Does George Berkeley provide an argument for the existence of the Judeo-Christian God at Principles of Human Knowledge, part I, section 29? The standard answer is that he does. In this paper, we challenge that interpretation. First, we look at section 29 in the context of its preceding sections and argue that the most the argument establishes is that there are at least two minds, that is, that the thesis of solipsism is false. Next, we examine the argument in section (...) 29 in light of the conclusions Berkeley draws in sections 30–33. There Berkeley concludes that there is one cause of the ordered world of ideas, a cause he calls the "Author of Nature." We argue that Berkeley's Author of Nature is conceptually distinct from, although numerically identical with, the Judeo-Christian God, for whose existence Berkeley argues in section 146. Finally, we ask whether, if our conclusion is correct, it is significant that Berkeley drew a conceptual distinction between the Author of Nature and the Judeo-Christian God. (shrink)
In Section 38 of the Theory of Vision Vindicated, George Berkeley claims that he had used the method of analysis throughout the Theory of Vision. What does that mean? I first show that "analysis" denoted a fairly well-defined method in the early modern period: it was regularly described as a method of discovery. Then I show that the discussion of distance perception in the Theory of Vision exemplifies the method of analysis and may be seen as a modification of a (...) non-geometrical account of distance vision in Rene Descartes' Optics. (shrink)
Rene Descartes credited his success in philosophy, mathematics, and physics to the discovery of a universal method of inquiry, but he provided no systematic description of his method. Descartes and Method carefully examines Descartes's scattered remarks on his application and puts forward a systematic account of his method with particular attention to the role it plays in the Meditations . The authors boldly and convincingly argue against the orthodox conception that Descartes had no method. Through a rigirous and thorough examination, (...) Daniel E. Flage and Clarence A. Bonnen unearth and explain the role of the method of analysis in the Meditations . This is a genuinly ground-breaking book that is sure to make a considerable impact on the philosophy community. (shrink)
IT IS ARGUED THAT DESCARTES DREW A METHODOLOGICAL DISTINCTION BETWEEN THE ORDER IN WHICH ONE ENTERTAINS PROPOSITIONS AND THE ORDER OF EPISTEMIC PRIMACY. RECOGNIZING THIS RECONCILES ANY "PRIMA FACIE" INCONSISTENCIES AMONG THE "COGITO" PASSAGES, MOST NOTABLY, THOSE BETWEEN THE "COGITO" PASSAGES IN THE "PRINCIPLES OF PHILOSOPHY" AND THE "SECOND REPLIES".
While most of hume's criticisms of the doctrine of substance are epistemological and theory-Independent, We show that in "treatise" i.Iv.5, Hume develops a metaphysical criticism of the cartesian theory of substance. Using three of pierre bayle's arguments of his own ends, He argues that on an empiricist theory of meaning, The cartesian theory of substance is reduced to absurdity.