An Intercultural Critique of Descartes

R. Panikkar has a book out which I saw in a Spanish translation (it was originally published in Italy) By G. A. Soto, entitled Paz e interculturalidad: una reflexión filosófica (Barcelona: Herder, 2006, ISBN 84-254-2424-0).

Chapter 10 is entitled “Confianza en vez de certeza” and on page 123 it says the search for certainty (Descartes) is an ideal of modern Western philosophy, but that this cannot be the goal of intercultural philosophy. The search for certainty has its origins in the fear of life and of death, and in the idolatry of a kind of reason which would give us such certainty.

The suggestion here is that one learn to deal with uncertainty and de paso not be so suspicious of the Other.

The essay is interesting.


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