This book examines Hegel’s religious thinking by seeing it against the backdrop of the main religious trends in his own day, specifically the Enlightenment and Romanticism.
A basic introduction to Hegel’s lectures, it provides an account of the criticism of religion by key Enlightenment thinkers such as Voltaire, Lessing, Hume, and Kant. This is followed by an analysis of how the Romantic thinkers, such as Rousseau, Jacobi and Schleiermacher, responded to these challenges. For Hegel, the views of these thinkers from both the Enlightenment and Romanticism tended to empty religion of its content. The goal that he sets for his own philosophy of religion is to restore this lost content.
The book provides a detailed account of Hegel’s Lectures on the Philosophy of Religion and argues that the basic ideas of the Enlightenment and Romanticism are still present today, and remain an important issue for both academics and non-academics, regardless of their religious orientation.