Spinoza’s Ethics of ratio: discovering and applying a spinozan model of human nature

Ethics and Education 15 (2):232-246 (2020)

ABSTRACTI argue that Spinoza attributes to society the role of moral educator, a role that is to be carried out via Religion and Politics and hence also via an educational system. In his account, the social body is given the task of applying and transmitting a notion of virtue whose criterion is enhanced freedom, yet that freedom paradoxically must be acquired initially via authoritative coercive rules of praxis. The aim is to achieve an infinite broadening of perspective upon oneself and upon the world and a consequent transformation of one’s motivations and desires from narrowly self-serving to infinitely inclusive. Intellectual virtue is exposed as the necessary and only true fulfillment of the virtue of moral models for it has achieved ‘the knowledge of the union that the mind has with the whole of Nature.’ Yet that intellectual virtue is not ready to hand but must be taught, and teaching necessarily entails an initial measure of authoritative transmission and even coercion, and hence moral models to be internalized.
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DOI 10.1080/17449642.2020.1732154
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Passion and Action: The Emotions in the Seventeenth Century Philosophy. [REVIEW]Marleen Rozemond - 2000 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 61 (3):723-726.

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