The fourth meditation

Recent scholarship suggests that Descartes’s effort to establish a truth criterion is not viciously circular ---a fact that invites closer scrutiny of his epistemological program. One of the least well understood features of the project is his deduction of a truth criterion from theistic premises, a demonstration Descartes says he provides in the Fourth Meditation: the alleged proof is not revealed by a casual reading, nor have commentators fared any better; in general, the relevance of the Fourth Meditation has not been duly appreciated. This paper reconstructs the argument of the Fourth Meditation, detailing the steps in the demonstration of the criterion and clarifying its role in the larger program. Surprisingly, Descartes deduces a truth criterion more fundamental than clarity and distinctness; this more fundamental criterion helps explain what are otherwise cryptic epistemological moves in the Sixth Meditation
Keywords Analytic Philosophy  Contemporary Philosophy  Philosophy of Mind
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ISBN(s) 0031-8205
DOI 10.2307/2653783
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Descartes on the Errors of the Senses.Sarah Patterson - 2016 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 78:73-108.
Descartes' Resolution of the Dreaming Doubt.Brad Chynoweth - 2010 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 91 (2):153-179.
Descartes's Sceptical Theism.Thaddeus S. Robinson - 2013 - Religious Studies 49 (4):515-527.
Sensory Doubts and the Directness of Perception in the Meditations1.Lex Newman - 2011 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 35 (1):205-222.

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