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Phil & Ethics: Part 1 - Philosophy > comparison > Flashcards

Flashcards in comparison Deck (6)
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1

anselm and Descartes on perfection

anselm
o It wouldn’t make sense to worship something that is anything less than perfection
o Does he offer 2 arguments?
o Perfection as a motor for reason
o while Anselm derives the existence of God from his definition of God, Descartes goes further in combining this with a theory of innate ideas, as well as the doctrine of clear and distinct perception

descartes
o God’s essence = perfection
o God is sum of all perfections (slightly different to Anselm who unpacks his argument in terms of conceivability and maximal greatness rather than sum of all perfections)
o God cannot be systematically deceiving us (problem of perceptual variation)

2

Anselm and Descartes on I vs. you

Emphasis on the ‘you’
o Doxological style
o It is a prayer

- Emphasis is on the I
o But it is still a meditation
o Personal task to prove that he can have confidence in the world
o Reflects interest in maths – a priori knowledge
There is a suspicion with experience

3

plato and descartes

- Platonic idea of quasi-divine illumination can be seen in Descartes’ use of scepticism. Divergence is that Plato is not clear as to what role (if any) divinity plays
- Both Plato and Anselm adopt a dualist approach to their views on the soul
Plato argued that the soul was the immaterial and immortal part of the body; for instance, in the Phaedo, Plato offers three arguments for the soul’s immortality. Whilst Descartes does share a dualist vision, it is clear that his view of the soul does in fact diverge from classical and medieval tradition. As Gilson highlights, ‘l’originalité de Descartes fut de repenser (la) distinction (entre le corps et l’âme) en fonction de la physique mécaniste’

4

descartes and aquians

argument for existence parallels 3rd way
- every created item = essence and existence. god's are equal

but Aquinas - more a posteriori

A stresses mysteriousness of god, D wants direct cognitive access

5

descartes and augustinee

- illuminationist epistemology
- cofg, si fallor, sum
- human intellect = generally reliable as given by god
- but divergence as D's knowledge is not a product of divine assistance, uses I not you
- uses A contemplation but combines with mathematics
- dualist approach but D describes in mechanistic terms
- doxological style

6

descartes and plato

dualism
images as dreams
seeking knowledge
immortal soul