Meditations vs. Freedom Writers

2012 Words9 Pages
Barnes 2 Rene Descartes, the author of The Meditations, deals with a quest for reality and truth through the numerous problems he raises. Descartes, a rationalist, in his Meditations, believes that if you can’t doubt a belief, the belief is certain. Rationalists believe that reasoning, rather than experience, yields truth and knowledge. Descartes gives good arguments for each of the problems he discusses and how he received a clear and distinct perception of innate, or native, ideas. The book provides him with three assurances by the end: the mind exists as a thing that thinks, the body as an extension of that, and God as the non-deceiving Supreme Being. Descartes isn’t quite sure of the certainty of his existence of himself and other beings and material things. He goes on to argue that knowledge is gained by way of awareness and experience. Using this approach, Descartes moves through doubt to certainty of his existence. He asks himself numerous questions about the certainty of his existence and solves them with thought and logic. With this method, Descartes’ doubts become truths, and he concludes that he does, in fact, exist. This quest for reality and truth by Descartes can also be seen in a work of film such as Freedom Writers, which is, in fact, inspired by a true story. Descartes’ and Freedom Writers’ quest is similar in that their motivations are to distinguish between what is true and what is false, and the distinction between mind and body is presented; however, Descartes and Freedom Writers differ in that Descartes’ obstacles include trying to overcome all the uncertainty and doubts he has, while the lead actor, Hilary Swank, encounters different obstacles such as trying to get her students to stop hating one another. Another difference between the two is the outcome of the quest: there was still some instability in Descartes’ findings by the

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