John McTaggart A Commentary on Hegel’s Logic 1910
Actuality       |     Actuality

Chapter VII

155. Actuality (Wirklichkeit) is divided as follows:

I. The Absolute. (Das Absolute.)

A. The Exposition of the Absolute. (Die Auslegung des Absolute.)

B. The Absolute Attribute. (Das absolute Attribut.)

C. The Modus of the Absolute. (Der Modus des Absolute.)

II. Actuality. (Die Wirklichkeit.)

A. Contingency, or Formal Actuality, Possibility and Necessity. (Zurfälligkeit, oder formelle Wirklichkeit, Möglichkeit und Nothwendigkeit.)

B. Relative Necessity, or Real Actuality, Possibility and Necessity. (Relative Nothwendigkeit, oder reale Wirklichkeit, Moglichkeit und ‘Nothwendigkeit.)

C. Absolute Necessity. (Absolute Nothwendigkeit.)

III. The Absolute Relation. (Das absolute Verhältniss.)

A. The Relation of Substantiality. (Verhältniss der Substantialität.)

B. The Relation of Causality. (Verhältniss der Kausalität.)

(a) Formal Causality. (Die formelle Kausalität.)
(b) Determined Causality. (Die bestimmte Kausalität.)
(c) Action and Reaction. (Wirkung und Gegenwirkung.)

C. Reciprocity. (Die Wechselwirkung.)

The only ambiguity in these titles is that Actuality is used to denote both the whole secondary division we are considering, and the second of the tertiary divisions contained in it, Actuality is, I think, one of the parts of the Greater Logic which requires most amendment. In the first place, as I shall endeavour to show, the whole content of the first two subdivisions, the Absolute and Actuality, is erroneous, and should be removed. (In doing this, however, we should only be departing from the Greater Logic to follow the Encyclopaedia.) And, in the second place, the treatment of Causality presents very grave defects.

The transition which leads to Actuality asserts that Externality is identical with Internality (G. L. ii. 177). It is the stability and solidity given by this complete union which causes the present secondary division to be specially worthy of the name of Actuality. “In this identity of Appearance with the Inner or Essence, Essential Relation has determined itself to Actuality” (G. L. ii. 183).


A. The Exposition of the Absolute.

156. (G. L. ii. 186.) We have, says Hegel, the Inner, or Essence-element, and the Outer, or Being-element. “The Absolute itself is absolute unity of both” (G. L. ii. 186). “The determination of the Absolute is to be the absolute form, but not in the same way as Identity, whose moments are only simple determinations — but as an Identity, each of the moments of which is itself the totality, and is therefore indifferent towards the form, and is the complete content of the whole” (G. L. ii. 186). This is the restatement of Inner and Outer which is to be expected at this place, but there seems no particular reason why it should be called the Absolute. On the next page, however, we find a very important statement — namely that the conception of the Absolute is incompatible with a variety of content, “The Absolute itself is the absolute Identity; this is its determination, so that all multiplicity of the World in itself, and of the World of Experience, or all multiplicity of the inner and outer totality is transcended in it” (G. L. ii. 187).

This passage must, I think, be taken as meaning that in this category not only has all difference between the Surface and Substratum vanished, but all differences which previously existed within the Surface, or within the Substratum, have also vanished, leaving a unity quite free from difference. This is a very important addition to the information about the category.

For the vertical difference, so to speak — the difference between the immediate element and the deeper element which explains it — might have vanished, and yet the horizontal differentiations — the distinctions between one finite thing and another finite thing — might have been preserved.

I do not think that there can be any doubt that Hegel regarded both of them as eliminated here. The words quoted above from p. 187 could not be made to apply to the difference between the World in itself and the World of Appearance, or between the Inner and the Outer. It is a multiplicity which is here transcended, and not a mere duality, such as is the difference between Surface and Substratum. And it falls within the Surface, and within the Substratum, not between them. This view is confirmed by the subsequent course of the argument in the triad which commences here, and is supported by Hegel’s choice of this place to discuss Spinoza’s philosophy (G. L. ii. 194).

157. We can now understand why Hegel gives this category the name of the Absolute. The word is habitually used of the universe viewed as a unity, and it forms a very appropriate name for a category which denies everything except the unity.

But the introduction of this fresh characteristic is illegitimate. Mate. The assertion of the unity between Surface and Substratum is justified, for it was demonstrated in the category of :Inner and Outer. But the removal of all multiplicity from the Actuality thus formed has not been demonstrated at all. And without the necessity of this transition being demonstrated, we have no right to go on to it. It seems scarcely possible to suppose that Hegel has confused the two unities, and imagined that we are justified in denying all multiplicity in Actuality because the duality of Surface and Substratum has been transcended. And yet it seems scarcely possible to explain in any other manner the introduction of the new characteristic without the least attempt at demonstration.

Hegel has proved, no doubt, that the Outer is now identical with the Inner. And it may perhaps be said that, though this is not the same as the denial of all multiplicity, yet it involves it. For, as against the Outer, the Inner was looked on as emphasising, the unity of the content, while the Outer emphasised the multiplicity. But the unity of Surface and Substratum has not been reached by explaining away the Surface and leaving the Substratum as the only reality. The attempts of ‘both sides to preserve their natures as they were when they were separate have been transcended. The Inner has been identified with the Outer as much as the Outer with the Inner. The result ought to be a category which combines harmoniously the multiplicity and the unity — such a category as we shall find later in Substance — not a category which ignores the multiplicity in favour of the unity.

The fact is that the conception which Hegel introduces here has been reached and transcended in the very earliest stages of Essence. The Surface, in so far as it is real at all, is always taken by Hegel as a multiplicity. And thus a category which denies the reality of multiplicity has to treat the Surface-element as completely unreal.

This is how Hegel does treat it here. And by doing so he goes back to the category of Show. (I do not mean the division of the third order, but the division of the fourth order, which forms the Antithesis of the division of the third order.) The characteristic of Show was that the Substratum was everything and the Surface nothing. And this is really Hegel’s position with regard to the Absolute. He asserts, indeed, that Surface and Substratum are identical, but, as we shall see, he admits that multiplicity still arises on the Surface, and has to be treated as unreal. Thus he falls back here into a position which he has already demonstrated to be inadequate, and replaced by something more adequate, and which he has therefore no right to introduce again here[1].

In so far as Spinoza’s philosophy is appropriately treated under this category of the Absolute, it could be treated with equal fitness under the category of Show. It is only one side of Spinoza’s thought — that which finds expression in the principle that all determination is negation — which exemplifies Hegel’s category of the Absolute. And this is exactly the position of Show.

