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G.W.F. Hegel -The Philosophy of History

G.W.F. Hegel -The Philosophy of History

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Published by Rahmat Ali
Chapter II Mohametanism.

On the one hand we see the European world forming itself
anew — the nations taking firm root there, to produce a world of
free reality expanded and developed in every direction. We
behold them beginning their work by bringing all social relations
under the form of particularity — with dull and narrow
intelligence splitting that which in its nature is generic and
normal, into a multitude of chance contingencies; rendering that
which ought to be simple principle and law, a tangled web of
convention, In short, while the West began to shelter itself in a
political edifice of chance, entanglement and particularity, the
very opposite direction necessarily made its appearance in the
world, to produce the balance of the totality of spiritual
manifestation. This took place in the Revolution of the East,
which destroyed all particularity and dependence, and perfectly
cleared up and purified the soul and disposition; making the
abstract One the absolute object of attention and devotion, and to
the same extent, pure subjective consciousness — the
Knowledge of this One alone — the only aim of reality; —
making the Unconditioned [das Verhältnisslose] the condition
[Verhält-niss] of existence.

We have already become acquainted with the nature of the
Oriental principle, and seen that its Highest Being is only
G.W.F. Hegel, The Philosophy of History,

373

negative; — that with it the positive imports an abandonment to
mere nature — the enslavement of Spirit to the world of realities,
Only among the Jews have we observed the principle of pure
Unity elevated to a thought; for only among them was adoration
paid to the One, as an object of thought. This unity then
remained, when the purification of the mind to the conception of
abstract Spirit had been accomplished; but it was freed from the
particularity by which the worship of Jehovah had been
hampered. Jehovah was only the God of that one people — the
God of Abraham, of Isaac and Jacob: only with the Jews had this
God made a covenant; only to this people had he revealed
himself. That speciality of relation was done away with in
Mahometanism. In this spiritual universality, in this unlimited
and indefinite purity and simplicity of conception, human
personality has no other aim than the realization of this
universality and simplicity. Allah has not the affirmative, limited
aim of the Judaic God. The worship of the One is the only final
aim of Mahometanism, and subjectivity has this worship for the
sole occupation of its activity, combined with the design to
subjugate secular existence to the One. This One has indeed, the
quality of Spirit; yet because subjectivity suffers itself to be
absorbed in the object, this One is deprived of every concrete
predicate; so that neither does subjectivity become on its part
spiritually free, nor on the other hand is the object of its
veneration concrete. But Mahometanism is not the Hindoo, not
the Monastic immersion in the Absolute. Subjectivity is here
living and unlimited — an energy which enters into secular life
with a purely negative purpose, and busies itself and interferes
with the world, only in such a way as shall promote the pure
adoration of the One. The object of Mahometan worship is
purely intellectual; no image, no representation of Allah is
tolerated. Mahomet is a prophet but still man — not elevated
above human weaknesses. The leading features of
Mahometanism involve this — that in actual existence nothing
can become fixed, but that everything is destined to expand itself
in activity and life in the boundless amplitude of the world, so
that the worship of the One remains the only bond by which the
whole is capable of uniting. In this expansion, this active energy,
G.W.F. Hegel, The Philosophy of History, 374
all limits, all national and caste distinctions vanish; no particular
race, political claim of birth or possession is regarded — only
man as a believer. To adore the One, to believe in him, to fast —
to remove th
Chapter II Mohametanism.

On the one hand we see the European world forming itself
anew — the nations taking firm root there, to produce a world of
free reality expanded and developed in every direction. We
behold them beginning their work by bringing all social relations
under the form of particularity — with dull and narrow
intelligence splitting that which in its nature is generic and
normal, into a multitude of chance contingencies; rendering that
which ought to be simple principle and law, a tangled web of
convention, In short, while the West began to shelter itself in a
political edifice of chance, entanglement and particularity, the
very opposite direction necessarily made its appearance in the
world, to produce the balance of the totality of spiritual
manifestation. This took place in the Revolution of the East,
which destroyed all particularity and dependence, and perfectly
cleared up and purified the soul and disposition; making the
abstract One the absolute object of attention and devotion, and to
the same extent, pure subjective consciousness — the
Knowledge of this One alone — the only aim of reality; —
making the Unconditioned [das Verhältnisslose] the condition
[Verhält-niss] of existence.

