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Single Idea 19918

[catalogued under 25. Society / A. State of Nature / 4. Natural Rights / b. Alienating rights]

Full Idea

People had to make a firm decision to decide everything by the sole dictates of reason (which no one dares contradict openly). They had to curb their appetites if it would hurt someone else, and not do to others what they did not want done to themselves.

Gist of Idea

Forming a society meant following reason, and giving up dangerous appetites and mutual harm


Baruch de Spinoza (Tractatus Theologico-Politicus [1670], 16.05)

A Reaction

The last bit invokes the Golden Rule. Being in society does indeed meaning curbing appetites, such as envy and lust.

Book Reference

Spinoza,Benedict de: 'Theological-Political Treatise', ed/tr. Israel,Jonathan [CUP 2007], p.198

Related Idea

Idea 19917 Without reason and human help, human life is misery [Spinoza]