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germ, differently from the transitions and contrasts found in Being and Essence, Hegel states that The doctrine of the notion is divided into three parts. (1) The first is the doctrine of the subjective or Formal Notion. (2) The second is the doctrine of the notion invested with the character of immediacy, or of objectivity. (3) The third is the doctrine of the Idea, the subject-object, the unity of notion and objectivity, the absolute truth. (162) The equation in (1) of "subjective" with "Formal" shows that for Hegel this term does not mean pertaining restrictedly to the individual mind. It means contingent, rather, less than entire or than necessary, and this is precisely the situation of "formal logic", from which the names for the next categories will accordingly be taken. Thus in formal logic there is no concern about the matter of the propositions and this fact is even seen as a virtue, a sharpening of a defined focus. Sometimes however this situation is misconstrued to the point of saying that the logical forms are without any content at all.1 They are forms in the sense of mere schemata. Thus argument forms are not arguments, it would follow, but that by which the validity of (other) arguments are judged.2 This however leaves entirely in the dark how we are to think of the (analogous?) validity of these forms or how anyone is ever to judge concerning their validity, even in terms of making them "immediate inferences" in the sense of an immediate combination of two premises or more. But how do these logical forms come to be considered as categories at all? For we can be quite sure that it is not just a matter of "taking" the names from formal logic, as we take the name of an animal for some human having such and such characteristics. Rather, formal logic itself is here placed where Hegel considers that it belongs within the dialectic. Some commentators seem to think that it does not rightfully belong there at all, as if Hegel merely included it because he could think of no better way to exhibit the relation of his Logic to traditional formal logic. Doubtless, indeed, he could not and this of itself might mean both that there is no better way and that formal logical categories indeed belong at this point, just as earlier philosophers subordinated logic to metaphysics, in logica docens (as contrasted with logica utens) and not conversely. Hegel tells us that just as the Absolute was earlier seen as Being, or as Variety, or as Inward and Outward, so everything, the Absolute that is to say, is at a certain "moment" seen as (but he says merely "is") a Judgement, the ultimate judgement overlapping all finite judgements. The word "absolute" is of course preserved for the final "category" which transcends the categories, viz. the Idea, so as not to repeat the definiendum in the definiens, even here where we are characterising the Unlimited or, therefore, indefinable. The Absolute is seen at a certain point as a Judgement and then, a little later, as a Syllogism, passing from the second to the third operation of reason in Aristotle's threefold scheme in his On Interpretation.3 This ultimate syllogism would, therefore, as it were "include" that Judgement, while that
Cf. Heny B. Veatch, "Concerning the Ontological Status of Logical Forms", Review of Metaphysics, December 1948, pp. 40-64, and our own "Does Realism Make a Difference to Logic", The Monist, April 1986, Vol. 69, Number 2, pp. 281-295, also included, slightly altered, in Philosophy or Dialectic, Peter Lang, Frankfurt, 1994, pp. 47-61. 2 Cf. our "Argument forms and argument from analogy", Acta Philosophica, Rome, fasc. II, vol. 6, 1997, pp. 303-310.
everything, also these, is found to be a Notion (first and foundational operation) was to be expected, here where everything is Notion because the Notion, the form of thought, is everything. On Aquinas's view of things ultimate Being, viz. the ultimate simply, of itself takes the form of Intellect precisely as not being limited to this or that successively. Non aliquo modo est sed est, est (Augustine). Limited being itself cannot be ultimate because nothing could limit it save Being over again. For Hegel it is rather that Being emerges from Mind as Idea and even as the first Idea, thus making of the Logic a circle with no point of entry, however this dilemma is later resolved in the Philosophy of Spirit. Mind as Freedom needs no cause (that is what Freedom "is") as Being, as normally said, would seem to do. Thus in Neoplatonic philosophy the One is placed above Existence, and Hegel takes a similar view: Because it has no existence for starting-point and point d'appui, the Idea is frequently treated as a mere logical form. Such a view must be abandoned to those theories, which ascribe so-called reality and genuine actuality to the existent thing and all the other categories which have not yet penetrated as far as the Idea. (213) So Hegel himself says, The common logic covers only the matters which come before us here as a portion of the third part of the whole system. (162) So there is just no question of the logical names being used for something else, as McTaggart comes close to suggesting in his Commentary of 1910. The matters discussed here are "covered" in common formal logic. This, however, also includes "the so-called Laws of Thought" discussed early in Essence, Hegel adds here. He finds that logic in his day has lost some of its unity as a science, introducing extraneous non-logical material to bridge gaps in the explanations. So what he will rather be doing here is setting logic upon a firmer and deeper foundation, after the manner, again, of the older logica docens, taking explicit account of the reality of logic itself as thinking about