November 1st, 2012

Evolution and German Idealism

Absolute Spirit is the fundamental reality. But in order to create the world, the Absolute manifests itself, or goes out of itself in a sense, the Absolute forgets itself and empties itself into creation (although never really ceasing to be itself). Thus the world is created as a “falling away” from Spirit, as a “self-alienation” of Spirit, although the Fall is never anything but a play of Spirit itself.”

Having “fallen” into the manifest and material world, Spirit begins the process of returning to itself, and this process of the return of Spirit to Spirit is simply development or evolution itself. The original “descent” (or involution) is a forgetting, a fall, a self-alienation of Spirit; and the reverse movement of “ascent” (or evolution) is thus the self-remembering and self-actualization of Spirit. And yet, the Idealists emphasized, all of Spirit is fully present at each and every stage of evolution as the process of evolution itself. ”