This restriction to the simple allows free play to the arbitrariness of thought which will not itself remain simple but brings in its own reflections on the subject. Having good right to occupy itself at first *only* with the principle and therefore not to let itself be involved in *anything else*, this industrious thoroughness in fact does the very opposite, for it *does* bring in the “else,” that is, other categories besides just the principle, extra presuppositions and prejudices. Such presuppositions as that infinity is different from finitude, content something else than form, the inner something else than the outer, likewise that mediation is not immediacy (as if anyone did not know these things), are didactically presented, narrated and affirmed, rather than demonstrated. There is something stupid – I have no other word for it – about this didactic mannerism; at a deeper level, there is the illegitimacy of simply presupposing and straight away accepting such propositions; still more, there is the failure to recognize that the requirement and the business of logical thinking is to investigate precisely this, whether apart from infinity a finite would be by itself something true; likewise, whether such an abstracted infinity, or whether a content without form or a form without content, an inner by itself without further externalization, an externality without inwardness, whether any of this would be *something true* or *something actual*. – But this culture and discipline of thought by which the latter acquires plasticity and overcomes the impatience of incidental reflection is procured solely by pressing onward, by study, and by carrying out to its conclusion the entire development.

G.W.F. Hegel 1816 Science of Logic


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