Descartes

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  • Descartes
    • what could be known for certain and what could be treated with skepticism?
      • Our senses can deceive us
        • So adopted a method called 'hyperbolic doubt'
          • Looked at everything he thought that was known and rejected them if there was any doubt of them being the certain truth
        • Perhaps they were illusions or dreams
      • There is the 'first certainty'
        • he could not doubt his own existence as a tinker because he would have to exist as a thinker in order to be able to do the doubting
        • "I think therefore I am"
          • (Cogito)
    • In his book 'Mediations' he demonstrated a clear distinction between the soul (mind) and body
    • He knew for certain that he had a mind because he could not doubt without one
      • But he could not be certain that he had a body
        • The body could just be a disembodied thinking thing
      • Therefore, the mind and body are disticnt
        • Cant doubt minds existence, yet we can doubt the body
          • Mind is perculiar
      • We are made of two distinct substances
        • Physical Body
        • Spiritual Mind
        • They cant be the same thing because they both have such different properties
          • Extension
          • Thought
          • Body has different parts (leg, head) but mind doesnt
            • Two things could not be identical if they had different properties
      • How does the mind and body interact so closely?
        • Pineal Gland connects soul and body
          • Connecting the material person and immaterial soul

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