17 - Critique of Pure Reason Lecture Notes Leibnizian...

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Critique of Pure Reason Lecture Notes, January 11, 1995: Leibnizian Rationalism G. J. Mattey The realm of possible worlds is in the mind of God; only the actual world has any existence on its own, according to Leibniz. Creation is the result of God's decree, and this decree flows from God's nature. God is free in this respect: that the other worlds are options which were available for God to choose. The constituents of each possible world are distinct from those of any other world. In contemporary terms, there is no "cross-world" or "trans-world" identity. Although different worlds could contain an individual meeting the description "the first man," only one world, ours, contains Adam. In the other worlds, the first man is someone else. What makes an individual possible is that its concept contains no contradiction. For Leibniz, an individual is fully described by an individual concept; anyone grasping the concept in its entirety would know everything there is to know about that individual, save whether it exists. To put it
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