Baruch Spinoza, Vancouver, British Columbia

Saturday, July 27, 2002, 12:16 pm, Vancouver, BC

Read a little further on Spinoza in Durant’s 1953 The Story of Philosophy. There is some very interesting material:

Because we act for conscious ends, we suppose that all processes have such ends in view; and because we are human we suppose that all events lead up to man and are designed to serve his needs. But this is an anthropocentric delusion, like so much of our thinking. (p. 133)

Writing to a correspondent, Spinoza says:

When you say that if I allow not in God the operations of seeing, hearing, observing, willing, and the like . . . you know not what sort of God mine is, I thence conjecture that you believe there is no greater perfection than such as can be explained by the attributes aforesaid. I do not wonder at it; for I believe that a triangle, if it could speak, would in like manner say that God is eminently triangular, and a circle that the divine nature is eminently circular; and thus would every one ascribe his own attributes to God. (p. 134)

Spinoza's house in Rijnsburg from 1661-3, now a museum

Spinoza’s house in Rijnsburg from 1661-3, now a museum

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