Augustine himself had said: ?If asked to define the Trinity, we can only say that it is not this or that.? John of Damascus: ?All we know of the divine nature is that it is not to be known.? By this, however, both Augustine and John of Damascus meant only that the precise mode of God?s triune existence is unrevealed and inscrutable.
Hegel. Philos. Relig., transl., 3:99, 100 ? ?God is but is at the same time the Other, the self-differentiating, the Other in the sense that this Other is God himself and has potentially the Divine nature in it, and that the abolishing of this difference of this otherness, this return, this love, is Spirit.? Hegel calls God ?the absolute Idea, the unity of Life and Cognition, the Universal that thinks itself and thinkingly recognizes itself in an infinite Actuality, from which, as its Immediacy, it no less distinguishes Itself again?; see Schwegler, History of Philosophy, 321,
331. Hegel?s general doctrine is that the highest unity is to be reached only through the fullest development and reconciliation of the deepest and widest antagonism. Pure being is pure nothing; we must die to live. Light is thesis, Darkness is antithesis, Shadow is synthesis, or union of both. Faith is thesis, Unbelief is antithesis, Doubt is synthesis, or union of both. Zweifel comes from Zwei, as doubt from du>o . Hegel called Napoleon ?ein Weltgeist zu Pferde? ? ?a world-spirit on horseback.? Ladd, Introduction to Philosophy, 202, speaks of ?the monotonous tit-tat-too of the Hegelian logic.? Ruskin speaks of it as ?pure, definite, and highly finished nonsense.? On the Hegelian principle good and evil cannot be contradictory to each other; without evil there could be no good. Stirling well entitled his exposition of the Hegelian Philosophy ?The Secret of Hegel,? and his readers have often remarked that, if Stirling discovered the secret, he never made it known.
Lord Coleridge told Robert Browning that he could not understand all his poetry. ?Ah, well,? replied the poet, ?if a reader of your caliber understands ten per cent, of what I write, he ought to be content.? When Wordsworth was told that Mr. Browning had married Miss Barrett, he said: ?It is a good thing that these two understand each other, for no one else understands them.? A pupil once brought to Hegel a passage in the latter?s writings and asked for an interpretation. The philosopher examined it and replied: ?When that passage was written, there were two who knew its meaning ? God and myself. Now, alas! there is but one, and that is God.? Heinrich Heine, speaking of the effect of Hegelianism upon the religious life of Berlin, says: ?I could accommodate myself to the very enlightened Christianity, filtrated from all superstition, which could then be had in the churches, and which was free from the divinity of Christ, like turtle soup without turtle.? When German systems of
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