thinking, as the Notion or nous thinks itself, thus founding everything. Thus dialectic can be seen as a step forward, in the sense of a fusion, from the classical ordering things according to which logicus non considerat existentiam vel naturam rei, i.e. he is not, qua logician, supposed to do that. In our day the "analytical" school of philosophy has also by and large endorsed the view that logic is itself an ontology as being the only way into ontology or "what there is" (Quine), always mutatis mutandis of course as between these two schools of thinking. Yet nothing forbids transcending this category of distinct schools, taking Hegel on board as an analytical philosopher or, conversely, bringing the latter under the specifically Hegelian concept, the very method of his own History of Philosophy lectures. Dialectic, however, only becomes thinking about thinking specifically, rather than about Being, say, or about causality and the like, in this third part, which is why consideration of logical entities belong here as, negatively and qua logical, they begin at the beginning only of this final part. We might ask, all the same, why Logic is to be considered just under this first part of the third part, the "subjective" notion, and not rather under the objective notion or the Idea, the two subsequent sections of this final part. It has to do, Hegel implies, with the general supposition
Cf. Robert W. Schmidt, The Domain of Logic according to Saint Thomas Aquinas, The Hague 1966. Schmidt considers these three operations identified by Aristotle in separate chapters as the intention(s) of universality, of attribution and of consequence respectively.
that the traditional logical forms are "categories of conscious thought only" in the psychologistic and subjectivist sense (rather than "subjective" in Hegel's understanding of the term). In addition they are taken as "thought in the character of understanding, not reason". Yet, he argues, just because they are "mere logical modes of entities", unlike Being or Essence, they are more properly notions and so belong in this third part. Thus the Subjective Notion or the "Notion as Notion" succeeds naturally to Reciprocity (159). The preceding categories are "notions in their transition or their dialectical element" but they are not notions knowing or thinking themselves as notions. Even Cause-and-Effect was considered as a correlation of notions rather than as a notion (this would be considering as a notion of a notion) of correlation, in J.N. Findlay's words. All that changes now and to the situation with which we have, in a way, long been familiar in our formal logical studies. These consider after all, in Aristotle's words, the acts or operations of the understanding. These he identifies as concept-formation, judgement, syllogism, three which are yet one, Hegel claims to show and even to show that this is implicit in and from the Aristotelian analysis, all knowledge being after all an anamnesis (a term best not translated as remembering simply, but as re-membering rather). By comparison, that is to say, Being or Essence and their more specific categories "are only in a modified form notions" (84, 112). Being, for example, is "the notion implicit only", while in Essence "the actual unity of the notion is not realised." These strictures do not apply to the logical categories of (subjective) notion itself, judgement and syllogism which, this is Hegel's point, considered in their full amplitude are each of them identical with all things as thought. That is, it is not merely that we can think all things "under" them, as with Being or Substance. Hegel is serious about the active quality of notions. He says here of the earlier categories, notions "for us" only, that their "freedom is not expressly stated: and all this because the category is not universality" in the special sense of "the notion as notion" which will be explained. The notion is not "form only". The logical forms are not mere canons of validity, "without in the least touching the question whether anything is true", the answer to that being "supposed to depend on the content only", conceived as material opposite of the formal character of the logical entity or, rather, ens rationis merely. These are not then mere dead and inert receptacles of thought, but rather shaped by it as its own intrinsic instruments. As "forms of the notion" they are "the vital spirit of the actual world". For all that is true "is true in virtue of these forms, through them and in them." Through them and in them. As touching Universality now as a "moment" or "functional part" of "the Notion as Notion", Hegel considers it together with Particularity and Individuality, of which he says: Individual and actual are the same thing: only the former has issued from the notion, and is thus, as a universal, stated expressly as a negative identity with itself (in-dividual). The actual, because it is at first no more than a potential or immediate unity of essence and existence, may possibly have effect: but the individuality of the notion is the very source of effectiveness, effective moreover no longer as the cause is, with a show of effecting something else, but effective of itself. (163, parenthesis added) Just to recap, here within "the Subjective or Formal Notion", which as first part of the doctrine of the Notion is itself a moment of it, we have, as first moment of this moment in
