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Essay on perception for TOK. Descartes believed that our senses could be deceived in many different ways.

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Introduction

Name: Pranav Sharma Class: 3.15 Nahum POD ESSAY 3: PERCEPTION (DESCARTES) Descartes believed that our senses could be deceived in many different ways. This is true to a large extent as it is quite possible for our senses to be deceived in numerous ways. However, this does not mean that our senses are not reliable at all. Descartes has provided several reasons as proof that our senses can be deceived and that they are not entirely reliable. Some have suggested that Ren´┐Ż Descartes argues that sense perception relies on the mind rather than on the body. Descartes asserts that we can know our mind more readily than we can know our body. ...read more.

Middle

Since sense experience never puts us in contact with the objects themselves, but only with mental images, sense perception provides no certainty that there is anything in the external world that corresponds to the images we have in our mind. Descartes introduces dreams, a deceiving God, and an evil demon as ways of motivating this doubt in the veracity of our sense experience. Now, once we take this point into consideration we can assume that every time we use our senses, the organs that we use, send signals to our brain. After that, our brain sends back signals to those organs, and thus we perceive. But if we were to think about it, what we perceive is actually our mind's interpretation of those signals. ...read more.

Conclusion

Without certain bits of the brain, we don't see. So we never directly see what is out there, according to science. From this we can accept that Descartes might have been right in suggesting that our senses can be deceived and that the world we believe we live could be virtual for all we know and everything that we have come accept as the truth could be just perceptions formed by our biased minds. But the circumstances of the world we live in does not allow us to think for ourselves but instead forces us to trust our senses so as to survive in the world and fit in. However, I believe that we should not blindly trust our senses but should instead take into consideration the method suggested by Descartes. We should apply pure reason and interpret what our senses show us instead of blindly believing all the time. ...read more.

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