Reimarus on Natural Religion, Final Causation and Mechanism

The article examines how Reimarus reorients concepts borrowed from Leibniz and Wolff – the principles of perfection, harmony and continuity – in order to feed his own natural religion project. Teleology is understood as a doctrine aiming at proving not only God’s perfections, but also the effects of the divine wisdom on creatures. Consequently, recourse to final causes in natural philosophy cannot remain at the level of general reasons, as Maupertuis’s principle of least action does, but rather ought to be used in the explanation of the specific purpose of beings.

This content has been updated on 5 June 2020 at 9 h 33 min.