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renounced every special preference, and schooled himself to an acquiescence in whatever is objective and necessary. As knower, I will that there shall be a world; and having once so willed, I must take it as I find it and yield to its demands. I have not interpreted the world to harmonize it with will, but have emasculated will into an assent to the world as it is.
The fate that befalls a strict voluntarism is thus similar to that which befalls a strict intellectualism. Specific categories drawn from thought or from the moral life, break down when used for the purpose of interpreting nature; and then when the categories are corrected to suit nature, they lose their specifically spiritual character. There is no saving grace in such a philosophy; and it does not constitute a possible resting-place for the idealistic mind.?
88. The romantic alternative alone remains, as apparently the inevitable destiny of idealism. It is generally Neo-Roman- recognized that contemporary German thought
has been repeating the phases through which the Kantian movement originally passed. Whether neo-Kantianism, neo-Fichteanism, neo-Hegelianism, and neo-Romanticism have observed the chronological order of their prototypes is doubtful. But the interplay of motives is strikingly similar to that of German thought at the opening of the last century, and in nothing more than in the emergence of romanticism.
Romanticism may take the agnostic form, and reduce the
1 Cf. Münsterberg. See below, pp. 178–179.
* Wherever the metaphysical motive is strong, ethical idealism tends to approach romanticism. Thus Münsterberg (op. cit.) stands nearer to romanticism than Windelband and Rickert, as he in turn falls short of the advanced position of Th. Lipps (“Naturphilosophie,” in Philosophie im Beginn des Zwanzigsten Jahrhunderts, Festschrift for Kuno Fischer, second edition). The common metaphysical motive in voluntarism and romanticism is significantly expressed by the new idealistic organ, Logos; cf. Vol. I, 1910, p. 1.
• The so-called “review-course” (Repetitionskursus). Cf. Oscar Ewald: "The Present State of Philosophy in Germany,” Phil. Review, Vol. XVI, 1907, pp. 238 sq.
various concrete manifestations of spirit to some ineffable life which engulfs and negates them. This was the method of Schopenhauer, and as revived in Hartmann's theory of “the Unconscious,” and in the earlier phases of Nietzsche's thought, it plays no inconsiderable part in the present movement. But there is another form of romanticism that is more hospitable as well as more positive in tone. If it is impossible to construe the world in terms of thought, or in terms of moral life, there yet remains a further conception, complete enough to embrace these and every other possible value, — the conception of a universal spiritual life ("geistiges Leben"), that shall be infinitely various and infinitely rich. Thus there arises the syncretistic and developmental romanticism, which is the popular movement of the day in German thought.
"I have shown," writes Ewald, "that it is more and more the tendency of the most diverse thinkers to regard the world as a fulness, exhibiting contradictions and antinomies only in the human spirit. In this way one-sided logicism is overthrown. Logic, morality, art, and religion enjoy in their own realms complete sovereignty and cannot be reduced by psychological or empiristic attempts to anything merely relative or temporal. This sphere, however, is not the whole, but only a part of inexhaustible reality.” Or, as it is expressed by Dilthey, for whom philosophy is a study of the great interpretations of life (“Weltanschauungslehre”) in all their historical variety: “It is not the relativity of every Weltanschauung, that is the final word of the spirit which has passed through them all, but rather the sovereignty of the spirit, as opposed to each and every one of them; and at the same time the positive consciousness that, in the different attitudes of the spirit, the One Reality of the world is given us, the persistent types of Weltanschauung being the expression of the manysidedness of the world.” The same philosophy finds an eloquent and influential exponent in Rudolph Eucken, who proclaims the self-sufficiency of the spiritual life
(“Selbstständigkeit des Geisteslebens”) — of that "cosmic life that forms the essence of things," and is apprehended in a spiritual immediacy."
Romanticism does not lend itself to vigorous criticism: it is not so much a philosophy as a faith. In romanticism, “the cause of the Spiritual Life is loyally championed by the soul against the pretensions of an alien or at least dissatisfying worldliness.” Little attempt is made to free the conception of the 'geistiges Leben' from its indeterminateness and promiscuity; or to defend its priority by orderly argument. Proof is as little congenial as analysis to such a mood of riotous spirituality. The spiritual life is an act to be performed, a privilege to be “freely appropriated,” rather than an idea to be defined and established. Its real motive force “lies in the impulse towards spiritual selfpreservation.” It springs from “the desire for a philosophy which seeks to regard reality from the inside and from the point of view of the whole, and which ... strives to raise the whole of human life to a higher level."'?
