Analyzing Main Concepts of Rene Descartes’ Philosophy

Categories: Rene Descartes

Descartes has six meditations listed in his book. He vividly discards the need for believing in things that are not necessarily certain. In his books, he tries to state the relevant things that people he claims people should know for sure. According to the way the meditations are outlined in the book, it seems he had experienced the meditations in six consecutive days because the following meditation refers to the previous one as yesterday. It is believed that he started to work on his meditations in 1639 and till to date; his context is one of the best philosophical texts to be written.

It has influenced many philosophers greatly around the world.

Descartes’ proof of the existence of God is both fascinating and at the same time barely understood. Descartes argue that the existence of God emanates from the simple but complex premises he created. He clearly states that the existence of the perfect human being and other animals is enough proof of the existence of a supernatural God (Witham, 2011).

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However, Descartes tendency of expressing his philosophies confuses many people which account for the confusion that revolves around his arguments.

Descartes’ first meditation is all about expressing the doubtable aspects about god. He introduces the readers to the several falsehoods that he had believed in. Descartes’ resolved on trashing everything that he believed in and started to build a new foundation of knowledge and belief based on credible aspects (Witham, 2011). He believed that he only needed one reason to doubt his existence so that he could create a foundation based on that doubt.

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In his reflections, he states that some of the simple things can also be subjected to doubt. He says that the belief in an Omnipotent God could be false. He states that this is because people believe that god is extremely good and that he would not lead them into bad things. He further states that people the belief on omnipotent god means that the people would reason that god would never deceive them by all means. The irony is that he also states that when people believe that there is no God there is a higher tendency of being deceived because of his believe that the human imperfect sense was not created by a perfect being. By avoiding being skeptical, he says that an evil being is responsible for human imperfection because God created us in his likeness (Witham, 2011).

The first meditation is evidently full of skeptical doubts while skepticism is a hot philosophical debate on its own. Descartes mysteriously raises the question of how humans claim to understand the world around them with certainty without wanting to know who may be responsible for their existence. It is at that point that he started to raise doubt so that he can understand the world in a better way. His idea is not meant to argue the existence of God but at the same time, they cannot be ruled out since they have created a foundation of knowledge to understand the world. Descartes uses philosophical methods that enabled him to believe in the truth that was indubitable. He was able to divide his question and doubts into manageable parts where he started with simple aspects and dealt with the complexities afterward. These methods helped him to support the existence of God by comparing humans with animals and other objects that did not have a soul and finally came to the conclusion that the existence of humans is the main proof for the existence of God.

Updated: Feb 17, 2024
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Analyzing Main Concepts of Rene Descartes’ Philosophy. (2024, Feb 17). Retrieved from

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