Descartes: Meditation Iii Summary Essay

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Juliana Tabor
Professor Webb
Introduction to Philosophy
4/1/13
Descartes: Meditations 3

In Descartes’s Meditations III, the Meditator describes his idea of God as "a substance that is infinite, eternal, immutable, independent, supremely intelligent, supremely powerful, and which created both myself and everything else."(70) Thus, due to his opinion in regards to the idea of God, the Meditator views God containing a far more objective reality than a formal one. Due to the idea that of God being unable to have originated in himself, he ultimately decides that God must be the cause of the idea, therefore he exists. The meditator defines God as such, “by ‘God’ I mean the very being the idea of whom is within me, that is, the possessor of all the perfections which I cannot grasp, but can somehow reach in my thought, which subject no defects whatsoever.” (70) The meditator disagrees with the argument that he could believe in a God due to being in denial, and creating the idea in contrast with his own imperfect self. Our own self-doubts, as well as our wishes derive from the idea that we are not adequate and there exists a perfect pious being. "In this first instance of knowledge, there is nothing but a clear and distinct perception of what I affirm. Yet this would hardly be enough to render me certain of the truth of a thing, if it could ever happen that something that I perceived so clearly and distinctly were false. And thus I now seem to be able to posit as a general that everything I clearly and distinctly perceive is true." The meditator also alludes to the idea that he could possibly be on the brink of perfection, and his remaining flaws are slowly vanishing, and he is growing more and more immaculate. However, if he is capable of being perfect, then he is capable of conceiving the idea of God without outside influence. "I am certain that I am a thinking thing. But do I not therefore also know what is required for me to be certain of anything?" (70)The...
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