Problems for Descartes

Date of Publication


Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Philosophy

Subject Categories



College of Liberal Arts



Thesis Adviser

Brian Elwood

Defense Panel Chair

Dr. Rolando Gripaldo

Defense Panel Member

Dr. Florentino Timbreza
Dr. Claro Ceniza


This thesis attempts to simplify Descartes' Meditations, and provide additional problems for the philosopher, which he was not able to anticipate. Entertaining his basic prescription in dealing with his work in connection with his goal of providing the necessary foundation for the whole of reality, it tries to expose the true nature of his methodological doubt. It deals with the possible consequences if one follows the basic character of doubt, the way Descartes, proposed it. It seems that Descartes did not remain consistent with his plan, to arrive at the truth is devoid of prejudices. The reality he claimed as product of his doubting is not new. It has been in his mind even before the start of the Meditations. They were written just to certify the truth that was claimed by him initially. Viewed in this manner, his doubting was done with a purpose. To clarify the truth of this assertion done by the author, this work includes Descartes' life background especially his Scholastic orientation with the Jesuits. Primarily before the Meditations, Descartes had already formulated sets of Rules and Maxims which guided their flow. The Meditations were not done blindly. Their structure was planned prior to them.

Descartes also stressed the need of using reason in dealing with his work. For a complete understanding of the Meditations, the author stressed the necessity for Descartes to further clarify his view of reason as a guide for truth. Thus this work also includes his epistemological stand on intuition and deduction. It also tries to discover the true foundation of Descartes' philosophy, whether God or the Cogito. Going even further, the author decided to trace the cause, the very root of all Cartesian principles...God. He was considered as the cause of intuitive experiences, and also the author of innate ideas. If ever the existence of God will be proven uncertain, what then will be its possible implication?

Abstract Format






Accession Number


Shelf Location

Archives, The Learning Commons, 12F Henry Sy Sr. Hall

Physical Description

128 numb. leaves


Meditations; Philosophers; Descartes; Rene; 1596-1650; Philosophy; Modern

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