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Forum Philosophicum

Volume 12, Issue 1, Spring 2007

Jakob Zigouras
Pages 105-118

Spinoza and the Possibility of Error

If we consider certain features of Spinoza's metaphysics, it can seem very difficult to see how error, or the having of false ideas, is possible. In this paper I want to give the metaphysical background to the problem, before turning to a more detailed consideration of how Spinoza in fact accounts for error, or the having of false ideas. I will show the importance of the notions of adequacy and inadequacy in Spinoza's account. Having done this I will return to the central problem of accounting for the ontological status of false ideas vis a vis both the Infinite Intellect, and finite minds.