more from Baruch de Spinoza

Single Idea 17229

[catalogued under 22. Metaethics / C. Ethics Foundations / 2. Source of Ethics / e. Human nature]

Full Idea

If a number of human beings were born adult, and only a few here and there were born infants, everyone would pity the infants, because we should then consider infancy not as a thing natural and necessary, but as a defect or fault of nature.

Gist of Idea

If infancy in humans was very rare, we would consider it a pitiful natural defect


Baruch de Spinoza (The Ethics [1675], V Pr 06)

Book Reference

Spinoza,Benedict de: 'Ethics', ed/tr. White,WH/Stirling,AH [Wordsworth 2001], p.233

A Reaction

A lovely example of the new objectivity about human beings that emerged in the Enlightenment. He could have said the same about old age.