Philosophy is often taken as an abstract science, completely divorced from reality. Not the least role in this assessment was played by various forms of philosophical idealism, which still have weight in the scientific community. Over the centuries-old history of the development of science, many idealistic concepts of the world order have been created, but all of them can be attributed to two main directions.
The concept of "idealism" serves as a general designation for a number of teachings that have existed in philosophy since ancient times. This term hides the idea that spirit, consciousness and thinking are primary in relation to natural objects and matter in general. In this sense, idealism has always opposed materialistic concepts of the world order, which stood on opposite positions.
Philosophical idealism has never been a unified trend. In this camp, there are still two fundamental trends, respectively called objective and subjective idealism. The first form of idealism recognizes the presence of an all-pervading immaterial principle that exists independently of human consciousness. The second form is characterized by the assertion that objective reality exists only within the framework of individual consciousness.
Historically, objective idealism was preceded by religious images that were widespread in the ancient culture of various peoples. But this direction received its complete form only in the works of the ancient Greek philosopher Plato. In later times, Leibniz and Hegel became the most consistent exponents of such idealistic views. Subjective idealism was formed somewhat later than objective one. His provisions were reflected in the works of the English philosophers Berkeley and Hume.
In the history of philosophy, several different variations of the two indicated trends in idealism are known. Thinkers interpreted the provisions related to the original in different ways. Some understood by him a kind of "world mind" or "world will." Others believed that the universe is based on a single and indivisible abstract substance or an incomprehensible logical principle. One of the extreme forms of subjective idealism is solipsism, which claims that only individual consciousness can be considered the only reality.
The basic forms of idealism described have common roots. These include the animation of all living things, which has been characteristic of man since time immemorial. Another source of idealistic views lies in the very nature of thinking, which at a certain stage of development acquires the ability to create abstractions that have no corresponding analogues in the material world.
Competing with each other, representatives of objective and subjective idealism forget about differences when it is necessary to rebuff materialistic concepts. To confirm idealistic views, their adherents actively use not only the entire arsenal of methods of proof and methods of persuasion accumulated in philosophy and logic. The data of fundamental science are also used, some of the provisions of which cannot yet be substantiated from the standpoint of materialism.