Rene Descartes Dreaming Argument Essay

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Rene Descartes work ‘Meditations on First Philosophy’ is filled with his many ideas on God, the relationship between the mind and body and the trustworthiness of things we believe to be true. The main focus of this essay is his arguments for distrusting the senses. These are the dreaming argument and the evil demon argument.
Meditations begins with Descartes casting doubt on everything he once believed to be absolutely true. It is a search for absolute certainty. In order to do this he uses what is referred to as the method of doubt. (Broughton, 2003)
Descartes’ method of doubt is to analyse and reject every belief that it is possible to cast the slightest of doubt upon. This method was not to look at every belief separately but to look at
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The first being that you cannot trust authorities as they disagree amongst themselves and have differing theories and ideas and therefore they cannot be passing on certain truths as they would agree if that was the case.
The mistrust of the senses is the basis of what will become Descartes’ dreaming argument, this is the idea that you cannot at any time trust your senses as they deceive us regularly in the form of things that are far away or too close being easily misinterpreted (Feinberg and Shafer-Landau, 2015).
From this Descartes introduces his dreaming argument. He begins by discussing that there are times when he believes he is sat awake in front of his fire when he is actually asleep in his bed; he tries to explain this by stating that he may be like an insane person who claims they are dressed a certain way when they are in fact not dressed at all before quickly dismissing this idea. He then introduces the idea that dreaming is a more believable explanation. (Broughton, 2003)
The dreaming argument is fundamentally that we do not know we are dreaming and that dreams feel like we are awake, therefore we cannot say for certain at any moment that what we are experiencing is real life and not actually a

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