Chapter 9 The Idea Of Freedom

 
Chapter 9 The Idea
        of Spiritual Activity

 
    [1] For our cognition,
       the concept of the tree
          is conditioned
             by the percept
                of the tree.

    When faced
        with a particular percept,
       I can select only one
           particular concept
              from the general system
                 of concepts.

    The connection
        of concept and
           percept
              is determined
            by thinking,
               indirectly
        and objectively,
       at the level
           of the percept.

    This connection
        of the percept
            with its concept
               is recognized
        after the act
            of perceiving;
      but
         that they
             do belong
          together lies
              in the very nature
                  of things.
 
    [2] The process
        looks different
           when we
          examine knowledge,
       or rather the relation
           of man
               to the world
              which arises within knowledge.

    In the preceding chapters
         the attempt
        has been made to show
           that
              an unprejudiced observation
                 of this relationship
                is
                   able to throw light
           on its nature.

    A proper understanding
        of this observation
           leads
        to the insight
       that thinking
       can be directly discerned
          as a self-contained entity.

    Those
         who find it necessary
            for the explanation
               of
                   thinking as such
                  to invoke
                       something else,
       such as physical brain
          processes
             or unconscious spiritual processes
          lying
         behind the conscious thinking which
             they observe,
       fail to recognize
          what an unprejudiced observation
             of thinking yields.

    When we
          observe our thinking,
       we live
           during this observation
              directly within a self-supporting,
       spiritual web
           of being.

    Indeed,
       we can even say that
          if
             we would grasp
                the essential nature
           of spirit
               in the form
         in which
            it presents itself most immediately
           to man,
       we need
          only
              look
           at the self-sustaining activity
               of thinking.
 
    [3] When
         we are contemplating thinking itself,
       two things
          coincide
             which
                otherwise must always appear apart,
               namely,
                  concept and percept.

    If we
          fail to see this,
       we shall be unable
           to regard
              the concepts
         which we
              have elaborated
           with respect
              to percepts
                 as anything
         but shadowy copies
            of these percepts,
       and
          we shall take
             the percepts
         as presenting
            to us the true reality.

    We shall,
       further,
          build up
             for ourselves
                a metaphysical world
               after the pattern
                   of the perceived world;
       we shall call this
           a world
              of atoms,
       a world
          of will,
       a world
           of unconscious spirit,
       or whatever,
          each
             according to his own kind
           of mental imagery.

    And
         we shall fail
            to notice
          that all the time
             we have been doing nothing
         but building
            up a metaphysical world hypothetically,
       after the pattern
           of our own world
               of percepts.

    But
         if
             we recognize
         what is
              present
           in thinking,
       we shall realize
          that
         in the percept
            we have only one part
               of the reality
                  and that the other part
              which belongs to it,
       and
          which
             first allows
          the full reality to appear,
       is experienced
           by us
               in the permeation
                   of the percept
                       by thinking.

    We shall see
        in this element
       that appears
         in our consciousness
      as thinking,
      not a shadowy copy
          of some reality,
      but a self-sustaining spiritual essence.

    And
         of this
             we shall be able
                to say
                   that it
                  is brought
                     into consciousness
                        for us
                           through intuition.

    Intuition
        is
           the conscious experience
       -- in pure spirit --
             of a purely spiritual content.

    Only through an intuition
        can the essence
           of thinking
              be grasped.

    [4] Only if,
       by means
           of unprejudiced observation,
       one has wrestled through
           to the recognition
               of this truth
                  of the intuitive essence
                     of thinking
                    will
                  one succeed
                       in clearing
                           the way
                   for an insight
                       into the psyche-physical organization
                           of man.

    One will see
          that this organization
              can have no effect
           on the essential nature
               of thinking.

    At first sight
          this seems
              to be contradicted
                 by patently obvious facts.

    For ordinary experience,
       human
          thinking
        makes its appearance
           only in connection
               with,
       and by means of,
          this organization.

    This form of its appearance
        comes so much
           to the fore
              that its real significance
                 cannot be grasped
         unless
             we recognize
          that
         in the essence
            of thinking
          this organization
             plays
                no part whatever.

    Once
         we appreciate this,
       we can no longer
          fail to notice
         what
             a peculiar kind
                of relationship
                   there is
           between the human organization
               and the thinking itself.

    For this organization
        contributes nothing
           to the essential nature
               of thinking,
       but recedes
          whenever the activity
             of thinking
            makes
          its appearance;
       it suspends
          its own activity,
       it yields ground;
          and
             on the ground
                thus left empty,
       the thinking
          appears.

