Descartes. Meditations. Doubt.

Full Descartes, how he sets out to induce doubt and from there comes to the Cogito, following from the cogito he uses Clear & Distinct perceptions and essential properties to work out further truths about the world like his essentially property.He argues material objects and removes doubt.

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  • DESCARTES. Meditations.
    • Descartes was interested in finding UNIVERSAL truths, similar to Mathematical certainty, that can be known purely through INTELLECTUAL thought
    • He induces Positive skepticism of everything to discover ABSOLUTE CERTAINTIES.
      • WHY?
        • Analogy of ROTTEN APPLES in a BASKET
          • If you have a basket of Apples and one is rotten, you would EMPTY basket and only let back in those that aren't rotten.
            • Similarly if we throw out all our beliefs at once and only allow certain truths back in we can ensure that our base beliefs that support others are CERTAIN
        • Analogy of BUILDING a HOUSE
          • If foundation of a house in unstable, you will DIG IT out and lay new foundation.
            • Similarly for a solid basis for our knowledge its necessary to throw out everything that could be doubted.
    • He induces this doubt using 3 arguments.
      • ARGUMENT FROM DREAMING
        • Our senses all SYSTEMATICALLY FOOL US when we are dreaming
          • Senses tell us something contrary to the real world when dreaming and is a much more COMPLETE ILLUSION.
            • Although senses mislead us whilst dreaming. WE HAVE NO REASON TO THINK WE ARE DREAMING WHILE AWAKE.
              • Still not enough to induce radical skepticism.
      • ARGUMENT FROM ILLUSION
        • Our senses are capable of deceiving us
          • A spoon in a glass APPEARS to bend in the water (refraction). Parallel tracks APPEAR to meet in the distance
            • Descartes: It is not prudent to trust a friend who has once deceived us as they could again
              • Not strong enough ALONE. Illusions are EXCEPTIONAL CIRCUMSTANCES.
      • ARGUMENT FROM MALICIOUS DEMON
        • IMAGINE an ALL-POWERFUL MALICIOUS DEMON who will try to DECEIVE us at EVERY TURN.
          • Other arguments proved our senses can be doubted therefore, all the world we gain through our senses the malicious demon can DECEIVE US in.
            • ARGUE: Like dreaming, there are no signs we are being deceived so we aren't. BUT: The demons point is to FULLY DECEIVE US.
              • Therefore, this proves that there is no way we'd be able to tell between DECEPTION and REALITY. SO very few of our beliefs are CERTAIN.
  • So now all our beliefs can be doubted what beliefs CANNOT be doubted?
    • DESCARTES. Meditations.
      • Descartes was interested in finding UNIVERSAL truths, similar to Mathematical certainty, that can be known purely through INTELLECTUAL thought
      • He induces Positive skepticism of everything to discover ABSOLUTE CERTAINTIES.
        • WHY?
          • Analogy of ROTTEN APPLES in a BASKET
            • If you have a basket of Apples and one is rotten, you would EMPTY basket and only let back in those that aren't rotten.
              • Similarly if we throw out all our beliefs at once and only allow certain truths back in we can ensure that our base beliefs that support others are CERTAIN
          • Analogy of BUILDING a HOUSE
            • If foundation of a house in unstable, you will DIG IT out and lay new foundation.
              • Similarly for a solid basis for our knowledge its necessary to throw out everything that could be doubted.
      • He induces this doubt using 3 arguments.
        • ARGUMENT FROM DREAMING
          • Our senses all SYSTEMATICALLY FOOL US when we are dreaming
            • Senses tell us something contrary to the real world when dreaming and is a much more COMPLETE ILLUSION.
              • Although senses mislead us whilst dreaming. WE HAVE NO REASON TO THINK WE ARE DREAMING WHILE AWAKE.
                • Still not enough to induce radical skepticism.
        • ARGUMENT FROM ILLUSION
          • Our senses are capable of deceiving us
            • A spoon in a glass APPEARS to bend in the water (refraction). Parallel tracks APPEAR to meet in the distance
              • Descartes: It is not prudent to trust a friend who has once deceived us as they could again
                • Not strong enough ALONE. Illusions are EXCEPTIONAL CIRCUMSTANCES.
        • ARGUMENT FROM MALICIOUS DEMON
          • IMAGINE an ALL-POWERFUL MALICIOUS DEMON who will try to DECEIVE us at EVERY TURN.
            • Other arguments proved our senses can be doubted therefore, all the world we gain through our senses the malicious demon can DECEIVE US in.
              • ARGUE: Like dreaming, there are no signs we are being deceived so we aren't. BUT: The demons point is to FULLY DECEIVE US.
                • Therefore, this proves that there is no way we'd be able to tell between DECEPTION and REALITY. SO very few of our beliefs are CERTAIN.
    • "Cogito Ergo Sum"... I THINK THEREFORE I EXIST
      • What does this IMPLY?
      • NIETZSCHE
        • The cogito goes too far in PRESUMING AN I. All that can be said is: "A thought is being thunk"
          • However, this is only one negative so far and Descartes could be justified in saying I am a Thinking thing.
  • That  THINKING implies EXISTENCE? so if i stop thinking, DO I CEASE TO EXIST? when i sleep I am not thinking - I do not always dream, DO i cease to exist?
    • What does this IMPLY?
    • However the cogito is NOT a set of conditions about our existence, it is simply a CERTAIN BELIEF that arises from doubt. Thus it doesn't follow we don't exist if we're sleeping.
  • REMOVING SKEPTICISM.
    • IMAGINATION: Capacity to see IMAGES in one's MIND's EYE
      • To IMAGINE  a triangle is to see it as if its in front of you
    • INTELLECT: Capacity for ABSTRACT RATIONAL THOUGHT
      • To appreciate a TRIANGLE through intellect is to UNDERSTAND it
    • IMAGINATION requires a peculiar effort of mind not required to understand something .
      • If we pay attention to IMAGINATION it is APPLYING THE MIND to a BODY therefore the MATERIAL BODY MUST EXIST.
        • DESCARTES: I experience sensations which DO NOT ORIGINATE FROM ME  and occur out of my control. COLOURS ON OBJECTS.
          • There must be a source  to these sensations.  As GOD is benevolent and would not deceive us our experience indicates God/ A lesser being than god is not responsible for these sensations
            • Experience suggests MATERIAL OBJECTS cause these sensations  and GOD is BENEVOLENT and would not make us think we were surrounded by objects if we weren't.
              • Proof of material objects used as a way out of skeptical doubt
              • However it relies on proofs of GOD which we dismiss.
  • ALL THIS RELIES ON THE PROOF OF GOD. (see Descartes and arguments for God) HIS PROOFS ACTUALLY FAIL so THIS ALL FAILS because he relies on God so much.

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