Coleridge, contemplation, and the ‘Triple Ichheit’

Suzanne E. Webster, Elizabethtown College


Chapter 17 concentrates on Coleridge’s theological reflections, especially those of his final years. In his later notebooks and other key works, including the ‘Theory of Life’ and Aids to Reflection, Coleridge yielded generally consistent results in terms of his efforts to define, desynonymize, and establish the ‘Order of the Mental Powers’. By 1830, with regard to the human being on Earth (or the earthly human ‘Personal Identity’), Coleridge had fleshed out his perception of the order of these powers in the context of what he called the ‘triple Ichheit’. Regarding Coleridge’s thought about the origins of and processes involved within contemplative acts, the chapter explores the ‘Order of the Mental Powers’ as Coleridge saw them within the context of the ‘triple Ichheit’; and it explains how this ordering related to Coleridge’s thought on God, the hypostases of the Trinity, and the relationships between ‘Will’, ‘Reason’, and faith.