    The essence
         which is active
            in thinking
               has
          a twofold function:
       first,
          it represses
             the activity
                of the human organization;
       secondly,
          it steps
             into its place.

    For even the former,
       the repression
           of the physical organization,
       is a consequence
           of the activity
               of thinking,
       and more particularly
           of that part
               of this activity
         which
            prepares
           the manifestation
              of thinking.

    From this one
        can see
           in what
              sense
            thinking
               finds its counterpart
                  in the physical organization.

    When
         we see this,
       we can no longer
          misjudge
             the significance
           of this counterpart
              of the activity
                 of thinking.

    When we
          walk over soft ground,
       our feet
          leave impressions
         in the soil.

    We shall not be tempted
        to say
       that
          these footprints
             have been formed from below
                by the forces
                   of the ground.

    We shall not attribute
        to these forces any share
           in the production
              of the footprints.

    Just as little,
       if
          we observe
             the essential nature
           of thinking
               without prejudice,
       shall
          we attribute any share
             in that nature
           to the traces
               in the physical organism
         which arise through the fact
            that the thinking prepares
           its manifestation
              by means
                 of the body.
 
    [5] An important question,
       however,
          emerges here.

    If the human organization
          has no part
             in the essential nature
                of thinking,
       what is the significance
           of this organization
              within the whole nature
                 of man?

    Now,
       what happens
           in this organization
              through the thinking
            has indeed
               nothing to do
           with the essence
               of thinking,
       but it
          has a great deal
             to do
           with the arising
              of the ego-consciousness
                 out of this thinking.

    Thinking,
       in its own essential nature,
          certainly contains
             the real
                I or ego,
       but it
          does not contain
             the ego-consciousness.

    To see
         this
             we have
         but to observe
             thinking
                with an open mind.

    The "I"
        is to be found
           within the thinking;
       the "ego-consciousness"
          arises
             through the traces
         which the activity
            of thinking
               engraves
                  upon our general consciousness,
       in the sense
          explained above.

    (The ego-consciousness thus
        arises
           through the bodily organization.

    However,
       this must not be taken
           to imply
         that the ego-consciousness,
       once
          it has arisen,
       remains dependent
           on the bodily organization.

    Once arisen,
       it is taken up
           into thinking and
              shares henceforth
                 in thinking's spiritual being.)
 
    [6] The "ego-consciousness"
        is built
           upon the human organization.

    Out of the latter flow
        our acts of will.

    Following the lines
        of the preceding argument,
       we can gain insight
           into the connections
               between thinking,
                  conscious I,
               and act
                  of will,
       only by
          observing first how an act
             of will
            issues
               from the human organization.
 
    [7] In any particular act
        of will
       we must take into account
          the motive
             and the driving force.

    The motive
        is a factor
           with the character
               of a concept
                   or a mental picture;
       the driving force
          is the will-factor belonging
             to the human organization
                and directly conditioned
                   by it.

    The conceptual factor,
       or motive,
          is the momentary determining factor
             of the will;
       the driving force
          is the permanent determining factor
             of the individual.

    A motive for the will
          may be a pure concept,
       or else
           a concept
              with a particular reference
                 to a percept,
       that is,
          a mental picture.

    Both general concepts
         and individual ones
            (mental pictures)
               become motives
           of will
               by affecting
                   the human individual
                and determining him
           to action
               in a particular direction.

    But one
        and the same concept,
       or one
           and the same mental picture,
       affects
           different individuals differently.

    They stimulate different men
        to different actions.

    An act
        of will
           is therefore
              not merely the outcome
                 of the concept
            or the mental picture
      but
         also of the individual make-up
            of the person.

    Here
         we may well follow
            the example
           of Eduard von Hartmann
              and call
          this individual make-up
             the characterological disposition.

    The manner
         in which concept
            and mental
               picture
            affects
          the characterological disposition
             of a man
            gives
           to his life
               a definite moral
                   or ethical stamp.
 
    [8] The characterological disposition
        is formed
           by the more
               or less permanent content
                  of our subjective life,
       that is,
           by the content
               of our mental pictures
                   and feelings.

    Whether
         a mental picture
            which
               enters
                  my mind
                     at this moment
                    stimulates me
           to an act
               of will or not,
       depends
           on how
              it relates itself
           to the content
               of all my other mental pictures
                   and also to my idiosyncrasies
               of feeling.