We have already become acquainted with the nature of the
Oriental principle, and seen that its Highest Being is only
G.W.F. Hegel, The Philosophy of History,

373

negative; — that with it the positive imports an abandonment to
mere nature — the enslavement of Spirit to the world of realities,
Only among the Jews have we observed the principle of pure
Unity elevated to a thought; for only among them was adoration
paid to the One, as an object of thought. This unity then
remained, when the purification of the mind to the conception of
abstract Spirit had been accomplished; but it was freed from the
particularity by which the worship of Jehovah had been
hampered. Jehovah was only the God of that one people — the
God of Abraham, of Isaac and Jacob: only with the Jews had this
God made a covenant; only to this people had he revealed
himself. That speciality of relation was done away with in
Mahometanism. In this spiritual universality, in this unlimited
and indefinite purity and simplicity of conception, human
personality has no other aim than the realization of this
universality and simplicity. Allah has not the affirmative, limited
aim of the Judaic God. The worship of the One is the only final
aim of Mahometanism, and subjectivity has this worship for the
sole occupation of its activity, combined with the design to
subjugate secular existence to the One. This One has indeed, the
quality of Spirit; yet because subjectivity suffers itself to be
absorbed in the object, this One is deprived of every concrete
predicate; so that neither does subjectivity become on its part
spiritually free, nor on the other hand is the object of its
veneration concrete. But Mahometanism is not the Hindoo, not
the Monastic immersion in the Absolute. Subjectivity is here
living and unlimited — an energy which enters into secular life
with a purely negative purpose, and busies itself and interferes
with the world, only in such a way as shall promote the pure
adoration of the One. The object of Mahometan worship is
purely intellectual; no image, no representation of Allah is
tolerated. Mahomet is a prophet but still man — not elevated
above human weaknesses. The leading features of
Mahometanism involve this — that in actual existence nothing
can become fixed, but that everything is destined to expand itself
in activity and life in the boundless amplitude of the world, so
that the worship of the One remains the only bond by which the
whole is capable of uniting. In this expansion, this active energy,
G.W.F. Hegel, The Philosophy of History, 374
all limits, all national and caste distinctions vanish; no particular
race, political claim of birth or possession is regarded — only
man as a believer. To adore the One, to believe in him, to fast —
to remove th

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Published by: Rahmat Ali on Jun 02, 2010
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The Philosophy of History
Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel
With Prefaces by Charles Hegeland the Translator, J. Sibree, M.A.
The History of the World is not intelligible apart from aGovernment of the World 
.” — W. V. Humboldt

Kitchener
2001
 
Batoche Books52 Eby Street SouthKitchener, OntarioN2G 3L1Canadaemail: batoche@gto.net
 
Table of Contents
Translator’s Introduction........................................................5Charles Hegel’s Preface.......................................................11Introduction..........................................................................14Geographical Basis of History..........................................96Classification of Historic Data........................................121Part I: The Oriental World.................................................128Section I: China..............................................................132Section II: India..............................................................156Section II. (Continued). India Buddhism......................185Section II: Persia.............................................................191Chapter I. The Zend People........................................194Chapter II. The Assyrians, Babylonians, Medes, andPersians....................................................................200Chapter III. The Persian Empire and its Constituent Parts..................................................................................206Persia........................................................................207Syria and the Semitic Western Asia.........................209Judaea......................................................................213Egypt........................................................................217Transition to the Greek World.................................240Part II: The Greek World...................................................243Section I: The Elements of the Greek Spirit...................245Section II: Phases of Individuality Æsthetically Conditioned........................................................................................258Chapter I. The Subjective Work of Art......................258Chapter II. The Objective Work of Art......................261Chapter III. The Political Work of Art.......................268The Wars with the Persians......................................274Athens......................................................................277Sparta.......................................................................280The Peloponnesian War...........................................284The Macedonian Empire..........................................290Section III: The Fall of the Greek Spirit.........................294Part III: The Roman World................................................296Section I: Rome to the Time of the Second Punic War...301Chapter I. — The Elements of the Roman Spirit.........301Chapter II. — The History of Rome to the Second Punic War.....................................................................................314

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