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The Chief Works of Benedict de Spinoza, vol. 2

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Overview

The Chief Works of Benedict de Spinoza, vol. 2 includes Spinoza’s magnum opus, Ethics, and select letters. In the first part of Ethics, Spinoza discusses the relationship between God and the universe. He argues that everything in the universe, humans included, is a mode of God. In other words, everything is logically dependent upon God for existence. Everything flows from God in the same way that it flows from the nature of a triangle that the sum of the angles equals 180 degrees. The second part of Ethics discusses the relationship between the human mind and the body. In particular, Spinoza attacks the Cartesian view that the mind and body are two different substances. In the third part of Ethics, Spinoza argues that everything fights to continue being. This fight motivates human emotion. In the fourth part, Spinoza says that the emotions control all actions of human beings. In the fifth and final part of Ethics, Spinoza maintains that we can rid ourselves of negative/damaging emotions by thinking the right thoughts.

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  • Provides a thorough introduction to the work of Spinoza
  • Offers todays reader a glimpse into the mind of this influential philosopher
  • Expertly translates the text, keeping the intent of the work intact
  • Includes 75 of Spinoza’s letters
  • On the Improvement of the Understanding: [Tractatus de Intellectus Emendatione.]
  • The Ethics: [Ethica Ordine Geometrico Demonstrata]
    • Concerning God
    • Of the Nature and Origin of the Mind
    • On the Nature and Origin of Emotions
    • Of Human Bondage, or the Strength of the Emotions
    • Of the Power of the Understanding, or of Human Freedom
  • Spinoza’s Correspondence
  • Title: The Chief Works of Benedict de Spinoza, vol. 2
  • Author: Baruch Spinoza
  • Translator: R.H.M. Elwes
  • Publisher: George Bell and Sons
  • Publication Date: 1891
  • Pages: 420
  • Resource Type: Collected Works
  • Topic: Modern Philosophy
Baruch or Benedict de Spinoza was a Dutch philosopher of Portuguese Jewish origin. Born Benedito de Espinosa; 24 November 1632 – 21 February 1677, 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 at the age of 24 was formally excommunicated from the Portuguese-Spanish Synagogue of Amsterdam. He was thus effectively cast out of the Jewish world and 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 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. 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. It was only after his death (probably caused by consumption resulting from glass dust), that his major work, the Ethics, appeared in his Opera Posthuma. This work, in which he opposed Descartes’ mind-body dualism, presented the full metaphysical basis of his pantheistic view. Today, he is considered one of the great rationalists of 17th-century philosophy, laying the groundwork for the 18th century Enlightenment and modern biblical criticism. Spinoza’s influence on the Enlightenment, on the Romantic Age, and on modern secularism has been of extreme importance. Dr. Dagobert D. Runes, the founder of the Philosophical Library, and Albert Einstein were not only close friends and colleagues; they both regarded Spinoza as the greatest of modern philosophers.

$9.99

Digital list price: $12.49
Save $2.50 (20%)