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Spinoza’s Views on God Essay

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Updated: Apr 22nd, 2019

The philosophy of Benedict Spinoza can sometimes be complex especially to upcoming scholars. In these readings, Spinoza expounds his views on God in detail. The readings on Spinoza’s views on God represent a complex philosophy. However, the author’s explanations make this philosophy very understandable. This philosophy addresses the author’s views on unity of everything.

In addition, the readings explain how God fits into this unity. Then Spinoza outlines the impact of the above knowledge on human beings. The first part of Spinoza’s readings on ethics addresses God as the main subject. This paper will break down this subject into three parts. The first part will explore God as an infinite subject. The second part will investigate God as a cause while the third part will explore Spinoza’s views on determinism.

According to first part of Spinoza’s readings, God is an infinite subject. The author’s general view is that there is no being that does not express God’s existence. The first statement in these readings starts with the expression that all substances are “by nature prior to their modification”. This means that no substance appears without having existed even though it was in another form.

This statement by the author helps us explain the nature of the universe. Human beings have the tendency to go through a lot of trouble when trying to discover origins. However, each of the discovered origin points towards another origin. For example, this “nature prior to modification” is the weak point in the theory of evolution.

This is because even if it can be explained that human beings previously existed as monkeys, it cannot be explained what monkeys were prior to their modification. The author also claims that when two things have nothing in common, none of them can cause the other. This can also be put into context using the evolution theory. Those advocating for evolution may take issue with this view.

This is because the interrelation between species can be faulted by this argument. The independence of species only proves the existence of a higher power. In this case, it seems like the author meant that God’s idea of different species eliminates confusion. This is why it is not possible to get a different species from the same species. The counter argument of this stand would be that some species are too similar.

According to the author, no two different substances in the universe can have identical nature and attributes. This would mean that the differences in attributes are the defining factor. Therefore, similarity does not amount to exactness. What all these arguments mean is that all substances are infinite. This is because they have neither origin nor destiny.

The author claims that this analogy explains the infinity of God’s existence. In addition, there is no God’s equal because there can never exist two substances with the same attributes. The author continues to explain the fallacies that are associated with God’s existence.

The article forwards a very interesting argument concerning where God came from. According to the article, the origin of God cannot be explained by exploring other origins. God is an origin and this means He can only cause His own existence. Following this line of thought, the article concludes that God is the first cause. This can be translated to mean that God is the origin of God.

In addition, it means that because God is the first cause, everything else must have originated from Him. This particular argument touches on other various issues. It can also help answer some frequently asked questions pertaining to God’s existence, origin, and, actions. For instance, most kids and adults alike have often found themselves confused when it comes to the origin of God.

Simply put, the question on most people’s minds is where did God come from? Spinoza answers this question by aligning several facts. Firsts, he poses the question about whose intention it was to make God exist. The answer to this question is that it was God’s intention to have God exist. Therefore, unlike many people speculate, there was no big event or accident that caused God’s existence.

It is also an accurate guess that God being the first form of existence holds the key to all other subsequent forms of existence. The other popular concern about God has to do with His actions. Given that all other forms of existence are answerable to a higher entity, people question who or what forces and laws control God’s actions.

Spinoza’s article answers this by noting that God is governed by “laws of his own nature”. According to this article, God is the reason why all things come into existence. Furthermore, the essence of all things can be explained through God. This puts God at the beginning and at the end of every other existence. The article also offers insight into God’s essence.

The discussion in this article brings us to the third part of this philosophy. Spinoza argues that all things are trained to act in a certain manner. Their trainer is the God to whom they owe their essence and existence. This means that all things are conditioned by God and consequently nothing in this world has the ability to condition itself.

This philosophy raises a storm with the common folk. This is because everybody wants to associate God with only the good actions. Whenever things happen because of negative conditioning, most people are reluctant to attribute this conditioning to God. To add to this debate, Spinoza notes that something that is conditioned cannot reverse its conditioning.

This would mean that those with conditioning that is undesirable to fellow humans do not have the capacity to change for the better. This is in spite of their efforts to try and change their conditioning. However, Spinoza addresses this presumption by arguing that God is not necessarily the source of individualistic behavior. The only reason God propagates such behavior is to offer examples of behaviors that are contrary to his own propagation.

This means that the reason evil exists is so that it highlights God’s nature. Therefore, it is up to God’s subjects to determine which behaviors are propagated for the sole reason of highlighting God’s effects. Nevertheless, it is true that the cause of all behaviors can be attributed to God. The only difference between these behaviors is that some of them are supposed to compliment God’s nature while others are supposed to contrast it.

The philosophy of causes of behavior is very dear to many people. This also touches on what causes some people to be good while others remain bad. In addition, some of the shocking behaviors that are associated with people could be explained using this philosophy. Spinoza’s article indicates that not all behaviors reflect God’s nature. Some ill or negative behaviors are meant to contrast God’s nature and make it more valuable.

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IvyPanda. 2019. "Spinoza’s Views on God." April 22, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/spinozas-views-on-god-essay/.


IvyPanda. (2019) 'Spinoza’s Views on God'. 22 April.

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