    But after all,
       the general content
           of my mental pictures
              is itself conditioned
           by the sum total
               of those concepts
         which have,
       in the course
           of my individual life,
       come
          into contact
             with percepts,
       that is,
          have become mental pictures.

    This sum,
       again,
          depends
             on my greater
            or lesser capacity
               for intuition
                   and on the range
           of my observations,
       that is,
           on the subjective
               and objective
                  factors
                     of experience,
       on my inner nature
           and situation
              in life.

    My characterological disposition
        is determined especially
           by my life of feeling.

    Whether
         I shall make
            a particular mental
               picture
           or concept
              into a motive
           of action or not,
       will depend
           on whether
              it gives me
            joy or pain.

    These are the elements
         which we
            have to consider
           in an act of will.

    The immediately present mental picture
        or concept,
       which becomes the motive,
          determines
             the aim or the purpose
           of my will;
       my characterological disposition
          determines me
             to direct my activity
                towards this aim.

    The mental picture
        of taking
           a walk
              in the next half-hour
             determines the aim
            of my action.

    But this mental picture
          is raised to the

    [9] We must therefore distinguish
         (1) the possible subjective dispositions
            which are capable
           of turning
               certain mental pictures
                  and concepts
           into motives,
       and
          (2) the possible mental pictures
             and concepts
          which
              are
                 in a position to influence
                    my characterological disposition
         so that an act
            of will results.

    For our moral life
         the former
            represent the driving force,
           and the latter,
              its aims.
 
    [10] The driving force
        in the moral life
           can be discovered
              by finding out
                 the elements
         of which
             individual life
                is composed.
 
    [11] The
         first level of individual life
            is
          that
         of perceiving,
       more particularly perceiving
           through the senses.

    This is the region
        of our individual life
       in which
         perceiving
            translates itself directly
               into willing,
      without the intervention
          of either
              a feeling
                 or a concept.

    The driving force here involved
          is simply called instinct.

    The satisfaction
        of our lower,
       purely animal
          needs
        (hunger,
           sexual intercourse, etc.)
              comes about in this way.

    The main characteristic
        of instinctive life
           is the immediacy
      with which
          the single percept
             releases
            the act of will.

    This kind
        of determination
            of the will,
      which
         belongs originally
            only to the life
               of the lower senses,
      may
         however
             become
                extended also
          to the percepts
              of the higher senses.

    We may react to the percept
        of a certain event
            in the external world
                without reflecting
                   on what
                  we do,
      without any special
          feeling connecting itself
             with the percept,
      as in fact
         happens
            in our conventional social behaviour.

    The driving force
        of such action
           is called tact
              or moral good taste.

    The more often
        such immediate reactions
           to a percept occur,
      the more the person concerned
         will prove himself able
            to act purely under
               the guidance
          of tact;
      that is,
         tact
       becomes
          his characterological disposition.
 
    [12] The second level
        of human life
           is feeling.

    Definite feelings
        accompany the percepts
           of the external world.

    These feelings
        may become
           the driving force
              of an action.

    When
         I see
            a starving man,
       my pity
           for him
              may become
           the driving force
              of my action.

    Such feelings,
       for example,
          are shame,
       pride,
          sense of honour,
       humility,
          remorse,
       pity,
          revenge,
       gratitude,
          piety,
       loyalty,
          love,
       and duty.
 
    [13] The third level
        of life amounts
            to thinking
               and forming mental
             pictures.

    A mental picture
         or a concept
        may become
           the motive
              of an action through
                 mere reflection.

    Mental
        pictures
           become motives
         because,
       in the course
           of life,
       we regularly connect certain aims
           of our will
              with percepts
         which
              recur again and again
           in more or
              less modified form.

    Hence with people
          not wholly devoid
             of experience
          it happens
             that
                the occurrence of certain percepts
                   is always accompanied
                      by the appearance
                         in consciousness
                            of mental pictures
                               of actions
                 that
                    they themselves have carried out
           in a similar case
              or have seen
          others
             carry out.

    These mental pictures
          float
             before their minds
           as patterns
         which
            determine all subsequent decisions;
       they become
          parts
         of their characterological disposition.

    The driving force
        in the will,
           in this case,
        we can call practical experience.

    Practical experience
        merges gradually
           into purely tactful behaviour.

