Does the intuition and deduction thesis show that rationalism is true?

  • Created by: Eeh16
  • Created on: 28-04-22 17:58

Introduction (key points and line of argument)

  • Descartes aims to establish that you can know synthetic statements (statements that are true due to their meaning and because of the way the world is) a priori (without knowledge).
  • He offers arguments from intuition and arguments from deduction to support this.
  • The big idea is that we can arrive at clear and distinct ideas (for Descartes, an idea is clear if it is bright and present to the mind and an idea is distinct if it is sharply separated from other ideas), which the mind intuits are true. Then by using deduction the mind can arrive at further truths. 
  • LOA: ulitimately, the weight of evidence reveals that the intuition and deduction thesis doesn't show that rationalism is true.

Paragraph 1: Descartes' intuition and deduction thesis falls into his cartesian circle.

  • An objection called ‘the Cartesian circle’ argues Descartes cannot establish that clear and distinct ideas guarantee truth.
  • 1. I am certain that God exists only because I am…


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