158. Leaving the question of the legitimacy of this category, we must now consider the transition to the next. We cannot after all get rid of the multiplicity. Since the Absolute “contains all difference and determination of form, or since it is the absolute form and reflection, the variety of content must also come forward in it” (G. L. ii. 187). The Absolute, that is, cannot preserve the purity of its unity by rejecting anything. It contains every thing, including, multiplicity. But the Absolute has been determined as this pure unity, and it follows that “the transparency of the finite, which allows only the Absolute to be seen through it,, ends in entire disappearance (Verschwinden); for there is nothing in the finite, which could maintain for it a difference from the Absolute; it” (the finite) “is a medium that is absorbed by that which shines through it” (G. L. ii. 188). But such a disappearance cannot be complete. For, in order even to disappear, the finite must have some reality, and that is just what this category must refuse to it. The Absolute can destroy the finite, if it is assumed that the finite is there to destroy, but the fact that it should be there to destroy is incompatible with the supremacy of the Absolute. “Such a determination has not its beginning in the Absolute, but only its end” (G. L. ii. 189). And thus we are forced to the conclusion that the Absolute, which is a pure unity, cannot, after all, be the whole of reality. “That Absolute, which has its being only as absolute identity, is only the Absolute of an external reflection. It is therefore not the Absolute-Absolute, but the

Absolute in a determination, or it is an Attribute” (G. L. ii. 189). So we reach (G. L. ii. 190)

B. The Absolute Attribute.

159. This transition seems to me not to be valid. For it is a transition to a conception which is recognised, at the time when we pass to it, to be a contradiction. — The Absolute was to be the sole reality. It is contradictory to take it as one side only of the reality. It cannot be said that the conception of the Absolute is so altered in the transition that there is no longer a contradiction. The contradiction does remain, for it Is subsequently put forward as the ground of the transition to the category of Modus.

Now it is illegitimate to pass to a category which is realised, from the previous course of the argument, to be a contradiction. The transitions of the dialectic are made to avoid contradictions, and if we see that we create a new contradiction by going on, there is no ground why we should go on at all. Of course each category to which we go develops a contradiction, but as soon as it (toes that, it is seen to be untenable. A which was from the beginning seen to be contradictory, which we only made by explicitly asserting the contradiction which makes it necessary to leave it, can have no rightful place in the dialectic.

160. If, however, this category be once reached, the necessity of advancing from it is obvious. If the Absolute is an Attribute, it only expresses part of the nature of that of which it is an Attribute. There must be other parts of that nature, which are not expressed by the Absolute, and which are independent of it. But this is impossible, for the Absolute has all along been determined as the whole nature of reality, and if it can only exist by the side of something which is not itself, it cannot exist at all. “The Form therefore, whether taken as Outer or Inner, through which the Absolute is an Attribute, is at the same time posited m being something intrinsically null, an external Show, or mere Manner (Art und Weise)” (G. L. ii. 191). We thus reach

C. The Modus of the Absolute.

(G. L. ii. 191.) The meaning of this category is difficult to grasp. Hegel says of it: “The true meaning of the Modus is that it is the Absolute’s own reflecting movement; a determination, but not one through which it becomes Another, but only a determination of what it already is; the transparent Externality which is the sign (das Zeigen) of itself; a movement out from itself, but so that this outward Being is as much the internality itself” (G. L. ii. 193). This seems to indicate that the category denotes a sort of logical movement comparable to that found earlier in Reflection, by which the Absolute determines, by its own nature, a multiplicity. But although this seems to be the right interpretation, is impossible t explain why Hegel should have said that it was a mere “Art und Weise,” and how the name of Modus is appropriate to this category.

Has the category been validly deduced? I do not think that it has. For, if it is meant that the Absolute, while remaining a pure unity, determines a multiplicity, the difficulty remains the same as before. The multiplicity cannot be part of the Absolute, if that is a pure unity. And yet there is nothing outside the Absolute. (This difficulty did not occur in the case of Reflection, because there the two sides of the relation had not. mutually exclusive qualities, such as pure unity and multiplicity are here.)

If, ii deed, we were to take the unity of the Absolute longer as a pure unity, but as a unity which contained multiplicity, and was all the more of a unity because it did so, we should certainly have transcended the difficulty. But I cannot find so advanced a conception as this in Hegel’s words, nor (toes the subsequent course of the dialectic suggest that it is reached at this point.

The use of the names Attribute and Modus in connexion with the Absolute seems suggested by Spinoza’s terminology. Hegel, however, uses the terms in a way quite different from Spinoza’s. For Hegel the Absolute is, in the Antithesis of this’ triad, an Attribute of something, not, as with Spinoza, the Substance to which all Attributes belong. And for Hegel Attribute and Modus denote two different ways of looking at.,, the universe, of which the second transcends the first, while for’ Spinoza the Attribute and the Modus have places in the same theory of the universe as compatible elements.

161. We now pass to


(G. L. ii. 199.) The last category has filled up the gulf which, in the category of the Absolute Attribute, had once more opened in reality. In the Absolute Attribute we had once more a Surface and a Substratum of different natures, but in Modus the separation is again transcended. The restored solidity of reality makes the name of Actuality appropriate. “The Actual is Manifestation, it does not enter the sphere of alteration by its externality, nor is it the appearance of itself in another, but it manifests itself; that is, in its externality it is itself, and is only itself in its externality, that is, in a determining movement which separates it from itself” (G. L. ii. 201).

It seems to me, however, that this conception of an Actuality which is itself in its externality, and only there, is just the conception which is reached in Inner and Outer, and that, after the triad of the Absolute, we have only come back to the place we started from. And it is to be noted that Hegel himself speaks of Actuality as the immediate form-unity of Inner and Outer” (G. L. ii. 201. The context makes it clear that he is not speaking of the secondary division, but of the tertiary division which we are discussing here).

A. Contingency, or Formal Actuality, Possibility and Necessity.

162. (G. L. ii. 202.) Here the first point is the introduction of Possibility. “Actuality is formal, in so much as it is, as first Actuality, only immediate unreflected Activity, and thus exists only in this determination of form, but not as a totality of form. It is thus nothing more than Being or Existence in general. But since it is essentially (wesentlich) not mere immediate Existence, but is the form-unity of Being in Self (Ansichsein) or Innerness, and Externality, it therefore contains immediately Being in Self or Possibility. What is Actual is Possible” (G. L. ii. 202).

The argument seems to be that in Actuality we once more look for a Substratum which shall explain the Actuality. We find it in Possibility. Accordingly ‘Actuality, as opposed to Possibility, becomes the Surface.

