Caterus and Descartes on ideas, causality and eternal truths

Milidrag, Predrag (2012) Caterus and Descartes on ideas, causality and eternal truths. Theoria, 55 (1). pp. 45-69. ISSN 0351-2274 eISSN 2406-081X

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The article analyzes the objections of Johannes Caterus, the author of the Fist objections on Meditations, concerning Descartes’ understanding of the objective reality of ideas, as well as Descartes’ First replies. Caterus’ critique rests on late Scholastics understanding of the act of conceiving and its objective terminus, and subsequent notions esse objectivum and realitas objectiva. Since they are extrinsic denominations of extramental represented thing, Caterus concludes that there is no room for the question about their cause. Despite his late Scholastics background, and without knowing for Descartes’ doctrine about the creation external truths, Caterus realized that for Descartes the degree of the objective reality of ideas is intrinsic denomination of the essence of thing, that requires efficient cause and that is equivalent with the creation of eternal truths. In his response, Descartes contrasts late Scholastics understanding with his new “ontology of the possible” according to which there are intramental essences of things, with objective being (esse objectivum) which cannot be reduced to extrinsic denomination (“non nihil”) and which requires actual efficient cause. From that he concludes that very conceivability and intelligibility of essences requires efficient cause.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: esse objectivum, esse cognitum, eternal truths, intelligibility, non nihil, late Scholastics, extrinsic denomination, realitas objectiva, večne istine, inteligibilnost, kasna sholastika, spoljna oznaka.
Institutional centre: Centre for philosophy
Depositing User: Vesna Jovanović
Date Deposited: 19 Feb 2022 07:50
Last Modified: 19 Feb 2022 07:50

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