Confessio Philosophi: Papers Concerning the Problem of Evil, by G. W. Leibniz

By G. W. Leibniz

This quantity includes papers that characterize Leibniz’s early concepts at the challenge of evil, centering on a discussion, the Confessio philosophi, during which he formulates a normal account of God’s relation to sin and evil that turns into a fixture in his thinking.How can God be understood to be the final word reason, asks Leibniz, with out God being regarded as the writer of sin, a end incompatible with God’s holiness? Leibniz’s makes an attempt to justify the way in which of God to people lead him to deep dialogue of similar issues: the character of unfastened selection, the issues of necessitarianism and fatalism, the character of divine justice and holiness. All yet one of many writings awarded listed here are on hand in English for the 1st time.

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Extra resources for Confessio Philosophi: Papers Concerning the Problem of Evil, 1671-1678 (The Yale Leibniz Series)

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Pay attention to the thoughts and speech of the people, and you will find out. That is to say, they concern themselves with explaining a matter whose possibility is in doubt. If something is now clearly explainable, and conceivable in all its intricacy, then one holds it to be possible; if one comes upon something that is in itself confused and self-contradictory, then one holds it to be impossible; if one comes upon a matter where one stumbles and cannot find an easy explanation, then one leaves it open and believes in it or not depending upon who said it.

Since Leibniz held that some states of affairs obtain whose obtaining is not per se necessary (V) and (VII) cannot both be correct. iii:127–28 is to avoid commitment to the thesis that the sins that obtain do so with per se necessity. So the difference between (V) and (VII) matters to our project of trying to understand Leibniz’s solution in the Confessio to the problem of the author of sin. If we assume that Leibniz was committed in the Confessio to (VII) rather than (V), then there would be a serious problem concerning the sins that obtain.

Therefore, why do we attribute to God what we do not want for ourselves? From this it is evident that an absolute will, not de118 pendent on the goodness of things, is monstrous. , to what is best. 9 There is no doubt that this was the opinion of Augustine. Sins are evil, not absolutely, not with respect to the world as a whole, not with respect to God—otherwise he would not permit them—but with respect to the sinner. God hates sins, not in the sense that he cannot bear the sight of them, as we cannot bear the sight of what we detest—otherwise he would eliminate them—but because he punishes them.

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