Descartes’ Meditation

1. In Descartes’ First Meditation, why does he set about doubting all of his knowledge? What is he hoping to achieve?  2. In the First Meditation, Descartes provides two skeptical arguments. What are they, and what kind of knowledge claims does each argument call into question? 3. In the Second Meditation, Descartes argues that we can be certain of one thing. What does he claim we can know with certainty, and what is the reason he gives? Do you agree that we can know this with certainty? 4. In the Second Meditation, Descartes introduces the wax analogy. Explain the significance of the wax example. What was the purpose in Descartes’ example? 5. In the Third Meditation, Descartes talks about three sources of ideas: innate, adventitious, and self-created. Explain what these ideas are. How does Descartes relate the idea of an idea’s source with the idea of God? Where does Descartes claim the idea of God comes from?

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