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OccasionalismCausation Among the Cartesians$
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Steven Nadler

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780198250081

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198250081.001.0001

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Occasionalism and General Will in Malebranche

Occasionalism and General Will in Malebranche

(p.48) 3 Occasionalism and General Will in Malebranche

Steven Nadler (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter is an examination of the details of Malebranche’s account of divine activity in his occasionalism, and in particular his notion of divine general volitions. Contrary to a reading first offered by Arnauld in his correspondence with Leibniz, according to which Malebranche’s God acts by way of volitions with general content (or laws), this chapter argues that Malebranche’s God acts constantly and ubiquitously in nature by way of volitions with particular contents, although these volitions are always in accordance with general laws of nature.

Keywords:   Malebranche, Arnauld, Leibniz, occasionalism, causation, volitions, laws, God

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