By Anne Ashley Davenport
This quantity has a unmarried target: to argue that Descartes’s such a lot basic discovery isn't the epistemological topic, yet relatively the underlying unfastened agent with no whom no epistemological topic is feasible. This clean interpretation of the Cartesian “cogito” is defended via an in depth examining of Descartes’s masterpiece, the Meditations . detailed consciousness is paid to the historic roots of Descartes’s curiosity in unfastened company, really his shut ties to the French institution of spirituality. 3 elements of Descartes’s own evolution are thought of: his aesthetic evolution from Baroque concealment to Classicism, his political evolution from feudal nostalgia to trendy secularism, and his non secular evolution from Stoic knowledge to lively engagement on the planet in the course of the clinical venture.
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Additional info for Descartes's Theory of Action
When the nuns failed to get Mother Angélique Arnauld to write down the story of the reform of Port-Royal, they asked her spiritual director to command her to do it as a matter of obedience. 100 Bérulle, “Oeuvres de Piété” CLXXXI, in Oeuvres Complètes, II, 1078, col. 1245. 98 spiritual directors and spiritual action 19 whether he appreciates the higher dimension of his deliberate aksesis or not. When Bérulle describes Copernicus as “an excellent mind,” what else does he mean than a mind self-disciplined out of reverence for truth?
16 Letter to Mersenne, Dec. 25, 1639, AT II, 630. For Étienne Gilson’s arguments that the Summa in question is the Summa Contra Gentiles, see La liberté chez Descartes et la théologie, 99–100. ” For Thomas Aquinas, see Summa Contra Gentiles, Bk. 2, chap. 49: “That the intellectual substance is not a body” and chap. ” See also Summa Theologica, Part I, Ques. 75 and 76. –L. Marion’s discussion, in Règles utiles et claires pour la direction de l’esprit, 244. 1. Actions vs. Passions Descartes’s interest in understanding how passions of the soul trigger behavior and how mental actions are connected (or not) to bodily movements dates back to 1619–1620.
When it applies itself (3) to the imagination as a blank slate for the purpose of inventing (ﬁngere) new shapes, the cognitive force is said to imagine or conceive: imaginari vel concipere. Finally, when (4) it “acts alone,” (sola agat), it is said to understand (intelligere). Although Descartes had initially stated that we have four faculties, he now clariﬁes that we have one indivisible “spiritual force” that manifests itself in four different ways. ” In what sense does it alternatively act and “suﬀer” (patitur)?