Sh3,n the name for spirits generally, and specially for spirits of heaven.

The combination of the names {kwei sh3,n) can often be translated in no other way than by spirits, spiritual beings" (pp.„ 39-40. )

Hegel uses the word " Schin " in all cases, but it has been thought better to take advantage in translation of the learned authority of Dr. Legge, both as regards words and the orthography of names. - (Tb. S.)


under the previous dynasty were declared unworthy to rule any longer on account of their neglect, which was the cause of the disasters that had overtaken the country, and they were dismissed from their posts. They were told that they could go wherever they liked, they might even enter into human life again in order that they might in this way earn a recompense anew. The deputed commander-in-chief now named the new Shan, and commanded one of those present to take the register and to read it aloud. He obeyed, and found his name to be the first on the list. The commander-in-chief then congratulated him upon this recognition of his virtues. He was an old general. Afterwards the others were summoned, some of whom had fallen in the interests of the new dynasty, and some who had fought and sacrificed themselves in those of the former one. In particular, there was one among them, a prince, commander-in-chief of the army of the former dynasty. In time of war he had been an able and;^a great general, in peace a faithful and conscientious ttiinister, and it was he who had placed the greatest hindrances in the way of the new dynasty, until finally he perished in battle. His name was the fifth - that is to say, it followed upon those of the directors of the four mountains which represented the four quarters of the world and the four seasons. As his office, he was to be intrusted with the inspection of all the Shan who were put in charge of rain, wind, thunder, and clouds. But his name had to be called twice, and the staff of command had to be shown to him before he would approach the throne; he came with a contemptuous mien, and remained proudly standing.

The general addressed him with the words, " Thou art no longer what tliou wast among men, thou art nothing but an ordinary Shan who has as yet no office; I have to convey one to thee from the mast^, give reverence to this command." Upon this the Shan fell down, a long speech was addressed to him, and he was appointed to


be the chief of those Ch'i whose business it i^ to take charrre of rain and thunder. It now became his business to create rain at the proper timej to -disperse the clouds when they were likely to be the cause of floods, not to allow the wind to increase to a storm", and only to permit the thunder to exercise its power for the purpose of frightening the wicked and of occasioning their repentance. He received four-and-twenty adjutants, to each of whom his own special inspectorship was intrusted, and this was changed every fortnight; of these, some were put in charge of other departments. The Chinese have five elements, and these, too, were given chiefs. To one Shan was given the oversight of fire, with reference to conflagrations 5 six Shans were appointed over epidemics, and received orders with a view to the alleviation of the troubles of human society, to purge it from time to time from superabundance of population. After all the offices were distributed, the book was given back to the Emperor, and to this day it constitutes tjie astrological part of the calendar. Two directories appear every year in China; one relates to the mandarins, the other to the invisible officials, the Ch'i [viz., Shan who have become such]. In case of the failure of crops, conflagrations, floods, &c., the Ch'i who are concerned are dismissed, their images thrown down, and freSh Ch'i appointed.

Thus the lordship of the Emperor oVer nature is here a completely organised monarchy.

There were besides among the Chinese a class of men who occupied themselves imoardly, who not only belonged to the general State religion of. T'ien, but formed a sect who gave themselves up to thought, and sought to attain to consciousness of what the True is. The first stage of advance out of that earliest attitude of natural religion (which was, that immediate, self-consciousness in its very immediateness, knows itself to be what is highest, to be the sovereign power) is the return of consciousness into itself, the claim^ .that consciousness


has essentially a meditating character. This stage is exemplified in the sect of Tdo.

It is, however, to be remarked that these persons who are absorbed in thought, in an inner life, and betake themselves to the abstraction of thought, at the same time have it as an aim to become immortal, pure beings in their own rightj partly on account of their having been previously consecrated, and partly because, since they have reached the goal and attained mastership, they deem themselves hif^her heinous, even as ref:jards their existence here and their actual state.

This turning inwards, toward abstracting pure thought, is thus already to be found in ancient times among the Chinese. A revival or reform of the doctrine of Tao took place at a later date; this is priucipally ascribed to LS,o-tsze, a wise man, who, although somewhat older, was contemporary with Confucius ai^d Pythagoras.

Confucius is emphatically a moral, and not a speculative philosopher. T'ien, this universal power over nature which attains to reality by t^he authority of the Emperor, is closely associated with morals generally, and it was this moral aspect especially which was developed by Confucius. With the sect of T^o the initial act is the passing over into thought, into the pure element.

