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Descartes - Essay Example

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Descartes

Although he decided to doubt everything, at some point the Cartesian method hit a brick wall. This happens when he himself agrees to settle for an assumption in as far as the existence of God is concerned. He makes an inference by saying that God is infinite and that he cannot conceive a cause by which God is produced, this means that his perception of God is doubtable since he is unable to explain the origin of God (page 117). This explanation does not in any way prove the existence of God. It is probably the weakest argument in his work and which also shows either fear or reluctance on his part to challenge the existence of God. Assuming that he feared to challenge the existence of God, it can be argued that such utterances as to the existence of God may have resulted in severe punishment for him during his time. TheCartesian theory reaches its point of elasticity when Rene Descartes approaches the argument of the existence of God.  The Cartesian theory does not therefore suffice as an essential school of thought in totality due to the fact that it leaves a rather big loophole to convince the layman and other philosophers how God came into existence. Therefore his view of the existence of God does not satisfy any philosophical urge to explain the existence of God. Philosophy aims to answer questions and set the standards in the way people think and assess situations. Its nature is such that it is critical and rationale. This means that all possible weaknesses have to be nipped in the bud. Positing absolute certainty means that philosophy has to reach an acme beyond which no one can come up with any further argument. Philosophy relies on rational judgment, so any philosophical claim or statement should be critical and based on pure reason and should not lead in circles. Philosophy should have a definite end point, a point which leaves no room for question marks. This is why philosophy must be absolute. However, since it is based on rational judgment, this absolute certainty can be difficult to achieve because rational judgment is relative, depending on factors like the environment one grows up in and even the foundations and teachings of one’s faith. It is thus rational to argue that the Cartesian method does not fully satisfy the philosophical requirements since the existence of God according to this method, though based on rational judgment according to the creator of the theory, leaves many a question unanswered as to the how God came to being, something that even Rene Descartes himself cannot explain satisfactorily. Although the Cartesian method has been criticized by many people, it actually does hold water. It achieved absolute certainty when Rene Descartes argues that he cannot be deceived into thinking that he does not exist, because unless something existed there would be nothing to deceive. This implies that one has to exist so as to be deceived, you cannot deceive that which does not exist. Absolute certainty becomes achievable mainly up to the extent of concrete things, those that we can see and touch, but when it comes to abstract matters which are based in thought and ideas, like the existence of God, the answers and explanations put forward in relation to the Cartesian method sometimes do not achieve the threshold required. According to the theory of knowledge by Rene Descartes, natural light or by the light of nature is the clear and distinct perception which emphasizes the nature that has been made by God. Natural light seems like the basis ...Show more

Summary

Name: Class: Date: Introduction Rene Descartes was a different philosopher in his own rights. He came up with the Cartesian method; this is a school of thought where he decided to doubteverything that he assumed to be in existence so as to see what cannot be doubted…
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