Basic Characteristics of 17th Century Philosophy

Basic Characteristics of 17th Century Philosophy

December 22, 2019 0 By Felso

Compared to Renaissance philosophy, the main characteristics of 17th century philosophy are:

1.  Renaissance philosophy, like the whole cultural environment in which it develops, is a philosophy that has not yet settled and is in a search and research breakthrough. On the other hand, the philosophy of the 17th century will develop a connection of thought with unity and integrity by compiling and gathering the accumulation provided by the Renaissance.

2nd. Renaissance philosophy, which in many respects reflects ancient philosophy as an example to itself, created a multi-colored picture of thought. The 17th century philosophy is more or less uniform, with more or less mergers in the problems it tackles. What gave him this cohesion is that he found the example of knowledge in mathematics and physics. Renaissance’s most original and greatest achievement, mathematics, physics, and mathematics, showed us that we can comprehend nature accurately; therefore, he showed that there was a harmony between reason and nature. So this method should be applied to other areas of existence, too. The unity of nature and the arguments that mathematics is built are the main ideas of mathematics physics. Since nature is mathematical, the quantifiable aspects of objects are real.

Descartes (1596-1650) was the initiator of 17th century philosophy. He first put forward the problems of this philosophy and he tried the solutions first. Those who follow him will focus on the same problems and work towards the same solution attempts. In this respect, 17th century philosophy is a Descartesism. Descartes is also a creative mathematician: by applying the method of arithmetic to geometry, he became the founder of analytic geometry. According to Descartes, if philosophy is to be a true connection of knowledge, then analytic geometry and mathematics should use the method of physics.

Descartes, who does not find what the philosophy put forward before him to be trustworthy, and starts with the thought of making a radical correction in philosophy according to the example of mathematical knowledge, finds the solid foundation he is looking for to build on the new knowledge structure: orum I think, I am there öyle. It’s a long way to go to get here. However, the basis he finds is so firm, so evident that all kinds of beings (himself, God, his environment, other people) that were previously eliminated by his suspicion become reality again and become reliable. The concept of God is a leverage in reconstructing reality in all its fields: Descartes says that when we look at consciousness, we see that the concept of God is here.

If we call God the most true being, God is incompatible with nothingness; it would be contradictory to think that it was destroyed. Since God is the most powerful being, he does not deceive me, so we can believe that the world of objects exists and that our memory does not mislead us.

Like the concept of God, the thoughts that we find ready in our consciousness call er innate thoughts ”. They are clear and specific, so the information values ​​are high. On the other hand, thoughts coming from outside our consciousness or formed by our imagination are fuzzy and confused; their information values ​​are also low.

In the discussion initiated by Descartes philosophy on method – knowledge, Pascal (1623-1662) and Bayle (1647-1706) stated that the method that Descartes proposed as universal could not elucidate every subject and that insan What is God? What is the meaning of human life? ”They can only be found with the light of heart.

According to Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679), who was under the influence of Descartes and advocated a consistent truth, the source of all kinds of information was experiment; the purpose of knowledge is to dominate human — nature and culture — environment. What is to be done in philosophy is to link events to the gerçek causes olan which are always the real facts. In the world of objects that are the only realities, all designs without foundations are delusions; Like “freedom“, “immaterial soul ruh. If we take things through the method of mathematics, we will get rid of such delusions; then emotions do not interfere. Descartes’ influence is clearly seen in this last understanding.

The original Spinoza (1632 – 1677) was influenced by Descartes’ understanding of method. We can see this in its inception: Spinoza — like Descartes’s proposition orum I think so, I exist — takes a single knowledge as the starting point in the teaching of God, and — again like Descartes geomet with all the rest of the information from this foundation with a deductive geometric method. derives: just as it derives the shapes of geometry from space.

Leibniz (1646-1716) can be considered in the footsteps of Descartes in his understanding of methods and knowledge – in terms of his main attitude. Because, according to him, the method of mathematics is the only method to be trusted in reaching the right information. As in mathematics, on the day we do calculations with concepts in philosophy, all the differences in philosophy will disappear. Leibniz de Descartes’s whole system of orum I think, so I exist ”type of basic truths, the first truths look for: to base the other truths and to find new ones for Leibniz also have prior knowledge, and the opposite of the mind is obligatory to think of these contradictions. The facts of the case are only random. Leibniz’s philosophy, which is a compromise, does not consider experiment knowledge worthless; but it is basically rational, the information that comes from the mind is of high value.

Another subject that 17th century philosophy focuses on besides method – information is the problem of existence and its center of gravity is gathered in the concept of substance.

