Relational Space and Places of Value

Author: 
Phemister, Pauline
Volume: 
Abstract: 
Drawing on a Leibnizian panpsychist ontology of living beings that have a body and a soul, this paper outlines a theory of space based on the perceptual and appetitive relations among these creatures’ souls. In parallel with physical space founded on relations among bodies subject to efficient causation, teleological space results from relations among souls subject to final causation and is described qualitatively in terms of creatures’ pleasure and pain, wellbeing and happiness. Particular places within this space include the kingdom of grace, where morally responsible, rational beings act as far as possible in accord with the ideal of justice as universal love and wise benevolence. However, while Leibniz considered love as properly directed only towards rational beings, it is argued here that the truly wise person will direct their love and benevolence towards all living things.