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Publication Details

Physics and Metaphysics in Leibniz

(Original title: Fyzika a metafyzika u Leibniza)
Filozofia, 21 (1966), 6, 578-590.
Type of work: Papers and Discussions
Publication language: Slovak
Leibniz's methaphysics, appearing at first sight markedly bizarre in their whole, are closely bound to his pregnant physical (and mathematical) ideas. Although his physics, thanks to his metaphysics, remain mechanistic, yet it is a considerably altered type of mechanicism, penetrated by thoughts which sap if from inside. This shift is induced, before all else, by dialectical moments of his metahpysics. Specific traits in Leibniz’s mechanicism were later exploited by some materialists for a deeper justification of their philosophy, which sometimes tempts towards an overestimation of ’materialistic tendencies’ in Leibniz's metaphysics. At the same time, the dialectic moments in his philosophy, which were immediately and intermediarily reflected also on some pages of his work on natural sciences, led certain interpreters to underestimate the dominant position of mechanistic elements in his thinking. The unusual, even bizzare features of many of Leibniz’s metaphysical constructions do not ensue from his disregarding attitude towards science, but on the contrary, they are, among other things, an expression of his efforts to overcome by the only way then accessible, i. e. through speculation, the insolvable problems and paradoxes in the explanation of basic notions on which physics, and natural sciences in general, stand. It is from this point of view that in addition to a change in the understanding of mechanicism, we should stress his contribution to the development of atomism (beside the inner activity of monad, we also draw attention to his concepts of the unobjectivity of the basic elements of being) and the space theory.
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