Rene Descartes Evil Genius Summary

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While writing the Meditations on First Philosophy, Rene Descartes was trying to figure out if he understood the differences in what were lies and what were truths, which ended up with him becoming extremely skeptical about everything, and disbelieving everything he thought he knew to be true. This came to him in the analogy of dumping out of a basket of apples. In this reference if one apple was rotten, it would spread to the rest of the apples in the basket, thus, if one of his beliefs was false, it could contaminate the rest of his beliefs. So, then he decided to dump out the “basket of apples” or skepticism of everything he knew. He then started to wonder if everything he understood in the world was not real; was the world around…show more content…
Then, after reading the work of Oets Kolk Bouwsma that challenges Descartes’ beliefs, I tend to lean more towards the theorization of Bouwsma. In Bouwsmas’ challenge to Descarte, he wrote about a character named Tom. In the story Descartes’ Evil Genius tries to deceive Tom by turning everything in his world into paper - the sky, the flowers, the animals and even Tom himself. Tom's response to this trickery was that he believed everything in this world was real and nothing was a deception. He believed this, because he could touch and sense everything so it could not be a trick. This, of course, made the Evil Genius angry, so he tried to coax Tom into thinking that everything in his world was fake. Tom told the Evil Genius that this world was not a fallacy, because everything was real; he could touch, smell, see, and hear everything in this world, so it was all legitimate. The Evil Genius replied by saying that everything was an illusion, even though Tom could not distinguish the difference, that only he, the Evil Genius, could distinguish the difference because he bore a extra sense that Tom did not. Tom once again contended that if he did not have this extra sense, how would he be able to tell that it's all fake? Everything seemed real, so to him it was real. This is the point where I begin to agree with Bouwsma; if something you can use all your senses to detect is…show more content…
If you have the proof that shows that it is not fake or an illusion then it has to be real. The argument can also be brought up if you can not use your senses to tell if something is real or not, then is it truly real? The way that I look at it is, if you can not use your senses to tell if something is real or not, then what is the point of arguing? If you can never truly show that something is real then why worry about it, why skepticize, and try to find the answer? If this thing that you are trying to comprehend has no true evidence then is it true or real at all? I believe that this also is my stance on Descartes Evil Genius. If you can not tell that there is someone or something tricking you or keeping you from the truth, then is there really someone trying to do so? Following that logic, there then can not be an Evil Genius that is trying to hijack your reality, because if the reality you are in is all a lie, but you can not tell, then it is your true reality. Put another way, if your reality is not true, but you can not tell because all your senses prove everything in your life to be legitimate, then what you are experiencing is genuine, not a lie. Therefor, if you believe that your reality is true, then it must be

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