Oxfordshire, OX20 1TR 119 Copy quote. "He who loves God cannot strive that God should love him in return," says Spinoza (5p19). Whether death is—as we all hope—a far off eventuality or, through age or illness, imminent, what is the proper attitude to take? He developed highly controversial ideas regarding the authenticity of the Hebrew Bible and the nature of the Divine. ———, "Preface to the English Translation" reprinted as "Preface to Spinoza's Critique of Religion," in Strauss, Williams, David Lay.  For example, he cited a series of cryptic statements by medieval Biblical commentator Abraham ibn Ezra intimating that some apparently anachronistic passages of the Pentateuch (i.e., "[t]he Canaanite was then in the land," Genesis 12:6, which ibn Ezra called a "mystery" and exhorted those "who understand it [to] keep silent") were not of Mosaic authorship as proof that his own views had valid historical precedent.  In fact, his technique and instruments were so esteemed that Constantijn Huygens ground a "clear and bright" telescope lens with focal length of 42 feet (13 m) in 1687 from one of Spinoza's grinding dishes, ten years after his death. 'The Bible in the Jewish Philosophical Tradition'. Spinoza was considered to be an atheist because he used the word "God" (Deus) to signify a concept that was different from that of traditional Judeo–Christian monotheism.  When his sister Rebekah disputed his inheritance seeking it for herself, on principle he sued her to seek a court judgment, he won the case, but then renounced claim to the court’s judgment in his favour and assigned his inheritance to her. Furthermore, in propositions 6.4311 and 6.45 he alludes to a Spinozian understanding of eternity and interpretation of the religious concept of eternal life, stating that "If by eternity is understood not eternal temporal duration, but timelessness, then he lives eternally who lives in the present." dread? They may seem strange at first sight. “Rehearse this thought [about death, that it is the evil that puts an end to all evils] every day, that you may be able to depart from life contentedly. Laws which prescribe what everyone must believe, and forbid men to say or write anything against this or that opinion, are often passed to gratify, or rather to appease the anger of those who cannot abide independent minds. " Thus, by default, Baruch de Espinoza became the first secular Jew of modern Europe. The seventeenth-century philosopher Spinoza has long been known for his “heretical” view of God and for the radical determinism he sees governing the cosmos and human freedom. Leibniz disagreed harshly with Spinoza in his own manuscript "Refutation of Spinoza," but he is also known to have met with Spinoza on at least one occasion (as mentioned above), and his own work bears some striking resemblances to specific important parts of Spinoza's philosophy (see: Monadology).  His premature death was said to be due to lung illness, possibly silicosis as a result of breathing in glass dust from the lenses that he ground. ), quoted in the translator's preface of Deleuze. 248 pp. Spinoza on Death, ‘Our Present Life’ & the Imagination (06.24.15) Yitzhak Y. Melamed and Oded. Phone: +44 1993 814500 ", Popkin, Richard H., "Spinoza de Spinoza" in, Charles Hartshorne and William Reese, "Philosophers Speak of God," Humanity Books, 1953 ch. Demistificazione e speculazione grammaticale nel Compendio di grammatica ebraica", Giornale di Metafisica, 3 (2009), pp. Some state it began as early as 1654–1655, when Spinoza was 20; others note that the documentary record only attests to his presence in van den Enden's circle around 1657–1658. ", Second, the Amsterdam Jewish community was largely composed of former "conversos" who had fled from the Portuguese Inquisition within the previous century, with their children and grandchildren. He wasthe middle son in a prominent family of moderate means inAmsterdam’s Portuguese-Jewish community. The structure of his Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus does have some structural affinities with Spinoza's Ethics (though, admittedly, not with the latter's own Tractatus) in erecting complex philosophical arguments upon basic logical assertions and principles.  His health began to fail that same year, and he died on 21 February 1677 at the age of 44. Can there be any mystery as to why one of history's boldest and most radical thinkers was sanctioned by an orthodox Jewish community? " Helena Blavatsky, a founder of the Theosophical Society also compared Spinoza's religious thought to Vedanta, writing in an unfinished essay "As to Spinoza's Deity—natura naturans—conceived in his attributes simply and alone; and the same Deity—as natura naturata or as conceived in the endless series of modifications or correlations, the direct out-flowing results from the properties of these attributes, it is the Vedantic Deity pure and simple.