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Cartesian ego


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Avicenna (980—1037) Persian-born Islamic philosopher and physician

bundle theory of the self

atman

René Descartes (1596—1650) French philosopher, mathematician

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The self conceived as Descartes presents it in the first two Meditations: aware only of its own thoughts, and capable of disembodied existence, neither situated in a space nor surrounded by others. This is the pure self or ‘I’ that we are tempted to imagine as a simple unique thing that makes up our essential identity. Descartes's view that he could keep hold of this nugget while doubting everything else is criticized by Lichtenberg and Kant, and most subsequent philosophers of mind. See also atman, Avicenna, bundle theory of the mind or self.

Subjects: Philosophy.


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