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Abstract


Leibniz’s Optimism and Critics of Voltaire
The discussion about moral evil and its ultimate cause is one of the ancient debates of ethics, morality, and religious philosophy. As one side of this debate, Leibniz – together with Pope – puts forward the idea of moral optimism. For Leibniz, who considers divine reason, will, and plan, but at the same time tries to stick to logical principles, God is omnipotent, best, and omniscient; therefore, considering the possible worlds, he must have created the best among them. Voltaire opposes this philosophical optimism. In particular, the experience and prevalence of evil and the fact that its ultimate cause is unknown to the limited human mind are important objections. In this sense, he satirizes Leibniz's thoughts in his works. In this study, Leibniz's thoughts in the context of evil and Voltaire's criticisms are discussed.

Keywords
Leibniz, Voltaire, evil, moral evil, physical evil.


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