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Single Idea 19577

[catalogued under 18. Thought / E. Abstraction / 2. Abstracta by Selection]

Full Idea

Before abstraction everything is one - but one as chaos is - after abstraction everything is again unified - but in a free alliance of independent, self-determined beings. A crowd has become a society - a chaos is transformed into a manifold world.

Gist of Idea

Everything is a chaotic unity, then we abstract, then we reunify the world into a free alliance


Novalis (Miscellaneous Observations [1798], 094)

Book Reference

Novalis: 'Philosophical Writings', ed/tr. Stoljar,M.M. [SUNY 1997], p.40

A Reaction

Personally I take (unfashionably) psychological abstraction to one of the key foundations of human thought, so I love this idea, which gives a huge picture of how the abstracting mind relates to reality.

Related Idea

Idea 6118 Philosophy is logical analysis, followed by synthesis [Russell]