‘Hegel’s God: A Counterfeit Double?’ by William Desmond

Published by Routledge in 2003.

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Hegel is widely regarded as one of the major thinkers of the modern era, if not the entire tradition of philosophy. Hegel, like many philosophers, took seriously traditional philosophical perplexities about God, but unlike many modern philosophers he claimed to take the specific characteristic of Christianity into account in his philosophizing. This book presents a new examination, interpretation and critical engagement with Hegel’s philosophy of religion, and with his concept of God in particular. William Desmond explores the distinctive stresses of Hegel’s approach to God, the influence it has exerted, and the fundamental problems that his approach exhibits.


William James Desmond (born January 7, 1951) is an Irish philosopher who has written on ontology, metaphysics, ethics, and religion. Desmond earned his B.A. and M.A. from University College, Cork, in 1972 and 1974; Ph.D. from Pennsylvania State University in 1978.

Former president of the Hegel Society of America (1990–1992) and the Metaphysical Society of America (1995), Desmond is a professor of philosophy at the Higher Institute of Philosophy at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven in Belgium, and also at Villanova University in Pennsylvania. He is a past president of the American Catholic Philosophical Association. In his trilogy, Being and The BetweenEthics and The Between, and God and The Between, Desmond works out an entirely new and complete metaphysical/ontological philosophical system based on what he calls the potencies of being and the senses of being.

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