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A History of Philosophy in Epitome by Schwegler

Accidentally changing phenomenal forms


_Actuality._--Actuality must be added as a _third_ to being and existence. In the actuality, the phenomenon is a complete and adequate manifestation of the essence. The true actuality is, therefore (in opposition to _possibility_ and _contingency_), a necessary being, a rational _necessity_. The well-known Hegelian sentence that every thing is rational, and every thing rational is actual, is seen in this apprehension of "actuality" to be a simple tautology. The necessary, when posited as its own ground, identical with itself, is _substance_. The phenomenal side, the unessential in the substance, and the contingent in the necessary, are _accidences_. These are no longer related to the substance, as the phenomenon to the essence, or the outer to the inner, _i. e._ as an adequate manifestation; they are only transitory affections of the substance, accidentally changing phenomenal forms, like sea waves on the water of the sea. They are not produced by the substance, but are rather destroyed in it. The relation of substance leads to the relation of _cause_. In the relation of cause there is one and the same thing posited on the one side as _cause_, and on the other side as _effect_. The cause of warmth is warmth, and its effect is again warmth. The effect is a higher conception than the accidence, since it actually stands over against the cause, and the cause itself passes over into effect. So far, however, as each side in the relation of cause presupposes the other, we shall find
the true relation one in which each side is at the same time cause and effect, _i. e._ _reciprocal action_. Reciprocal action is a higher relation than causality, because there is no pure causality. There is no effect without counteraction. We leave the province of essence with the category of reciprocal action. All the categories of essence had shown themselves as a duplex of two sides, but when we come to the category of reciprocal action, the opposition between cause and effect is destroyed, and they meet together; unity thus takes again the place of duplicity. We have, therefore, again a being which coincides with mediate being. This unity of being and essence, this inner or realized necessity, is the conception.

3. THE DOCTRINE OF THE CONCEPTION.--A conception is a rational necessity. We can only have a conception of that whose true necessity we have recognized. The conception is, therefore, the truly actual, the peculiar essence; because it states as well that which is actual as that which should be.

(1.) _The subjective conception_ contains the elements of _universality_ (the conception of species), _particularity_ (ground of classification, logical difference), and _individuality_ (species--logical difference). The conception is therefore a unity of that which is distinct. The self-separation of the conception is the _judgment_. In the judgment, the conception appears as self-excluding duality. The twofoldness is seen in the difference between subject and predicate, and the unity in the copula. Progress in the different forms of judgment, consists in this, viz., that the copula fills itself more and more with the conception. But thus the judgment passes over into the _conclusion_ or inference, _i. e._ to the conception which is identical with itself through the conception. In the inference one conception is concluded with a third through a second. The different figures of the conclusion are the different steps in the self-mediation of the conception. The conception is when it mediates itself with itself and the conclusion is no longer subjective; it is no longer my act, but an objective relation is fulfilled in it.

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