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Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel Born 1770 Died 1831

~ Jannelle Garcia ~ Lucas Snow-Llerena


Hegels Biography George Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, was a German philosopher and one of the creators of German Idealism. He was born on August 27, 1770, in Stuttgart in southwestern Germany, and died on November 14, 1831. He attended German school at the age of three, and went on to Latin school at the age of 5. At the age of eighteen, in 1788, Hegel attended a Protestant seminary University; the records showed he was deficient in philosophy, but in reality he was not terrible at it, he just didnt take many courses. In 1793 Hegel became a tutor to a prominent family, and later on taught classes, lectured on philosophy and accepted the chair of philosophy at the University of Berlin. Over the years Hegel developed a philosophy of his own, while completing a draft of his book, Science of Logic. Hegels contribution to the journal, Critical Journal of Philosophy founded by him and his old friend Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph Schelling, showed the Hegel was an original thinker. At the age of 37, Hegel published his first major book, The Phenomenology of the Mind in 1807. Hegels works are known for their difficulty and for the breadth of topics they attempt to cover, but is his later writings it is shown that he was trying harder to communicate with his audience. Hegel died from either cholera or gastrointestinal disease. Hegel was towering intellectual figure, and a great influence over the development of philosophy through his lectures on law, religion, esthetics, and history, including the history of philosophy, Philosophical thought develops like a vast dialogue, different philosophies represent different positions, none can compete for a claim in the truth, they build on one anothers insights. Behind the entire process is reason trying to express itself. (Hegel).

Syllabus Questions
Who were the three people that Hegel influenced? o Three people whom Hegel had greatly influenced were Karl Marx, Soren Keirkegaard, and Jean Paul Sartre. What are three themes running through German Idealist? o 1. The self or subject is central; subjectivity has a rational objective structure, Knower and Moral Agent, o 2. Nature of knowledge and of reason, and o 3. The importance of religion, the rationality of reality. What was Hegels response to Hume and Kant regarding How can we know? and What can we know? o We must first discover whether knowledge is possible, before we set out to know knowing before you know. Hegel believed you could know by utilizing your rationality over and against ones emotions and passions. He also believed man can know everything. Parts and Whole or Particulars and Universals: Does Hegel give up a hope of finding a unity of knowledge? o No, he believes there is a tension between them because they are not the same, yet the contradiction is the moving force of the Dialectical process whose task is to preserve the difference between them, yet at the same time unify them, Hegel claims these opposites must be brought together, the Particulars and the Universal are united in the individual. Explain Hegels view of how knowledge begins and how it advances. o Knowledge begins by apprehending existing objects in their specific differences; the process in knowledge is affected from one scientific truth to another, the full truth that embraces both sameness and difference. What are the three stages of Hegels Dialectic?

o Stage 1 A Beginning o Stage 2 - An Advance o Stage 3 - A Resolution.

Hegels Dialectic
Hegel believed that there was a Negative and Positive Dialectic. In the Negative Dialectic, the opposites work against each other to produce a stalemate, a situation where no progress can be made or no advancement is possible, rather than working against each other to produce a new, better and higher reality. The Positive Dialectic is reason, the organic and constructive form of all philosophical thinking. Wherever there is movement there is life, wherever anything is carried into actual affect in this world, their Dialectic is at work. The first step of the Dialectic is The Beginning, which is being. Being is the concept implicit, is has two sides. The first side is the immediate content of direct experience, and the second side is the implicit content (rationality) that being embodies, which Hegel calls the Universal. The second stage of the Dialectic is called The Advance. All details about the object are brought out and expressed in concept, the stage of Particulars, contradiction emerges a tension between the Particulars and the Universal, theyre not the same. The development of being and knowledge is led to the pair of opposites the contradiction is the moving force of the Dialectical process, whose task is to preserve the difference between them yet also unify them. Hegel claims these opposites must be brought together; the Universal and the Particulars are united in the individual. The move to the individual is in the third step in the Dialectic, The Resolution. We now grasp the subject as that individual who is the unity of that unique set of Particulars, we now know explicitly all that is connected, and the rational pattern is the form of the entire system. Dialectic is not a form imposed by the thinker, its the rational form of reality itself as it develops. He also believed that the Dialectic has two sides. The first side of the Dialectic is that it is the rational pattern that determines all growth in the world. The second side is that the Dialectic is the logical form of reason as it grasps this rational pattern and sets it forth as a coherent system both sides are together. Hegel believes the Dialectic to be an organic development that leads to positive results. The Dialectical process includes both subject and object, only this process can give us the kind of knowledge that makes us self conscious beings. Dialectic is an essential phase in the development of positive reason. Hegels Dialectic has given man a new way of viewing history and a new way of determining what is true. Would you say that Hegels system is based upon Thesis and Anti-thesis?

