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Read Rene Descartes’ Meditations I and II and reflect on the following: 1. In your own...

Read Rene Descartes’ Meditations I and II and reflect on the following:


1. In your own words, how would you summarize Descartes’ argument with respect to knowledge, as he outlines it in Meditation I? Specifically, what is he arguing with respect to what we can know with certainty, and what evidence does he use to support his argument (premises), to reach his conclusion? When answering, make specific references (with quotations) to what Descartes says.

2. What seems to be Descartes’ ultimate conclusion with respect to knowledge, as outlined in Meditation II? Specifically, what is he now arguing with respect to what we can know with certainty, and what evidence does he use to support his argument (premises), to reach his conclusion? When answering, make specific references (with quotations) to what Descartes says.

3. Do you find yourself agreeing or disagreeing with Descartes’ ultimate argument and conclusion, as you described them #1 and #2? Explain why.

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Answer #1

1. According to Descartes meditation helps to rebuild the knowledge. It makes one aware about the existence of truth. All the past experiences come to his mind while in meditation. All the physical senses remain suspended because his senses can be directed to either evil thought or good thought. He becomes aware of his own existence. He realizes that as he is thinking, so he exists. He clearly perceives of his own self. It generates faith to God and he feels that all the perfection existed in his are inherent and given by God. He believes in the existence of God. He also perceives that he is not deceived by God. He does errors for his own error of judgment for insufficient knowledge. It confirms one’s belief in the existence of God. He believes that as there is body, so there is also the existence of God. He says, " I think, therefore I am". His final realization is that senses are to feel the surrounding. Senses never lead one to the path of truth.

2. Here Descartes says that what we feel through senses is not true. Senses may lead us to lie. He says that thinking proves that we exist. We exist because we can think. Therefore we are thinking being. Through meditation, one thinks properly and we can feel our self and our existence. He says, “If you would be a real seeker after truth, it is necessary that at least once in your life you doubt, as far as possible, all things.” So it is clear that real meditation leads us to the path of truth.

3. Descartes is absolutely right. Man is a thinking animal. So, real thinking is only possible through meditation. It helps one to search truth.  

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