It is remarkable in this connection that in Tao - in Totality - the idea of the Trinity makes its appearance.

The One has produced the Two, and the Two the Three: this is the Universtcm, Thus, as soon as ever man took up a thinking attitude, the idea of Trinity at once made its appearance as the result of this. The One or Unity is wholly characterless or devoid of determination, and is simply abstraction. If it is to have the principle of life and of spirituality, an advance must be made to determination. Unity is only real in so far as it contains two within itself, and with this Trinity is given. That this advance has been made to thought does not, however, imply that any higher spiritual religion has as yet


established itself: the determinations of TS,o remain complete abstractions, and life, consciousnesSj the spiritual •element is not found, so to speak, in Tao itself, but still belongs absolutely and entirely to man in his immediate character.

To us God is the Universal, but determined within Himself; God is Spirit; His existence is spirituality.

Here the actuality, the living form: of T^o, is still the actual immediate consciousness. Though it is indeed dead, as represented by Lao-tsze, it yet transforms itself into other shapes, and is living and actually present in its priests.

Like T'ien, this One is the governing power, but is only an abstract basis, the Emperor being the actual embodiment of this basis, and, strictly speaking, the real governing power, and the same is the case with the idea of Eeason. Eeason is, in like manner, the abstract foundation, which only has its actuality in existing human beinc^s.

(c.) Worship or Cidtus. - Worship really represents the whole existence of the religion of Measure, the power of Substance not having as yet taken on the form of a stable objectivity, and even the realm of idea or popular conception, so far as it has developed itself in that of the Shan, is in subjection to the power of the Emperor, who is himself merely the actual embodiment of the Substantial.

When, accordingly, we begin to inquire into worship in the stricter sense, all that is left for us to do is to examine the relation of the universal determinateness of this religion to inner life and to self-consciousness.

The Universal being only the abstract foundation, man remains in it without having a strictly'imnianent, realised, ¦or concrete inner character; he has no firm hold or stability within himself. ]SI"ot until freedom, not until rationality comes in does he possess ^ this, for then he is the consciousness of being free, and this freedom develops nntil it appears as reason.


This developed reason yields absolute principles and duties, and the man who is conscious of these absolute determinations in his freedom, in his consciousness, who knows they are immanent determinations within him, has then, for the first time within himself, within his conscience, something to hold by and to give him stability. In so far only as man knows God as Spirit, and knows the determinations of Spirit, are these divine determinations essential, absolute determinations of rationality - determinations, in fact, of that which is duty within him, and which, so far as he is concerned, is immanent in him.

Where the Universal is merely this abstract foundation in a general sense, man has no ^immanent definite inner life within himself. For this reason, all that is external acquires an inward character for him; everything external has a meaning for him, a relation to him, and, in fact, a practical relation. From a general point of view, this external element is the eonstitution of the State, the fact that he is ruled from without.

No morality in the strict sense, no„ immanent rationality by means of which man would have worth and dignity within himself and protection against what is external, is bound up with this religion. All which has a relation to him is for him a power, because he possesses no power in liis own rationality and moral sense. The result is this indefinable dependence upon all external circumstances, this complete and entirely arbitrary superstition.

Speaking generally, what lies at the foundation of this external dependence is the fact that all that is particular cannot be placed in an inner relation with a Universal, which remains merely abstract. The interests of individuals lie outside of the universal determinations which the Emperor puts into practice. As regards particular interests, what we find is rather the conception of a power which exists on its own account.


This is not the universal power of Providence, which extends its sway even over the destinies of individuals.

What we find rather is that the Particular is brought under the sway of a particular poWer. This power is that of the Shan, and with it a whole realm of superstition enters in.

Thus the Chinese are in perpetual fear and dread with regard to everything, because all that is external has a meaning, is for them a power which is able to use force against them and to affect them.

China is, par excellence, the home of divination; in every locality you find many people who deal in prophecies. The finding of the right spot for a grave, questions of locality, of relations in space, &c., are the kind of things with which they occupy themselves during their entire life.

If in building a house another house flanks their own, and the front has an angle towards^ it, all possible ceremonies are gone through, and the special powers in question are rendered propitious by means of presents.

The individual is wholly without the power of personal decision and without subjective freedom.

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