Confused by Spinoza’s Use of Substance as Infinite?

What does Spinoza mean by infinite?

absolutely necessary, Eternal being never begin or cease to exist; Spinoza calls “an infinite enjoyment of existence or – pardon the Latin – of being (essendi)” (102). The spatial or Extended Attributes of Substance likewise do not allow parts or division.

What is the infinite mode found in Spinoza’s philosophy?

Spinoza claims that infinite modes follow more or less directly from “the absolute nature of any of God’s attributes,” whereas finite modes do not follow from the absolute nature of God’s attributes (see Ip21–22 and Ip28d).

What is Spinoza’s theory of substance?

According to Spinoza, everything that exists is either a substance or a mode (E1a1). A substance is something that needs nothing else in order to exist or be conceived. Substances are independent entities both conceptually and ontologically (E1d3).

How is Spinoza’s definition of substance different from that of Descartes?

However, whereas Descartes held that distinct bodies are distinct extended substances, Spinoza famously holds that there is but one substance—God or nature—and that distinct bodies are merely modes of this one substance, considered as extended.

What is an infinite substance?

The innate idea of God is said to represent God insofar as the idea’s objective reality has its origin in the formal reality of God (an infinite substance). The innate idea of a body is said to represent a body insofar as the idea’s objective reality has its origin in the formal reality of a corporeal substance.

Why does Spinoza believe God is the only substance?

But whereas Descartes (and Anselm) argue that existence is part of the notion of God because existence is a perfection and God has all perfections, Spinoza argues that God must exist because God is a substance and existence is part of the notion of substance.

What is Spinoza’s philosophy?

Spinoza attempts to prove that God is just the substance of the universe by first stating that substances do not share attributes or essences, and then demonstrating that God is a “substance” with an infinite number of attributes, thus the attributes possessed by any other substances must also be possessed by God.

What is finite substance philosophy?

As we mentioned earlier, finite substances are bodies and minds, while modes are modifications of body and mind, like color, shape, size, imagination, idea, will, etc. This implies, among other things, that ideas have the formal reality of modes, since they are modifications of mind.

What did Spinoza believe about the mind and body?

Spinoza claims that the mind and body are one and the same. But he also claims that the mind thinks and does not move, whereas the body moves and does not think.

What does Descartes mean by the essence of a substance?

(“Principal attribute” is just another way of saying “essence”.) A mode is any other property of a substance. Descartes defines a substance as a thing that does not depend on anything else for its existence. That is to say, substance is a self-subsisting thing.

What are Descartes arguments for substance dualism?

Descartes was a substance dualist. He believed that there were two kinds of substance: matter, of which the essential property is that it is spatially extended; and mind, of which the essential property is that it thinks.

Why is substance dualism false?

(1) If substance dualism is true, then we cannot know the mental states of others. (2) We do, on at least some occasions, know the mental states of others. (3) Therefore, substance dualism is false.

What is the strongest argument for substance dualism?

The Basic Argument for Substance Dualism
(1) If we can exist without bodies, then we cannot be bodies. (2) We can exist without bodies. (3) Therefore, we cannot be bodies.