What Is the Hegelian Principle?

How do you create power and influence?

There are plenty of ways. One of the best is to contribute something genuinely useful to society and then to enjoy the (deserved) rewards.

Unfortunately, this isn’t always the route that today’s richest and most powerful individuals choose. More often, they will take advantage of what is known as the ‘Hegelian Principle’. Introduced by George Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel in the 19th century, this is essentially a ‘framework’ that can be used to achieve almost any goal and to rise to a position of power in a short amount of time.

This is a framework you can utilize yourself, but that’s not really the point of this article. Rather, we’re interested in using this as a tool for critical thinking. Analyze some aspects of your own life and of the broader community around you and look for examples of the Hegelian Principle in play. You might be surprised to find how it’s already being used against you.

The Steps

The steps involved are as follows:

  1. Create a problem or conflict. The first stage is to invest a problem that doesn’t exist (or to create one). Another option is to take a small problem and to blow it out of all proportion. A good example of this might be how a super villain would cut off the water supply in order to create a water shortage.
  2. Publicize the problem and create opposition. The next step is to make sure that everyone knows about the problem and is angered/scared/frustrated by it. The more opposition and publicity you can create the more you’ll be able to use the situation to your advantage.
  3. Offer a solution. Finally, you need to present the solution in order to profit, to make yourself look better, or both. The irony here is that you look like the savior, when in fact you were the one who created the problem in the first place.

What Does This Have to Do With Health?

So what does this have to do with your health? Well, there are plenty of scenarios where supplement companies and food companies will create problems with existing brands in order to sell new products.

How about the way that Dave Asprey sells his ‘Upgraded Coffee’ by telling people that ‘regular’ coffee contains ‘mycotoxins’ (not true). Or what about the time margarine companies started telling us how bad for us butter was? (Also not true.)

It’s unfortunate too, as it’s difficult enough trying to work out what the real dangers in our diet are without companies pushing their agendas. Research is constantly changing the goal posts and the views of the scientific community regarding diet genuinely do change – it’s just that sometimes they change for the wrong reasons too. And don’t forget that very often, research is funded by food and drugs companies.

So next time you’re considering the implications of an article you’re reading online, an advert for a new food product or even a scientific paper – make sure to ask yourself whether the Hegelian Principle may be at play and who stands to benefit!

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Adam Sinicki

Adam Sinicki is a full time writer who spends most of his time in the coffee shops of London. Adam has a BSc in psychology and is an amateur bodybuilder with a couple of competition wins to his name. His other interests are self improvement, general health, transhumanism and brain training. As well as writing for websites and magazines, he also runs his own sites and has published several books and apps on these topics.

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