Philosophers such as Rene Descartes have dreamed ideas and situations in their mind regarding philosophy that contain required something additional to become explainable. Often, philosophers will use an example to guide others through the idea. The example is generally a hypothetical, but sometimes an example will be demonstrated to ensure maximum impact. Descartes uses the "Wax Example" in the second meditation of Meditations on First Viewpoint to clarify why we as considering things have the ability to know a thing even if it's been altered or modified for some reason.
To begin, it is vital that Descartes' wax example be discussed. Descartes examines a bit of wax, noting its properties. It appears, feels, and smells like wax. Descartes then retains the little bit of hardened wax next to a flame and the wax melts. He observes the wax again after they have melted and notes so it smells, appears, and feels unique of it just have, but it is still obviously wax. Even though the properties of the piece of wax had modified, we're able to conclude that an object is still an subject even if it has truly gone through change. We count on our senses to provide us with the information which allows us to determine what something is, and even though our senses tell us various things, our minds are able to take that information and determine what a thing is. Therefore, there has to be something inherently characteristic of this thing; otherwise we wouldn't have the ability to conclude just what it was because our senses can deceive us.
Our senses are limited in that they purely give us information about things; they don't interpret that information for us. We must appeal to the mind whenever we experience smart objects. We constantly go directly to the mind to know what the inherent quality of the thing is that helps it be that thing. It is something that we cannot sense. There are two types of chemicals in our world; thinking substances and extended substances. Thinking chemicals are things in the mind plus they do not actually exist. Extended substances are also known as material substances, and they are physical in their life. The reason why that extended chemicals are called such is because the essential thing about those material objects is that they take up room and also have mass, therefore increasing in space.
The characteristics of chemicals are also important as it pertains to determining just what a thing is. You will discover two types of qualities; primary and supplementary. Primary attributes do not be based upon the way one activities an thing. An thing that has mass is always going to have mass, and your senses are not involved. A secondary quality does rely upon the way one encounters an object. The information that your five senses discover will affect how you see the attributes. A secondary quality could be how an subject looks/smells/tastes/sounds/feels for you. Our conception of extra qualities can often be misled if we've misinterpreted a thing's main qualities. If, for example, one was to have a hallucinogen and then monitor a tree, you might still clearly observe that the tree is constructed of matter and takes up space, but one might not see the tree as darkish with inexperienced leaves, but instead as some kind of swirl of colors that's not a real representation of the thing. The previous is female quality and will not change even if we are experiencing it in an altered way, however the latter is a second and can change. The wax involved undergoes an alteration in every of its reasonable properties, and although all of its secondary attributes are sharing with our senses that it's no longer that piece of wax, our brains have the ability to determine through the principal qualities that it is still indeed a bit of wax.
In this meditation, Descartes says, "I really do not understand what this wax is through the imagination; rather, I perceive it through your brain exclusively. " In expressing this, Descartes is showing that it is our heads that are truly realizing things including the little bit of wax. There are specific qualities and characteristics of objects that we connect to them in order to classify them. What those qualities are, are independent from the object itself; these are abstract and intangible. The platonic fact of an thing is exactly what our heads use to identify an subject, not our imagination's use of our senses' perceptions. Descartes is not positively being, smelling, and experiencing the wax to determine that it's wax, but instead his mind is spotting the platonic fact of the wax, figuring out it even if it changes bodily.
Descartes' second meditation is approximately more than simply the wax example, but it is an important thing to understand, as it offers further information for his thoughts. Descartes says that he's a "thinking thing". He decided that is something considers, it exists- I think which means that I must are present. This is true, because even if you were to say "I talk, therefore I exist" that may be your senses deceiving you; with "I believe, therefore I exist", considering this is itself a thought, so there can't ever be any hesitation as to if I am a pondering thing. Descartes is exhibiting us that there is a difference between minds and systems, and that people know our own minds superior to we know any body, even our very own.
Through the utilization of the wax example, Descartes is able to explain the distinctions between thinking and long substances, major and secondary characteristics, and that we have greater knowledge of thoughts than we do of body. Descartes' second meditation relies on the conversation of the wax example to make clear the importance of changes and how our senses and our intellects can tell us two various things. In the end, it is our head that can truly start to see the platonic fact of a thing and also identify it. Our senses be capable of deceive us, making our minds the most reliable. Descartes has provided an explanation and exemplory case of his ideas, allowing us to see for ourselves what the mind and senses are capable of.