Sunday, April 6, 2008

Two Types of Hegelian 'Scholars'; Two Types of Capitalism

There are two types of Hegelian scholars: 1. the type who are most meticulously familiar with Hegel and his work: and 2. the type who did and/or are doing the most value, relevance, meaning and vision with his work. I call this latter type of 'modified' Hegelian scholar a 'post-Hgelian creative-application scholar'. I include in this latter list such philosphical and psychological creative wonders as: Kierkegaard, Schopenhauer, Marx, Nietzsche, Freud, Jung, Perls, Derrida...

While I respect the work of the first type of Hegelian scholar -- and wish to some point that I had this level of 'technical expertise and familiarlity' with Hegel's work -- I am not sure that I have enough time, energy, and motivation in my life to every get remotely close to this type of 'Hegelian scholarship'.

In contrast, regarding the 'post-Hegelian creative-application scholars' that I listed above, you will see their 'blood and DNA' running everywhere through Hegel's Hotel, and ideally, I would like to some day join the list. Much of my motivation as an individual and as an 'underdog' philosopher -- meaning someone who philosophizes with intent, purpose, and focus from outside the 'normal topdog circles of university, academic life' -- is to show that a person doesn't need to necessarily be in the most elite, academic circles in order to become 'well educated' and to deliver a strong, forceful philosophical message -- ideally again, a 'tour de force' if you will (especially now with the invention of personal websites and blogsites to bridge the gap between 'university' and 'non-university' writers).

Now, I may or may not be able to deliver the full philosophical tour de force that I want to deliver in my lifetime. And/or I may or may not be able to reach my 'underdog' goal of full academic credibility and respect -- with or without my Phd in philosophy. But life is not all about the final destination of where you want to get to. It is also about the process, the encounters, the new awarenesses and the personal discveries you make along the way in trying to get there. Indeed, life is in the process, not the final destination because there is no final destination, just new, different, and creatively wonderful ways of re-inventing yourself -- or not. Life is in the details, the first, middle, and the last steps -- not in the grandiose life plans that never make it to or past the first step.

Ideally, I want my legacy -- at least my 'Hegel's Hotel' legacy -- to be that I was able to appeal to lay, professional, and specialty academic readers alike, and that I was able to combine an integrative philosophcial style and approach in a way that fostered creative vision, relevance, meaning, and pragmatic application.

If I can do all those things in Hegel's Hotel, then Hegel'a Hotel will have been a success. But of course, I am getting ahead of myself. Much, much hard work is still needed to get between here and there.

When things are working best in our capistalist economy, humanistic-existential values are working harmoniously together to support each other, not at odds with each other as when personal narcissism dominates and suppresses all other human values, especially compassion and integrity.

What I idealize as 'humanistic-existential capitalism' as opposed to 'narcissistic capitalism', utilizes integrative Hegelian philosophy to combine personal self-assertiveness, creativity, indeed, even elements of personal confidence, arrogance, egotism, narcissism -- with its 'dialectical dance partners': specifically, social sensitivity, respect, trust, integrity, ethics, compassion, social visiion, and pragmatic social application.

That is where 'Hegel's Hotel' is trying to get to...Again, we have much, much hard work in front of us before we get there.

dgb, Mar. 28th, 2008.

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