TED Conversations

This conversation is closed. Start a new conversation
or join one »

i think, therefore we exist.

I think, therefore we exist
Descartes said “I think, therefore I exist”.
Brief summary. If everything turn out to be illusion, e.g. the whole world is like dream or omnipotent is tricking you or that you in matrix…. There is one think you can false back to and prove that you exist.
1) I can’t doubt that I’m doubting
2) I can’t be decieved about whether I’m thinking.

 If I am doubting, I must exist
 I think, therefore I exist.
He was first western to prove and support dualism. Using indiscernibility of identical it possible to prove Mind & body as separate.

However I believe he is not correct. The problem with his agrument is where is he getting the ‘I’. How can he separate the ‘I’ e.g from the illusion or omnipotent or matrix … If he know the ‘I’ he does not even need prove that ‘I must exist’. He simply say ‘I know myself, therefore do not need prove even I exist.’ He or not anyone know ‘I’ only ‘we’, so what is we is dream we is you and dream, in omnipotent tricking you, we is omnipotnet and you, in a matrix we is the matrix system and you. Etc..
1) I can’t separate myself fully from the we.

->we think, therefore we exist

To agrue against 1) I can’t separate myself fully from the we. You say that the part that is doubting is me and other part that is not doubing is other entities. It only prove that you are doubter, not best describation of you.
1) Do you 100% doubt ? very unlikely. Plus
AND
2) While other entites 0% doubt. Very unlikely. (because matrix or omnipotent know what it doing to you, you are one in confusion)
3) If you can know what I is, you are not in doubt. You don’t need prove it.
Without doubt we can only best prove. We (or I) think, therefore we exist.
Therefore it is not possible to separate the body and mind as totally different planes. You need a better prove to prove dualism.
Good thing in case of mind & body, I (the mind or brain) think, therefore we (mind & body) exist. It is hard separate both.

+1
Share:

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • Sep 21 2013: You pose a very deep philosophical question. Descartes quote, "Je pense, donc je suis" (I think, therefore I am) is certainly a mind-stretching quote because of its intense transcendent nature. The first thought that pops into my mind when I here that quote is "How can I prove my own existence?". What if my life is an illusion? What if everything happening in and around me doesn't exist?

    However, I think Descartes really struck home with "I think, therefore I am". Right now, I'm typing keys on a keyboard. My conscious is also aware of my typing, and that fact is an idea in my head. An idea cannot stand alone; you need a device to hold it, to nurture it, in this case a human brain. You cannot hold onto an idea - it is intangible. There is nothing anchoring it to reality, except our minds which hold and these ideas. You cannot put an idea into a cardboard box, like the one that your last shipment of Christmas gifts came in. One cannot physically touch, hold, or drop and idea. Even a computer cannot hold an idea - however it can hold words, which can be understood by the next person who reads them. These words can then be formulated into an idea similar to the first.

    The entire last paragraph was an attempt to gather evidence to support this statement: If an idea cannot stand alone, and ideas exist, then something must be mentally holding that idea. Therefore, if an idea exists, the mental holding container for it must exist as well. Every human is born with a mental holding container - our brains. It has be proven humans have brains (thousands and millions of cells producing chemical reactions that allow the process of thought). Therefore, if ideas exist, then brains exist. If brains exist, humans exist. And if humans exist, you and I exist.

    Any questions? Comments? Rebuttals?
    • Sep 21 2013: I understand what you saying. However can you prove it without any doubt, logically. that is what Descartes was trying. from small we though that we have mind, brain and body, so it make sense however it does not prove it logically 'I exist'. when we carefully question it, it is in doubt.

      Descartes is dualism. It say mind in one realm the mental and body in the other realm physical. how do we move?. there are two separate realm.

      what "We" in case of the mind and body (dualism) is both mind and body, there are interlinked.It is in a mix realm (mental & physical), if go left close 0% it is fully mental, if go less than 50% it is slightly mental and higher than 50% it is physical and close to 100% it is physical. the brain probably 50% , it connect the mind with body. so we can move, think, interact with physical and mental world.

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.