It was Descartes who started the problem with this concept. According to him, there are three substance, one of which is infinite (God), two of which are finite (soul and body), which are essentially separate from each other. The attribute of the Spirit is thinking and space is space. These two qualities cannot be reconciled. The basic nature of the object is space, and the understanding of nature has led Descartes to complete mechanistic physics: the real real movements. Movement is a displacement, which is caused by the direct impact and pressure of objects on each other. In this physics, “nature” is nothing but a machine operating according to the laws of motion, and the living being is an automaton within this machine. In spiritual events, however, we are confronted with the appearance of another substance, essentially substance. How can the body and soul, which are the material aspects of human beings, relate to each other? Descartes working this relationship together; Although it explains it as a mutual interaction, this solution cannot be convincing to understand the coexistence of these two antagonists and remains a problem after it.

The main ideas in the development of the question of being after Descartes: According to Hobbes, a very consistent materialist, everything that is substance can only be material. There is no substance called soul; no matter how real the spiritual events are, their basis is still material.

The main concern of the so-called Occasionalists was the problem of the body-soul relationship that Descartes could not solve convincingly. According to them, it is God who establishes this relationship; That is the real reason. A will that reaches from the human soul to the body or a stimulus transmitted from the body to the soul, both of which are only intermediaries in establishing this relationship. This epoch eventually made God the sole cause of all that was happening in the universe, not only between the body and the soul, but between God and all that exists.

Spinoza is monist in substance understanding: There is only substance; this is called Spinoza God; nature also says. All existed with a mathematical – logical necessity from the essence of God; therefore, they are identical with God (monotheism). These two aspects of development of the body and soul and substance are evident. There are innumerable events in these two attributes, which are separate from each other, and they are connected to each other by obligatory bonds. With this understanding, Spinoza is a mechanist in which there is no desire and freedom of will; has reached a world view. In this view, the universe is a strict system of mathematical – logical commitments. Spinoza tried to explain the body – soul relationship with the argument that they work in parallel:

Leibniz calls the substance monad, an infinite multiplicity in number. Monads, it’s closed to themselves. “Associations” are spiritual; they are effective “power centers bulunan with design capabilities. Since all monads design the same subject, the entire universe, they are united in one connection and no longer be themselves. However, since the design of each monad is otherwise different in terms of clarity and selectivity, it itself is different from all other monads. Therefore, in this world there are no two things that are exactly equal. The monads are ranked according to the clarity and clarity in their designs: At the top there is God, who is designing the entire universe openly at the moment, and at the bottom there is the material deprived of design consciousness. The remaining assets are arranged between these two. The activity is also proportional to the design brightness; God, whose design is the brightest, is therefore the most active being. The “pre-established harmony bir, which is the order of God, provides the relationship between monads“ without windows that open to each other ”and therefore cannot influence each other. The harmony between body and soul takes place in this harmony. The body and the soul function as two clocks set up parallel to each other.

From such a metaphysics, Leibniz developed an organic physics. In his own words: “Nature is like a pond filled with fish. Zorunlu The necessary mechanical connection in nature, a continuity that never leaves, is a means at the command of God’s will. However, Galilei and Descartes understood nature as a necessary mechanism with no desire.

Descartes’ philosophy centered on theoretical problems such as knowledge and being. Ethics, state, religion and so on. Descartes did not work systematically as the theoretical problems. For example, we learn from his letters about his thoughts on morality. These thoughts walk in the footsteps of the Stoa morality; they are rational like him. The virtue, according to Descartes, is that the soul beats the body. For this, it is necessary to be clear and distinct and really want what is really valuable. Evil means that willfulness is not bound to affections, in other words to our material side, slave. (In fact, error arises from the blind counting of the senses by the will). If so, both evil and error can be saved only by the clear and distinct designs of the mind; As well as akl right “,“ good de can also have knowledge of the mind.

Contrary to the situation in Descartes, Hobbes’ philosophy is the doctrine of the state, the (practical) question of this action. Hobbes considers making the state an object in accordance with the naturalistic materialist attitude of his philosophy. Because, according to him, what is real, only natural is the individual. The state is an institution of making subsequently created. Hobbes deals with the problem of the establishment of the state (society), based on a certain human understanding: Man is a selfish creature: his desire to survive and develop is his basic motive. That is why the human world always wants to have the blessings of himself. But because everyone wants it, the situation of savaş war with all herkes occurs, in which case “man is the wolf of man”.

This is the “natural state.. That is to put an end to this situation, which is contrary to the basic motive of human being who wants to exist and develop; in other words, in order to ensure general security, everyone transfers the hakk right to use force başına to an authority on its own: the state is thus established. This is hali citizenship hali. Hobbes thus derives the notions of law and morality from the established state: what is good for general security, which is the cause of the establishment of the state, is “good” “right”; what does not work is “bad” and sız unjust ”. Therefore, morality and law existed because of the state. Religion also gains a certain meaning only within the framework of the state: Only the belief that the state considers legal is true. The authority of the State in order to fulfill its duty properly (to ensure general security) shall be complete and unconditional. “The state should be like a giant, Hob Hobbes said in a work that deals with the state.

