Essay on Descartes 's Meditations On First Philosophy

Essay on Descartes 's Meditations On First Philosophy

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In his Meditations on First Philosophy, René Descartes seeks to prove that corporeal objects exist. This argument is put forth based on the principles and supposed facts he has built up throughout the Meditations. In order to fully understand his argument for the existence of corporeal things, one must trace his earlier arguments for effects and their causes, the existence of God, the nature of God, and his ability to never make mistakes.
Descartes sought to establish some truths in the world that would never be proven false through his Meditations. In order to do so, Descartes said that he had to call everything into question of which he thought was true, because building truths on other truths that are not absolutely true allows for error, and many years of scientific thought wasted if it was spent using false information. Therefore, Descartes begins by doubting everything and slowly works his way through overcoming doubt with certainty in order to contribute and make more efficient the scientific community. This even came down to God, the existence of the physical world, and himself.
However, Descartes determines early on that he exists. He notes that he has thoughts, and whether or not they come from him, they do exist, and he cannot be convinced of otherwise. He also notes that if the thoughts are not his own and something else is making him think these thoughts that he must exist somehow in the first place and have thoughts to corrupt in order to have some entity make him think thoughts that are not his. He does not yet in his argument state his theory for effects and their causes, but it is around this point in his argument that he is conveying this idea: nothing happens without a reason.
One can see in everyday life that...

... middle of paper ...

... exist. Also central to his argument for the existence of God is that this idea of God being perfect means that he must exist, since an existent God would be better than one that is nonexistent, and therefore the very thought of God is interlocked with the idea that he exists.
If God would not allow for any other powerful being to exist and he is infinitely good, then it follows, according to Descartes, that the idea of God himself must come from God. Descartes relies on these principles and their implications in order to prove the existence of the corporeal world.
There is, however, another principle that is key to his proof of the existence of the corporeal world, and that is
Descartes uses the same method of elimination he uses when considering the origin of his understanding of God. Descartes considers where these clear and distinct perceptions come from, and

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