Leibniz's unintentional theology
There's no Christ in Leibniz's metaphysics, so it's not a Christian
philosophy. Yet Leibniz knew Christian philosophy, since he was a believing
But, L does not discuss salvation, but it is a basis for his pre-established
harmony (PEH) a theodicy he later wrote. I will get back to that below.
But theology wasn't the purpose of L's metaphysics, L's purpose was to show
defects in materialism and propose a sound alternative to a group of atheists.
Which he did. It turned out to be an anti-materialist metaphysics which
necessitated God or the One (yes, necessitated) or something like that to be in
it to work properly,
even to work at all. La Place, you may recall, the mechanical materialist, said
he was an atheist because he had no need of God in his calculations of the
Hawkings has said the same. But they conveniently forgot that God is necessary
if there is any design or principles of motion. Where else could they come from
But L's overall metaphysics gives a complete picture of actual being which,
to my mind at least, strongly suggests that there is an overall design and
principles of design.
That would be God as Creator. Taking that and the pre-established harmony (PEH)
into account, L's God is metaphorically a software program that controls
all things according to a PEH). This PEH allows free will in man presumably
because it was established with time running backwards. God in L's metaphysics
would be the God
Monads themselves are not in spacetime, so they have no size,
They are mental concepts. As to the corporeal bodies they may refer to,
there's no size limit except as long as they can be located and
referred to. Heisenberg's uncertaqinty principle would give such a size.
But the planck length seems to be simply an empirical unit of measurement, not
an actual entity in itself, not a complete concept, so I can't see how you can
characterize it as a monad. L's principle of the identity of indiscernibles
also sems to rule it out.
What about an afterlife ?
Anybody that criticizes materialism, which is a cult, will get
ostracized. It's a sad condition. L is not very explicit on life after death,
no doubt because Jesus is missing from his metaphysics.
But we can infer what L believed according to his metaphysics from the
way he esplains the succession of plants. plant to seed to plant to seed etc.
the seed has a plant curled up inside, this curled up plant unfolds to
a full plant, which then produces a new plant seed and the process continues.
But this is not reincarnation, for each new plant comes out the
plant-within-plant-within-plant ad infinitum that has individualized vegetable
created at the beginning of the universe. Presumably it is the same with man,
except only those written in the Book of Life (part of the PEH) would be
Attached to a rotting corpse is another way of saying that we sleep after death
until we are resurrected in our bodies (now rehabilitated) after death.
Dr. Roger Clough NIST (ret.) 5/18/2013
See my Leibniz site at
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