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Volume 21, Issue 1, Spring 2017

Jeffrey Reid
Pages 182-202

Reason and Revelation
Absolute Agency and the Limits of Actuality

Contemporary reluctance to consider any complicity between philosophy and religion has led to an inability to consider, in Hegel studies, how the revelatory agency of the Absolute necessarily complements the narrative of human reason. According to Hegel, reason alone can do no more than end in the endless limitations of actuality, in the infinite approximations of a moral summum bonum and in the ad infinitum strivings for concrete political freedom. Recognizing where revelatory agency occurs in Hegel’s Science allows us to recognize the Idea’s freedom in the worldly, human expressions of art, religion and philosophy, in their philosophical study within the state University. Without such recognition, both Left and Right fields of Hegel interpretation tend to evaluate the success (or failure) of his philosophy based on inflated, unrealistic expectations of what is meant by “actuality.”

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