Hegel's 'Dialectic' In Life
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Politics and Activism

Hegel's 'Dialectic' In Life

Why philosophy still matters, and how you can use it in everyday life.

Hegel's 'Dialectic' In Life

In his great work "The Phenomenology of Spirit," Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel proposed an idea that would have a profound influence on society. In the section "On Lordship and Bondage," Hegel offers an allegory describing the relationship between lord and subject, which upon a near death struggle each party realizes they inescapably need each other. This allegory created the idea of synthesis, which Merriam-Webster defines as, "something that is made by combining different things (such as ideas, styles, etc.)". This synthesis has become the foundation of solving much of humanity's problems, and is the road-map to proactive and peaceful resolution of future problems.

To achieve a synthesis, one must first establish their thesis, which Merriam-Webster defines as, "a statement that someone wants to discuss or prove." Upon realization of ones thesis, one then provides the antithesis, which Merriam-Webster defines as, "the exact opposite of something or someone." While it may seem counter-intuitive for one to negate the thing they wish to argue, it is the clash of the thesis and antithesis which produces the best possible outcome, the synthesis. What Hegel imagined in the 19th century is now inescapable in our everyday life.

Hegel's dialectic is the foundation of Marxist and other social thinkers, as it is an almost literal allegory of the class warfare that has shaped our history. It is the American political system, two political parties that create opposing views in hopes the truth comes out of political conflict. It is in our film, by method of editing contrasting idea's and allowing the audience's brains to form their own interpretation of the synthesis. It forms the basis of psychological and sociological thought, in particular nature versus nurture, which is our attempt to find the synthesis of human behavior.

This article offers just a sliver of what Hegel's "Dialectic" is, and how it affects our lives. The idea is incredibly important to understand because it is human nature to follow our feelings and ignore the possible synthesis, and pursue a never ending struggle of ideas. This was the fatal flaw of communism, but it is also a fatal flaw of absolute capitalism, which is inherently dehumanizing. We, as a society, must explore all ideas and try and piece them together like a puzzle to find the best synthesis. The only dangerous ideas are those not discussed and explored, as they tend to fester like a virus.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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