By Andre Gombay
A daring and insightful departure from similar texts, Descartes is going past the specific institutions put on the philosopher’s principles, and explores the subtleties of his ideals.
- An stylish, compelling and insightful creation to Descartes' existence and paintings.
- Discusses a extensive diversity of his so much scrutinized philosophical concept, together with his contributions to common sense, philosophy of the brain, epistemology, metaphysics, the philosophy of technology, and the philosophy of faith.
- Explores the subtleties of Descartes' likely contradictory ideals.
- Addresses topics left unexamined in different works on Descartes.
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Additional resources for Descartes (Blackwell Great Minds)
About the mundane cogito, a few facts deserve notice. The first bears on the central word ergo (or donc, or therefore). ”4 If that gloss is accurate, it points to a curious fact, namely: the therefore of the mundane cogito is not the logician’s therefore – it works, so to speak, in the 32 me and others DESC03 19/9/06 6:04 PM Page 33 opposite direction. ” This says that if Socrates were not mortal, he would not be a man; it does not say that if he were not a man, he would not be mortal – he might be a cat or a centaur.
Does this mean that he must whirl forever? No: [A] There is a deceiver of supreme power and supreme cunning who is deliberately and constantly deceiving me. In that case I, too, undoubtedly exist – if he is deceiving me. And let him deceive me as much as he can, he will never bring it about that I am nothing as long as I think that I am something. So after considering everything very thoroughly I must finally conclude that this proposition, I am, I exist, is necessarily true whenever I state it or conceive it in my mind.
Nor are they alone: odds are that we, readers of Descartes – perhaps even Descartes himself – hear that message too in some subliminal form. So why not don blinkers and try to look at the dictum through the eyes of the untutored viewer? We might gain valuable insight in the process. For the sake of brevity, let me call the cogito as I presume it to be understood by philosophically innocent mortals, the “mundane” or “lay” cogito; and call the one that involves taking the First Meditation into account, the “cleric’s” or “strict” cogito.
Descartes (Blackwell Great Minds) by Andre Gombay