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Monday, January 17, 2011


Self portrait of Rene Descartes , Frans Hals c. 1640 Louvre


I Think Therefore I am (Rene Descartes)
By Afi Drahman

The philosopher who taught of this important statement has great impact to our future life. This is because his way of thinking has triggered the others questioning the existence of life and one self. Another way of understanding this philosophy is that he is thinking towards logical point of view. One needs to prove an existence with a solid evidence and justification.

HOW does Descarte's quote brings us to the thinking of modern man?

In the center of commotion resulted from high payment of taxation to the church and overthrowing the monarchies, people need new guide on continuing their life. The appearance of Rene Descartes and his philosophy has attracted minds to think beyond and explore the world of KNOWLEDGE.

Descartes stated, “The chief cause of our errors is to be found in the prejudice of our childhood.”

This is why he starts to doubt everything and he will only accept as true only those things that were demonstrably true to him. He reasoned that doubt was a thought, and thought could not take place without someone think to it.

“ Descartes’s general goal was to help human beings master and possess nature. He provided understanding of the trunk of the tree of knowledge in The world, Dioptrics, Meteorology, and Geometry, and he established its metaphysical roots in Meditations.

In the statement above clearly referring to his vision on the importance of discovering knowledge of science. The ongoing process of discovering new knowledge has brought more intellectuals people to debate and collaborate for the sake of knowledge. His published works were later use by other philosophers and individuals for further research.

One of example of his findings which being used till today is the algebraic geometry coordinates which now called Cartesian coordinates. He suggested solution on how to solve intricate problems which by breaking large problems into smaller steps that could be completely understood. Here we can see that creative thinking among philosophers starts to generate and could be apply to other field(s).

Here are some links dedicated to Rene Descartes history and his contributions. (recommended as they have some videos regarding to this topic)

(updating in progress 24th jan) next topic: concept of joy of work relate to modern thinking and ornamental is it a crime?

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