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Rene Descartes

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Yael Moya

on 9 October 2012

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Transcript of Rene Descartes

Rene Descartes PIONEERS OF PSYCHOLOGY: 1596-1650 Three Minute Philosophy: Rene Descartes Three Minute Philosophy: Rene Descartes Three Minute Philosophy: Rene Descartes THE END Rene Descartes was a G... Philosopher
Mathematician
Scientist Specifically, Descartes developed Western modern philosophy. He presented the idealization that knowledge is the outcome of reasoning based on self-evident assumptions. His concept of reasoning provided the foundation for modern philosophy throughout the 1600-present. The two beginning meditations in his work "Meditations on First Philosophy" introduced Cartesian doubt (also known as Cartesian skepticism, methodic doubt, methodological skepticism, or hyperbolic doubt.) "GANGSTA OF MODERN
PHILOSOPHY" Cartesian skepticism is a form of skepticism popularized by Descartes that uses the function of methodology in order to be skeptical about (doubting) the truth of one's beliefs. In Descartes Discourse on the Method, he attempts to arrive at a fundamental set of principles that one can know as true without any doubt. To achieve this, he employs a method that rejects any ideas that can be doubted, and then reestablishes them in order to acquire a firm foundation for genuine knowledge. THE COOLEST
SMARTEST DUDE EVER! "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." "I think, therefore I am" is an extremely important argument in the history of philosophy and is always used to prove that we actually exist. Descartes also used this as a foundation to come to more certainties (from the existence of his body to the existence of God). ...the most famous quote from Descartes translates from Latin to "I think, therefore I am". Descartes arrives at only a single principle: thought exists. Thought cannot be separated from me, therefore, I exist therefore, Descartes concluded, if he doubted, then something or someone must be doing the doubting, therefore the very fact that he doubted proved his existence.

"The simple meaning of the phrase is that if one is skeptical of existence, that is in and of itself proof that he does exist. Descartes concludes that he can be certain that he exists because he thinks. But in what form? He perceives his body through the use of the senses; however, these have previously been unreliable. So Descartes determines that the only indubitable knowledge is that he is a thinking thing. Thinking is what he does, and his power must come from his essence. THE FACT THAT WE THINK IS THE ONLY SOLID PROOF THAT SHOWS WE DO EXIST. DUALISM Mind–body problem Rene Descartes suggested that the body works like a machine, That it has material properties. The mind (or soul), on the other hand, was described as a nonmaterial and does not follow the laws of nature. Descartes argued that the mind interacts with the body at the pineal gland. This form of dualism or duality proposes that the mind controls the body, but that the body can also influence the otherwise rational mind, such as when people act out of passion. Most of the previous accounts of the relationship between mind and body had been uni-directional.

Descartes suggested that the pineal gland is "the seat of the soul" for several reasons. First, the soul is unitary, and unlike many areas of the brain the pineal gland appeared to be unitary (though subsequent microscopic inspection has revealed it is formed of two hemispheres). Second, Descartes observed that the pineal gland was located near the ventricles. He believed the cerebrospinal fluid of the ventricles acted through the nerves to control the body, and that the pineal gland influenced this process. Cartesian dualism set the agenda for philosophical discussion of the mind–body problem for many years after Descartes's death.

In present day discussions on the practice of animal vivisection, it is normal to consider Descartes as an advocate of this practice, as a result of his dualistic philosophy. Some of the sources say that Descartes denied the animals could feel pain, and therefore could be used without concern. Other sources consider that Descartes denied that animal had reason or intelligence, but did not lack sensations or perceptions, but these could be explained mechanistically. BE SKEPTIC OF THE SKEPTIC Rationalize That! Rationalism is an epistemological view that knowledge can be attained through reason. Descartes was most certainly a rationalist, using reason and deduction in many of his arguments, often stating that only reason and deduction can give us knowledge, as all else fails. Descartes is considered one of the first most important rationalist philosophers to emerge in the early Enlightenment. What differentiates Cartesian skepticism with regular Philosophical skepticism is that Philosophical skepticism denies the possibility of certainty in knowledge, whereas methodological skepticism is an approach that subjects all knowledge claims to scrutiny with the goal of sorting out true from false claims. In other words, its purpose is to use doubt as a route to certain knowledge by finding those things which could not be doubted cogito ergo sum yo His parents made bank so he's raining in money. MATHEMATICAL! Descartes most influential piece in mathematics was creating analytic geometry (coordinate geometry). Analytic geometry is the study of geometry using a coordinate system and the principles of algebra and analysis.
Before him Science and Math were taught as two different entities, never forming as one together.
Descartes also realized that arithmetic and algebra were not just sciences of numbers, but sciences of propositions, which justified the use of irrational numbers and opened up vast new mathematical possibilities.
The universal mathematics that Descartes described has since been applied to optics, astronomy, meteorology, acoustics, chemistry, architecture, physics, engineering, accounting, and warfare, all of which Descartes foresaw, plus electronics, cybernetics, microbiology, genetics, economics, and even politics, which he didn't.
He was the first to use the first letters of the alphabet to represent known quantities, and the last letters to represent unknown ones.
He also invented the method of using exponents, such as x2 to represent the powers of a number.
Descartes also formulated a rule known as Descartes' rule of signs, for finding the positive and negative roots of an algebraic equation. DON'T FUQ WITH SCIENCE In his study of optics he discovered the fundamental law of reflection- that the angle of incidence equals the angle of reflection.
Descartes dissected various animal heads to see in what form imagination and memory exists.
He studied reflexes and explained by what mechanism the eye blinks when a blow is approaching.
Descartes developed a theory of human emotions: the external cause of the emotion sets off a response and generates a corresponding emotion at the same time (eg. we see a dangerous animal approaching, which sets off an automatic response, such as flight, and causes the corresponding emotion: fear).
Descartes' studies led him to believe that the entire universe, except for God and the rational mind, operated on mechanical principles.
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