Dubito Ergo Cogito

Marquis
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Dubito Ergo Cogito

When people quote Descartes' famous "I think, therefore I am" (Cogito Ergo Sum), they are usually meaning to say something about how the art of thinking is a fundamental human quality that, for better or worse, has made us what we are today, as a species. However, they almost always - conveniently - leave out the first sentence of the quote, thereby taking it out of context.

 

The full quote states: Dubito Ergo Cogito. Cogito Ergo Sum. (I doubt, therefore I think. I think, therfore I am.)

 

I doubt, therefore I think.

 

If I had no doubt, I wouldn't have to think, would I? I'm not saying that I doubt the bloody obvious, such as a sophist may do with clever questions about the essential nature of existence and how we cannot know anything for certain, but I do doubt my own ability to understand the nature of reality. This leads me to ask questions about fascinating subjects, such as cosmology and quantum mechanics. But I do not try to "believe" either this or that way about it. I am quite happy to just observe how scientists are struggling with what may argably be the high end of all human thinking. I like it. Asking questions keeps me on my toes. Studying things I don't understand makes me less complacent in the way I relate to the world I'm living in.

 

In many ways, I suppose that having a "faith" of sorts would make me feel more "safe" and important before the vastness of space and the conundrums of subatomic particle behaviour, but I really don't think it would make me a better human being. It seems like cheating, almost sacrilege, to jump to comfortable conclusions such as "beliefs" when in fact I am destined to be alive, as a human being, in this mysterious world such as it is, equipped with the ability to ask questions and investigate matters of a philosophical nature.

"The idea of God is the sole wrong for which I cannot forgive mankind." (Alphonse Donatien De Sade)

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Vastet
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Good read.

Good read. Smiling

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


BobSpence
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Good points.It's funny, some

Good points.

It's funny, some Theists claim they have no doubts, others insist they 'test' or question their 'faith' all the time.

 

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

The path to Truth lies via careful study of reality, not the dreams of our fallible minds - me

From the sublime to the ridiculous: Science -> Philosophy -> Theology


Marquis
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BobSpence1 wrote:claim they

BobSpence1 wrote:

claim they have no doubts 

 

I find people who, for any reason, claim to have "no doubts" a little scary. Like borderline psychopaths.

"The idea of God is the sole wrong for which I cannot forgive mankind." (Alphonse Donatien De Sade)

http://www.kinkspace.com