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Spinoza’s Psychological Theory

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[Revised entry by Michael LeBuffe on May 26, 2020. Changes to: Main text, Bibliography] In Part III of his Ethics, "On the Origin and Nature of the Affects," which is the subject of this article, Spinoza addresses two of the most serious challenges facing his thoroughgoing naturalism. First, he attempts to show that human beings follow the order of nature. Human beings, on Spinoza's view, have causal natures similar in kind to other ordinary objects, other "finite modes" in the technical language of the Ethics, so they...

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News source: Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

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