This seems unjustifiable. Surely the result of the category of Inner and Outer was that Surface and Substratum had become permanently identical, and that it was impossible to find the explanation of any part of immediate reality in a Substratum which is in any way different from it. Now Possibility is, as Hegel fully recognises, something quite different from the corresponding Actuality. And so, in taking Possibility as a Substratum, we have gone back to a position already transcended — which is, of course, illegitimate. The only way to avoid this difficulty would be to show that Actuality differed from Possibility in some subtle way which had not been transcended in reaching Inner and Outer, and which was not, therefore, denied in asserting the identity of Inner and Outer. Hegel does not make any such distinction, nor does it seem possible that one could be made. The relations of Surface and Substratum were developed so carefully, and in so much detail, in the first two divisions of Essence, that it would be improbable that any possible form had not been considered.

At present the Possibility of each thing is looked for entirely within itself. Possibility due to the Actuality of something else is not reached till we come to Relative Necessity. Thus Possibility can only mean here the absence of internal contradiction. “A is possible just means that A is A” (G. L. ii. 203). The only difference, he goes on to say, between Possibility and Identity, is that Possibility is only one side of the relation, while Identity is both. Possibility implies that there is something more — namely Actuality. It is “das Sollen der Totalität der Form” (G.L. ii. 203).

It might be thought that Identity extended further than Possibility. A four-angled triangle is not formally Possible, but it is true that a four-angled triangle is a four-angled triangle. But we must remember that Hegel’s category of Identity, as we have seen, has a much narrower scope than the logical law of Identity. The category applies only to the existent, and, as nothing can exist which is not formally Possible, Identity can only be rightly applied in cases where Possibility can be applied also.

163. Hegel now asserts (G. L. ii. 204) that Possibility is in itself a contradiction, and therefore Impossibility. This is rather misleading. What he means, as lie explains, is that Possibility is an Essence, a Substratum, which can only be if it is in relation to a Surface. Possibility taken without reference to an Actuality would be a contradiction, and so impossible. This is, no doubt, true, but only true in the same way that any other Substratum, in any of the previous categories of Essence, would be impossible without the corresponding Surface. Hegel’s language suggests that Possibility passes into Impossibility as its contrary, which is not his meaning Since the content of the Possible, he continues, “is only a Possible, another which is the Opposite (Gegentheil) is just as Possible. A is A, ‘In the same way -A is -A” (G. L. ii. 204). Opposite is a rather ambiguous word. Hegel’s example of -A suggests that he means by Opposite a Material Contrary. But, as we saw in his treatment of the Law of Excluded Middle, he sometimes ignored the difference between not-A and -A. If in this passage he meant by -A nothing more than not-A, his statement will be correct. If there is no internal contradiction in A, there can. be none in not-A. The assertion of not-A is exactly equivalent to the denial of A. And if there is no internal contradiction in A when it is asserted there eau be no internal contradiction in A when it is denied.

Thus we reach the conception of the Contingent, “an Actual, which is at the same time determined as only Possible, whose Other or Opposite is also possible” (G. L. ii . 20.5).

From the Contingent we proceed to the Necessary, as follows. The Contingent as such has no Ground. For the fact that it is Contingent means that its Opposite might have taken its place, and that there is no reason why it has not done so (G. L. ii. 20.5). But, again, it must have a Ground. The Substratum to which it has been referred is insufficient to explain it. For it is only its Possibility, and as the Opposite — which is not Actual, for they are incompatible — is equally Possible, some other explanation must be sought for the fact that the one Possible is Actual, while the other is not. We cannot, as we have seen, find this explanation within the Actual in question. We must therefore look for it outside. The Actual, taken as Contingent, is “no longer in and for itself, but has its true Reflection-into-self in Another, in other words, it has a Ground” (G. L. ii. 206).

So far Hegel’s language is clear. But he adds a perplexing sentence. “Thus the Contingent has no Ground, because it is Contingent; and just as much it has a Ground, because it is Contingent” (G. L. ii. 206). This, by itself, would suggest that it had a Ground and had not a Ground in the same sense, and that a contradiction arose here which would have to be transcended. But his previous argument, given in the last paragraph, makes it clear that he only means that the Contingent has not a Ground within itself, and that it has a Ground outside itself.

164. In this way we reach Necessity. When the Actual has a Ground outside itself, it ceases to be Contingent, for that Ground determines why it exists, rather than its Opposite, which possessed the same Format Possibility. And so Actuality and coincide. For, now that the Actual has its Ground, which determines why it exists rather than its Opposite, its Opposite is no longer Possible (G. L. ii. 206, 207).

But this Possibility is no longer the Formal Possibility, which is possessed equally by the two Opposites. It is the Possibility which is limited by the relations of the Actual to other things. Actuality and Formal Possibility can never coincide. With this reference to what is external, we pass over to

B. Relative Necessity, or Real Actuality, Possibility and Necessity.

(G. L. ii. 207.) Real Actuality is Actuality in relation to another. This relation to another is also Reflection-into-self. “The Thing stable, hub has its Reflection-into-self, its determined Essentiality, in something else stable (G. L. ii. 208). In the same way, the Real Possibility of the Thing is in another Thing. “The Real Possibility of a fact is therefore the definitely existing (daseiende) multiplicity of circumstances which relate themselves to it” (G. L. ii. 209).

But this Real Possibility is identical with Necessity. “What is Really Possible can no longer be anything else; under these conditions and circumstances nothing else can follow” (G. L. ii. 211). We have gone beyond the Formal Possibility which consists in the absence of internal contradiction, and now find the Possibility of a fact in the absence of any facts which are incompatible with it. But, if nothing is incompatible with its Actuality, it must be Actual.[2] For otherwise it might either be Actual or might not, and so we should have ‘gone back to the position that there can be an Actual with nothing to determine that it, rather than its Opposite, should be Actual. Thus a Real Possibility which does not completely determine Actuality is only imperfect. We may say that the circumstances of a certain enterprise leave it possible either that it should succeed or that it should not succeed. But then the circumstances known to its are only some of the total number. If a complete knowledge of all the circumstances revealed no impossibility of success, success would be certain.

We may sum up Contingency and Relative Necessity by saying that in the first Formal Actuality and Formal Possibility were separate, that the contradiction which this involved led on to Necessity, and that Necessity is now seen to be identical with Real Actuality and Real Possibility. There are not two Necessities, a Formal and a Real, as there are two Possibilities and Actualities. The Necessity which falls within the division of Contingency is the transition to the next division, and is not Formal, but the same Real Necessity which, in the next division, is seen to be identical with Real Actuality and Possibility[3].

But. this Real Necessity is only a Relative Necessity. For when we ask why A is Necessary, the answer is that it has its Real Possibility in B, C, etc. It depends on these. and these are, so far as this relation goes, merely immediate. Thus A’s Necessity depends on the mere fact of the existence of B, Q etc., and is so, in the last resort, Contingent. “The Really Necessary is a limited Actuality, which, on account of this limitation is also, from another point of view, a Contingent” (G. L. ii. 212).

