However, the credibility of these collective, detached vision depends on writing philosophical assertions in a way that allows multiple interpretations & relevance in order to avoid its bluff being called by the events of the day. By abandoning the gifts of myth, which had generated a highly sophisticated narrative that accounted for change and conceptual paradox, philosophy acquired a new rhetorical technique: abstraction. Given its claim to describe the non-particular universals or permanent forms that underlie the changing world, the authority of philosophy has rested on this abstract and atemporal discourse. The very possibility of the objective and formalized vision of Being & of human knowledge depends on a certain relation between immutable structures and change in human experience, wherein nature is the dominant theme and change is secondary. However, this relation has been overturned since the French Revolution, once "history" stepped up to "nature" and finally overthrew it.
When that happened, when history usurped nature's role as the authoritative framework of human experience, then man began to think about his experience historically, which in turn hollowed out the traditionally atemporal categories of philosophy.
The thinker that faced this monumental change was Hegel, who was confident that he could rescue the philosophical enterprise from this radical reorientation of human experience by recasting philosophy as the history of philosophy. No more, and no less.
It is just too bad that Hegel could not resist to present his system as true and beyond history since it incorporated the historical perspective. As long Hegel's system was true, it was the end of philosophy. Why? Only the final philosophical system was true philosophy, utterly conceived thoroughly The "eternal" is reinstalled, and history has come to an end.
Of course history didn't stop with Hegel. And we realized that Hegelianism was proved to be an utter failure as a system, if not as method. As method, by disseminating into all the sciences of man, Hegelianism confirmed and awarded the greatest intellectual catalyst to the consolidation of historical experience.
The original quest of philosophy for the eternal, used to be prestigious, now stood naked as the true root of all philosophical thought, exposed in its desolation and immaturity. Philosophy declined into an outdated fantasy of the mind, and regressed to the childhood of humanity. No matter how decisively philosophical statements form an argument, there was no way to avoid the radical question that exposed the value of the terms that composed the statements, or restoring the sheer amount of confidence in the verbal currency in which philosophy had trucked.
Bewildered by the new movement of an emerging secularized and dramatically more competent and efficient human will that was determined to control, manipulate, and modify nature, falling far behind the onrushing historical change of the human knowledge, philosophy's loaded vocabulary ended up pornographic in its over-determination. In other words, malnourished and bereft of meaning.
Given such attrition of changes of this scale, philosophy's traditionally abstract procedures failed to address themselves to anything whatever. They were no longer substantiated, neither as descriptions of existence (reality, the world, the cosmos) nor as alternative conceptions (where descriptions of existence were taken as what exists outside of the mind) that determined as the first retrenchment of the philosophical enterprise, as description of the mind. Philosophy was left with a modest capacity that fulfilled its original ambitions as the providing of formal models of understanding.
The collapse of system building in the 19th century inspired two responses:
- emergence of ideologies, i.e., aggressively anti-philosophical systems of thought that took various forms like descriptive sciences of man (Comte, Marx, Freud and the early founders of anthropology, sociology, linguistics).
- new mode of philosophizing that was personal or autobiographical, aphoristic, lyrical and anti-systematic: Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Wittgenstein.