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Introduction to philosophy - Assignment Example

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Introduction to philosophy

The two are modern philosophers and their ideas lay a foundation to much human thought and examine the modern thought as they have developed a unique philosophy that extends to both rationalism and empiricism worlds. Examining both Hume and Descartes contributions to philosophy shows their critical contribution to the foundation of Kant and thus the basis that united rationalism and empiricism. Descartes contributions He is a rationalists who believe that some knowledge is attained other than by or via human senses, for instance, he says, “I therefore think I am” is a crucial element of this concept. More significant, the knowledge is heavily determined by knowledge of God – that is God and the idea of God is outside the senses realm and thus exists only through thought. Through his meditation, he indicates that with minds and thoughts people can make decisions around them. Descartes believe on two metaphysical substances – the thought and the matter. Contrary to traditional philosophy and their beliefs, Descartes holds that matter is without form and that certain ideas such as ideas of the God and mind are senses-centered and innate. The main limitation with Descartes contributions is that most of his work is highly grounded on God’s existence and thus it needs God to aid prove certain innate ideals concept outside the sensible universe. Descartes contributions gives a easy example to support because it does not require much support as one cannot truly deny God’s existence and people can argue that God exists because they believe in his existence and may twist this idea to consider it as innate thought. If a person has faith in God, he cannot reject this faith; therefore, Descartes supports his ideas through this faith. The philosophical concept of innate ideas can be used as evidence to support God’s existence because it does not require any other basis. David Hume’s contributions He is an empiricist who opposes Descartes ideas of knowledge of God, as Hume does not believe in God. He started by arguing for the empiricism significance, the idea that peoples’ knowledge is anchored on their experiences and he employed this strategy to analyze various philosophical concepts. He argues that all of peoples’ complex ideas originate from simpler ideas that are formed based on the impressions received via their senses, thus, ideas does not essentially differ from experiences. Hume also stresses on matter of fact – he considers them matters that people must experience and not instinctually arrived at or reasoned. Because of the above claims, Hume opposes systems of metaphysic utilized to prove soul, divine creation, and God ideas existence. Therefore, because people have no experience of these ideas and cannot get straight impression of them, people do not have to believe in their truth. Hume systematically believes that facts and ideologies emanate from experiences and that unless people have experience of concepts like universe size, time and space such a concept would be meaningless. He argues that both our ideas and impressions are not infinitely divisible and if we insist on simplifying them further we would eventually reach at an increasingly small level that is hard to conceptually understand and perceive, therefore, because people have no experience of infinite divisibility, then the idea if infinitely divisible an idea is meaningless. According to Hume, mathematics is a system of pure ideas relations and thus it maintains its value although people cannot directly perceive its phenomena because most of mathematical principles do not make sense, but it is a realm of knowledge because perfect certainty is attainable. Irrespective of Hume’ ...Show more


The contributions that Descartes, Hume to philosophy The 17th and 18th century philosophers had enormous contributions to philosophy and they include Hume, Kant, and Descartes among others. This discussion will outline Hume and Descartes contribution to philosophy…
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