turn, "the Notion as Notion". This is to be followed (and superseded) by Judgement and the Syllogism (which gives way to Objectivity, called sometimes "the objective notion"). Of course Judgement and Syllogism are also notions, are also the Notion. The significance of this coincidence of names is that Judgement and Syllogism are assimilated to this "first operation of reason" (Aristotle, On Interpretation, who also calls them instruments, organa, of reason). For they are themselves "mental words", verba interiora or verba cordis, "intentions" which the mind makes in the course of understanding or apprehending anything. This takes place in one of three ways, i., apprehending a nature simply, ii, reuniting or identifying two notions or concepts (or simply names) formerly abstracted (the rose and its redness, God and existence) or iii, taking the step, in a specifically triple identity, to new knowledge. For this reason the expression verbum cordis is often mistakenly taken as having applied only to the formation of the concept. Hegel rightly therefore assimilates the two more complex mental operations to "the Notion", as if clearing up an ancient hesitation. There is nothing Procrustean, however, in his innovation as one finds in some later theories of reference where it discards without proper understanding some of the complexities of earlier theories of suppositio.4 Such is the Scholastic theory that Hegel inherits. His special angle upon it, again, stressing the authentically Aristotelian, is to show that in fact all three operations are moments of just "the Notion" and hence are assimilable to the first operation of reason as both foundational and inclusive. They are not built up or composed of specifically notional steps but are themselves unitary notions, thoughts. Thus the thought or notion that the pack of cards is on the table (William James) is not divisible into separable parts. It is as unitary as the concept of a pack of cards (as this is as that of a card simply). Hence subject and predicate are no more than abstracted "functions" of it at best, not however in the Fregean sense exactly where just the predicate is a function of the subject. Thus Aquinas says that the predicate signifies only quasi formally, the subject only quasi materially. So anything and everything may be predicated and not just "forms".5 In judgement, however, what, for Aquinas, is especially manifested, as distinct from the mere notion in the mind, is the being of the unitary (united) entity, at least as an ens rationis. This particular contrast is, so to say, not open to Hegel's absolute idealism. The latter is, though, open to it inasmuch as the being or true actus (essendi) of anything whatever is, as an aspect of the Notion or of absolute reality, in fact itself identical with the whole (160). This reality, however, is the infinite array of Ideas into which the Absolute, itself Idea, necessarily and in perfect freedom therefore differentiates itself, inclusive of the idea of being and its sheen. Even this doctrine, however, is present in Aquinas under the rubric, found already in Augustine and the Greeks before him, mutatis mutandis, of the divine ideas (Summa theol. Ia 15). This is arguably Aquinas's deepest layer of thought, his philosophical position as it were sheltering behind the theological super-structure making esse or being actus actuum rather than thought. This would be needed to suggest a realm absolutely other than God (as could never be posited of the Notion, actively thinking itself only), which God in consequence absolutely transcends as his "creation" without negating it. Such a presentation, however, true as to content, is defective in form (of presentation specifically: see the section on "Absolute Spirit" at the very end of the Encyclopaedia. See also David Burrell, "Aquinas's
See our "The Interdependence of Semantics, Logic and Metaphysics as Exemplified in the Aristotelian Tradition", International Philosophical Quarterly, Vol. 42, No. 1, March 2002, pp. 63-92; also "Subject and Predicate Logic", The Modern Schoolman, LXVI, January 1989, pp. 129-139, "The Supposition of the Predicate", Ibid. LXXVII, November 1999, pp.73-77. 5 Cf. Henry Veatch, "St. Thomas's Doctrine of Subject and Predicate" in St. Thomas Aquinas (1274-1974), Commemorative Studies, Vol. II, Toronto 1974.
Appropriation of Liber de Causis to Articulate the Creator as Cause-of-Being" in Contemplating Aquinas, ed. Fergus Carr, University of Notre Dame Press, Notre Dame Indiana, 2003, pp. 75-85). Even the syllogism (third operation) is thus assimilable as manifesting thought's primary and sole product of the Notion in all its particular moments and aspects, each of them actual as individuals and, as such, subjects, identical in their mutual othernesses. Here it emerges that the Notion, as absoloutely actual, i.e. as absolute, is necessarily and indeed infinitely differentiated. The resulting individuals or actualities, however, are Not to be understood to mean the immediate or natural individuals, as when we speak of individual things or individual men: for that special phase of individuality does not appear till we come to the judgement. It is indeed a special phase of what is more generally brought to light here, viz. individuality as actual. Under this what is particular or specific can have any number of variations into groupings articulated as individual unities, unities as tight or tighter and more absolute than that of organic living bodies, for example. In general, again, Every function and "moment" of the notion is itself the whole notion (§160); but the individual or subject is the notion expressly put as a totality. Therefore, whatever is thus "expressly put as a totality" itself becomes an individual or subject, as in nature what is one individual can later become two or more (though Hegel, remarkably, sees doubling as the "essential" development here. In this way "the principle of personality is universality", as indeed it is of any individual actuality at this level which is thinking or the dialectic become conscious of itself.
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