As I understand it, the Leibniz's rational for advocating the
pre-established harmony idea was Newton's discovery of conservation of
momentum. Descartes knew that energy was conserved, but not momentum.
This would have permitted a non-physical mind to alter the trajectories of
particles in the mind so long as the speed of the particles remained
unchanged. Newton's revelation however was that in order for the motion of
one particle to be changed, another physical particle must have an equal
and opposite change in momentum. This does not permit a non physical force
to change the motion of particles, and hence Leibniz concluded that the
mental world does not affect the physical word, or vice versa. Rather,
they were made to agree beforehand (you might think of it as a bunch of
souls watching a pre-recorded movie of the physical world, but this
pre-recorded movie also agrees with the intentions of the souls watching
In *Monadology*, published in 1714, Leibniz wrote “Descartes recognized
that souls cannot impart any force to bodies, because there is always the
same quantity of force in matter. Nevertheless he was of opinion that the
soul could change the direction of bodies. But that is because in his time
it was not known that there is a law of nature which affirms also the
conservation of the same total direction in matter. Had Descartes noticed
this he would have come upon my system of pre-established harmony.”
On Sat, Aug 11, 2012 at 6:37 AM, Roger <rclo...@verizon.net> wrote:
> Hi Stephen P. King
> As I understand it, Leibniz's pre-established harmony is analogous to
> a musical score with God, or at least some super-intelligence, as
> This prevents all physical particles from colliding, instead they
> all move harmoniously together*. The score was composed before the
> Big Bang-- my own explanation is like Mozart God or that intelligence
> could hear the whole (symphony) beforehand in his head.
> I suppose that this accords with Leibniz's belief that God,
> whoc is good, constructed the best possible world where
> as a miniomum, that least physics is obeyed. Hence
> Voltaire's foolish criticism of Leibniz in Candide that how
> could the volcanic or earthquake disaster in Lisbon be
> part of the most perfect world ?
> Thus, because physics must be obeyed, sometimes crap happens.
> * As a related and possibly explanatory point, L's universe
> completely is nonlocal.
> Roger , rclo...@verizon.net
> ----- Receiving the following content -----
> *From:* Stephen P. King <stephe...@charter.net>
> *Receiver:* everything-list <email@example.com>
> *Time:* 2012-08-11, 01:56:41
> *Subject:* Re: Where's the agent ? Who or what does stuff and is aware of
> stuff ?
> Hi Roger,
> I have noticed and read your posts. Might you write some remarks about
> Leibniz' concept of pre-established harmony?
> On 8/10/2012 8:53 AM, Roger wrote:
> Hence I follow Leibniz, even though he's difficult and some say
> contradictory. That agent or soul or self you have is your
> monad, the only (alhough indirectly) perceiving/acting/feeling
> agent in all of us, but currently missing in neuroscience and
> "Nature, to be commanded, must be obeyed."
> ~ Francis Bacon
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