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Date: 1641

The "I" is not present in the body as a sailor is in a ship but is joined and intermingled with it

— Descartes, René (1596-1650)

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Date: 1641

"You may say that you occupy the citadel in your brain and there receive whatever messages are transmitted by the animal spirits which move through the nerves, and sense-perception thus occurs there, where you dwell, despite the fact that it is said to occur throughout the body."

— Gassendi, Pierre (1592-1655)

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Date: 1664

"And finally, when a rational soul is present in this machine it will have its principal seat in the brain, and reside there like the fountain-keeper who must be stationed at the tanks to which the fountain's pipes return if he wants to produce, or prevent, or change their movements in some way."

— Descartes, René (1596-1650)

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Date: 1665

"The passions are the only orators who always convince"

— La Rochefoucauld, François, duc de (1613-1680)

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Date: 1748, 1749

"If reason is the slave of depraved, or distracted sense, how then can it be expected, that at that time it should be governor?"

— Julien Offray de La Mettrie (1709-1751)

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Date: 1748, 1749

"And where is the wonder that the body when in health should be subservient, for how can it resist that torrent of blood, and all those spirits which are ready to force obedience, the will having for its ministers an invisible army of fluids, always ready to receive its orders, and as quick as li...

— Julien Offray de La Mettrie (1709-1751)

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Date: 1762

"The body should be strong enough to obey the mind; a good servant must be strong."

— Rousseau, Jean-Jacques (1712-1778)

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Date: January 1762

"C’est lui qui porte le flambeau au fond de la caverne; c’est lui qui apprend à discerner les motifs subtils et déshonnêtes qui se cachent et se dérobent sous d’autres motifs qui sont honnêtes et qui se hâtent de se montrer les premiers. Il souffle sur le fantôme sublime qui se présente à l’entré...

— Diderot, Denis (1713-1784)

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Date: 1762

"En méditant sur la nature de l’homme, j’y crus découvrir deux principes distincts, dont l’un l’élevoit à l’étude des vérités éternelles, à l’amour de la justice & du beau moral, aux régions du monde intellectuel dont la contemplation fait les délices du sage, & dont l’autre le ramenoit bassement...

— Rousseau, Jean-Jacques (1712-1778)

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Date: 1764

"But behold, this soul of thought frequently has the ascendancy over the animal soul. The thinking soul orders its hands to grasp, and they grasp. It does not tell its heart to beat, its blood to run, its chyle to form; all these things happen without it: so here we have two perplexed souls which...

— Arouet, François-Marie [known as Voltaire] (1694-1778)

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The Mind is a Metaphor is authored by Brad Pasanek, Assistant Professor of English, University of Virginia.