165. This difficulty is removed for Hegel by the passage to

C. Absolute Necessity.

(G. L. ii. 213.) The nature of this category and the transition to it are extremely obscure. I am inclined to agree with Noel’s interpretation (La Logique de Hegel, p. 79). The transition seems to consist in the fact that if we took all Existence as a, whole it would form a Necessity which was not Contingent, but which had Contingency as an element within itself. It would not be Contingent, for it would have no Ground outside itself. But Contingency would be an element in it, because each part Of it would be determined by other parts of it. Each part then would have its Ground outside itself, and, looked at separately, would be Contingent (G. L. ii. 213).

Hegel’s obscurity here seems to me to be due to the fact that the ideas of this triad are not really, is he supposes them to be, categories distinct from, and leading up to, the categories of Substantiality, Causality, and Reciprocity. The idea of Necessity, as used by Hegel here, is really the same as his category of Causality. The difficulty that the Relatively Necessary is Contingent, because of the immediacy of its external determinant, is really the same difficulty as that which produces the infinite series of Causes of Causes and Effects of Effects. And the only way to escape from it is the way in which Hegel does escape from it, when it recurs a second time under the head of Causation — by means of Reciprocity. And he gets very close to this solution here, when he has recourse to the conception of the system as a whole to transcend the Contingency of the parts. But he does not see that the difficulty is the same in the two places. (If he had seen this, indeed, he would have seen that he was wrong in bringing it in twice.) And consequently he states his solution here as if it were different from the later one. It is this, I think, which accounts for the obscurity.

166. In this way Hegel reaches


A. The Relation of Substantiality.

(G. L. ii. 219. Enc. 150.) According to this category the universe is something which is to be looked at both as a multiplicity of particulars (the Accidents) and as a unity (the Substance). There is thus a certain duplicity, but no longer the old duplicity which was finally transcended in Inner and Outer. Substance and Accidents are not two forms, in either of which we may regard the reality. They are two ,characteristics of one form, which is the only form which the reality takes, We could, according to Hegel, contrast the reality seen as Whole with the reality seen as Parts, for although the content was the same in both cases, Whole and Parts were two separate forms, under either of which it could be seen. And the same was true of Force and Exertion. But now it is different. To regard it as Substance is to regard it also as Accidents, and to regard it as Accidents is to regard it also as Substance.

Thus the Essence-relation has been transcended. There is no longer a Substratum and a Surface, in whose relation to one another the explanation of reality was to be found. All that we can say is that Substance — the characteristic of unity — corresponds to Whole, Force, and the Inner, which were previously Substratum, and that in the same way Accidents correspond to the previous Surfaces — Parts, Manifestation, Outer. But to have a Substratum and a Surface we want more differentiation than is here permissible. It may seem curious that categories in which the Essence-relation is transcended should fall in the Doctrine of Essence, but we are now very near the end of that Doctrine.

Is there only one Substance, or are there many Substances, each having many Attributes? It seems that, in the sense in which Hegel uses Substance, there is only One. The Absolute Necessity, from which he attempts to derive the new category, connects the whole universe in one. And of Inner and Outer (which should have been the immediate predecessor of Substance, as I shall point out later) we must say, as of its predecessor Whole and Part, that with such a conception all existents can be grouped in a single unity.

There is, then, only one Substance. But what. are the Accidents? Accident is generally used as a name for the qualities of the Substance which has them. Extension and impenetrability would be said to be Accidents of material Substance. But this is not Hegel’s use. The Accidents of which he speaks are the things which are parts of the Substance. “They are ... existing things with manifold properties, or wholes which consist of parts, stable parts” (G. L. ii. 222). Although Hegel’s special categories of Thing and Properties, and of Whole and Parts, have been transcended, we must say, in a more general sense, that the Accidents are parts of the Substance, and are themselves things with properties.

167. This, then, is what Hegel means by the category. Is it valid? I believe that it is valid, but that the way in which he reached it is invalid, and that it should have been reached directly from Inner and Outer.

In the first place, it can be reached from Inner and Outer. For it is simply the restatement of that category, as a new Thesis should be of the previous Synthesis. All that we have said of Substance and Accident is equally true of Inner and Outer (cp. the last Chapter, Section 151).

Now, if it can be reached from Inner and Outer, Hegel must be wrong in inserting two triads between them. For every triad indicates an advance, and there must be something wrong with the argument when, at the end of the second triad, we are only where we were before the beginning. of the first one.

And, secondly, the transition by which Hegel does reach Substance from Absolute Necessity is intrinsically invalid. For, as I said above, the conception of Necessity is really that of Causality. Necessity means for Hegel much more than the fact that reality is certainly determined. If it only meant that, we should have had Necessity very early among the categories of Being, and the relation between Surface and Substratum in Essence would have been Necessity throughout.

Necessity for him involves two characteristics. In the first place, that which is necessitated must be a Thing — not the mere Somethings of the earlier categories. In the next place, that which determines it must not be its own Substratum — its Ground, Matter, Law, or Force — but some other Thing. It will be remembered that it was the introduction of the idea of Necessity which formed the transition from the Formal Actuality and Possibility, which regarded the thing in its isolation, to the Real Actuality and Possibility, which regarded the thing as connected with others. Now the determination of one thing by another is just what Hegel means by Causality. And, if this is the case, the Greater Logic proceeds, in effect, though not in name, from Causality to Substance, and then from Substance to Causality, And this must be wrong. For the same category cannot be both higher and lower in the chain than another category.

Thirdly, Hegel bad no right to reach the category of Absolute Necessity at all. For, as I argued above (Sections 157 and 161), the Exposition of the Absolute is not properly deduced from Inner and Outer, nor is Contingency properly deduced from the Modus of the Absolute, so that there are two breaks in the chain.

Thus Hegel had no right to reach the categories of the Absolute and of Actuality (in the narrower sense), and he has no right to go on from them to Substance. On the other hand, by leaving them out, we get a valid transition from Inner and Outer to Substance. It is clear then that they ought to be left out, and, as we shall see, this is just what Hegel does in the Encyclopaedia.

168. It is in connexion with Substance that Hegel introduces in the Encyclopaedia (Section 151) some remarks on the philosophy of Spinoza, which he dealt with in the Greater Logic under the category of the Absolute (G. L. ii. 194). The position in the Greater Logic was more appropriate. It is true that Spinoza called his sole reality by the name of Substance. But in Hegel’s category the whole nature of the Substance is to be found in the Accidents, and they are as real as the

Substance. This is very far from Spinoza’s view. Indeed, according to that tendency in Spinoza’s thought to which Hegel gives most attention, the Accidents, as finite, would be unreal. Such a view is more appropriately dealt with under the category of the Absolute, but this category, as I have said, is omitted in the Encyclopaedia.

