This article attempts to deal with the last phase of the life and work of Auguste Conte, the founder of the philosophy of positivism. The appearance and development of this type of philosophy were conditioned by the new waves of thought which dominated European philosophy during the nineteenth century. It was believed that faith in a scientific method would guarantee the success of any kind of scientific endeavor. Conte developed his idea of a three level intellectual evolution from notions which had already been posited by Saint-Simon. According to this ideology, man begins to mature when he begins to abandon his childish and immature notions about the world, or in other words, his religious-mystical preoccupations. Eventually he becomes an adult and begins to discover a type of God in himself. But in this way, positivism itself begins to develop its own religious and mystical traits while at the same time conducting a fierce battle with a religious conception of the world. These ideas come especially to the fore in the later works of Conte. In these works, the philosopher stipulates that although sociology is at the absolute pinnacle of the sciences, there is yet another level, still higher than all these - and that is the domain of the so-called religion of mankind.
AUGUSTE CONTE, POSITIVISM, SCIENCE AND RELIGION