Hegel on the Proofs and Personhood of God

Studies in Hegel's Logic and Philosophy of Religion

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Robert R. Williams
  • Oxford, U.K.: 
    Oxford University Press
    , March
     2017.
     352 pages.
     $95.00.
     Hardcover.
    ISBN
    9780198795223.
     For other formats: Link to Publisher's Website.
Review coming soon!

Review by David Lē forthcoming.

Description

Hegel's analysis of his culture identifies nihilistic tendencies in modernity i.e., the death of God and end of philosophy. Philosophy and religion have both become hollowed out to such an extent that traditional disputes between faith and reason become impossible because neither any longer possesses any content about which there could be any dispute; this is nihilism. Hegel responds to this situation with a renewal of the ontological argument (Logic) and ontotheology, which takes the form of philosophical trinitarianism. Hegel on the Proofs and Personhood of God examines Hegel's recasting of the theological proofs as the elevation of spirit to God and defense of their content against the criticisms of Kant and Jacobi. It also considers the issue of divine personhood in the Logic and Philosophy of Religion. This issue reflects Hegel's antiformalism that seeks to win back determinate content for truth (Logic) and the concept of God. While the personhood of God was the issue that divided the Hegelian school into left-wing and right-wing factions, both sides fail as interpretations. The center Hegelian view is both virtually unknown, and the most faithful to Hegel's project. What ties the two parts of the book together--Hegel's philosophical trinitarianism or identity as unity in and through difference (Logic) and his theological trinitarianism, or incarnation, trinity, reconciliation, and community (Philosophy of Religion)--is Hegel's Logic of the Concept. Hegel's metaphysical view of personhood is identified with the singularity (Einzelheit) of the concept. This includes as its speculative nucleus the concept of the true infinite: the unity in difference of infinite/finite, thought and being, divine-human unity (incarnation and trinity), God as spirit in his community.

About the Author(s)/Editor(s)/Translator(s): 

Robert R. Williams is Professor Emeritus of Germanic Studies, Philosophy, and Religious Studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He is Past President of the Hegel Society of America (1998-2000). His publications include Tragedy, Recognition, and the Death of God: Studies in Hegel and Nietzsche (Oxford University Press, 2012), Recognition: Fichte and Hegel on the Other (State University of New York Press, 1992), and Hegel's Ethics of Recognition (University of California Press, 1998).

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