Descartes, Epictetus, And Plato

1448 WordsDec 16, 20156 Pages
As people age, they begin to wonder what is the meaning of life, particularly their own life. It is a natural curiosity and has been thought about for several centuries. Philosophers claim to know, or at least be fairly aware of, what the meaning of life is. Three that come to mind are Rene Descartes, Epictetus, and Plato; these three philosophers have lived through different time periods and differ greatly in theories. Descartes had no true theory but used skepticism to establish his philosophy, Epictetus was a Stoic, and Plato was a Platonist. One, Descartes, lived questioning anything and everything to only be sure of two existences, another, Epictetus, lived perhaps too happily since he believed that everything that occurred in life was a part of God’s plan, but one lived in the middle of these two philosophers. This philosopher was Plato, he was not too skeptical of life nor was he too engulfed in “God’s plan,” instead he was rational about life and searched for the deeper meaning to his own being. For this reason, his theories are far more well thought-out and reasonable than those of Descartes and Epictetus. In order to understand Descartes’ way of thinking, it is crucial to note his education. He received a sufficient education in mathematics and science which led to his rejection of scholastic philosophy. He was not only taught about old philosophers such as Plato and Epictetus, but there was a recent philosopher [according to his time] named Montaigne who was a
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