SUAREZ AND SPiNOZA: THE METAPHYSICS OF MODAL BElNG
The metaphysics of modal being, a novel and momentous achievement of post-Tridentine scholasticism, found its most articulate and influential expression in Suárez's Disputationes Metaphysicaex. Modes played also a decisive role in Spinoza's metaphysical system wherein they acquired a new sense leading to conclusions radically incompatible Afith Judaeo-Christian orthodoxy2. Our purpose is to probe the approximations and contrasts between the form and the content of both philosophers' theory of modal being while providing more evidence of Suarez' likely albeit indirect influence upon Spinoza. We shall begin our task with a concise but adequate presentation of Suarez' thought on this matter.
Suarez' theory of modes is not presented in any particular disputatio but is spread through several sections of his lengthy metaphysical
1 I have used the Latin-Spanish edition of the Disputationes Metaphysicae prepared by S. Rabade, S, Caballero and A. Puigcerver (Madrid 1966). The reference to the text, henceforth DM, will include the number of the disputatio (Latin numerals) , section and paragraph (both in Arabic numerals). The reader might consuit the following studies on Suárez' theory of modes: J. I. Alcorta, La Teoría de los Modos en Suárez (Madrid 1949); C. Vollert, Suarez-. On the Various Kinds of Distinctions (Milwaukee 1947); J. M. Hellín, 'La Teoria de los Modos en Suárez', Pensamiento 6 (1950) 216-26; P. Nolan, 'The Suarezian Modes', Proceedings, Annual Convention Jesuit Education Association (Chicago 1931); N. J. Wells, 'Suárez, Historian and Critic of the Modal Distinction between Essential Being and Existential Being', New Scholasticism 38 (1962) 419^4; J. P. Burn, 'Action in Suárez', New Scholasticism 37 (1964) 453-72; F. Garcia y Martinez, 'El sentido de Ia realidad en Ia metafísica suaroziana', Miscelánea Comillas 9 (1948) 309-22; M. Murray, 'The Theory of Distinctions in the Metaphysics of F. Suárez', unpubl. doct. diss. (Fordham University 1944). 2 The vast literature on Spinoza includes some outstanding studies on his metaphysics of modes. Among the best are: H. A. Wolfson. The Philosophy of Spinoza, 3 ed. (Cleveland 1961) I, chs. 3, 7, 11; H. F. Hallet, Benedict de Spinoza (London 1957) chs. 1-3; M. Gueroult, Spinoza (Paris 1968) I, part one, ch. 1 (ss. 20-23) and 12; A. E. Taylor, 'Some Inconsistencies in Spinozism'. Studies in Spinoza, P. Kashap ed. (Berkeley 1972); G. D. Hicks, 'The Modes of Spinoza and the Monads of Leibniz', Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 18 (1917-18) 329-62; Sanat Kumar Sen, A Study of the Metaphyscs of Spinoza (Calcutta 1966) chs. 6 and 7; H. H. Joachim, Spinoza's Tractatus de lntellectus Emendatione (Oxford 1958); E. E. Harris, 'Finlte and Infinite in Spinoza's System', Speculum Spinozanum 1677-1977, 197-212.