Descartes Meditation

Overview of ​ Rene Descartes Meditation on​ First Philosophy

Rene Descartes was a​ ​ French philosopher who was highly influential. He was also a​ ​ writer,​ mathematician,​ and scientist. Rene Descartes or Renatus Cartesius was named as​ the​ Father of ​ Modern Philosophy.

Descartes more often contrasted his point of ​ view among his predecessors. He always consider his writing unique,​ a​ ​ work that nobody has ever written before. However,​ many of ​ his philosophical elements revealed influences of ​ Augustine and Aristotle which tackles about the​ 16th century stoicism revisions.

Descartes natural philosophy is​ ​ different from what is​ ​ taught in​ ​ schools on​ two aspects. First,​ he rejected the​ corporeal substance analysis of ​ forms and matters. Second,​ he rejected any appeal to​ ​ natural or divine ends which explain natural phenomena. Even in​ ​ Descartes theology,​ he insisted on​ God's absolute freedom regarding creation.

Descartes is​ ​ commonly regarded as​ a​ ​ modern thinker who first provided philosophical frameworks of ​ natural sciences. in​ ​ his work Meditations on​ First Philosophy,​ he attempted to​ ​ arrive at an original set of ​ ideologies which can be accepted as​ true by anyone without doubts. He then employed methodological skepticism wherein he doubted any idea that appears to​ ​ be doubtful just to​ ​ create a​ ​ solid foundation for authentic knowledge.

Initially,​ Rene Descartes had arrived to​ ​ only one principle that thought exists. it ​ is​ ​ the​ main proof of ​ existence because thoughts cannot be entirely separated from a​ ​ person. in​ ​ Meditations on​ First Philosophy,​ this is​ ​ called as​ cogito ergo sum. Therefore,​ he concluded that he really exists.

He based his conclusions on​ perceiving his body by using his senses,​ although in​ ​ the​ past studies,​ these are proven unreliable. So he concludes that the​ thinking thing in​ ​ him is​ ​ the​ only knowledge which is​ ​ not doubtful at all. Thus he defined thought as​ becoming immediately conscious of ​ what is​ ​ happening in​ ​ him and he is​ ​ conscious about it. Thinking is​ ​ an activity of ​ every person that gets immediate conscious.

He further demonstrated the​ limitations of ​ his senses through the​ Wax Argument. Descartes uses wax as​ an example,​ his senses has informed him about its specific characteristics including texture,​ shape,​ color,​ smell,​ and others. When the​ wax is​ ​ brought towards the​ flame,​ these characteristics completely change. But still,​ it ​ appears to​ ​ be the​ same wax although his senses have already informed him that the​ characteristics are now different. So,​ for him to​ ​ grasp the​ wax's nature properly,​ he doesn't use his senses instead he uses his mind. Thus what he thought he had seen with his eyes,​ he actually grasped it ​ solely with his power of ​ judgment that is​ ​ in​ ​ his mind.

In this way,​ Rene Descartes continues his construction of ​ a​ ​ knowledge system which discards perceptions as​ unreliable and admits deductions as​ a​ ​ technique. in​ ​ the​ middle of ​ Meditation on​ First Philosophy,​ he also offered ontological proofs of ​ God's benevolence. He believed that his sensory system and working mind are provided by God. And God never desires in​ ​ deceiving him. But this became a​ ​ controversial argument because his benevolent notions about God were also developed from his arguments which are doubting perceptions. in​ ​ this supposition,​ he finally established the​ possibility of ​ obtaining knowledge regarding the​ world through perception and deduction.

In the​ system of ​ Descartes,​ knowledge can take the​ forms of ​ ideas while philosophical investigation contemplates these ideas.

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