I think therefore I exist, is a complex statement that can be reduced to three simpler statements:
- If it thinks then it exists
- I think
- I exist
This statement is in the logical deductive reasoning form:
- p => q
Here we have two premises (1) and (2), and one conclusion (3). In order to verify the claims of Descartes we have to inquire the validity of its premises. In this post, I will not discuss the first premise, but the second one.
Do Humans have the ability to think?! Some might argue positively... Descartes apparently supports this view. I disagree. Humans cannot think.
To think is to be creative. To think is to be free. Humans are neither creative nor free! We might think we are creative and free - This is the illusion that eluded even the most reputable philosophers. This view is influenced by my pessimistic incompatibilism views.
So how do we explain those illusions?! What most humans fail to see is that our consciousness is merely an advanced form of Artificial Intelligence. Actually, its more like Naturally-Implied Intelligence, but my point is, we are no better than an intelligent machine. If we consider things more deeply, we find that an intelligent machine is not much different from a non-intelligent one. So we're no better than any machine if we consider things at the low level. I already discussed this perspective before. Our survival depends on being self-protective. This recognition of self is the source of our illusion to think and existence. We would not protect what does not exist. If we acknowledge our inexistence, then our survival will be endangered. Nature has its own ways of Natural Selection and survival of the fittest... Its ironical that an illusion is what gives us our strength, but well.. Thats how things work!
So far, I have considered "thinking" in a very strict notion. A notion that requires creativity and freewill. To ease things up, one can consider a less strict concept of thinking. Such model would be even more tolerant, that it might even include machines as being able to think. Personally, I got no problem with this view. If a machine was so sophisticated in a way that is comparable to humans, I guess we have to acknowledge it as a being of worthy existence. If we adopt this view, maybe few years later, we will see "Machine Rights" activists!! Seriously!
Back to the fist premise... Does ability to think imply existence?! I will leave this question open for the time being...