Hegel says in the Encyclopaedia that Spinoza should not be called an Atheist, but rather an Acosmist. There is great truth in the view that he was an Acosmist, though it must be admitted that he did not carry out consistently the principle that all determination is negation, on which his Acosmism is based. As to his Atheism, it is beyond doubt that he denied the existence of a personal or conscious God, but then Hegel never regarded personality or consciousness as essential characteristics of God. At times he took God as being the Absolute Reality, whatever that reality might be. If the word is used in this sense, nobody but ail absolute sceptic could ‘be an Atheist. At other times he took God to mean the Absolute Reality conceived as a unity. It Is in this sense that he appears to use it here. In either sense, of course, it would be true that Spinoza believed in the existence of God.

169. We now proceed to Causality. The transition lies, according to Hegel, in the fact that Substance, relative to Accident, is to be conceived as Power. This relation of Substance to Accident “is only the appearing totality as Becoming, but it is just as much Reflection ; the Accidentality, which is implicitly Substance, is for that very reason posited as such; and it is thus determined as a negativity which relates itself to itself, it is determined as over against itself, as relating itself to itself and as a simple identity with itself; and is Substance existing for itself and powerful. Thus the relation of Substantiality passes over into the relation of Causality” (G. L. ii. 223).

In other words, the Substance is conceived as determining the Accidents. The Accidents are now conceived as something existing in and for themselves, as a reality separate from the original Substance, and as themselves Substantial. Thus the relation of Substance to Accident changes into the relation between two Substances (the original Substance, and what was originally the Accident), and passing over into

B. The Relation of Causality.

(G. L. ii. 223. Enc. 153), we have, as its first form

(a) Formal Causality.

(G. L. ii. 224.) The Accidents, being now, as Hegel tells us, “Substance existing for itself” must be taken as having a separate existence from the original Substance, though they stand in relation to it, and though the content of the two is identical. Thus it is not merely that the conception of Causality has been substituted for that of Substance, but that the two terms in the Substance-relation have been transformed respectively into the two terms in the Causality-relation, the original Substance being the Cause, while the Accidents become the Effect.

It would seem that there is a plurality of Causes, each having a single Effect. For the Accidentality comprised plurality, and if it is taken as Substantial it must be taken as many Substances. And as each Cause is identical in content with its Effect, the plurality of Effect would require a corresponding plurality of Causes.

170. Is the transition valid? I think it is not. For I cannot accept Hegel’s argument to prove that what was taken as one Substance must now be taken as two Substances with identical content. So far as I can see the whole transition rests )n the phrase quoted above from p. 223, that the relation is Reflection and that therefore “the Accidentality, which is implicitly Substance, is for that very reason posited as such.” The Accidents, that is, if I understand it rightly, are so closely related to the Substance, that they themselves are Substance. B, let us say, is an Accident of the Substance A. Substance and Accident are so closely connected — in Hegel’s language, are so reflected into one another — that B is implicitly its Substance A. From this we proceed to the conclusion that B is itself a Substance, over against A.

I cannot interpret Hegel’s words in any other way than this, and surely this is invalid. It was nothing else but the fact that Force was implicitly Manifestation, and Manifestation was implicitly Force, which led Hegel to transcend the difference of form previously, and to each, in Inner and Outer, a category where Surface and Substratum were completely united. And now he is using just the same argument — that. each side is implicitly the other — as a reason for going back to the conception transcended in Inner and Outer, the conception of an identical content in two separate forms. It is impossible that the same consideration should both disprove and prove this conception, It seems to me that it did disprove it, that it does not prove it, and that the present transition must therefore be condemned.

It must be noted that in this Formal Causality the Causal relation is not between what would be generally called two different things — things different in content, and on the same stratum of reality. Causation of this sort does not come in till the next category. At present the Causation is only between the Substratum, which is Cause, and the Surface, which is Effect, and these have the same content. For the separation of the two sides has restored the difference between Surface and Substratum. If we carry on the spatial metaphor which these two terms involve, we may say that Formal Causality is vertical, while ordinary Causality is horizontal.

171. Hegel now continues. “In this identity of Cause and Effect the form is transcended, whereby they distinguish themselves as that which is in itself and as that which is posited. The Cause expires in its Effect; thus, equally, the Effect has expired, for it is only the determination of the Cause. This Causality expired in its Effect is thus an Immediacy, which is indifferent towards the relation of Cause and Effect, and has it outside itself” (G. L. ii. 226).

(b) Determined Causality.

(G. L. ii. 226.) “The identity of the Cause with itself in its Effect is the transcending of their might and negativity, and so is a unity which is indifferent to the differences of form, and is the content. — It is therefore only implicitly related to the form, in this case the Causality. They are therefore posited as separated, and the form as against the content is posited as something which is only immediately actual, as contingent Causality.

“Moreover the content as so determined is a content with internal differences (ein verschiedener Inhalt an ihm selbst); and the Cause is determined according to its content, and thereby the Effect also. — The content, since the reflectedness is here also immediate Actuality, is so far actual but finite Substance.

This is now the Causal Relation in its reality and finitude. As formal it is the infinite relation of absolute power, whose content is pure manifestation or necessity. On the other hand, as finite Causality it has a given content, and subsides into an external difference to that identity which is one and the same substance in its determinations” (G. L. 226, 227).

This is very obscure. But it seems to me that the same things which were Cause and Effect in Formal Causality are taken as Cause and Effect in the new category. If A is the Cause of B by Formal. Causality, then, I think, under the new category A will still be the Cause of B, though the nature of A and B, and their relation to one another, are conceived rather differently. The same Identity which connects Cause and Effect in Formal Causality connects them in Determined Causality. This seems clear, for it is “the Identity,” “this Identity,” “the Content” all through, without any suggestion of a change in the Identity. And if it is the same Identity, it must be the same things which it connects. The Identity which links together two things of which one was the Substratum of the other, could not connect any other two things. Moreover, if the Causality-relation related things in the new category by other groupings than those of the last category, the transition would have to show some negative character — something which broke down the one system and so made the substitution of the other necessary. Now there is no such negative element to be found in the transition, which appears to be entirely a direct movement forward, and so leads to the conclusion that if A was the Cause of B under the first category, it will also be the Cause of B under the second. At any rate, Hegel does not give any indication of why the grouping should change, or how any new one should be formed.

