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Hegelianism: A Philosophical School of Thought

Hegelianism is a philosophy based on the beliefs of Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. It involves the idea of a historically-minded absolute idealism.

Hegelianism is a philosophical thought whose basis is the beliefs of Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, the famous German Idealist philosopher. This intellectual tradition began in Germany during the mid-19th Century when Hegel came up with the idea of a historically-minded Absolute Idealism, also known as Hegelian idealism. According to this, the realisation of the universe’s spiritual potential occurs through human society’s development. In this human society, Hegel viewed the mind and nature as two abstractions of one spirit, indivisible and whole. 

In Hegelianism, a division of philosophies derives from the process of spirit, God, or idea. This article deals with the various types of perspectives, where you will come to know the exact Hegelian meaning.

Nature: Process or Idea

To understand Hegelian idealism, the first thing we need to study is the Philosophy of nature. This particular philosophy takes up the study of the “process” or “idea”. Most noteworthy, this study is taken at the point where its development enters into “otherness” in nature. Otherness can be described as the process or idea entering the material world. 

Nature, according to Hegel, was described as an “estranged spirit,” and he believed that the whole world processes in a divine self-estrangement manner. The word “estranged” should not be considered “annihilated” or “altered” in Hegelian meaning. 

Spirit or Mind

According to Hegel, the divine and human synthesis expression occurs in the absolute and the relative “Geist” doctrine. The word “Geist” stands for spirit or mind. In English, the translation of Hegel’s phenomenology of “Geist” takes place as the phenomenology of “mind.” Most importantly, the mind should not be taken as a mere intellectual movement but rather as an element of spiritual power.

The consideration of the individual or the subjective mind is the central premise behind the philosophy of mind in Hegelianism. This philosophy perceives that the individual or subjective mind is only the first stage, which, according to Hegel, is called the “in-itself” stage of mind. 

The next stage in the Philosophy of mind is the objective mind, which is objectified in the state, morality, and law. According to Hegel, this is the “out-of-itself” stage of mind.  

Hegel believed that freedom is the essence of the mind, and proper development is possible only by breaking away the restrictions that nature and human institutions impose on it.

Objectified Mind 

The philosophical division of History involves the State and Absolute Mind, which is the most exciting portion of Hegelianism. 

According to Hegel, the State is equal to the objectified mind. He believed that the individual mind is only partly free because of desires, prejudices, and blind impulses. The partly free mind subjects itself to the yoke of necessity, which is the opposite of the state of freedom.

The yoke of necessity is met in the following ways:

  • Recognition of the rights of others
  • Recognition of morality
  • Recognition of social morality, in which family is the primal institution

The most comprehensive view of history, according to Hegelianism, shows us three crucial development stages:

  • Oriental monarchy (the stage of oneness, also known as suppression of freedom)
  •  Greek democracy (the stage of expansion, where unstable demagogy resulted in losing freedom)
  •  Christian constitutional monarchy (reintegrating freedom in constitutional government)

Absolute mind

The Philosophy of Absolute Mind is the final philosophical division in Hegelianism. The domination of other minds limits the mind even in the State. So, the last step remains to acquire freedom. Here, the absolute mind subjects itself to itself alone in philosophy, religion, or art. 

According to Hegel, art is the intuitive contemplation by the mind of itself regarding the art material. The Philosophy of absolute mind depicts that the conditioning of the development of the arts is due to the ever-increasing lending of the art material to the actualisation of mind or the idea.

 When it comes to religion, the mind feels superior to the specific restrictions of finite things. In the religious aspect of the absolute mind, there are three significant moments: 

  • Oriental religion( An exaggeration of the infinite idea) 
  • Greek religion (Unwarranted importance to the finite)
  • Christianity (union of the infinite and the finite)

Finally, a transcending of its restrictions occurs when it comes to philosophy. Philosophy involves the truth that is found in art and religion. Philosophy is the highest form, free from all restrictions or limitations. You can say that it is the greatest objective of all progress. 


Hegelianism is a philosophical school derived from the teachings of Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, the famous German Idealist philosopher. Historically-minded Absolute Idealism, also known as Hegelian idealism, is the main idea behind this school of thought. According to this philosophy, spiritual potential is realised only due to the development of human society. In this philosophy, ultimate reality is placed in ideas instead of things. This philosophy believes that thinking takes place in stages- nature, spirit or mind, objectified mind, and absolute mind. On reaching the final stage of absolute mind, the person would acquire freedom.


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