Ethics

Front Cover
Wordsworth Editions, Jan 1, 2001 - Fiction - 400 pages
25 Reviews
Benedict de Spinoza lived a life of blameless simplicity as a lens-grinder in Holland. And yet in his lifetime he was expelled from the Jewish community in Amsterdam as a heretic, and after his death his works were first banned by the Christian authorities as atheistic, then hailed by humanists as the gospel of Pantheism.His Ethics Demonstrated in Geometrical Order shows us the reality behind this enigmatic figure. First published by his friends after his premature death at the age of forty-four, the Ethics uses the methods of Euclid to describe a single entity, properly called both 'God' and 'Nature', of which mind and matter are two manifestations. From this follow, in ways that are strikingly modern, the identity of mind and body, the necessary causation of events and actions, and the illusory nature of free will.
  

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - MarkBeronte - LibraryThing

Published shortly after his death in 1677, Ethics is undoubtedly Spinoza’s greatest work—a fully cohesive philosophical system that strives to provide a coherent picture of reality and to comprehend ... Read full review

Review: Ethics

User Review  - Kevin K - Goodreads

How to Read the Ethics by Spinoza This is a great, but notoriously difficult book. Allow me to present some guidelines on reading it efficiently. 1) The "proofs" (aka demonstrations) in this book aren ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

Section 1
viii
Section 2
ix
Section 3
x
Section 4
xi
Section 5
xii
Section 6
xiii
Section 7
xiv
Section 8
xvii
Section 13
35
Section 14
45
Section 15
97
Section 16
98
Section 17
98
Section 18
99
Section 19
157
Section 20
161

Section 9
xxxiii
Section 10
lix
Section 11
lxxxix
Section 12
3
Section 21
217
Section 22
227
Copyright

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About the author (2001)

Baruch Spinoza was born in Amsterdam, the son of Portuguese Jewish refugees who had fled from the persecution of the Spanish Inquisition. Although reared in the Jewish community, he rebelled against its religious views and practices, and in 1656 was formally excommunicated from the Portuguese-Spanish Synagogue of Amsterdam and was thus effectively cast out of the Jewish world. He joined a group of nonconfessional Christians (although he never became a Christian), the Collegiants, who professed no creeds or practices but shared a spiritual brotherhood. He was also apparently involved with the Quaker mission in Amsterdam. Spinoza eventually settled in The Hague, where he lived quietly, studying philosophy, science, and theology, discussing his ideas with a small circle of independent thinkers, and earning his living as a lens grinder. He corresponded with some of the leading philosophers and scientists of his time and was visited by Leibniz and many others. He is said to have refused offers to teach at Heidelberg or to be court philosopher for the Prince of Conde. During his lifetime he published only two works, The Principles of Descartes' Philosophy (1666) and the Theological Political Tractatus (1670). In the first his own theory began to emerge as the consistent consequence of that of Descartes (see also Vol. 5). In the second, he gave his reasons for rejecting the claims of religious knowledge and elaborated his theory of the independence of the state from all religious factions. After his death (probably caused by consumption resulting from glass dust), his major work, the Ethics, appeared in his Opera Posthuma, and presented the full metaphysical basis of his pantheistic view. Spinoza's influence on the Enlightenment, on the Romantic Age, and on modern secularism has been tremendous.

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