|E5: PROP. 35. God loves himself with an infinite intellectual love.
|Proof.--God is absolutely infinite (E1D6), that is (E2D6), the nature of God rejoices in infinite perfection; and such rejoicing is (E2P3) accompanied by the idea of himself, that is (E1P11 and E1D1), the idea of his own cause: now this is what we have (in E5P32C) described as intellectual love.
|Referenced in: E5P36,- E5P36CN
|E5: PROP. 36. The intellectual love of the mind towards God is that very love of God whereby God loves himself, not in so far as he is infinite, but in so far as he can be explained through the essence of the human mind regarded under the form of eternity; in other words, the intellectual love of the mind towards God is part of the infinite love wherewith God loves himself.
|Proof.--This love of the mind must be referred to the activities of the mind (E5P32C and E3P3); it is itself, indeed, an activity whereby the mind regards itself accompanied by the idea of God as cause (E5P32 and E5P32C); that is (E1P25C and E2P11C), an activity whereby God, in so far as he can be explained through the human mind, regards himself accompanied by the idea of himself; therefore (by the last Prop. E5P35), this love of the mind is part of the infinite love wherewith God loves himself. Q.E. D.
|Referenced in: E5P42
|E5: PROP. 36, Corollary.--Hence it follows that God, in so far as he loves himself, loves man, and, consequently, that the love of God towards men, and the intellectual love of the mind towards God are identical.
| E5: PROP. 36 Corollary, Note.
--From what has been said we clearly understand wherein our
or freedom, consists: namely, in the constant
love towards God, or in God's
love towards men. This
is, in the Bible, called Glory, and not undeservedly. For
whether this love
be referred to God or to the
mind, it may rightly be
called acquiescence of spirit, which (Def. of the Emotions,
E3DOE30) is not really
distinguished from glory. In so far as it is
referred to God, it is (E5P35)
if we may still use that term,
accompanied by the idea of itself, and, in so far
as it is referred to the
it is the same (E5P27).
Again, since the essence of our mind consists solely in knowledge, whereof the beginning and the foundation is God (E1P15 and E2P47N), it becomes clear to us, in what manner and way our mind, as to its essence and existence, follows from the divine nature and constantly depends on God.
I have thought it worth while here to call attention to this, in order to show by this example how the knowledge of particular things, which I have called intuitive or of the third kind (E2P40N2), is potent, and more powerful than the universal knowledge, which I have styled knowledge of the second kind. For, although in Part 1 I showed in general terms, that all things (and consequently, also, the human mind) depend as to their essence and existence on God, yet that demonstration, though legitimate and placed beyond the chances of doubt, does not affect our mind so much, as when the same conclusion is derived from the actual essence of some particular thing, which we say depends on God.
|Referenced in: E5P42
|E5: PROP. 37. There is nothing in nature, which is contrary to this intellectual love, or which can take it away.
|Proof.--This intellectual love follows necessarily from the nature of the mind, in so far as the latter is regarded through the nature of God as an eternal truth (E5P33 and E5P29). If, therefore, there should be anything which would be contrary to this love, that thing would be contrary to that which is true; consequently, that, which should be able to take away this love, would cause that which is true to be false; an obvious absurdity. Therefore there is nothing in nature which, etc. Q.E.D.
|Referenced in: E5P38
|E5: PROP. 37, Note. --The Axiom of Part 4 E4A has reference to particular things, in so far as they are regarded in relation to a given time and place: of this, I think, no one can doubt.
|E5: PROP. 38. In proportion as the mind understands more things by the second and third kind of knowledge, it is less subject to those emotions which are evil, and stands in less fear of death.
|Proof.--The mind's essence consists in knowledge (E2P11); therefore, in proportion as the mind understands more things by the second and third kind of knowledge, the greater will be the part of it that endures (E5P29 and E5P23), and, consequently (by the last Prop. E5P37), the greater will be the part that is not touched by the emotions, which are contrary to our nature, or in other words, evil (E4P30). Thus, in proportion as the mind understands more things by the second and third kind of knowledge, the greater will be the part of it, that remains unimpaired, and, consequently, less subject to emotions, etc. Q.E.D.
|Referenced in: E5P42
| E5: PROP. 38, Note.
