Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Was Descartes poisoned?

In considering the claim that "the father of modern philosophy was poisoned with an arsenic-laced communion wafer by a Catholic priest because his metaphysical position is inconsistent with the Transubstantiation doctrine," Bill Vallicella asks, "Isn't a Catholic priest's commission of murder by desecration of the host far worse than a philosopher's holding of heretical views?"

But, there's no substance to that. It was an accident.


No? Well, that's what Wikipedia is for, brain stem—first line. Really, it's quite funny. I know, you think I'm a nerd. Well, all I can say is, if crafting delightful witticisms reliant on Aristotelian distinctions in Catholic theology makes me a nerd, then nerd me up, baby, because it ain't gonna stop.


Hume's Ghost said...

If you haven't already read it, AC Grayling's biography of Descartes is quite fascinating. I found the proposition that Descartes may have been a spy intriguing.

Mark Vuletic said...

Not quite there, yet, but it's on my list. I want to read Cottingham's three volumes of Descartes before I get into biographies. But I'm impatient: AC Grayling is always good.