172. But the attempt to regard the things which are joined by Formal Causation as also Joined by Determined Causation is impossible. Hegel appears to ignore the fundamental difference which exists between the two. Determined Causation is what is ordinarily known as Causation, with one very important difference. Hegel defines it entirely without relation to Time or Change. Thus while the ordinary conception of Causation is that a change in A produces a change in B, Hegel’s Determined Causation only says that the nature of .1 determines the nature of B. It would be as applicable in a timeless world as in a world of change.

This is no doubt a very important difference . But in spite of the fact that Determined Causation resembles Formal Causation in not involving Time, the points in which Determined Causation resembles the ordinary non-Hegelian conception of Causation are such as to leave a very fundamental difference between Determined and Formal Causation — a difference which, as I have said, Hegel does not recognise.

There are four such points. The first is that, as I said above, Formal Causality does not connect what would usually be called two things — each containing the elements of Surface and Substratum united. It only connects two things one of which is the Surface and the other the Substratum of what would usually be called the same thing. It would not connect, e.g., an axe with a tree, but only the Substance of the axe viewed as one thing, with the Accidents of the axe, now transformed into another thing — the original Substance being Substratum and Cause, and the former Accidents being Surface and Effect. As a consequence of this the content of Cause and Effect in Format Causality must be identical, since the identity of content between Substance and Accidents is not regarded by Hegel as lost when’ the Accidents gain a Substantiality of their own.

The second point of difference is that Determined Causality — like ordinary causality — unites the plurality of existence into a system. Things which are different are connected by it[4].

But in Formal Causality there is no such union. Each Effect has its own Cause — identical with it in content, a mere reduplication of it on the level of the Substratum. The different things are not united with one another. Each is split into two, and these two are united by Causality. The other differences — those united by Determined Causality — are not united at all in Formal Causality.

The third point of difference is that in Determined Causality, as Hegel expressly says, a Cause can be (and, indeed must be) also an Effect. This is impossible with Formal Causality, since there all Causes are Substrata, and all Effects are Surfaces. Now the same thing cannot be both a Substratum and a Surface.

Fourthly, in ordinary Causation an Effect has a plurality of Causes, and a Cause a plurality of Effects. In Determined Causation Hegel admits, as we shall see, a plurality of remote Causes, though not of immediate Causes. But in Formal Causality there can be no plurality, whether of Causes or Effects, since the Substratum has only one Surface, and the Surface only one Substratum.

173. Hegel makes one attempt to remove these differences in his well-known doctrine of the identity of Cause and Effect, even in Determined Causation. He says, after the transition to Determined has been made, “Through this identity of content this i’s an analytic proposition. It is the same Fact (Sache) which shows itself at one time as Cause, at another time as Effect” (G. L. ii. 227). I shall endeavour to show that Hegel is wrung in asserting this identity, while, even if he had been right, it would by no means have removed the differences between Formal and Determined Causation which he ignores.

There is at any rate a presumption against the truth of this doctrine. It is against the ordinary usage of language. In ordinary empirical propositions about finite things we never find ourselves asserting that A is the cause of A, but always that A is the cause of B. The Cause and Effect are always things which, irrespective of their being Cause and Effect, have different names. The presumption is that there must be some difference between things to which different names are generally given. Let us see how Hegel. meets it.

He gives four examples of the asserted identity of Cause and Effect. The first is that rain makes things wet, and that the rain and the wetness are the same water. The second is that the paint is the cause of the colour of a surface, and that it is also the colour of the surface. Again, the cause of a deed is the inner sentiment (Gesinnung) of the agent, and these have the same content and value. Finally, when the cause of the movement of a thing. is its with another thing, the “quantum of movement” which was the Cause has been transferred to the thing acted on, and is thus the movement which is the Effect (G. L. ii. 227, 228).

We must notice, in the first place, that Hegel only gives part of the Cause. For example, the rain-water, by itself, will make nothing wet. Unless the clouds are driven over the house, unless the meteorological conditions allow the rain to fall, the roof will not be wet. Nor could the roof be wet if the house had never been built. The wind, the air, the builders of the house, are all part of the Cause, but they certainly are not identical with the wetness of the roof.

In the second place, rain is not identical with the wetness of a roof, in the sense required here. The rain is detached drops of water falling through the air, the other may be a Uniform thin sheet of moisture. They are, from a scientific point of view, different forms of the same matter. But the is part of the nature of the thing, and, if two things differ in form, they are not Identical.

The other examples show similar defects. And so there are two fatal objections to Hegel’s position. He only reaches it, firstly, by taking only one Cause of each Effect, although every Effect has many Causes. And, secondly, he only reaches it by assuming that two thin” are if they are formed of the same matter, or if they are of the same value, or have a quantitative equality, ignoring which they the other aspects differ from one another.

174. Hegel does, indeed, admit (G. L. 228) that the Cause has a content which is not in the Effect, but says that this content is a “zufälliges Beiwesen.” But, in fact, much of the content of the Cause which is not in the Effect is by no means contingent and unessential, but is an essential part of the Cause, without which it would not produce the Effect. The roof would not be wet except for the action of the wind and the builder. But neither the wind nor the builder is a part of the wetness of the roof.

Again, he admits that the identity is only between the Effect and its immediate Cause, and not between the Effect and its remote Cause (G. L. ii. 228). The reason that he gives for this is that the Effect has a plurality of remote Causes. But it is also the case that it has a plurality of immediate Causes. Indeed, the fact that any Effect has a plurality of remote Causes is sufficient to prove that some Effect has a plurality of immediate Causes. If we go back from any Effect along the chain of its Causes, there must be some point in the chain where we pass from a single Cause to the admitted plurality of remote Causes. In that case the last stage (in this backward process) which is a unity will have the members of the first stage which is a plurality as its immediate Causes.

And there is another difficulty. If A is the Cause of B, and B of C, then, according to Hegel, A is identical with B, and B with C, but A need not be identical with C. But, unless the point in which B is the Effect of A is a mere zufälliges Beiwesen with regard to B’s causality of C (and this cannot always be the case) it would seem that A must be identical with C. For surely things which are identical with the same thing must be identical with one another.

Lastly Hegel has to admit that, with this interpretation of Causality, it is impossible to apply Causality to the relations of organic and spiritual life (G. L. ii. 229)[5]. His examples of improper applications include the assertions that fever could be caused by eating certain foods, and that Caesar’s ambition was the cause of the destruction of the republican constitution of Rome. His meaning must, therefore be, not merely that the organic and the spiritual cannot enter into causal relations with the inorganic and the material respectively, but that they cannot enter into causal relations at all. But if this category is not applicable to the whole of reality, how can it be derived from earlier categories and lead on to later categories which certainly apply to the whole of reality? (Of course It is not completely adequate to the organic and spiritual worlds, but Hegel’s meaning here must be more than this, since no category except the Absolute Idea is completely adequate to any reality.)

