Studies in the Cartesian Philosophy

Studies in the Cartesian Philosophy

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Studies in the Cartesian Philosophy

Studies in the Cartesian Philosophy

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Excerpt

When Huxley declares that Descartes advanced beyond his age and anticipated what would be the thoughts of all men three hundred years after him, he has mainly in view Descartes' achievements in the natural sciences. And in that relation the assertion is undoubtedly justified. In a more adequate manner than even Galileo or Bacon, Descartes formulated the methods and defined the ideals of modern science. A very different estimate must, however, be made of his work in metaphysics. Though the new and definite conception of nature which he derived from his studies in the sciences, enabled him to state the problem of perception, and the problem of the relation of mind and body, much in the form in which they persist to the present day, his metaphysical teaching is perverted, I shall try to show, by principles wholly at variance with his own positive scientific . . .

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