    This happens
         when
             definite typical pictures
                of actions
                   have become
                  so firmly connected
           in our minds
              with mental pictures
                 of certain situations
                    in life that,
       in any given instance,
          we skip over all
             deliberation based
           on experience
              and go straight
           from the percept
               to the act of will.
 
    [14] The highest level
        of individual life
           is
       that
      of conceptual thinking
         without
        regard
           to any definite perceptual content.

    We determine
        the content
           of a concept through
              pure intuition
            from
               out of the ideal sphere.

    Such
         a concept contains,
            at first,
           no reference
              to any definite percepts.

    If
         we enter
            upon an act
               of will
                  under the influence
                     of a concept
                  which refers to a percept,
       that is,
           under the influence
               of a mental picture,
       then it
          is this percept
             which determines
           our action
              indirectly by way
                 of the conceptual thinking.

    But
         if
             we act under the influence
                of intuitions,
       the driving force
          of our action
        is pure thinking.

    As it
        is the custom
           in philosophy
          to call
             the faculty
           of pure thinking
              "reason",
       we may well be justified
           in giving
               the name
                  of practical
            reason
               to the moral
                  driving
                     force characteristic
           of this level
               of life.

    The dearest account
        of this driving force
            in the will
       has been given by Kreyenbühl.

    In my opinion
         his article on this subject
            is one
               of the most important contributions
                  to present-day philosophy,
       more especially to Ethics.

    Kreyenbühl
        calls
           the driving force
              we are here discussing,
       the practical a priori,
          that is,
             an impulse
           to action
        issuing directly
           from my intuition.
 
    [15] It is clear
          that such
             an impulse
                can
               no longer
            be counted
               in the strictest sense
              as belonging
                 to the characterological disposition.

    For
         what is here effective
            as the driving force
               is no longer something
                  merely individual
               in me,
       but the ideal and
          hence universal content
             of my intuition.

    As soon
        as I see
            the justification
               for taking
       this content
          as the basis
         and starting
            point
               of an action,
      I enter
          upon the act
              of will irrespective
                  of
        whether
            I have had
               the concept beforehand
              or
            whether
                it only enters
                   my consciousness immediately
              before the action,
      that is, irrespective
          of whether
             it was already
                 present
          as a disposition
              in me or not.

    [16] Since a real act
        of will
           results
       only
      when a momentary impulse
         to action,
      in the form
          of a concept
              or mental picture,
      acts
         on the characterological disposition,
      such an impulse
         then becomes
            the motive
               of the will.
 
    [17] The motives of moral
          conduct
        are mental
            pictures and concepts.

    There are
          Moral Philosophers
             who see
                a motive
           for moral behavior
               also in the feelings;
       they assert,
          for instance,
       that
          the aim of moral
             action
        is to promote
           the greatest possible quantity
              of pleasure
                 for the acting individual.

    Pleasure itself,
       however,
          cannot become
             a motive;
       only
          an imagined pleasure can.

    The mental picture
        of a future feeling,
       but
          not the feeling itself,
       can act
           on my characterological disposition.

    For the feeling itself
        does not yet exist
           in the moment
               of action;
       it has first
          to be produced
             by the action.
 
    [18] The mental picture
        of one's own
           or another's welfare is,
              however,
            rightly regarded
               as a motive
                  of the will.

    The principle
        of producing
            the greatest quantity
        of pleasure
            for oneself
                through one's action,
      that is,
          of attaining
         individual happiness,
      is called egoism.

    The attainment
        of this
       individual happiness
         is sought
        either
           by thinking ruthlessly
        only of one's own good
            and
         striving
            to attain it even
        at the cost
            of the happiness
                of other individuals (pure egoism),
      or by promoting
         the good
            of others,
      either
         because
            one anticipates
               a favorable influence
          on one's own person
              indirectly through the happiness
                  of others,
      or
         because
            one fears
         to endanger
             one's own interest
          by injuring others
       (morality
          of prudence).

    The special content
        of the egoistical principles
            of morality
               will depend
        on the mental pictures
       which
         we form
        of what
           constitutes
       our own,
          or others',
        happiness.

    A man
        will determine the content
           of his egoistical striving
               in accordance
                   with what
                  he regards
                     as the good things
                        of life
        (luxury,
           hope
               of happiness,
           deliverance
               from various evils,
           and so on).
 
    [19] The purely conceptual content
        of an action
           is to be regarded
              as yet
                 another kind
            of motive.

    This content
        refers not
           to the particular action
          only,
       as with the mental picture
           of one's own pleasures,
       but
          to the derivation
             of an action
                from a system
                   of moral principles.

