David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Philosophia 38 (1):69-105 (2010)
Descartes famously endorsed the view that (CD) God freely created the eternal truths, such that He could have done otherwise than He did. This controversial doctrine is much discussed in recent secondary literature, yet Descartes’s actual arguments for CD have received very little attention. In this paper I focus on what many take to be a key Cartesian argument for CD: that divine simplicity entails the dependence of the eternal truths on the divine will. What makes this argument both important and interesting is that Descartes’s scholastic predecessors share the premise of divine simplicity but reject the CD conclusion. To properly understand Descartes, then, we must determine precisely where he diverges from his predecessors on the path from simplicity to CD. And when we do so we obtain a very surprising result: that despite many dramatic prima facie differences, there is no substantive difference between the relevant doctrines of Descartes and the scholastics . Or so I argue.
|Keywords||Descartes Eternal truths Scholastics Divine simplicity|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
Lilli Alanen (1985). Descartes, Duns Scotus and Ockham on Omnipotence and Possibility. Franciscan Studies 45 (1):157-188.
Lilli Alanen (1988). Descartes, Omnipotence, and Kinds of Modality. In Peter H. Hare (ed.), Doing Philosophy Historically. Prometheus Books. 182--200.
Jonathan Bennett (1994). Descartes's Theory of Modality. Philosophical Review 103 (4):639-667.
J. Bouveresse (1983). A Response to Kenny, Anthony+ the Cartesian Spiral. Revue Internationale de Philosophie 37 (146):259-264.
Janet Broughton (1987). Necessity and Physical Laws in Descartes's Philosophy. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 68 (3/4):205.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Amos Funkenstein (1975). Descartes, Eternal Truths, and the Divine Omnipotence. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 6 (3):185-199.
Patricia Easton (2009). What is at Stake in the Cartesian Debates on the Eternal Truths? Philosophy Compass 4 (2):348-362.
Lilli Alanen (1991). Descartes, Conceivability, and Logical Modality. In Tamara Horowitz (ed.), Thought Experiments in Science and Philosophy. Rowman and Littlefield.
Graham Oppy (2003). The Devilish Complexities of Divine Simplicity. Philo 6 (1):10-22.
M. T. (2003). Cartesian Causation: Body-Body Interaction, Motion, and Eternal Truths. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 34 (4):737-762.
C. P. Ragland (2005). Descartes on Divine Providence and Human Freedom. Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie 87 (2):159-188.
Dan Kaufman (2003). Divine Simplicity and the Eternal Truths in Descartes. British Journal for the History of Philosophy 11 (4):553 – 579.
Dan Kaufman (2003). Infimus Gradus Libertatis? Descartes on Indifference and Divine Freedom. Religious Studies 39 (4):391-406.
Added to index2009-05-02
Total downloads106 ( #16,032 of 1,696,808 )
Recent downloads (6 months)12 ( #50,381 of 1,696,808 )
How can I increase my downloads?