A Theologico-Political Treatise and a Political Treatise
Benedict de Spinoza, a Jewish-Dutch philosopher, laid the foundation for the Enlightenment movement of the 18th century in Europe and is regarded as ... Show synopsis Benedict de Spinoza, a Jewish-Dutch philosopher, laid the foundation for the Enlightenment movement of the 18th century in Europe and is regarded as one of the great rationalists of 17th century philosophy. Presented here are "A Theologico-Political Treatise" and "A Political Treatise," two works that precede Spinoza's most famous work "Ethics." In "A Theologico-Political Treatise" Spinoza argues for the separation of theology and philosophy insisting that whereas the goal of theology is obedience, philosophy aims at understanding rational truth. Spinoza believes that in order for man to realize his full potential a society organized around the principles of reason is necessary. In "A Political Treatise" Spinoza analyzes the forms of government: monarchy, aristocracy, and democracy. Based on his analysis he favors democracy, which he refers to as any representative government. The highly influential works of Spinoza laid the foundation for many of the concepts that we see in modern political life.