    These moral principles,
       in the form
           of abstract concepts,
       may regulate
           the individual's moral life
              without his worrying himself
           about the origin
               of the concepts.

    In that case,
       we simply feel that submitting
           to a moral concept
               in the form
                   of a commandment
                      overshadowing
          our actions,
       is a moral necessity.

    The establishment
        of this necessity
       we leave to those
      who demand moral subjection
         from us,
      that is,
          to the moral authority
             that
                we acknowledge
       (the head
          of the family,
             the state,
                social custom,
                   the authority
                      of the church,
          divine revelation).

    It is
         a special kind
            of these moral principles
         when
             the commandment
                is made
                    known
           to us
               not through an external authority
                   but through our own inner life
        (moral autonomy).

    In this case
         we hear
            the voice
         to which
             we
          have to submit ourselves,
       in our own souls.

    This voice
        expresses itself
           as conscience.
 
    [20] It is
         a moral advance
            when a man no longer
               simply accepts the commands
           of an outer
              or inner authority
                 as the motive
               of his action,
       but tries
          to understand
             the reason
                why
                   a particular maxim of behavior
                  should act
                     as a motive
                   in him.

    This is
         the advance from morality
            based
           on authority
               to action
                   out of moral insight.

    At this level
        of morality
           a man
              will try
           to find out
              the requirements
                 of the moral life
             and will let
           his actions
              be determined by the knowledge
                 of them.

    Such requirements are

    1. the greatest possible good
        of mankind
           purely for its own sake;

    2. the progress
        of civilization,
       or the moral evolution
           of mankind
          towards ever
             greater perfection;

    3.
         the realization of individual moral
            aims
               grasped
                  by pure intuition.
 
    [21] The greatest possible good
        of mankind
           will naturally be understood
              in different ways
        by different people.

    This maxim
        refers not
           to any particular mental picture
               of this "good"
                   but to the fact
              that everyone
                  who acknowledges this principle
                strives to do
         whatever,
            in his opinion,
           most
        promotes
           the good
              of mankind.
 
    [22] The progress
        of civilization,
       for those
          to whom
             the blessings of civilization
                bring a feeling of pleasure,
       turns out
          to be
              a special case
                 of the foregoing moral principle.

    Of course,
       they will have to take
           into the bargain
         the decline
             and destruction
                of a number
                   of things
             that
           also contribute
              to the general good.

    It is also possible,
       however,
          that some people regard
             the progress
           of civilization
               as a moral necessity
                   quite apart
                      from the feeling
                   of pleasure
                      that it brings.

    For them,
       this becomes
           a special moral principle
              in addition
                 to the previous one.
 
    [23] The principle
        of the progress
            of civilization,
      like
         that
            of the general good,
      is based
          on a mental picture,
      that is,
          on the way
             we relate
                the content
              of our moral ideas
                  to particular experiences (percepts).

    The highest conceivable moral principle,
       however,
          is
         one
             that from the start contains
                no such reference
           to particular experiences,
       but springs
           from the source
               of pure intuition
                   and only later
                seeks any reference
                   to percepts,
       that is,
           to life.

    Here the decision
         as to what
            is to be
               willed
                  proceeds
           from an authority very different
               from
             that
                of the foregoing cases.

    If
         a man holds
            to the principle
               of the general good,
                  he will,
                     in all his actions,
       first ask
          what
             his ideals
                will contribute
           to this general good.

    If
         a man upholds
            the principle
               of the progress
                  of civilization,
       he will act similarly.

    But there is
          a still higher way which
             does not start
           from one
               and
                  the same particular moral aim
                     in each case,
       but sees
           a certain value
              in all moral principles
            and always asks
         whether
            in the given
               case
          this or that principle is
             the more important.

    It may happen
          that
              in some circumstances
                  a man
                      considers the right aim
                  to be
                      the progress
                   of civilization,
       in others
           the promotion
               of the general good,
       and
          in yet
             another the promotion
           of his own welfare,
       and
          in each case
             makes
          that the motive
             of his action.

    But
         if
             no other ground
           for decision
              claims more than
          second place,
       then conceptual intuition
           itself
        comes first
           and foremost
              into consideration.

    All other motives
          now give way,
       and
          the idea
             behind an action alone
            becomes its motive.

    [24] Among the levels
        of characterological disposition,
       we
          have singled out
             as the highest
         the one
            that works
           as pure thinking or practical
              reason.

