Descartes tries to say he must doubt all of his beliefs based on the fact that he cannot trust his senses because he might be sleeping and is being deceived into thinking he is awake. He is skeptical of his senses in this dreaming argument because he is a human and humans sleep and that there are situations that “there exist no certain marks by which the state of waking can ever be distinguished from sleep” (Descartes, #). He also says that only insane people would mistake the less probable things presented in dreams as reality,” I must nevertheless here consider that I am a man, and that, consequently, I am in the habit of sleeping, and representing to myself in dreams those same things, or even sometimes others less probable, which the insane think are presented to them in their waking moments” (Descartes, #) Therefore he is implying that we should disregard anything that an insane person would think and that he is in fact a sane person because he could never believe improbable things if he was awake.
I will begin my argument by saying that if he is dreaming that means every person he sees would also be dreaming, which would mean that the “insane people” he is referring to are also dreaming, therefore wouldn’t insanity be possible in dreams? This idea that his entire reality is actually a dream seems pretty improbable and that could be grounds to dismiss this argument completely due to the fact that this would mean that he is actually insane and we shouldn’t believe a word he is saying. I will also argue that if he is dreaming anything is possible and nothing is concrete so there is no point in trying to be certain of anything in a dream. By doubting his senses and arguing that he could be dreaming implies that he doubts his reality and by extension doubts his existence. Doubting the only reality that you know would eventually drive you insane and would lead to overall insanity in the population if everyone walked around questioning their existence which makes this argument pretty impractical.
Another reason that I will argue against radical philosophy as a basis for skepticism is the Pyrrhonean principle of the ten modes talked about by Diogenes Laertius. The Pyrrhonists rejected the dogmas of all philosophical schools and formulated no dogmas of their own yet they still proposed the argument of the ten modes of perplexity as support for their doubts. I will only argue against two of these ten modes. The first mode of perplexity as stated by pyrrhonists is, “the differences between living creatures…by this it is inferred that they do not receive the same impressions from the same things, with the result that such a conflict necessarily leads to suspension of judgment” (Laertius,25). Here the pyrrhonists are suggesting that the differences between living things is reason to cause doubt of our senses because we all will have different experiences of the same things. The second mode refers to “the natures and idiosyncrasies of men” (Laertius,25). This mode is talking about the fact that all humans have different experiences of things, for example, some like hot weather and some like cold weather. These differences in nature being enough to cause to withhold judgment based on the senses.
Instead of trying to find doubt in our senses we should embrace them because they are the only ways that we have to guide ourselves in daily life. The first mode is dismissible because I should not live my life doubting because I do not see the world the same as a something else like a bat for example. A human would never need to perceive the world the same as a bat because we have little in common as far as our lifestyles go, a bat’s senses would be useless to a human and vice versa. For example a bat uses…