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ESL forum > Grammar and Linguistics > I can´t understand...    

I can´t understand...



hongduyen
Vietnam

I can´t understand...
 

Please, can anyone tell me what this sentence mean:

I think, therefore I am.�
Confused
 

3 Feb 2009      





s.lefevre
Brazil

Hi,

This is a famous sentence by philosopher Descartes.

It means:  You, by thinking is evidence that there is a you to be doing the thinking. (There is an assumption here that you created the thoughts.)

3 Feb 2009     



juvelry
United Arab Emirates

To my opinion the meaning is connected to our abilities. Like if you think that means you are alive, you are (you exist) in the world.
It�s like a point - conclusion sentences. For instance: Tiger has claws, therefore it is a predator. In your sentence knowing that you are able to think drives you to conclusion that you are real (do exist in the world).
I think that is the meaning.
Take care

3 Feb 2009     



Mar (itxasobcn)
Spain

DESCARTES phylosophy. A very famous sentence.

3 Feb 2009     



Mar (itxasobcn)
Spain

DESCARTES phylosophy. A very famous sentence.

3 Feb 2009     



hongduyen
Vietnam

Thanks a lot for your replies! I think you�re right, julvery. Poor me, I�m bad at philosophy!Unhappy

3 Feb 2009     



Nebal
Lebanon

Hello,

In the 17th century, the French philosopher Ren� Descartes came up with the "explanation for it all": "I think, therefore I am". I remember this statement being the source of debates in philosophy classes. It was the existential "which came first" story� the chicken or the egg.

Years later, I feel that his statement really is a fill-in-the-blanks statement. "I think _________, therefore I am _____________." In other words, "I think I am angry, therefore I am angry." "I think I am tired, therefore I am tired." "I think I am busy, therefore I am busy."

First the thought, then the action. It�s always been that way. Everything starts with a thought. Even conception starts with a thought. You first think about doing something and then do it (or decide not to do it). All inventions started with a thought. Thomas Edison didn�t invent the light bulb without first having a thought (or many thoughts) about it.

The thoughts always precede the actions. Thus the importance of "managing" our thoughts and not let them run rampant. They are not the "directors" of our show. They are simply the precursors to action.

I hope it was clear enough!!!

3 Feb 2009     



hongduyen
Vietnam

Sensible!!!!!

3 Feb 2009     



libertybelle
United States

It also means - that as long as you think - you are alive (therefore you are)
when you cease to think - you�re probably dead. Embarrassed (therefore you are not anymore)

L

3 Feb 2009     



Ivona
Serbia

That�s a very interesting interpretation according to which we may conclude that the majority of people is actually �dead� because the system has turned them into...

... an attendant lord, one that will do

To swell a progress, start a scene or two,

Advise the prince; no doubt, an easy tool,

Deferential, glad to be of use,

Politic, cautious, and meticulous;

Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse;

At times, indeed, almost ridiculous �

            Almost, at times, the Fool.

                                                     (T.S. Eliot �The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock�)




3 Feb 2009