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Lecture 17

philosophy lecture 17 - Metaphysics and descartes.docx

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Philosophy 1020
John Thorp

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Metaphysics & Descartes’ Substance Dualism IDEA = IMAGE MIND = SOUL Two assumptions: 1. God exists 2. Thinking substance exists – even if we doubt thinking, we are still thinking. One thing we can be certain of, is a thinking substance Part one:  Recall: Epistemology concerns the theory of knowledge  Metaphysics concerns ultimate existence  Examples of metaphysical questions Part two:  Argument 1: are there external things  Objection: the dream sensations objection  Possible counter objection  Argument 2: external things are material things  Objection: difficulty in examining human error  Possible counter objections  Major objection: mind body interaction problems Part 1 Shift from Epistemology to metaphysics Recall: Epistemology concerns the theory of knowledge Characteristic of epistemological questions: How do we know that P? Def: knowledge – belief/truth/justification Analysis of truth: 1. Correspondence account 2. Coherence account 3. Pragmatic account Metaphysics concerns ultimate existence Two main senses (meanings) of existence: A) Commonsensical sense of existence a. Everyday use of ‘existence’ B) Ultimate sense of existence a. Metaphysician’s use of existence b. Ex: taste, red chair…. even though we see them, they aren’t really real Examples of some metaphysical questions  Do colours exist?  Does time exist?  Do natural numbers exist? o Note: these questions are asked in the ultimate sense of the word existence and not in the everyday sense of the word. General Metaphysical question Q. what exists in the world A. Everything Q. what ar
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