Truth and Method/II.2.1Bi The rehabilitation of authority and tradition

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We have prejudices, what then? What is their 'ground of legitimacy'?

Taking the previous section, which divided the Enlightenment view (that reason alone can keep us from misunderstanding) into prejudices of 'authority' and 'overhastiness', we can find a middle path since reason alone may be a itself a prejudice that favours the 'new' for novelty's sake, ironically a form of overhastiness!

For Shleiermacher, partiality and overhastiness are the causes of misunderstanding. Partiality being 'The One-sided preference for what is close to one's own sphere of ideas'. This is fair enough for unjustified prejudices, but what of 'justified prejudices productive of knowledge'?

People who know and intuit better than us earn our respect for them as authorities, as a surrogate for reaching, through reason, their level for ourselves. 'All education depends on this' and continues to influence us.

Those who advocate revolution ought to weigh these words:

Even where life changes violently, as in ages of revolution, far more of the old is preserved in the supposed transformation of everything than anyone knows, and it combines with the new to create a new value.