more from Baruch de Spinoza

Single Idea 4299

[catalogued under 10. Modality / B. Possibility / 5. Contingency]

Full Idea

The common notion of 'contingency' is for Spinoza an illusion, which derives from the fact that our view of reality is often inadequate and incomplete.

Gist of Idea

Contingency is an illusion, resulting from our inadequate understanding


report of Baruch de Spinoza (The Ethics [1675]) by John Cottingham - The Rationalists p.8

Book Reference

Cottingham,John: 'The Rationalists' [OUP 1988], p.8

A Reaction

The crux is if there could another universe with different natural laws. Spinoza is in no position to deny the possibility. Cosmologists assume it is possible, and run computer simulations to test it. There is 'metaphysical' and 'natural' necessity.