the Sixteenth, Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries. Et des notes, par. (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1952). But while, in the end, physics went well beyond that limited Cartesian concept of the laws of physics to the laws of quantum mechanics and of molecular biology, these are still the laws of physics and it is still physics which forms the basic patterns. This again is a generic description of the laws applying to many specific situations. He argued that the complexity of the human body and activity, indeed the complexity of plants and animals, could not be accounted for in terms of the bouncings and collisions of billiard balls of different sizes. Deduction in the Discourse and Meditations As for the analytic method, Descartes was to use the first of the treatises appended to the Discourse on Method to illustrate the power of this method. To solve this problem he invents and uses the notion of a coordinate system. He offered little evidence for his model of light. One hypothesizes that there is a powerful being, like God no doubt, but instead an evil genius, intent on deceiving one about the basic ontological structure of being.
Overall, it argued the thesis not only that the parts of the body are useful to the survival and good life of the animal or human being, but more strongly that the existence of these parts was to be explained by their utility-they existed. This is the theorem to be proved. Deriving the theorem from the newly discovered premises is the synthetic process.
The Method of Descartes: A Study of the Regulae. Descartes argues that all things, including the material world we know by sense, have an inner essence or form, and its presence explains the structure of things as they ordinarily appear. The idea that one has of oneself is that of an imperfect being; but to conceive an imperfect being requires one to be able to conceive a perfect being, just as conceiving something to be a non-square requires one to have the idea. This problem, which was posed originally by Pappus, is one of finding a curve of a point y relative to a point x, subject to certain geometrical constraints. There is something to this standard picture, but Descartes thought, like that of the empiricists, goes far beyond this simple description. To suppose this would be to suppose that the Meditations are organized in the order of a synthetic process, proceeding from known truths to true theorems that are deduced from those known truths. (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1993).
These laws, he suggests, can be deduced from our knowledge of God. But if it has the creative power to maintain itself as a being which lacks nothing, if, in other words, it is a being which as a creating being is infinitely powerful, then there is nothing else that could cause it not to. On this method, one takes the conclusion to be demonstrated not as something accepted as true but merely as an hypothesis.