The Sufficiency of Spinozistic Attributes for their Finite Modes
Istvan Jr., Michael Anthony
Some passages throughout Spinoza’s body of works suggest that an attribute in its absolute nature provides a sufficient condition for all of its modes, including the finite ones. Other passages suggest that an attribute in its absolute nature fails to provide a sufficient condition for its finite modes. My aim is to dispel this apparent tension. I argue that all finite modes are ultimately entailed by the absolute nature of their attribute. Furthermore, I explain how the Spinozistic positions that appear incompatible with this view are in fact compatible. As I see it, we should read those passages where Spinoza says that no finite mode ultimately follows from the absolute nature of its attribute as saying merely that no finite mode ultimately follows in one-by-one fashion, independent of an infinite series of other modes, from the absolute nature of its attribute.