This article discusses Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz’s philosophical reflections on essences, ideas, and truths in God’s mind and in the human mind. After discussing Leibniz’s claim that the essences (essentiae) of things are like numbers, the article goes on to analyze his argument that ideas are the buildings blocks of truths and that the intimate nature of ideas is what enters in a proposition determining its truth. It then examines Leibniz’s views about ideas and truths in relation to God’s understanding; language, particularly philosophical language; scholasticism and nominalism; and the relationship among words, signs, and ideas. Finally, it considers Leibniz’s notion of the nature of ideas in the human mind in relation to the existence of God.
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