more from René Descartes

Single Idea 2601

[catalogued under 18. Thought / D. Concepts / 2. Origin of Concepts / c. Nativist concepts]

Full Idea

The ideas of pains, colours, sounds etc. must be all the more innate if, on the occasion of certain corporeal motions, our mind is to be capable of representing them to itself, for there is no similarity between these ideas and the corporeal motions.

Gist of Idea

Qualia must be innate, because physical motions do not contain them


René Descartes (Comments on a Certain Broadsheet [1644], p.365)

Book Reference

'The Philosophy of Mind', ed/tr. Beakley,B /Ludlow P [MIT 1992], p.365

A Reaction

Simple and brilliant! We know perfectly well that there is no redness zooming through the air from a tomato (or the air would be pink!). Redness occurs when the light arrives, so we add the redness, so it is innate.