The Three Final Doctrines of Spinoza: Intuition, Amor Dei, the Eternity of the Mind

Michaela Petrufová Joppová

Abstract


The study deals with the matter of three of the most puzzling doctrines of Baruch Spinoza’s system, the so-called ‘final doctrines’, which are intuitive knowledge, intellectual love of God, and the eternity of the (human) mind. Contrary to many commentators, but also in concordance with many others, this account strives to affirm the utmost importance of these doctrines to Spinoza’s system as a whole, but mostly to his ethical theory. Focusing specifically on the cultivation of the human mind, the paper offers partial analyses of the central notions of these doctrines and their conceptual contexts. It is argued that the cultivation of the human mind, i.e., its determination to its perfect activity, should be considered as Spinoza’s ultimate ethical goal, and that the mind truly only advances to this goal by means of these cognitive, affective, and intellectual transformations of thinking.


Keywords


Baruch Spinoza; intuition; love of God; intellect; eternity

https://doi.org/10.5817/pf20-1-2073

Full Text:

PDF

References

Show references Hide references

Bennett, J. (1984): A Study of Spinoza's Ethics, Hackett Publishing.

Broad, C. D. (1930): Five Types of Ethical Theory, Harcourt, Brace & Company.

Curley, E. (1973): Experience in Spinoza's theory of knowledge, in M. Greene (ed.) Spinoza: A Collection of Critical Essays, Doubleday/Anchor Books, 25‒59.

Damasio, A. (2005): The neurobiological grounding of human values, in J.-P. P. Changeaux et al. (eds.) Neurobiology of Human Values, Springer, 47–56.

De Dijn, H. (1996): Spinoza: The Way to Wisdom, Purdue University Press.

Ellsiepen, Ch. (2011): The types of knowledge (2p38‒47), in Hampe, M. – Renz, U. – Schnepf, R. (eds.) Spinoza's Ethics: A Collective Commentary, Brill, 129‒145, available at: < https://doi.org/10.1163/ej.9789004194250.i-380.42 >. | DOI 10.1163/ej.9789004194250.i-380.42

Garrett, D. (2009): Spinoza on the essence of the human body and the part of the mind that is eternal, in Koistinen, O. (ed.) The Cambridge Companion to Spinoza's Ethics, Cambridge University Press, 284–301, available at: < https://doi.org/10.1017/CCOL9780521853392.014 >. | DOI 10.1017/CCOL9780521853392.014

Harris, E. E. (1995): The Substance of Spinoza, Humanities Press.

Koistinen, O. (2009): Spinoza's eternal self, in Miller, J. (ed.) Topics in Early Modern Philosophy of Mind, Springer, 151‒170, available at: < https://doi.org/10.1007/978-90-481-2381-0_7 >. | DOI 10.1007/978-90-481-2381-0_7

Melamed, Y. Y. (2012): Spinoza's deification of existence, in D. Garber – D. Rutherford (eds.) Oxford Studies in Early Modern Philosophy Volume IV, 75–104, available at: < https://doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199659593.003.0003 >. | DOI 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199659593.003.0003

Melamed, Y. Y. (2013): Spinoza's Metaphysics: Substance and Thought, Oxford University Press.

Melamed, Y. Y. (2018): The building blocks of Spinoza's metaphysics: substance, attributes, and modes, in Della Rocca, M. (ed.) The Oxford Handbook of Spinoza, Oxford University Press, 84–113, available at: < https://doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780195335828.013.006 >. | DOI 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780195335828.013.006

Melamed, Y. Y. (2019): The enigma of Spinoza's amor Dei intellectualis, in NaamanZauderer, N. (ed.) Freedom, Action, and Motivation in Spinoza's Ethics, Routledge, 222–238, available at: < https://doi.org/10.4324/9780429350962-11 >. | DOI 10.4324/9780429350962-11

Naaman-Zauderer, N. (2019): Spinoza on human freedoms and the eternity of the mind, in Naaman-Zauderer, N. (ed.) Freedom, Action, and Motivation in Spinoza's Ethics//, Routledge, 198–221, available at: < https://doi.org/10.4324/9780429350962-10 >. | DOI 10.4324/9780429350962-10

Nadler, S. (2006): Spinoza's Ethics: An Introduction, Cambridge University Press.

Nadler, S. (2018): The intellectual love of God, in Della Rocca, M. (ed.) The Oxford Handbook of Spinoza, Oxford University Press, 295–313, available at: < https://doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780195335828.013.007 >. | DOI 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780195335828.013.007

Primus, K. (2019): Spinoza's 'infinite modes' reconsidered. Journal of Modern Philosophy, 1(1), 1–29, available at: < https://doi.org/10.32881/jomp.69 >. | DOI 10.32881/jomp.69

Sandler, R. (2005): Intuitus and ratio in Spinoza's ethical thought, British Journal for the History of Philosophy, 13(1), 73‒90, available at: < https://doi.org/10.1080/0960878042000317591 >. | DOI 10.1080/0960878042000317591

Soyarslan, S. (2014): From ordinary life to blessedness: the power of intuitive knowledge in Spinoza's Ethics, in Kisner, M. J. – Youpa, A. (eds.) Essays on Spinoza's Ethical Theory, Oxford University Press, 236‒257, available at: < https://doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199657537.003.0013 >. | DOI 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199657537.003.0013

Spinoza, B. (1914): Ethica ordine geometrico demonstrata; ex editione Operum quotquot reperta sunt / quam curaverant J. van Vloten et J. P. N. Land. Seorsum repetita, Martinus Nijhoff.

Spinoza, B. (2002a): Ethics, in Complete Works, Hackett Publishing, 213–382.

Spinoza, B. (2002b): Short treatise on God, man, and his well-being, in Complete Works, Hackett Publishing, 31–107.

Spinoza, B. (2002c): The letters, in Complete Works, Hackett Publishing, 755–959.

Spinoza, B. (2002d): Treatise on the emendation of the intellect, in Complete Works, Hackett Publishing, 1–30.

Tippelt, H. (2010): Vztah ideje a afektu u Spinozy: inkrementálně-holistická interpretace [The Relation of Idea and Affect in Spinoza: An Incremental-Holistic Interpretation], Filozofická fakulta Univerzity J. E. Purkyně v Ústí n. Labem.




Copyright (c) 2020 Michaela Petrufová Joppová


Published by the Department of Philosophy, Faculty of Arts, Masaryk University, Brno, Czech Republic.
ISSN: 1212-9097