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The following paper focuses on the philosophical content of images used to depict immanent causality and monism in Pierre Bayle’s refutation of Spinoza's system and Matteo Ricci’s dialogue The True Meaning of The Lord of Heaven. I will show that monism was problematic for both authors because it challenged the Aristotelian understanding of efficient causality by implying an immanent causal relation, in which the agent and the patient were substantially identical. On a more general level, the question I want to address is why exactly monism or pantheism was deemed unacceptable philosophical position. It is only when we look at the imagery employed to expose the allegedly absurd implications of the monist worldview that we begin to understand the kind of single-substance world to which the Early Modern authors reacted.


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