Hegel and Wittgenstein on God at the Beginning of the World

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Year of publication 2022
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source Cuadernos Salmantinos de Filosofia
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Web https://summa.upsa.es/viewer.vm?id=148511&lang=es
Doi http://dx.doi.org/10.36576/2660-9509.49.89
Keywords Hegel; Wittgenstein; God; pure thinking; logos; Gospel of John
Description I argue that Hegel and Wittgenstein, each in their own specific way, used the idea of God at the beginning of creation as a complex analogy for other kinds of beginning, most notably the beginning of philosophical thought. Hegel’s Logic describes God’s mind before the creation of the world, i.e. God’s pure thinking. For a philosopher, beginning afresh means resolving to consider this kind of abstraction from the existence of the world. Wittgenstein, by contrast, says that the idea of a creator of the world does not explain anything. It marks the terminus ad quem of asking for explanations; we must not ask further who created the creator of the world. Wittgenstein generalizes this for any kind of reasoning: “Explanations come to an end somewhere.” (Philosophical Investigations: §1) Any sort of explanation must eventually arrive at its terminus ad quem, which means only that any kind of reasoning must have its logical beginning.
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