Like Hobbes, Spinoza’s moral doctrine takes the instinct of koruma protecting ourselves olarak as the starting point. Spinoza analyzes human emotion life with a naturalist – mechanicalist approach. as the basic emotion koruma to protect and improve ourselves bul finds. All the remaining emotions come out of it. Morality is also the basis of this instinct, this feeling: “good uygun is compatible with the sense of self-protection and development,“ bad aykırı is contrary to this feeling. There is no such thing as good or bad self that is independent.

According to Spinoza, if the body — body — is strong, it develops. The development of the soul depends on the ability to think. : In other words: The virtuous soul is the competent, ie the soul that can think clearly and distinctly. Clear and selective thinking provides information that shows what is worth obtaining.

As in Descartes, there is a close interest in in being active ”and being“ virtuous da in Spinoza: a soul possessed by emotions and passions is passive; in a turbid, turbid state; therefore it is virtuous. Clear and distinct information makes the soul active, happy and free. Since freedom is our own self-determination, this happens in the event of activity and with the thought that provides it, with real knowledge. Therefore, the duty of human morality is to defeat passions with thought. That true knowledge that makes man righteous, powerful, free, for Spinoza, is knowledge of God. He who has attained this knowledge will attach to God alone and love him, and the rest will come to count – temporary appearances. To love God with certain accounts, not with fears, not blindly, with intent, with reason, is the culmination of virtue. Because human development is a law of nature. In this kind of love of God, man has attained full authority; thus, the law of nature in its essence was realized at its highest stage.

Spinoza explains the reason for the establishment of the state with an approach similar to that of Hobbes. The value of the state, which is an “making kurum institution, is measured by the suitability of the state. The duty of the state regulates the rights and power fields of individuals as they will not disturb each other. This is the best democracy. Spinoza, who is opposed to Hobbes in his last thoughts, should not make man a slave because the state was established for peace; on the contrary, it should create a free environment in which man can develop both his body and his spiritual abilities.

Leibniz’s moral teaching is rational. The measure of what is right and not right in terms of morality is, accordingly, right and wrong information. The designs are fuzzy and complex, the monad is passive; slave of instincts, not free. The monad, which has clear and distinct information, is active; in this case, this monad is self-determining, so it is free.

The more light a soul has attained with clear knowledge, the more lovingly it embraces the goodness of others. Because this light gives him a better understanding of other people’s designs; together with them, according to the principle of “pre-established harmony,, teaches the connection in which it has taken place. The brighter this learning, the less selfishness of the monad decreases; the desire for the well-being of others, and the love for others.

Leibniz’s doctrine of law is also included in this understanding of morality. Law is not only an institution that regulates the external relations of people. The roots of law are morality, moral love. Because of this love, one feels the happiness of others as his own happiness; with this feeling he does not reach out to the rights of others, he cannot break them. It is wisdom that guides such love, and is to guide the mind through actions.

Leibniz’s world view in the philosophy of religion has reached its most unambiguous expression. Leibniz makes the distinction between “religion of reason” and “positive religion.. According to Uscu Leibniz, of course, the mind is the one with the highest religious value; The dogmas of the historically positive religion are things that are randomly added to the religion of reason. Therefore, various forms of worship of this religion, for example, are not obligatory. However, the beliefs of the religion of reason take place in the doğr truths of the mind,, they are obligatory, and it is contradictory to think of their opponents. According to Leibniz, the basis of religion is the knowledge and love of God alone.

The God of Leibniz is at the top of the order of monads, hence the most knowledgeable, the most effective, the most powerful, the whole. the “central monument Tanrı of the universe, in the face of such a conception of God: how can he compromise? Why didn’t such a powerful God create a competent world in which all of this is not present? Sor As a matter of fact, Bayle had previously pointed out this contradiction; Leibniz, in a work he wrote to counter this contradiction and justify God, thinks: If we look at the whole of the universe, which is the mirror of God, we see that it is the authority of the whole. The fact that the monads are charged with crime and sin, that their suffering is always incomplete, is not competent. This is due to the “metaphysical deficiency alan within the truths of the mind: Inefficiency is an element which is found in necessity in the concept of universe. A world without finite beings cannot be imagined. So if God was going to create a universe, he asked, it was imperative that it consist of missing beings. So when God created the universe, he was not completely free, but adhered to the rules of his mind. But God has created the best possible world. In short: God wanted good, but it was a logical necessity for the world to be incomplete and corrupt. In God, the mind outweighed the will. it was a necessity to make up the missing assets. So when God created the universe, he was not completely free, but adhered to the rules of his mind. But God has created the best possible world. In short: God wanted good, but it was a logical necessity for the world to be incomplete and corrupt. In God, the mind outweighed the will. it was a necessity to make up the missing assets. So when God created the universe, he was not completely free, but adhered to the rules of his mind. But God has created the best possible world. In short: God wanted good, but it was a logical necessity for the world to be incomplete and corrupt. In God, the mind outweighed the will.


Evolution of Philosophy; Macit Gökberk; Publications of the Ministry of National Education; 1979