- Notes on Contributors
- Essences and Kinds
- From Causes to Laws
- Space and Time
- The Mechanical Philosophy
- Machines, Souls, and Vital Principles
- The Soul
- Qualities and Sensory Perception
- The Passions
- Language and Semiotics
- Form, Reason, and Method
- Instruments of Knowledge
- Picturability and Mathematical Ideals of Knowledge
- Virtue and Vice
- Egoism and Morality
- Realism and Relativism in Ethics
- The Free Will Problem
- The Equality of Men and Women
- Natural Law as Political Philosophy
- Sovereignty and Obedience
- Conceptions of God
- The Epistemology of Religious Belief
- Religious Toleration
Abstract and Keywords
This article examines the three ways in which God was conceptualized by leading philosophers in early modern Europe. Gottfried Leibniz and Nicholas Malebranche's rationalist God was conceived as an analogy with a rational human being whose actions are explained by their purposes. René Descartes and Antoine Arnauld's voluntarist God was conceived Antoine Arnauld. Baruch Spinoza equated God with an eternally existing, infinite nature.
Steven Nadler is the William H. Hay II Professor of Philosophy at the University of Wisconsin‐Madison and the co‐editor of Oxford Studies in Early Modern Philosophy. His books include Spinoza: A Life (Cambridge, 1999) and The Best of All Possible Worlds: A Story of Philosophers, God and Evil (Farrar, Straus, Giroux, 2008).
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