o No, it is based upon Synthesis. Thesis and Anti-thesis contradict one another, so they must find and settle on a compromise, which is the Synthesis. Yet through this settlement the Synthesis turns once again into a Thesis and the whole chain reaction starts up again with no end in the form of a triangle, leaving Truth no longer absolute but questionable. That is one of the reasons Francis Schaeffer called Hegels Philosophy the doorway to despair, because man can no longer have a basis for truth. The Thesis, Anti-thesis, and Synthesis theory is extremely important in Hegels philosophy and greatly emphasized in textbooks yet in reality Hegel didnt use this concept. He used his Dialectic more, which in a way is a further thought out, technical, specified version of the Thesis, Anti-thesis, and Synthesis theory

Explain Hegels understanding of the relationship between man and Nature. - Hegel saw Nature as a living embodiment of the same spirit that is manifested in us, Mankind. The Reason that is in nature is a mirror in which we see our rationality, we are in a world where we are at home, The mind shall recognize itself in everything in heaven and on earth. (Hegel). According to the Biblical World View what is this relationship?

According to Hegel how is the mind and spirit related? o To achieve a connection between mind and spirit, one must recognize their own self consciousness by being recognized by other self-conscience beings. Contrast the thoughts of Hegel and Marx on freedom. o Hegel taught that society must be organized through free institutions, and these institutions encourage people to view everyone as equals. o Marx on the other hand, believed that the working class should be exploited Hegel taught that government intervention is necessary to overcome the many problems facing a society. He cites 3 evils that arise from a free market economy. What were the 3 evils? 1. Poverty endless desire for material goods causes poverty 2. Class Antagonisms based on social and economic inequalities 3. Alienation of the disinherited

Do you Agree with Hegel?

Compare Kant and Hegel on their understanding of God. Talk with Hegel about his understanding of the Trinity. o Kant believed that man can have no knowledge of God, He is both the sum total and the ground of all reality. o Hegel explains that God Creates His Son done to the form of universreality. Mankind becomes the spirit of creation developing until it calls for redemption, and finally the Son enters the world as mediator. Explain Hegels view of reason and understanding, religion and philosophy. o All these are concrete spiritual forms o Philosophy alone attains the concept of absolute mind o Art and religion are limited because they rely on sensible materials Reason is a living process that unites and integrates all that has been fragmented by understanding. Reason is need to comprehend faith. Religion can reject understanding that disintegrates things. Philosophy can recognize its own forms in the categories of religious conscience Hegel spoke of Organic Development an ongoing process the growth of becoming. What do the statements mean? o Hegel thought of history as a flow of powerful events which I believe is the meaning of Organic Development history unfolds under new and meaningful events. Hegels thinking of a flow of events rather than cause and effect thinking changed the world. Hegel shifted thinking from cause and effect, to a combination of thesis and antithesis a synthesis. Explain Hegels Position of History. o History is a dynamic order of novel and creative events time flows in a straight line, not in a circle. History has a purpose. What is his belief about mankind? o Evil is found in pride and self deception. Spirit is supposed to be free, but this opens the door to evil.

o The very concept of spirit is enough to show that man is evil by nature. Do you agree with Hegel?

Do we live in a normal or abnormal world? o Hegel says the world might be as it ought to be (normal world), but who are we to judge what is normal or abnormal? The Teachings of Hegel arrived at just the right moment of history for his thinking to have its maximum affect.