In other words it becomes in the end a question of the function of philosophy. If philosophy be an attempt to inspire men with noble and elevating sentiments, the romanticists are perpetually right. But if philosophy be the attempt to think clearly and cogently about the world, and lay bare its actualities and necessities — for better or for
then romanticism is irrelevant. It is not a false philosophy; it is simply not, in the strict theoretical sense, a philosophy at all.3
$ 9. Before concluding, we shall do well to inquire whether this great movement, with all the brilliancy and versatility of mind which it has displayed, has proved its
· Ewald: op. cit. (con.), Phil. Review, Vol. XVII, 1908, p. 426; W. Dilthey: "Das Wesen der Philosophie,” in Systematische Philosophie (Hinneberg's Kultur der Gegenwart), p. 62; R. Eucken: Life of the Spiril, trans. by F. L. Pogson, p. 327.
? Eucken: op. cit., pp. 332, 403; and The Meaning and Value of Life, trans. by L. J. and W. R. B. Gibs pp. 98, 126.
• Cf. above, pp. 29–30, 40-41.
Has objective or transcendental idealism, the idealism of Kant and of those whom he inspired, established The New or strengthened the general contention of Idealism and the Cardinal
idealism? Principle In the first place, it is clear that the cardinal principle of idealism remains what it was with Berkeley. It is asserted that consciousness in some form, especially consciousness in its cognitive form, is the one necessary and universal condition of being. It is idle and misleading for contemporary idealists to slur the fundamental place of the conscious subject in their scheme of reality; to resort, for example, to a seemingly neutral or colorless conception like 'experience. This conception is used by certain nonidealistic writers' to mean the bare aggregate of entities, not as yet brought under the form of either mind or body. But for idealists experience means the contents of consciousness, construed as such. Thus when Mr. Joachim refers to that “Ideal experience" in terms of which he defines truth, he means not the systematic totality of things merely, but such a totality witnessed and comprehended. This explains why he is not satisfied with the phrase "significant whole." For “if ‘experience' tends to suggest the experiencing apart from the experience, 'significant whole' tends to suggest the experienced apart from the experiencing.” “We want a term,” he says, “to express the concrete unity of both, and I cannot find one.” Now I think that Mr. Joachim is mistaken in thinking that the term experience is defective in the respect to which he refers. The danger is rather that, as used by idealists, it shall obscure the fact that they mean content of consciousness, and not merely things. Indeed I strongly suspect that it owes its vogue to its ambiguity; otherwise I cannot account for the abandonment of such downright terms as 'state,' 'percept,' 'idea.' Surely these terms answer perfectly to the demand that things shall be construed as present to consciousness, and consciousness as made up of content. In any case, it is clear that the “concrete unity” to which this author refers is a unity of consciousness.
1 By James, for example; cf. below, pp. 364-365.
An alternative phrasing of objective idealism is to be found in the writings of Edward Caird. Thus he writes: “The main result of modern philosophy and especially of modern idealism has been to put a concrete, in place of an abstract unity, or, in other words, to vindicate the essential correlation of the self and the not-self.”2 Now this does not mean merely that the self and the not-self are in some sense necessarily related; and does not follow from any general proof of the systematic unity of the world. It means that it is essential to everything to stand in the specific relation, for-a-self; that the simplest possible entity is a self with its content, or an object engaged by a conscious mind. The unity to which the idealist refers is not a unity between consciousness and something else, but a unity of consciousness.
§ 10. Supposing it to be granted, then, that objective or transcendental idealism, like Berkeleyan idealism, is
founded on the assertion of the primacy of The New Proof
consciousness; we may now ask whether this from Synthetic version of idealism has advanced new arguments Unity
in support of that assertion. One is compelled to express astonishment at the common failure of idealists to separate this question, and deal with it proportionately to its importance. But the new idealism does urge at least one new argument — the argument from the 'synthetic' function of consciousness. It is contended that consciousness affords the only genuine unity, and that since the world requires unity it must derive it from consciousness.
1 H. Joachim: op. cit., pp. 83-84, note. The same comment will apply to the use which Rickert and others make of the conception of immanence' to describe the most universal form of being. 'Immanence' is meaningless except in relation to a subject, and the theory of universal immanence does not really differ except in unclearness from a more explicit theory of universal consciousness. Cf. Rickert: Der Gegenstand der Erkenntnis, pp. 24-25.
• Edward Caird: op. cit., p. 6.