Concept Of ‘I Do Not’ In The Philosophical Reflections Of Fichte Johann

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Concept of ‘I do not’ in the philosophical reflections of Fichte Johann

Fichte Johann

Gottlieb Fichte was born in 1762 in Rammenau, in Saxony. As poor family, he was able to carry out his first studies with the help of Baron Von Militz, who sent him to the famous Pforta school, where Nietzsche would later study. In 1780 he began his theology studies at the University of Jena, Wittenberg and Leipzig.  At this time he assigned the deterministic philosophy. For economic precariousness he had to work as a tutor in a family in Zurich, where he read Rousseau and Montesquieu. In 1791, I visit Kant in Konigsberg and wrote a work to win his attention, this was rehearsal about the criticism of all revelation. In 1793, I published considerations destined to correct the public’s trial over the French Revolution. In 1794 I became a professor of philosophy in Jena.  His main work was published in 1794 with the title of the foundation of the total theory of science and in it he presented the idealistic development of Kant’s critical philosophy.

In parts of the aforementioned works we can also mention the following: 

  • Lessons on the learned mission, 1794; 
  • Foundation of the entire doctrine of science, 1798; 
  • Foundation of closed right, 1800; 
  • The mission of man, 1801;
  • Masonry Philosophy: Letter to Konstant, 1802; 
  • Introduction to Beata Life, 1806; 
  • Speeches to the German nation, 1808.

In 1810, when the University of Berlin was founded, Fichte was appointed dean of the Faculty of Philosophy. Between 1811 and 1812 he was rector of the University. In 1814, his wife, Tifus spread and died on January 29 of that year.

Fichte starts from a double base to build his philosophy;Reflection on nature and the sense of wanting. Consequently, a theory of conscience elaborates on the one hand, on the other a moral theory.

In the work the lessons about the learned mission, Fichte argues that the learned is the one who has reached the culmination of wisdom and has been entrusted with a mission. It is also forced not only to spread their knowledge with those who do not know but also present themselves as living examples of rationality and morality.

Doctrine and consciousness for fichte constitute the essential part of society. Consequently, the learned acquires almost inconsistently the role of educator of men, as a common teacher. This means as a social teacher.

The most significant work of Fichte was the foundation of the entire doctrine of the science of 1794, in it the author changes his point of view thanks to religion. Fichte part of Kant, particularly his concept of knowledge. Kant had overturned the Thomistic doctrine that says that when the intellect knows he adapts. Thus affirming that they are the objects that have to revolve around the subject. With this he had indicated the supreme founding unity of knowledge with the unifying mental center of the so -called "I think". Kant had thus given importance to the subject, but despite this he remained a realistic not an idealist in that he puts the existence of an independent reality of an individual and argues that of reality itself is possible above all the knowledge of the phenomenon, thisReality means how our senses appears.

The idealist, argue that the individual can know all reality as the individual who creates it is. At the level of knowledge the material world exists only as we know it. The idealist want to change the Kantian "I think", of formal condition on condition whether formal or material of reality.

Fichte with this seeks thus absolutely primary and unconditioned principles from which the integer can be systematically deducted. Such principles will be possible by unifying the results of Kant’s three criticisms, this will give philosophy an absolute and perfect knowledge. Philosophy that can be exfolled from its etymological meaning of love for wisdom to become absolute knowledge.

In Fichte the I think becomes absolute. This intends to unify the doctrine of science for which it will establish a categorematical division. Everything that exists can be divided between self and no me.

Elyo, is the spontaneous, active, intuitive act of consciousness, the first movement originally from the same that is to know. It is the ability to know all things. This is what Fichte will call absolute. On the other hand, the no me, is all that is not me and must be known by the self, nature. This opposes and generates resistance to what I know. Nature is not passive, she puts resistance to the self that knows her. In addition the self is the absolute principle that unifies all knowledge, which is guarantor of the truth.

Knowing for Fichte is creating a concept, and creating it does not only mean interpreting reality, but creating it, because I create a model of what reality should be.

  • Idealists tell us that impressions do not pass directly towards the reason that orders them according to the categories of intelligence. There is a previous step. The imagination is the one who takes the coming of the senses and creates the intuitive material with which the reason will work.   
  • Consciousness can know everything but consciousness itself. And why is this? Because consciousness itself is light and you can’t light itself. It is the light that illuminates everything and allows you to know everything. We can only know the conscience through the objects of knowledge because these are images of the "absolute I" that has created it.

In addition to knowing and understanding there is will, which is the ability of the self to be imposed and modified by no me. The impulse of knowing reality is insatiable, it is only appeaseable by the instinct of modifying reality. And why modify it?  According to Fichte, to create an idyllic, harmonic world in which all beings of reason, we can live and live in harmony.

Therefore the theory of science aims to develop the system of the necessary ways of representing and knowing;It wants to be, therefore, a first philosophy or a fundamental ontology. In its moral doctrine, you can also find the radical formalism that appears in the theory of science. Fichte understands the position of objects by the spirit as authentic activity. The theory of science is transformed into moral doctrine, and that of being, into ethics. 


  1. Copleston. Frederick. History of philosophy, vol. 7, Barcelona, Ariel, 1996, pp. 37-68.
  2. Hirschberger. Johannes. History of philosophy, vol. 2, Barcelona, Herder, 2000, pp. 225-234.
  3. [1] J. Hirschberger.  History of Philosophy, II, Barcelona, Herder, 2000, P.227.
  4. [2] J. Hirschberger.  History of Philosophy, II, Barcelona, Herder, 2000, P.231.

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