Statue of Schelling in Munich
And a wee-bit more for today from the Blue House of HYGEIA, further gleanings from the works of F.W. Schelling, as transcribed by Sydney C. Grew in his foreword of his 1989 translation of the ‘Introduction to the Philosophy of Mythology’.
Here, then, are five excerpts from other works of Schelling, which should show why I wanted to translate him and may arouse the reader’s interest too.
1. All life must pass through the fire of contradiction; contradiction is the driving force
and innermost nature of life.
2. What Dante saw written on the gates of the Inferno should also be written, in a
different sense, at the entrance to philosophy: Leave all hope behind ye who enter here.
He who would truly philosophize must be rid of all hope, all desire, all longing; he
must desire nothing, feel himself entirely poor and bereft, surrender all to gain all. This
step is hard, the ultimate abnegation. We realize this from the fact that so few have ever
been capable of it.
3. True philosophy consists of soul, reason, and feeling.
4. What is highest in all works—both of art and science—arises precisely because the
impersonal is operative in them.
5. Just as in the beginning of creation, which was nothing other than the birth of light,
the dark principle had to be there as its basis so that light could be raised out of it (as
the actual out of the merely potential); so there must be another basis for the birth of
spirit, and hence a second principle of darkness, which must be as much higher than
the former as the spirit is higher than light.
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