--Hence we understand that point which I touched on in
which I promised to explain in this Part; namely, that death becomes less
hurtful, in proportion as the mind's
clear and distinct
knowledge is greater, and, consequently, in proportion as the
loves God more.
Again, since from the third kind of knowledge arises the highest possible acquiescence (E5P27), it follows that the human mind can attain to being of such a nature, that the part thereof which we have shown to perish with the body (E5P21) should be of little importance when compared with the part which endures. But I will soon treat of the subject at greater length.
|Referenced in: E5P39N
|E5: PROP. 39. He, who, possesses a body capable of the greatest number of activities, possesses a mind whereof the greatest part is eternal.
|Proof.--He, who possesses a body capable of the greatest number of activities, is least agitated by those emotions which are evil (E4P38)-- that is (E4P30), by those emotions which are contrary to our nature; therefore (E5P10), he possesses the power of arranging and associating the modifications of the body according to the intellectual order, and, consequently [by E5P14], of bringing it about, that all the modifications of the body should be referred to the idea of God; whence it will come to pass that (E5P15) he will be affected with love towards God, which (E5P16) must occupy or constitute the chief part of the mind; therefore (E5P33), such a man will possess a mind whereof the chief part is eternal. Q.E.D.
| E5: PROP. 39, Note.
--Since human bodies are capable of the greatest number of activities,
there is no doubt but that they may be of such a nature, that they may be
referred to minds
possessing a great knowledge of themselves and of God,
and whereof the greatest or chief part is
eternal, and, therefore, that
they should scarcely fear
But, in order that this may be understood more clearly, we must here call to mind, that we live in a state of perpetual variation, and, according as we are changed for the better or the worse, we are called happy or unhappy. For he, who, from being an infant or a child, becomes a corpse, is called unhappy; whereas it is set down to happiness, if we have been able to live through the whole period of life with a sound mind in a sound body. And, in reality, he, who, as in the case of an infant or a child, has a body capable of very few activities, and depending, for the most part, on external causes, has a mind which, considered in itself alone, is scarcely conscious of itself, or of God, or of things; whereas, he, who has a body capable of very many activities, has a mind which, considered in itself alone, is highly conscious of itself, of God, and of things.
In this life, therefore, we primarily endeavour to bring it about, that the body of a child, in so far as its nature allows and conduces thereto, may be changed into something else capable of very many activities, and referable to a mind which is highly conscious of itself, of God, and of things; and we desire so to change it, that what is referred to its imagination and memory may become insignificant, in comparison with its intellect, as I have already said in the note to the last Proposition (E5P38N).
|E5: PROP. 40. In proportion as each thing possesses more of perfection, so is it more active, and less passive; and, vice versa, in proportion as it is more active, so is it more perfect.
|Proof.--In proportion as each thing is more perfect, it possesses more of reality (E2D6), and, consequently (E3P3 and E3P3N), it is to that extent more active and less passive. This demonstration may be reversed, and thus prove that, in proportion as a thing is more active, so is it more perfect. Q.E.D.
|Referenced in: E5P40CN
|E5: PROP. 40, Corollary.--Hence it follows that the part of the mind which endures, be it great or small, is more perfect than the rest.
|For the eternal part of the mind (E5P23 and E5P29) is the understanding, through which alone we are said to act (E3P3); the part which we have shown to perish is the imagination (E5P21), through which only we are said to be passive (E3P3 and general Def. of the Emotions E3DOE); therefore, the former, be it great or small, is more perfect than the latter. Q.E.D.
|E5: PROP. 40 Corollary, Note. --Such are the doctrines which I had purposed to set forth concerning the mind, in so far as it is regarded without relation to the body; whence, as also from E1P21 and other places, it is plain that our mind, in so far as it understands, is an eternal mode of thinking, which is determined by another eternal mode of thinking, and this other by a third, and so on to infinity; so that all taken together at once constitute the eternal and infinite intellect of God.
