more from Baruch de Spinoza

Single Idea 21872

[catalogued under 22. Metaethics / C. Ethics Foundations / 2. Source of Ethics / b. Rational ethics]

Full Idea

Acting absolutely from virtue is nothing else in us but acting, living, and preserving our being (these three signify the same thing) by the guidance of reason, from the foundation of seeking one's own advantage.

Gist of Idea

We seek our own advantage, and virtue is doing this rationally


Baruch de Spinoza (The Ethics [1675], IV Pr 24)

Book Reference

Spinoza,Benedict de: 'Ethics', ed/tr. Curley,Edwin [Penguin 1996], p.128

A Reaction

The influence of stoicism is obvious here, that we live according to our nature, but our nature is rational. Spinoza doesn't seem to understand the pure altruism of lovers and parents.

Related Ideas

Idea 21871 The more we strive for our own advantage, the more virtuous we are [Spinoza]

Idea 21873 Men only agree in nature if they are guided by reason [Spinoza]