    Among the motives,
       we have just singled out
          conceptual intuition
             as the highest.

    On closer inspection
          it will at
              once be seen
          that
         at this level
            of morality
               driving
              force and motive
                 coincide;
       that is,
          neither a predetermined
             characterological disposition
           nor the external authority
               of an accepted moral
              principle influences our conduct.

    The action
        is therefore
           neither a stereotyped one
          which merely follows certain rules,
       nor is it one
          which
             we
                automatically perform in response
                   to an external impulse,
       but it
          is an action determined purely
             and
           simply by its
               own ideal content.
 
    [25] Such an action presupposes
        the capacity
            for moral intuitions.

    Whoever lacks
        the capacity
       to experience
          for himself
        the particular moral principle
            for each single situation,
      will never achieve truly
         individual willing.
 
    [26] Kant's principle
        of morality
       -- Act
          so that
             the basis
                of your action
                   may be valid
           for all men --
              is the exact opposite
                   of ours.

    His principle
        means death
           to all individual impulses
               of action.

    For me,
       the standard
          can never be
             the way all men
            would act,
               but rather what,
                  for me,
       is to be done
           in each individual case.
 
    [27] A superficial judgment
        might raise
           the following objection
              to these arguments:
       How can
           an action
        be individually made to fit
           the special case
              and the special situation,
       and
          yet at the same time
             be determined by intuition
                in a purely ideal way?

    This objection
        rests
           upon a confusion
               of the moral motive
                   with the perceptible content
                       of an action.

    The latter
        may be
           a motive,
       and actually is
           one
              in the case
                 of the progress
                    of civilization,
       or
          when
             we act
           from egoism,
              and so forth,
           but
              in an action
            based
               on pure moral
              intuition it
                  is not the motive.

    Of course,
       my "I"
          takes
        notice
           of these
               perceptual contents,
       but it
          does not allow itself
             to be determined by them.

    The content
        is used only
           to construct
               a cognitive concept,
       but the corresponding moral concept
          is not derived
             by the "I"
           from the object.

    The cognitive concept
        of a given situation
           facing me
       is at the same
           time a moral concept only
              if
                 I take the standpoint
                    of a particular moral principle.

    If
         I were
            to base
               my conduct
           only on the general principle
               of the development
                   of civilization,
       then my way
           through life
              would be tied down
                 to a fixed route.

    From every occurrence
         which
             I perceive and
                which concerns me,
       there
          springs
             at the same
          time a moral duty:
       namely,
          to do
         my little bit
        towards seeing
           that this occurrence
        is made
           to serve
              the development
           of civilization.

    In addition
        to the concept
       which
           reveals to me the connections
        of events
           or objects according to
              the laws
                 of nature,
      there is also
         a moral label
            attached
          to them
        which for me,
           as a moral person,
          gives ethical directions
        as to
           how I
         have to conduct myself.

    Such a moral label
          is justified
             on its own ground;
       at a higher level it
          coincides
             with the idea
          which reveals itself to me
             when
                I am faced
               with the concrete instance.
 
    [28] Men
         vary greatly in their capacity
            for intuition.

    In one,
       ideas
          just bubble up;
       another
          acquires them
             with much labor.

    The situations
         in which men
              live and
             which
                  provide
                 the scenes of their actions
                    are no less varied.

    The conduct
        of a man
           will therefore depend
        on the manner
       in which
         his faculty of intuition
            works
        in a given situation.

    The sum of ideas
         which are effective
            in us,
       the concrete content
           of our intuitions,
       constitutes
          what is individual
             in each of us,
       notwithstanding
           the universality
              of the world
                 of ideas.

    In so far
        as this
            intuitive content
         applies
            to action,
      it constitutes
         the moral content
            of the individual.

    To let
          this content
              express itself in life
            is
               both the highest moral driving
                  force and
                 the highest motive a man
                    can have,
       who sees
          that
         in this content all other moral
            principles
               are in the end united.

    We may call
          this point of view ethical individualism.
 
    [29] The decisive factor
        of an intuitively determined action
            in any concrete instance
               is the discovery
                  of the corresponding purely
        individual intuition.

    At this level
        of morality
           one can only speak
              of general concepts
                 of morality
                    (standards, laws)
                       in so far
                    as these result
                        from the generalization
                            of the individual impulses.

    General standards
          always presuppose concrete facts
             from
         which
             they can be derived.

    But the facts
        have first
           to be created
              by human action.