What did Descartes mean by the phrase I think therefore I am?

“I think; therefore I am” was the end of the search Descartes conducted for a statement that could not be doubted. He found that he could not doubt that he himself existed, as he was the one doing the doubting in the first place.

Is it I therefore I am or therefore I think?

The Latin cogito, ergo sum, usually translated into English as “I think, therefore I am“, is the “first principle” of René Descartes’s philosophy. He originally published it in French as je pense, donc je suis in his 1637 Discourse on the Method, so as to reach a wider audience than Latin would have allowed.

Why does Descartes think the Cogito is certain?

Once the Cogito is discovered, Descartes argues it can serve as a foundation for how to find other truths that are certain. Descartes proposes that the Cogito is undeniably true because it is clear and distinct.

What does Descartes say about thinking?

The nature of a mind, Descartes says, is to think. If a thing does not think, it is not a mind. In terms of his ontology, the mind is an existing (finite) substance, and thought or thinking is its attribute.

What did Descartes think was essential in finding the truth?

Innate ideas are truths that are not derived from observation or experiment. Descartes cautioned against relying too much on authoritarian thinking. Descartes placed much weight on common sense. Descartes rejected sense knowledge as a sufficient foundation for certainty.

What was Descartes’s purpose in writing Discourse on Method?

Rene Descartes wrote Discourse on the Method of Properly Conducting One’s Reason and of Seeking the Truth in the Sciences in 1637. The purpose of the text is to consider different approaches to epistemology, which is the theory of knowledge.