Malebranche, Nicolas

(1638-1715)
   Long under-appreciated in the English-speaking world, Malebranche was an innovative French philosopher/theologian that developed an original philosophy built on the thought of Augustine and Descartes. Malebranche's chief work, The Search After Truth (1674-5), develops two striking doctrines: occasionalism and the vision in God. Occasionalism depends on divine omnicausality and was posited as a response to the formidable problem of causal interaction presented by Cartesian dualism. Further, Malebranche believed that the existence of secondary causation would diminish God's greatness. Malebranche's critique of causation was later taken up by David Hume, albeit shorn of its theistic framework. His emphasis on the vision in God (according to which we perceive not physical objects but divine ideas) follows on from this, for if we cannot have any direct interaction with anything, then the content of our conscious life must result from a direct impression of divine ideas upon the human mind. All that would be required to turn this theory into the idealism of Berkeley would be the elimination of extended substance. While sharing some parallels with the Augustinian theory of divine illumination, Malebranche's theory is unique. Not surprisingly, both these doctrines have come under heavy criticism: one standard charge is that Malebranche so emphasises the divine sovereignty that his view is in danger of collapsing into pantheism.
   Further reading: Easton, Lennon and Sebba 1992; Malebranche 1958-84, 1980a and 1980b; Nadler 2000; Pyle 2003; Sebba 1959

Christian Philosophy . . 2015.

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  • Malebranche, Nicolas — • A philosopher and theologian, priest of the Oratory of St. Philip Neri; b. at Paris, 6 Aug., 1638; d. 13 Oct 1715 Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006 …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Malebranche, Nicolas — ▪ French priest born Aug. 6, 1638, Paris, France died Oct. 13, 1715, Paris  French Roman Catholic priest, theologian, and major philosopher of Cartesianism, the school of philosophy arising from the work of René Descartes. His philosophy sought… …   Universalium

  • Malebranche, Nicolas — (1638 1715)    philosopher, theologian    Born in paris, Nicolas Malebranche, who developed the metaphysical theory of occasionalism, studied philosophy and theology at the Collège de la Marche and at the sorbonne. In 1660, he entered the… …   France. A reference guide from Renaissance to the Present

  • Malebranche, Nicolas — (1638–1715) French Cartesian philosopher. Malebranche was born in Paris and educated in philosophy and theology at the Sorbonne. Deeply impressed by the philosophy of Descartes, he produced in 1674 and 1675 the two volumes of De la recherche de… …   Philosophy dictionary

  • Malebranche, Nicolas de — born Aug. 6, 1638, Paris, France died Oct. 13, 1715, Paris French priest, theologian, and philosopher. His philosophy is an attempt to reconcile Cartesianism with the thought of St. Augustine and with Neoplatonism. Central to Malebranche s… …   Universalium

  • Malebranche, Nicolas de — ► (1638 1715) Filósofo francés. Postuló la imposibilidad de comunicar el cuerpo y el alma como no sea a través de Dios, que es como el hombre conoce las cosas. Elaboró la que se considera la primera teoría moderna de los colores. Escribió La… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Malebranche, Nicolas — See Occasionalism …   History of philosophy

  • Мальбранш Николя де / Malebranche, Nicolas de — (1638 1715). Мальбранш отказался от интеракционизма Декарта в пользу окказионализма. Согласно окказионалистской доктрине, одно событие не является причиной другого, но только поводом для Бога причины всех вещей заставить произойти это другое… …   Психологическая энциклопедия

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