Sample Coursework Paper on Philosophy

Meditation is aimed at reflecting on the falsehoods that one has been made to believe in their life and seeking the truth. It begins with doubting the things that one believes ends in the formation of firm foundations for the arguments of the falsehood of the beliefs. Descartes had doubt in the reality of God and immortality of the human soul, and this doubt led to his meditation on the same. His project was not successful because he separated science from religion. Descartes distinguished the body from the mind arguing that the matters related to religion were of the mind or the soul while the scientific matters were true of the body. It is not possible to draw a line between the two because they affect one another.

Descartes argued that bad thinking can be destroyed through doubt on three levels. The perceptual illusion is the first level where he stressed that one is not supposed to believe everything in the first time they see or hear about it. The dream problem is the other level that he argued that could destroy bad thinking. In the third level, Descartes suggested the possibility of a god that is deceiving (Descartes & Cottingham, 2013). It is thus possible to doubt almost anything that one believes in.

The ontological arguments by Descartes differ from what was proposed by Anselm. The definition of God’s real existence by the latter is a being that is beyond human conception, but Descartes’ argument founds on the doctrine of distinct and clear perception and the theory of innate ideas. Despite the differences, both philosophers agree that there exists a highest authority that is beyond human understanding (Descartes, 2002). Descartes suggested human beings’ awareness of their existence because they can think. The mind is more popular and pronounced than the body.

 

References

Descartes, R., & Cottingham, J. (2013). René Descartes: Meditations on First Philosophy: With Selections from the Objections and Replies. Cambridge University Press.

Descartes, R. (2002). Meditations on First Philosophy, Sixth Mediation: The Existence Of Material Things, And The Real Distinction Between Mind And Body as quoted in “Philosophy of Mind: Classical and Contemporary Readings” edited by David J Chalmers.