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Lecture

PHL210Y1 Lecture Notes - Baruch Spinoza


Department
Philosophy
Course Code
PHL210Y1
Professor
Linda Hunter

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Philosophy Lecture
May 30, 2012
Free Will
When you know more about which or two options to take, you are
less indifferent [ex. 401 or 407 to Ottawa] you are more free to
choose when you have all the information [Descartes]
Descartes says freedom comes in degrees; freedom in terms of
spontaneity which is the highest state of freedom [all or nothing-
determined or not; this is a more perfect form of freedom] and the
other one is indifference and seems to come in degrees [are you
more or less inclined]
C&D ideas; no indifference in them whatsoever; the way to avoid
error is just no to ascend
He describes the will as synonymous with choice
Baruch Spinoza
No such thing as free will; there is only determined will
Denies there is such thing as a faculty of willing and non-willing;
all there is is particular volitions [this or that negations] there are
just instances of will
Faculty of will is just a mere mental construct
Any instance of volition in the mind is gonna be a modification
[mode] it’s a way in which the mind is at that particular moment
each volition will begin and end at a certain point and it is going to
be finite [limited and bounded because any volition is going to be
caused by some other finite volition in the mind]
Freedom definition [ID7]
Mind-Body Distinction
Evokes the truth rule as a guide to showing what things are really
possible
Anything that I really C&D understand can be made by god in such
that way [does this by appealing to God; his powers are what
guarantees the possibility of what you can see]
C&D of it implies the possibility of a thing
Existence of Body
Ideas get their reality from sensible things themselves or God
He's so closely joined to his body that they constitute one single
thing
He thinks there is a close relation between the mind and the body
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