Moses Mendelssohn: Philosophical Writings
Mendelssohn's Philosophical Writings, published in 1761, bring the metaphysical tradition to bear on the topic of "sentiments" (defined as knowledge or awareness by way of the senses). They include a nuanced defense of Leibniz's theodicy and conception of freedom, and examination of the ethics of suicide, an account of the "mixed sentiments" so central to the tragic genre, an hypothesis about weakness of will, an elaboration of the main principles and types of art, and a brief tract on probability theory, aimed at rebutting Hume's skepticism.
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On the main principles of the fine arts and sciences
On the sublime and naive in the fine sciences
On evidence in metaphysical sciences
On the ability to know the ability to feel and the ability to desire
what does to enlighten mean?
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able according actions actually appear basis beauty become believe body called cause certainty combination completely concepts condition connection consider consideration constitution contains definition desire determined distinct distinguished divine effect entire essay ethics everything evil example existence experience expression extension eyes feel final gratification grounded hand harmony Hence human imagination imitation important individual inference infinite knowledge laws less letter limits magnitude manner mathematics matter means Mendelssohn merely metaphysics mind moral movements namely nature necessary never object particular passions perceive perfection person philosopher pleasant pleasure positive possible practical present principles probability produce properties proportion proposition quantity rational reason regard relation remains represent representation rules sciences senses sensuous sentiments side signs similar single someone sort soul sublime supposed sure Theocles things thinking thoughts translation true truth universal virtue whole