Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

M.A. in Philosophy


Philosophy and Religion

First Advisor

Timothy P. Yenter

Second Advisor

Neil Manson

Third Advisor

Donovan Wishon

Relational Format



Spinoza’s theory of persistence is articulated through the conatus (EIp7) and the ratio of motion and rest (EIIp13). Section I explores Spinoza’s usage of “motion,” and illustrates that the conatus is essentially temporal. From this claim and Spinoza’s conception of eternity, the problem arises. I explain this as a contradiction between Natura naturata and Natura naturans. Section II features an evaluation of the potential acosmist solution and reveals how it contradicts other Spinozistic commitments. I construct an alternative solution in Section III. Temporal passage is not an adequate idea for Spinoza. However, Spinoza considers duration to be a feature of reality that can be explicated without temporal passage. Similar reasoning can also be applied to motion. Interpreted in this way, temporal passage is ideal while motion is real. This solves the problem of motion from eternity without entailing the problems present in the acosmist interpretation.

Included in

Philosophy Commons


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