The metaphysical stage, which took place between 1300 and 1800 A.D., is the second stage. In the metaphysical stage, the mind invokes abstract entities, such as “nature,” to explain phenomena. They are anthropomorphic abstractions of these abstract concepts. Humans seek to understand and explain the universe in terms of “essences,” “ideals,” and “forms,” or, to put it simply, in terms of a notion of some supreme reality, such as god. Reason dominates human thought at this point. This stage is usually regarded as the abstract stage.
The intellect assumes abstract forces, personified abstractions, inherent in all things and capable of causing all events in the metaphysical condition, which is only a variation of the first. At this point, what is referred to as the explanation of phenomena is only a reference to each phenomenon’s appropriate entity.
Auguste Comte thinks this crucial stage was only a passageway between the theological and the positive stages. At this point, lawyers are challenging the supremacy of the clergy, and the state is the leading social institution. Without a doubt, this era delivers advancement, often of the revolutionary kind, but frequently chaos rules society rather than order.
People believed that the universe and events were just natural reflections of human impulses during the metaphysical stage of civilization. During this period, people continued to believe in supernatural forces or gods, but they saw them as being more abstract and less immediately connected to everyday events. Human flaws and weaknesses are to blame for the world’s issues.
Religious reasoning nearly extends into metaphysical thought. In its place, rationalism began to advance. According to rationalism, god is not personally responsible for every phenomenon. Pure logic demands that god is a supernatural being. The man was able to discover some order in the natural world thanks to reasoning. It was thought that the abstract power or force, an advancement above the prior stage, directed and determined occurrences in the world. Thinking metaphysically rejects the concept of a concrete god. The metaphysical stage is a period of transition when supernatural influences are replaced with abstract forces like nature to explain how the world functions.
Comte believes this stage is the least significant of the three. It is a transitional phase between the previous theological and the next positivistic stage. It occurs because Comte thought humans couldn’t withstand a sudden transition from a theological to a positivistic stage. As a result, the explanation for the initial causes and purposes of things in the universe is no longer provided by supernatural entities but rather by abstract forces in the metaphysical stage.
Both negative and progressive, metaphysical society lacks a solid basis for long-term social peace while paving the ground for positivism to come after it. The destruction and failed attempts to create the new ensure that it will have a relatively brief life rife with violent conflict and intellectual strife. In the first stage, Protestantism, monotheism’s spiritual and moral unity is broken, resulting in a civil war and intellectual conflict. Deism, the second stage, is an example of a failed effort to reestablish social order based on dubious ideas. For instance, the metaphysical notion of inalienable rights encourages egotistic self-aggrandizement and removes the need to submit to a higher good for everyone. In Comte’s perspective, any government and social order conceptualized intellectually as a contract based on such pretended rights is doomed to failure.