Selection from – On the Improvement of the Understanding (Page 6)

Spinoza's Words: (all things happen according to the Laws of Nature)

One thing was evident, namely, that while my mind was
employed with these thoughts it turned away from its former objects
of desire, and seriously considered the search for a new principle;
this state of things was a great comfort to me. Although
these intervals were at first rare, and of very short duration, yet
afterwards, as the true good became more and more discernible to me,
they became more frequent and more lasting.

I will here only briefly state what I mean by true good,
and also what is the nature of the highest good. In order that
this may be rightly understood, we must bear in mind that the terms
good and evil are only applied relatively. The same thing
may be called both good and bad (or) perfect or imperfect.

Nothing regarded in its own nature can be called perfect or
imperfect; especially when we are aware that all things which come
to pass, come to pass according to the eternal order and fixed
laws of nature.


Oh, oh. Things are getting a little deep. It is clear that as Spinoza bent his thoughts to something he calls "the true good" he was comforted, and the more he thought on it the easier it became. He says that he will give us a brief glimpse of what he means by "true good" and its nature. But we must remember that good or bad, perfect or imperfect are relative terms. A thing regarded all by itself is neither good or bad. When it relates to some other thing - then it may be good or bad for that other thing.

And things come to pass according to the eternal order and fixed laws of nature. Spinoza here states as fact a philosophical position - one that modern science will later adopt. The universe has an order that is maintained by Laws of Nature discoverable by human beings.