Thus we must reject Hegel’s theory of the identity of Cause and Effect. It is curious that it should have proved one of the most popular of his doctrines. It is often maintained by writers whose works show little study of the detail of other parts of the dialectic.

175. Even if Hegel had proved the identity of Cause and Effect in the way in which he asserted it, the identity would still be different from the identity in Formal Causality. For, as we saw above, Hegel does admit some difference in the empirical content of Cause and Effect in Determined Causality, though he asserts it to be a “zufälliges Beiwesen.” In Formal, Causality, on the other hand, it is impossible that there should be any difference between Cause and Effect, except the fact that they are respectively Cause and Effect. In other words, as was said before, Formal Causation is a relation between two aspects of what would commonly be called the same thin,,. Determined Causality is a relation between xhat would commonly be called different things.

Hegel has thus failed to remove even the first of the four differences between Formal and Determined Causality, which enumerated above (Section 172). He does riot even attempt to remove the other three — that Determined Causality unites the plurality of the existent, that in it every Cause is also an Effect, and every Effect a Cause, and that in it every Effect has a plurality of Causes — at any rate of remote Causes. None of these features is to be found in Formal Causality.

As Formal and Determined Causality are so different, a valid transition would require a demonstration that, to remove some inadequacy in the conception of Formal Causality, it would be necessary to alter it in each of the four characteristics in which it differs from Determined Causality. And it seems clear to me that he has not succeeded in doing this. Nor does it seem that he realised how much there was to do.

We must therefore reject this transition — one of the most interesting in the dialectic, since it deals with a problem which has been of such cardinal importance to many philosophies.

176. In the Encyclopaedia the treatment of Causality is substantially the same. There is no separate category of Formal Causality, but the transition from Substance to Cause is clearly through the conception of Substance as Cause and Accidents as Effect. (Enc. 153, “Substance is Cause, in so far as Substance reflects into self as against its passage into Accidentality, and so stands as the primary fact, but, again no less suspends tills reflection-into-self (its bare possibility), lays itself down as the negative of itself, and thus produces an Effect, all actuality, which, though so far only assumed as a sequence, is through the process that effectuates it at the same time necessary.”) This harmonizes with the fact that the Encyclopedia as well as the Greater Logic, maintains the identity of Cause mid Effect.

177. Hegel now remarks that, starting from any point, we shall get an infinite series of Causes and Effects. If the Effect, as being a finite reality, wants a Cause, then the Cause, which is equally a finite reality, wants another Cause, which again will require another, and so on without end. And the same will be true of the Effects.

We have an infinite series, then. But does its infinity involve a contradiction? For, as we have seen before, Hegel does not regard an infinite series as ipso facto contradictory. I do not see that there is a contradiction here. At first sight, no doubt, our present series seems to resemble very closely the Infinite Qualitative Series in the Encyclopaedia, which was coil tradictory[6]. But there is an important difference. There the nature of each term was found in its Other, and not in itself. A’s nature was only to be found in its other, B. But B had no nature, except in its other, C. Thus A’s nature must be looked for in C, For the same reason it could not be found there, but in D. And so on unendingly. A’s nature could be found nowhere, which was contradictory to the fact, already established, that A had a nature.

Here it is different. A’s nature is in itself, not in its Cause, B. That it should be what it is is determined by B, but it fails in A. And thus, as it seems to me, there is no contradiction in an infinite series of Causes. If there is such a series, then A will have an infinite number of relations. It will be related to B, and it will also. be related to C, which, as the immediate Cause of B, will be the remote Cause of A. And it will be related in the same way to D, E, and so on infinitely. But there is no contradiction in A’s standing in an infinite number of relations.

Again, it follows from the existence of such an infinite series that no mind working in time could ever completely explain anything. For A cannot be explained without reference to the nature of its Cause B, which determines it. But this will not be a complete explanation unless the nature of B is an ultimate fact, neither admitting nor requiring an explanation. If B requires explanation — as will be the case here — by its Cause C, A will not be explained without a knowledge of C, and so on through an infinite series of terms the end of which can never be reached by a mind passing through them successively. But a state of things is not impossible because it could never be completely explained by a mind working in time.

Thus there is no contradiction in this infinite series. And Hegel never says that there is. He calls it a False Infinite (Schlecht-Unendliche) but this is the term which he applies to all infinites of endless succession (as distinguished from the True Infinite of self-determination) whether lie regards them as contradictory or not. And his transition to the next category does not depend on any contradiction being found in the infinite series, but develops from the nature of Causation in a point quite independent of the infinite series.

178. To this transition we now proceed. That which is acted on, Hegel tells us, must also itself act (G. L. ii. 237). In the first place, the Effect which is worked on anything is also the Effect of that thing (G. L. ii. 238). A determines the Effect x in B. But that A should determine that precise Effect is due not only to A’s nature but also to B’s. The stylus is the cause of the impression made on the wax. But when we consider what a different effect would have been produced by pressing the stylus on a diamond or on water, we see that the result produced in the wax is due to its own nature as much as to the nature of the stylus.

What Hegel says is doubtless true, though he might find some difficulty in reconciling it with his doctrine of the identity of Cause and Effect. For the proof that B is also a Cause of the Effect determined in it lies in the fact that A determines a different Effect in B to what it would determine in C. Now if A produces different Effects in different things, what becomes of the identity of Cause and Effect? A cannot be identical with two things of different natures.

In this way we reach

(c) Action and Reaction

(G. L. ii. 2.35), where the thing in which the Effect is produced is recognised as its joint Cause.

179. From this we proceed to the next category as follows’. There is, Hegel tells us, a second sense in which that which is acted on must also act (G. L. ii. 238). Not only does B cooperate in determining the Effect x in itself, but B is also the Cause of an Effect in A. A’s exertion of Causality on B is just .is much a characteristic of A as the result of that exertion, namely x, is a characteristic of B. But A cannot determine an Effect unless there is something to determine it in, nor can it determine the Effect x unless there is B to determine it in, for it is only the co-operation of B’s nature which makes the Effect to be x rather than anything else. Hence B is the Cause in A of the characteristic “A’s co-operation in determining x.” (That is to say, B is the external Cause of it. A’s nature will of course co-operate.) Thus we reach

C. Reciprocity.

(G. L. ii. 239. Enc. 155.) Here “the Activity (Wirken) which in finite Causality ran out into the process of the false infinite becomes bent round and an infinite reciprocal Activity returning into itself” (G. L. ii. 239).

As Hegel places both the transition from Determined Causality to Action and Reaction, and the transition from Action and Reaction to Reciprocity, within the section headed Action and Reaction, the distinction between the two may at first sight be missed, but becomes evident on closer examination.