|E5: PROP. 41. Even if we did not know that our mind is eternal, we should still consider as of primary importance piety and religion, and generally all things which, in Part 4., we showed to be attributable to courage and high-mindedness.
|Proof.--The first and only foundation of virtue, or the rule of right living is (E4P22C and E4P24) seeking one's own true interest. Now, while we determined what reason prescribes as useful, we took no account of the mind's eternity, which has only become known to us in this Fifth Part. Although we were ignorant at that time that the mind is eternal, we nevertheless stated that the qualities attributable to courage and high-mindedness are of primary importance. Therefore, even if we were still ignorant of this doctrine, we should yet put the aforesaid precepts of reason in the first place. Q.E.D.
| E5: PROP. 41, Note.
--The general belief of the multitude seems to be different. Most
people seem to believe that they are free, in so far as they may obey
and that they cede their rights, in so far as they are bound
to live according to the commandments of the divine law. They therefore
believe that piety,
and, generally, all things attributable to
firmness of mind, are burdens, which, after death, they hope to lay aside,
and to receive the reward for their bondage, that is, for their piety and
religion; it is not only by this
hope, but also, and chiefly, by the
of being horribly punished after death, that they are induced to live
according to the divine commandments, so far as their feeble and infirm
spirit will carry them.
If men had not this hope and this fear, but believed that the mind perishes with the body, and that no hope of prolonged life remains for the wretches who are broken down with the burden of piety, they would return to their own inclinations, controlling everything in accordance with their lusts, and desiring to obey fortune rather than themselves.
Such a course appears to me not less absurd than if a man, because he does not believe that he can by wholesome food sustain his body for ever, should wish to cram himself with poisons and deadly fare; or if, because he sees that the mind is not eternal or immortal, he should prefer to be out of his mind altogether, and to live without the use of reason; these ideas are so absurd as to be scarcely worth refuting.
|E5: PROP. 42. Blessedness is not the reward of virtue, but virtue itself; neither do we rejoice therein, because we control our lusts, but, contrariwise, because we rejoice therein, we are able to control our lusts.
consists in love towards
God (E5P36 and
love springs from the
third kind of knowledge
(E5P32C); therefore this
E3P59) must be referred to
the mind, in so far as the latter is
(E4D8) it is
itself. This was our first point.
Again, in proportion as the mind rejoices more in this divine love or blessedness, so does it the more understand (E5P32); that is (E5P3C), so much the more power has it over the emotions, and (E5P38) so much the less is it subject to those emotions which are evil; therefore, in proportion as the mind rejoices in this divine love or blessedness, so has it the power of controlling lusts. And, since human power in controlling the emotions consists solely in the understanding, it follows that no one rejoices in blessedness, because he has controlled his lusts but, contrariwise, his power of controlling his lusts arise, from this blessedness itself. Q.E.D.
| E5: PROP. 42, Note.
--I have thus completed all I wished to set forth touching the
power over the emotions
and the mind's freedom. Whence it appears, how
potent is the wise man, and how much he surpasses the ignorant man, who is
driven only by his
For the ignorant man is not only distracted in
various ways by external causes without ever gaining the true acquiescence
of his spirit, but moreover lives, as it were unwitting of himself, and of
God, and of things, and as soon as he ceases to suffer, ceases also to be.
Whereas the wise man, in so far as he is regarded as such, is scarcely at all disturbed in spirit, but, being conscious of himself, and of God, and of things, by a certain eternal necessity, never ceases to be, but always possesses true acquiescence of his spirit.
If the way which I have pointed out as leading to this result seems exceedingly hard, it may nevertheless be discovered. Needs must it be hard, since it is so seldom found. How would it be possible, if salvation were ready to our hand, and could without great labour be found, that it should be by almost all men neglected? But all things excellent are as difficult as they are rare.