What did rene descartes discover

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what did rene descartes discover

Rene Descartes Quotes (Author of Discourse on Method and Meditations on First Philosophy)

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Who Was Rene Descartes? (Famous Philosophers)

Rene learned something of Galileo's work including his recent amazing discovery of Jupiter's moons. At this time, Galileo had still not published his greatest.

Rene Descartes

Because he was one of the first to abandon scholastic Aristotelianism , because he formulated the first modern version of mind-body dualism , from which stems the mind-body problem, and because he promoted the development of a new science grounded in observation and experiment, he has been called the father of modern philosophy. He developed a metaphysical dualism that distinguishes radically between mind, the essence of which is thinking, and matter, the essence of which is extension in three dimensions. He is often considered a precursor to the rationalist school of thought , and his vast contributions to the fields of mathematics and philosophy , individually as well as holistically, helped pushed Western knowledge forward during the scientific revolution. He is also attributed with developing Cartesian dualism also referred to as mind-body dualism , the metaphysical argument that the mind and body are two different substances which interact with one another. In the mathematics sphere, his primary contribution came from bridging the gap between algebra and geometry , which resulted in the Cartesian coordinate system still widely used today.

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He was extensively educated, first at a Jesuit college at age 8, then earning a law degree at 22, but an influential teacher set him on a course to apply mathematics and logic to understanding the natural world. He was the youngest of three children, and his mother, Jeanne Brochard, died within his first year of life. His father, Joachim, a council member in the provincial parliament, sent the children to live with their maternal grandmother, where they remained even after he remarried a few years later. So did spending the next four years earning a baccalaureate in law at the University of Poitiers. Some scholars speculate that he may have had a nervous breakdown during this time. Descartes later added theology and medicine to his studies. So he traveled, joined the army for a brief time, saw some battles and was introduced to Dutch scientist and philosopher Isaac Beeckman, who would become for Descartes a very influential teacher.

He published other works that deal with problems of method, but this remains central in any understanding of the Cartesian method of science. Descartes is usually portrayed as one who defends and uses an a priori method to discover infallible knowledge, a method rooted in a doctrine of innate ideas that yields an intellectual knowledge of the essences of the things with which we are acquainted in our sensible experience of the world. In fact, Descartes sought to found our knowledge of things as much in experience and in experiment as in things a priori. He asks the reader to carefully observe an eyeball, say that of an ox, from which a portion of the rear has been removed with sufficient care to leave the eyeball fluid untouched. The portion removed is covered with a thin piece of paper. Descartes then describes how one can view the image formed on the back of the eyeball of objects at varying distances from the front of the eyeball, how the size of the image varies with distance, becomes fuzzier when the eyeball is squeezed, and so on. The method was to, in the first place, explore it by empirical observation.

His fundamental break with Scholastic philosophy was twofold. Second, he wanted to replace their final causal model of scientific explanation with the more modern, mechanistic model. Descartes attempted to address the former issue via his method of doubt. His basic strategy was to consider false any belief that falls prey to even the slightest doubt. This clearing of his previously held beliefs then puts him at an epistemological ground-zero. From here Descartes sets out to find something that lies beyond all doubt.


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