The question now arises at what points the line of Causality bends round on itself. Hegel’s demonstration indicates that two things in immediate causal relation to one another may by themselves form a unity of reciprocal action. At the same time his treatment of this category, and his transition from it by means of the idea of complete Necessity, clearly. indicate that the whole of existence is to be taken as forming a single unity of reciprocal activity.

The two positions, however, are quite harmonious. If the principle of Reciprocity is admitted, we can begin with unities as small as we choose but we shall be led on to an all-embracing unity. Suppose we take two things only, A and B, as forming such a unity. If they are the only things in the universe, then the unity is already all-embracing. But, if not, the unity thus formed will have other things outside it. Being thus finite, it will have to be determined from outside. If we call its Cause Q then (A and B) and C will form a larger reciprocal unity, which must again be determined from outside, and so on, till we come to a unity which embraces the whole of existence.

This assumes the truth of the principle that, if several things are taken together as a unity, a Cause for that unity must be found outside it, as if it were a single thing. Hegel unquestionably does assume this, for without it lie could not arrive at the final result of this category — that all things are bound in one system of Necessity. But he has not proved it. It would be inapplicable in Formal Causality, and must spring, if it is to be justified, from the special nature of Determined Causality. This nature, we have already seen, Hegel has failed to deduce from Formal Causality.

180. The unity of this reciprocal Activity is called by Hegel, as we saw above, by the name of infinite. This does not mean that the universe of existents is, in the ordinary sense, infinitely large. He speaks here of what he calls the True Infinite — the infinite of self-determination. Such a universe is infinite because it is determined only by its own nature, and not by anything outside it. The absolutely True Infinite will only be reached in the Absolute Idea. BLit the universe as connected by Reciprocity is relatively a True Infinite as compared with the finitude of a part of the universe or as against the false infinite of endless chains of Causes and Effects.

The system of such a universe as a whole is an ultimate fact, which neither admits nor requires any explanation. And in this consists its infinity, for it is determined by nothing outside it. On the other hand each of the particulars in the system is determined by others, and there is no particular part which does not in this way find an explanation.

But while the infinity which Hegel ascribes to this system is not a ‘, false” infinity of number or magnitude, I do not see that it is impossible for it also to possess a “false” infinity. (On this point Hegel himself says nothing.) If the universe were adequately expressed by the category of Determined Causality, it would necessarily possess such a false infinity, since beyond each thing there would be a fresh thing which was its Cause. With Reciprocity it becomes possible to have a complete system of determination with a finite number of things, and so the number may be finite. But it would be equally possible, I think, to have a complete system of determination with an infinite number of things, and so the number may be infinite.

181. We have now reached the last category of Causality and of Essence. (The transition into the Notion will be considered in the next Chapter.) We have found ourselves able to accept very little of the treatment of the subject in the Greater Logic. But the results at which we have arrived are in closer agreement with the Encyclopaedia.

Our chief criticisms were two: that the two first subdivisions (the Absolute, and Actuality in the narrower sense) were unjustifiable, and that the treatment of Causality was erroneous. Now the first of these does not apply to the Encyclopaedia. Hegel there omits all the categories of the Absolute. Nor does he introduce into the dialectic chain the conceptions which, in the Greater Logic, fall within Actuality in the narrower sense. He treats of them, indeed (Enc. 143-149), but only in a preliminary discussion before he proceeds to consider the development of the categories. The result of these omissions is that Substantiality, Causality, and Reciprocity are the three immediate subdivisions of Actuality in the larger sense, instead of, as in the Greater Logic, subdivisions of its final subdivision. Instead of being divisions of the fourth order, they are now divisions of the third order.

Thus the Encyclopaedia escapes one of the two objections to the Greater Logic. The introduction of the excursus on Possibility, Contingency, and Necessity is quite justifiable, so long as they are not treated as categories of the dialectic process. For Necessity and Causality, as I pointed out above, are really the same conception. And the relation of this conception to Possibility and Contingency is well worth consideration, although that consideration is not required, either to reach the conception of Necessity, or to transcend it.

(The Encyclopaedia, however, with curious inconsistency, makes the transition to Substantiality from Necessity. This is clearly incompatible with the general line of argument which the Encyclopaedia adopts. Since, for it, Possibility, Contingency and Necessity are not a triad in the chain of categories, if Substantiality were deduced from them it would have no connexion with the earlier part of the chain, which would therefore be hopelessly broken at this point. The category immediately before Substantiality, according to the Encyclopaedia, is the category of Inner and Outer. It is, therefore, from Inner and Outer that Substantiality must be deduce(]. And, as I pointed out above, this can easily be done.)

But when we come to our second criticism on the Greater Logic, its failure with the category of Cause, we find that the Encyclopaedia is in no better position. It has no subdivisions of Cause., But the transition from Substance to Causality is still through the conception of the Substance as the Cause of its Accidents. “Substance is Cause, in so far as Substance reflects into self as against its passage into Accidentality, and so stands as the primary fact, but again no less suspends this reflection into self (its bare possibility), lays itself down as the negation of itself, and thus produces an Effect, an Actuality, which, though so far assumed only as a sequence, is through the process that effectuates it at the same time necessary” (Enc. 153). With this he holds himself to have arrived at a Causality equivalent to the Determined Causality of the Greater Logic. Thus the transition is really the same as in the Greater Logic. The only result of the omission of Formal Causality as a separate division is to render the argument more obscure.

The Encyclopaedia also maintains the identity of Cause and Effect. “So far again as we can speak of a definite content, there is no content in the Effect that is not in the Cause” (Enc. 153).


1. In several passages he actually gives the name of Show to the Surfaceelement of the Absolute, e.g. G. L. ii. 188 and 192.

2. It is, of course, equally true that if nothing is incompatible with its non-Actuality, it will not be Actual. Actuality has not any prerogative in this respect, such as was sometimes attributed to it in pre-Kantian philosophies.

3. Hegel certainly speaks (G. L. ii. 213, 215) as if the Formal Necessity of Contingency was different from the Real Necessity of Relative Necessity. But I think the only change he means is that, in the latter, Necessity is seen to coincide with Actuality and Possibility, which it did not in the former. And this coincidence comes about through a change in Actuality and Possibility (from Formal to Real), not from any change in Necessity.

4. Hegel, as we shall see, asserts that in Determined Causality Cause and Effect are identical, but, as we shall also see, he qualifies this by admitting, after all, a certain difference. And he certainly regards the plurality of existence as related by Determined Causality.

5. This seems quite inconsistent with his previous issertion that the relation between an act and the sentiments of the agent is an example of the identity of Cause and Effect.

6. The Infinite Qualitative Series in the Greater Logic took a different form, and does not resemble the Causal Series so closely. Cp. above, Sections 32 and 3.5.