Hartman on Hegel's Reason in History

Hartman on Hegel's Reason in History

Robert S. Hartman (p. xii)  introduces Hegel’s Reason in History:

Thought is what is ideal in the world; the world is what is concrete in the Idea. For the Idea is not static, but dynamic; it gives rise, by its own inner dynamic, to all that exists. All existence is the manifestation, the actualization, of the Idea. Only be being actualized does the Idea receive its full reality, and only by containing the Idea, does the existing obtain its full existence. Thus, reality becomes more real in existence, and existence more existent in reality. Thought and thing merge, and each becomes more what it is by being the other.

…The Idea develops both in space and in time. The idea developing in space is Nature, the Idea subsequently – or rather consequently, for it is all a logical process - developing in time as Spirit. The latter, the development of the Idea in time, or of Spirit, is History. History thus becomes one of the great movements of the Idea; it becomes embedded in a metaphysical flow of universal scope.


Hegel, G. W. F. Reason in History. Translated by Robert Hartman. New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, Inc, Library of Liberal Arts, 1997.

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