The Ultimate Origin of Things (1697)
Beyond the world, i.e. beyond the collection of ﬁnite things, there is some one being who rules, not only as the soul is the ruler in me (or, to put it better, as the self is the ruler in my body), but also in a much higher way. For the one being who rules the universe doesn’t just •govern the world but also •builds or makes it. He is above the world and outside it, so to speak, and therefore he is the ultimate reason for things. ·That follows because •he is the only extramundane thing, i.e. the only thing that exists out of the world; and •nothing in the world could be the ultimate reason for things. I now explain that second premise·. We can’t ﬁnd in any individual thing, or even in the entire collection and series of things, a sufﬁcient reason why they exist. Suppose that a book on the elements of geometry has always existed, each copy made from an earlier one, ·with no ﬁrst copy·. We can..
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