Descartes: Descriptions of the body

HideShow resource information
View mindmap
  • Descartes: Descriptions of the body
    • It's possible to doubt the existence of a body but it is not possible to doubt the existence of the soul because we are thinking, conscious beings and there must be something doing the thinking (the mind/soul)
    • The body is separate from the mind (Dualism).
      • "If a foot, or an arm, or another limb were amputated from the body, nothing would be taken from my mind."
    • Humans (and other animals in the vertebrate group) contain a pineal gland which secretes a hormone that helps them detect light and dark and therefore informs them of the 24 cycle in nature and when to wake up/rest.
      • The pineal gland was considered the "seat of the soul," as he believed that it involves sensation, imagination, the causation of bodily movements and memory.
        • Thought that the Pineal gland contained animals spirits which were brought it by small, surrounding veins.
        • He believed in two kinds of memories
          • The memories that were stored in the hemispheres, pineal gland and the muscles.
          • The memories that were stored in the soul.
            • "Entirely intellectual that depends on the soul alone."
        • Believed that the pineal gland gave us our basic ability to perceive, understand and judge things shared by almost all people.
          • "the pineal gland is the seat of the 'sensus communis'."
          • "Since it is the only part of the brain that it is single, it must be the seat of all common sense."
    • The body is indivisible (unable to be divided or separated)
      • "The body by nature is indivisible, the mind is not."
    • Interactionist so believed that the soul interacted with the body.


No comments have yet been made

Similar All resources:

See all All resources »See all Descartes: Philosophy of Religion resources »