Georg Hegel, fully Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

Georg
Hegel, fully Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel
1770
1831

German Philosopher

Author Quotes

When liberty is mentioned, we must always be careful to observe whether it is not really the assertion of private interests which is thereby designated.

The state is the actuality of concrete freedom.

The universal ... cost thousands of years to enter the consciousness of men.

This ideal and rational middle term is speech, the tool of reason, the child of intelligent beings.

To make abstractions hold in reality is to destroy reality.

We ought, says Kant, to become acquainted with the instrument, before we undertake the work for which it is to be employed; for if the instrument be insufficient, all our trouble will be spent in vain. The plausibility of this suggestion has won for it general assent and admiration.... But the examination can be only carried out by an act of knowledge. To examine this so-called instrument is the same as to know it.

When needs and means become abstract in quality, abstraction is also a character of the reciprocal relation of individuals to one another. This abstract character, universality, is the character of being recognized and is the moment which makes concrete, i.e. social, the isolated and abstract needs and their ways and means of satisfaction.

The state is the actuality of the ethical Idea.

The universal is a people, a group of individuals in general, an existent whole, the universal force. It is of insurmountable strength against the individual, and is his necessity and the power oppressing him. And the strength that each one has in his being-recognized is that of a people. This strength, however, is effective only insofar as it is united into a unity, only as will. The universal will is the will as that of all and each, but as will it is simply this Self alone. The activity of the universal is a unity. The universal will has to gather itself into this unity. It has first to constitute itself as a universal will, out of the will of individuals, so that this appears as the principle and element. Yet on the other hand the universal will is primary and the essence – and individuals have to make themselves into the universal will through the negation of their own will, [in] externalization and cultivation. The universal will is prior to them, it is absolutely there for them – they are in no way immediately the same.

This is love. I have my self-consciousness not in myself but in the other. I am satisfied and have peace with myself only in this other and I AM only because I have peace with myself; if I did not have it then I would be a contradiction that falls to pieces. This other, because it likewise exists outside itself, has its self-consciousness only in me; and both the other and I are only this consciousness of being-outside-ourselves and of our identity; we are only this intuition, feeling, and knowledge of our unity. This is love, and without knowing that love is both a distinguishing and the sublation of this distinction, one speaks emptily of it.

To pit this single assertion, that “in the Absolute all is one,” against the organised whole of determinate and complete knowledge, or of knowledge which at least aims at and demands complete development – to give out its Absolute as the night in which, as we say, all cows are black – that is the very naïveté of emptiness of knowledge.

We stand at the gates of an important epoch, a time of ferment, when spirit moves forward in a leap, transcends its previous shape and takes on a new one..... A new phase of the spirit is preparing itself. Philosophy especially has to welcome its appearance and acknowledge it, while others, who oppose it impotently, cling the past.

When philosophy paints its grey in grey, one form of life has become old, and by means of grey it cannot be rejuvenated, but only known. The owl of Minerva, takes its flight only when the shades of night are gathering.

The state of man's mind, or the elementary phase of mind which he so far possesses, conforms precisely to the state of the world as he so far views it.

The valor that struggles is better than the weakness that endures.

This unity is consequently the absolute and all truth, the Idea which thinks itself.

To the philosopher, infinity, knowledge, movement, empirical laws, etc., are things just as familiar {as family relations}. And as her dead brother and uncle are present to the peasant woman, thus Plato, Spinoza, etc. are present to the philosopher. The one has as much reality as the other, but the latter are immortal.

What and how much I possess is a matter of indifference so far as rights are concerned.

When philosophy paints its grey on grey, then has a shape of life grown old. By philosophy's grey on grey it cannot be rejuvenated but only understood. The owl of Minerva spreads its wings only with the falling of the dusk.

Such are all great historical men, whose own particular aims involve those large issues which are the will of the World Spirit. ... World historical men - the Heroes of an epoch - must be recognized as its clear-sighted ones; their deeds, their words are the best of that time. Great men have formed purposes to satisfy themselves, not others.

The constitution of any given nation depends in general on the character and development of its self-consciousness.

The Few assume to be the deputies, but they are often only the despoilers of the Many.

The Idea, in positing itself as absolute unity of the pure Notion and its reality and thus contracting itself into the immediacy of being, is the totality in this form – Nature.

The nation state is Mind in its substantive rationality and immediate actuality — the absolute power on earth.

The same may be said to be the case with human life as a whole and the occurrences with which it is fraught. All work is directed only to the aim or end; and when it is attained, people are surprised to find nothing else but just the very thing which they had wished for. The interest lies in the whole movement.

Author Picture
First Name
Georg
Last Name
Hegel, fully Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel
Birth Date
1770
Death Date
1831
Bio

German Philosopher