Rene Descartes On Personal Identity

Improved Essays
Personal identity refers to certain properties that make a person feel a special sense of attachment or ownership. Both philosophers John Locke and Rene Descartes had contrasting views about one’s working mind. Descartes believes that the mind cannot be identical to the body whereas Locke emphasizes that our bodies and mind are the same thing. Locke’s ideas on personal identity are primarily focused on memory, whereas Descartes is focused on the “thinking mind.” The thinking mind is our way of alerting the body, confirming that we are aware of our senses and selfhood. This interaction between the mind and body is commonly known as our consciousness, which has primary control over our mind and body. I unfortunately disagree with Locke and believe …show more content…
He developed this “I think therefore I am” hypothesis that vaguely points out that our brain is just an organ that houses the way we think and perceive information. The job of the brain is to break down and process what your mind is doing. Your mind is thinking, as it holds feelings, emotions, secrets, and personal thoughts. Your mind and brain are connected and placed in your head as the most important elements of your body. Your mind is in tune with your soul, whereas your brain is in tune with your body's functions. To keep a healthy mind, you must obtain your personal identity. Your personal identity overall describes your sense of “self.” Self is your consciousness, and our way of holding each other responsible for our thoughts and actions. Although a part of our “self” is subject to change through experience, we will mainly remain the same due to our beliefs and morals that we have instilled within us throughout our lifetimes from numerous origins like family, religion, and culture, which in turn help us identify as individuals. Descartes believes that one cannot lose themselves entirely in the process of finding their identity. According to him, when finding ourselves, we put our six passions to use. These are good for the soul to have, but could be easily wiped out. When they do harm, it's only because they strengthen and preserve our thoughts. Physically, we all change continuously, and our memories leave us or become incomplete. We could individually solve the most profound problems by only searching deep within ourselves. Finding ourselves reflects the message of The Method of Doubts because it requires a lot of

Related Documents

  • Improved Essays

    In John Locke’s essay idea is considered to be an object in which he uses for anything that a person’s sees or in which a person may be thinking of. He talks about qualities of being in one’s body in which the mind perceives on its own. Therefore quality is also a power that produces some idea in one’s mind. When he talks about “they are ideas or perception in our minds; and as they are modifications of matter in the bodies that cause such perception s in us” (E.24) keeping in mind that ideas or perception are internal operations in our minds that are perceived and reflected by ourselves. Therefore “modifications of matter” lack internal changes and are motions that our body does allowing one to perceive the object.…

    • 813 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Great Essays

    Mind Vs Body

    • 1529 Words
    • 7 Pages

    While those who believe that activities that are attributed to the mind, are just activities of the body are called materialist. Dualist believe that the Mind and the body are two separate entities. According to Rene Descartes, who was a dualist, “we can think of the self without a body, so it is not a body; we cannot think of the self without thinking, which is not a material act. So, the self must be a thinking, immaterial mind with a material body” (p. 79). This view is held by many traditionalist.…

    • 1529 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Churchland states: “you cannot understand the mind without understanding how the brain works.” (The Neural Basis of Consciousness) Churchland believes that fully understand brain structure and function is able to truly understand human consciousness. Churchland also realized that all consciousness are rooted in the nervous system of the human brain. As same as self-reflective awareness, it is rooted in the nervous system of the human brain either. It is based on the protection of the basic human need to survive in order to constant evolution of the nervous system and regulation. As we decide on the course of brain’s unconscious activity, ultimately unconscious neural activity in the brain is making decisions.…

    • 1335 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    So if you discover yourself by creating what needs to be discovered that contradicts the two models of Self-Discovery and Self-Creation. He has found his answer. Let’s recap what Self-Creation and Self-Discovery are again. Self-Creation is the idea that you are nothing more than what your conscious believes you to be. Self-Discovery is the idea that you have something inside, past your conscious that controls you.…

    • 759 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    But as we already know not everyone thinks in the same way, like Renè Descartes who believed that the mind makes an effort to take control over the brain and is the principal seat of the soul and place where all of our thought are being formed. George Berkeley created the theory called immaterialism on which it denies the existence of material substances and instead refers to that familiar object like tables and chairs, that are only ideas of the mind. As a result it cannot exist without being perceived. Thomas Hobbes who 's reputation relies on his…

    • 1440 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    The mind is extended from the body and interacts with brain to form our private selves. The body depends on the mind to function, but the mind can live without the body. According to Rene Descartes, “…when my body is hurt, I, who am merely a thinking thing, should not feel pain…For all these sensations of hunger, thirst, pain, ect. are in truth none other than certain confused modes of thought which are produced by the union and apparent intermingling of mind and body” (297). Rene Descartes means that the reason that people have emotions and feelings is because they have a mind.…

    • 2025 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Great Essays

    Besides, Descartes claims that this personal body have some particular perception which are recognized by the mind as being felt on the very own body: pain and pleasure. Consequently, Descartes argues that the human body is intimately intermingled with the mind, and the production of knowledge concerning some elements of the physical world depends on the relationship between these elements. As it widely known, Descartes’ dualism carries out some serious epistemological problems that Descartes dealt with in his correspondence with the princess Elizabeth. However, for our actual purpose it is enough that Descartes argues that the human body shares its substance with other physical objects; i.e. that the human body is an extend substance.…

    • 2575 Words
    • 11 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    As from monist, they believe that the body and mind itself is made up from the same matter. Hence, one can be error in their owns mind as the mind and the brain is one. When there is something wrong or an error happen to the brain, its mean that there is same error happened to the mind which can affect our mental activities. As a dualism, they believe that mind and brain are distinct element which mind as non-physical whereas brain is a physical element. The mind and brain are exist in separate but they have interaction between two of them.…

    • 1655 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    When people say “it is a mental thing”, they are talking about using their mind separate from their body. People may argue that our body is dependent on the mind to function-or move, or they may think that they complement each other. Meaning that whatever the mind does, the body follows. Since I believe that they are separate, and that our mind is not physical, it would not make sense to think that they have to always work together. I believe that yes, the mind and body do complement each other well, but it does not mean that they are dependent on one another.…

    • 968 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Dualism Argument Analysis

    • 827 Words
    • 4 Pages

    In conclusion I will reiterate that the brain and mind are separate from each other, that cartesian dualism is true. The first argument I put forward to support dualism is; the brain and mind of human beings are different from each other. They both have unique properties and distinctive roles in human beings. The brain has definable characteristics that can be observed and analysed (Robinson, 2012, p.2). For example the activity of the brain when sleeping is examinable on electroencephalograms (Marieb & Hoehn, 2013, p.452).…

    • 827 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays