- The philosophical system of Rene Descartes (1596-1650) was based on doubt, because to doubt is to think. His system became known as Cartesian philosophy, derived from the Latinized form of his name. His most famous conclusion was expressed in three words: Cogito, ergo sum ("I think, therefore I am"). His theory of the importance of doubt is based on the assumption that all existing knowledge rests on an unstable foundation; therefore everything that can be doubted should be doubted. The only fact that he could not doubt was that he was doubting. He reasoned that to doubt is to think, and to think is to exist. Hence the above three-word conclusion.Descartes provided many expressions that have been passed down through the ages; for example, "Common sense is the most widely distributed commodity in the world, for everyone is convinced that he is well supplied with it." And another: "The reading of all good books is like a conversation with the finest men of past centuries."Descartes was born at La Haye in Touraine, attended the Jesuit College at La Fleche, and was graduated in law from the University of Poitiers. After ten years' service in the army, and then travel throughout Europe, he settled in Holland where he remained the rest of his life and where he did his most important work. In 1649 he accepted an invitation to teach philosophy to Queen Christina of Sweden. He died a few months after arriving at the court at Stockholm.Descartes was an eminent mathematician. He is often called the father of modern philosophy. His two chief works are Discourse on Method and Meditations. Descartes' explanation of heavenly bodies has been replaced by Newton's theory of gravitation.
Dictionary of eponyms. Morton S. Freeman. 2013.
Look at other dictionaries:
Cartesian product — The Cartesian product of two sets, A and B (written A × B), is the set of all ordered pairs whose first member is an element of A, and whose second member is an element of B … Philosophy dictionary
philosophy, Western — Introduction history of Western philosophy from its development among the ancient Greeks to the present. This article has three basic purposes: (1) to provide an overview of the history of philosophy in the West, (2) to relate… … Universalium
Cartesian linguistics — Noam Chomsky s Cartesian Linguistics: A Chapter in the History of Rationalist Thought , published in 1966, has the purpose of deepening our understanding of the nature of language and the mental processes and structures that underlies its use and … Wikipedia
Philosophy (The) of the Italian Renaissance — The philosophy of the Italian Renaissance Jill Kraye TWO CULTURES: SCHOLASTICISM AND HUMANISM IN THE EARLY RENAISSANCE Two movements exerted a profound influence on the philosophy of the Italian Renaissance: scholasticism and humanism, both of… … History of philosophy
Cartesian skepticism — refers to the method of reasoned skepticism employed by the 17th Century Philosopher René Descartes. Frequently referred to as Methodological Skepticism or Methodological Doubt, this concept forms an important component of Descartes… … Wikipedia
Philosophy — • Detailed article on the history of the love of wisdom Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Philosophy Philosophy † … Catholic encyclopedia
Philosophy of Immanuel Kant — Philosophy of Immanuel Kant † Catholic Encyclopedia ► Philosophy of Immanuel Kant Kant s philosophy is generally designated as a system of transcendental criticism tending towards Agnosticism in theology, and favouring the view that… … Catholic encyclopedia
Cartesian — Car*te sian, a. [From Renatus Cartesius, Latinized from of Ren[ e] Descartes: cf. F. cart[ e]sien.] Of or pertaining to the French philosopher Ren[ e] Descartes, or his philosophy. [1913 Webster] The Cartesion argument for reality of matter. Sir… … The Collaborative International Dictionary of English
Cartesian coordinates — Cartesian Car*te sian, a. [From Renatus Cartesius, Latinized from of Ren[ e] Descartes: cf. F. cart[ e]sien.] Of or pertaining to the French philosopher Ren[ e] Descartes, or his philosophy. [1913 Webster] The Cartesion argument for reality of… … The Collaborative International Dictionary of English
Cartesian devil — Cartesian Car*te sian, a. [From Renatus Cartesius, Latinized from of Ren[ e] Descartes: cf. F. cart[ e]sien.] Of or pertaining to the French philosopher Ren[ e] Descartes, or his philosophy. [1913 Webster] The Cartesion argument for reality of… … The Collaborative International Dictionary of English