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Defending Descarter's Cogito Ergo Sum - Essay Example

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Defending Descarter's Cogito Ergo Sum

Hence, we should, I think, recognize that it is possible, to a certain extent, to think of things, which certainly do not have a physical form. The justification for my argument is grounded mainly on Descartes’s Meditations. He decisively focused on the argument, as seen in the beginning of Meditations on First Philosophy, confidently carved the independent realms of religion and reason, and trusted that his effort would discreetly, but determinedly, re-establish reason to its legitimate place (Sarkar 2003). However, there are detractors of Descartes’s ‘cogito ergo sum’ (I think, therefore, I am), such as the mostly overlooked philosopher Michel de Montaigne. Montaigne was the forerunner of Descartes, with perspectives on reason that have a great deal of influence on the theories of his descendants in France (Hatfield 2003). Edwin M. Curley claims that the evidence of God’s existence is intertwined with cogito’s premise in this sense (Sarkar 2003, 110): “Descartes would hold that even the proposition ‘I exist’ is fully certain only if the rest of the argument of the Meditations goes through. We must buy all or nothing.” However, defending Descartes’s cogito against critics, like Curley, is not the main objective of this paper. It is the primary objective of this paper to demonstrate that there is a contemporary form of the Cartesian Circle—“I now seem to be able to lay it down as a general rule that whatever I perceive very clearly and distinctly is true” (Lemos 2004, 45)—more overwhelming than the previous version. We should address this contemporary Cartesian Circle. This new version of Descartes’s magnum opus will be required as an unvarying cue soon after, when different approaches toward interpreting the cogito are broken up. Although I support the notion that we can exist even without physical form through thinking, I believe that Descartes’s cogito has several flaws that have to be addressed in order to make the argument stronger. Certainly, the failure of Descartes to challenge his ability to reason is baffling, because his way of distrusting his senses would have offered him an almost perfect paradigm for distrusting his reason. Descartes could have created skepticisms about his ‘thinking’ that are similar to the skepticism about his senses (Dicker 1993). The first Cartesian Circle of the senses elaborates, and validates, the apparent argument that our senses at times mislead us; the next Cartesian Circle rationalizes a firmer argument, specifically, that at certain points in time we are incapable of making certain whether they mislead us or not (Dicker 1993); and ultimately, as stated in Lemos (2004), the last and most compelling Cartesian Circle is created, specifically, that there is no such thing as senses. Likewise, Descartes could have embarked on these ideas: an initial Cartesian Circle about reason, demonstrating how exercising reason at times deceive us; a next Cartesian Circle to demonstrate that at certain points in time we would be incapable of making sure whether we have used our reason rightfully; and ultimately (Moore 1962), a final Cartesian Circl ...Show more


Name Name of Professor Defending Descartes’s Cogito Ergo Sum If we take into account the idea of false ideas, it becomes somewhat understandable to me that we can exist without a physical form just by ‘thinking’. For example, my parents might be thinking at this moment that I am not in Texas…
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Defending Descarters Cogito Ergo Sum
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