Sources:

Die Leibniz-Handschriften der Königlichen Öffentlichen Bibliothek
Eduard Bodemann (ed)
p 74

Sämtliche schriften und briefe series VI volume 4
Deutsche Akademie der Wissenschaften (ed)
p 1353



Date: 1677?

Translated from the Latin



View this translation in PDF format (10k)

Back to home page


Search texts by category:

METAPHYSICS
MIND, BODY AND SOUL
FREE WILL AND NECESSITY
SCIENCE
POLITICS, LAW AND ETHICS
THEOLOGY


LEIBNIZ: DEMONSTRATION THAT GOD UNDERSTANDS ALL POSSIBLES


[BH p74] [A VI 4, p1353]

     Thus it can be excellently shown that God understands not only all things that are and will be, but also all possibles.
     Let us assume some liquid which is compressed, and which is trying to escape. It is clear that it will always attempt all possible ways, but it only has success following the easiest way of all those possible. But it is evident that all ways are attempted from the fact that, as each more suitable way is presented, it immediately goes for it: and it would not be able to choose the most suitable unless all ways were attempted at the same moment, for neither is the most suitable determined except by the comparison of all. But it is agreed that nature is the work of God, and when nature attempts something it does not come to pass except by the will of God, for bodies are not the cause of their own actions, since they may not even be the same for more than a moment.


© Lloyd Strickland 2005
With gratitude to John Thorley for advice and suggestions