Bauhaus-Universität Weimar

Dictionary of philosophy and psychology including many of the principal conceptions of ethics, logics, aesthetics ... and giving a terminology in English, French, German and Italian, vol. 1 [a-laws]
Baldwin, James Mark
and a postulate concerning the nature of 
reality. The hypothesis of ‘ hare identity,’ or 
‘ distinctionless being/ is opposed by that of 
‘ identity in difference,’ according to which 
identity and difference are correlative and 
mutually dependent conceptions, identity 
being relative to difference and difference 
presupposing identity. This is undoubtedly 
sound as a criticism of these categories of 
thought as such ; hut it is mere tautology 
in relation to concrete matters of fact or of 
science, or, more broadly, to the process of 
knowledge as concretely determined. For 
here it is always one side or the other— 
identity or difference—which subserves the 
interest of the thought or action, and the 
determination of an identity in difference 
says nothing as to the extent or form of 
either. For example, to say that heredity is 
a law of identity in difference, leaves the ex¬ 
tent of likeness and variation quite untouched; 
so also to say (see Bosanquet, Mind, April, 
1899) that imitation and invention are both 
covered by the formula ‘ identity in difference.’ 
Difference as a conception is fruitful as 
lending itself to one sort of method and to one 
sort of data, identity to another sort of each ; 
just as in the genetic development of con¬ 
sciousness, the discernment of difference and 
distinction is a later and more complex act 
than that of the vague generalization which 
proceeds upon resemblances. So while they 
are logically correlative, and existence is al¬ 
ways both, yet to the thought which makes 
use of these categories identity is an abstrac¬ 
tion from differences and difference from 
Identity considered as principle of per¬ 
manence and changelessness in being, con¬ 
trasted with the flux of the phenomenal, 
dates back to the Eleatics. See Pre-Socratic 
Philosophy. Cf. also Change, and, for the 
place of identity in the Hegelian dialectic, 
Hegel’s Terminology, III, IY. 
Literature: works of general metaphysics, 
as in Bibliog. B, i, c; also see the indica¬ 
tions under the other topics Identity. 
(J.M.B., G.E.S.) 
Identity (logical). The principle that a 
logical term is always equal to itself (A = A) 
and to nothing else. Cf. Contradiction, and 
see Laws oe Thought. 
This principle states a logical demand or 
ideal of thinking rather than a psychological 
fact. The identity which formal logic sup¬ 
poses is an abstract or symbolic representation 
requiring a sameness in the content of the 
term which is never fully realized. The sub¬ 
stitution of A for A is valid only without the 
psychological context in which A is a matter 
of experience. In dealing with universals and 
with definitions the principle of identity is 
both logically and psychologically valid, since, 
in the former case, the limit of material modi¬ 
fication has been reached, or is formally 
assumed, and, in the latter case, material 
modification is expressly excluded. The 
hypostatizing of identity as a metaphysical 
principle assumes the metaphysical validity 
of this logical category. Cf. the other topics 
Identity. (j.m.b.) 
Identity (personal) : see Personal 
Identity in Difference : see Identity 
(in metaphysics). 
Identity-philosophy: Ger. Identitätsphilo¬ 
sophie ; Fr. philosophie de l’identité ; Ital. 
filosofia dell’ identità. (1) The theory which, 
metaphysically, reduces mind and matter, the 
ideal and the real, thought and being, to unity 
in the absolute (cf. Idealism, Monism, and 
Pantheism) ; or, phenomenally, looks upon 
the physical and the psychical series as corre¬ 
lative ‘ sides ’ or ‘ aspects ’ of one and the same 
process. Cf. Double Aspect Theory, and 
Parallelism (psychophysical). 
(2) In particular, the system propounded 
by Schelling in the second and most signifi¬ 
cant stage of his philosophical development 
(Falckenberg, Hist, of Mod. Philos., 447, 
456-61), in which, through a combination 
of Spinozistic and Fichtean principles, he 
reaches the conclusion that object and subject, 
real and ideal, nature and spirit, are one in the 
absolute, which is the identity or indifference 
of both (Ueberweg, Hist, of Philos., ii. 213). 
Fichte, in his subjective or transcen¬ 
dental idealism, had subordinated the objec¬ 
tive or real element in the world to the 
subjective or ideal. Schelling adds the 
philosophy of nature to the science of 
knowledge with co-ordinate rank, and then 
interprets nature and spirit as alike pro¬ 
ceeding from a neutral ground which is above 
them both. This identity divides by polar 
opposition into the negative or real pole 
(nature, object) and the positive or ideal pole 
(spirit, subject) ; but in itself it is the 
identical ground or indifference of the two. 
This system of identity was set forth in 
a series of writings which appeared in rapid 
succession in the first decade of the 19th 
century (Darstellung meines Syst. d. Philos., 
1801 ; Bruno, oder ü. d. göttliche u. natürliche


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