“Inherence, Causation, and Conceivability in Spinoza”

Abstract
In this paper I suggest a new interpretation of the relations of inherence, causation and conception in Spinoza. I discuss the views of Don Garrett on this issue and argue against Della Rocca's recent suggestion that a strict endorsement of the PSR leads necessarily to the identification of the relations of inherence, causation and conception. I argue that (1) Spinoza never endorsed this identity, and (2) that Della Rocca's suggestion could not be considered as a legitimate reconstruction or friendly amendment to Spinoza's system because it creates several severe and irresolvable problems in the system. In the first part of the paper, I present the considerations and arguments that motivated Don Garrett's and Della Rocca's interpretations. In the second part, I present and examine several problems that result from Della Rocca's reading. In the third and final part, I (1) present my own view on the relation among inherence, causation, and conception; (2) offer a new interpretation of the conceived through relation in Spinoza; and finally, (3) defend and justify the presence of (non-arbitrary) bifurcations at the very center of Spinoza's system.
Keywords Spinoza  Causation  Time  Eternity  Inherence  Principle of Sufficient Reason  Modes  Della Rocca
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PhilPapers Archive Yitzhak Y. Melamed, “Inherence, Causation, and Conceivability in Spinoza”
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Mogens Laerke (2011). Spinoza's Cosmological Argument in the 'Ethics'. Journal of the History of Philosophy 49 (4):439 - 462.
Yitzhak Y. Melamed (2012). Spinoza on Inherence, Causation, and Conception. Journal of the History of Philosophy 50 (3):365-386.
Michael Della Rocca (1991). Causation and Spinoza's Claim of Identity. History of Philosophy Quarterly 8 (3):265 - 276.
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