Schelling, F W J - Philosophical Inquiries into the Nature of Human Freedom – Darkness and Light and divine transmutation
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
Philosophical Inquiries into the Nature of Human Freedom – F W J Schelling
When, through the reaction of the depths to revelation, evil in general had once been aroused in creation, man from eternity took his stand in egotism and selfishness; and all who are born are born with the dark principle of evil attached to them, even though this evil is raised to self-consciousness only through the entrance of its opposite.
As man now is, the good, the Light as it were, can be produced only out of this Dark principle through divine transmutation.
Only he could gainsay this original evil in man who has but superficially come to know man in him- self and in others.
This evil, though it is entirely independent of freedom with respect to present empirical life, was at its source man's own deed, and hence the only original sin. The same cannot be said of that equally undeniable disorder of forces which spread as a contagion after the initial corruption.
For it is not the passions which are in themselves evil, nor are we battling merely with flesh and blood, but with an evil within us and outside us, which is spirit. Only an evil which attaches to us by our own act, but does so from birth, can therefore be designated as radical evil. And it is noteworthy that Kant who did not in theory rise to a transcendental act determining all human existence, was led in later investigations by sheer faithful observation of the phenomena of moral judgment, to the recognition of a subjective basis of human conduct (as he expressed it) which preceded every act within the range of the senses, but which, in turn, had itself to be an act of freedom.
On the other hand Fichte, who had speculatively grasped the concept of such an act, reverted in his theory of morals, to the current humanitarianism and was content to find this evil (which precedes all empirical action) only in the inertia of human nature.