MENTAL STRUCTURE, SPONTANEOUS ILLUSIONS, AND PROJECTIONS
Men think of themselves as free because they are conscious of their volitions and their appetite, and do not think, even in their dreams, of the causes by which they are disposed to wanting and willing, because they are ignorant of those causes. (Spinoza, 1677a, Ethics, I, appendix I, II/79, p. 26)
The Inherent Perversions of the Mind
This doctrine concerning the end turns nature completely upside down. For what is really a cause, it considers as an effect, and conversely (what is an effect it considers as a cause). (Spinoza, 1677a, Ethics, I, appendix II, II/81, p. 28)
To reflect with ease, the thinking individual needs to have the impression that he is reasoning on all of the existing data. The mind has difficulty including in its reasoning the fact that it is influenced by the very forces it wants to control. Humans automatically have the impression that the functioning of nature is so simple that they can easily understand it.15 This impression creates a form of the reversal that characterizes perversion. The human being believes to be the cause of what is going on around him, whereas very often this perception is organized by an environment that thoughts perceive only in a partial way.