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  1. These key questions of Spinoza's philosophy can be distinguished:

    • monism and the doctrine of substance;
    • ethics.

    Benedict Spinoza, being a rationalist, continued some of the questions indicated by Descartes, including the need for mathematics as a method of knowing being. At the same time, Spinoza rejected Descartes ' dualism, formulating his ideas of monism: all the diversity of the world is connected with a single substance. Substance is everything that exists, it is indivisible, infinite, is the first cause and at the same time is the cause of itself. At the same time, Spinoza's monism has a pantheistic character: substance as the first cause is God, but he is the foundation, the essence of things. It is he who can be called the creative nature that gives finite things. Things, on the other hand, are modes of infinite substance, which necessarily follow from it.

    When we turn to substance, we are dealing with its attributes – we know only thinking and extension. Extension defines all the physical characteristics of things, while thinking at the level of specific modifications can be designated as an idea. When referring to a person, thinking and extension determine his body and soul, which implies the relationship of spirit and matter (physicality corresponds to any idea).

    In the essay “Ethics” you can highlight his main ideas on this issue. Causality, which determines the succession of things from substance, also asserts the absence of free will in humans. Freedom is associated with the ability to act in accordance with the order of things, which has its own causal relationships. The good is contained in the knowledge of God, and the true moral behavior, the foundations of which are in knowledge. Man, being a part of nature, is subject to emotions (Spinoza distinguished pleasure, displeasure and desire), which can be eliminated by striving for God through knowledge.

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