1. For Descartes, “imagination” differs from pure “intellection” in that imagination allows one to form a clear and detailed picture in the mind’s eye. In contrast, “intellection” refers to an intellectual understanding of something that cannot be pictured clearly, because its form is beyond concrete conceptualization. An example might be that one can imagine a group of three friends, but one can only use intellection with regard to a group of one’s three future children. Because it is possible to picture one’s friends’ bodies clearly in one’s mind, this can be considered imagination. However, even though it is possible to understand intellectually that three future children will be the biological offspring of oneself and another, it is not possible to know what they will look like – this can therefore be considered intellection.
2. Descartes basic line of argument in this paragraph is that, things he can conceive of as different must be physically different, in order for his senses to provide him with the data he needs to conceive of them as different. Therefore, because he can conceive of his body distinctly, and can conceive of his mind as being distinctly different, they must be distinct entities.
3. In this section, Descartes means that God has made it seem that the things he can sense issue from corporeal bodies, and because God is not deceptive, and no other other rational source exists for the things he can sense, it must be the case that corporeal bodies are the source. He is, therefore, arguing that the direct link between the sense and the physical world is the most likely truth, as it conforms both to what reason and religion dictate.
4. In this paragraph, Descartes is explaining that it is nearly impossible for a human being to separate the data that can be taken from the senses concerning the physical world, and his own mental or imaginative judgements and perceptions of that data. In other words, human perception is an inseparable mix of thoughts informed by the body, and physical sensations informed by the mind.
5. I feel that Descartes is right in his judgement in this paragraph, because he is identifying the fact that there is no objective way of ascertaining whether one’s own conceptions of the physical world correspond to the conceptions of another.
6. Descartes argues in this paragraph that the function of the senses is merely to inform a particular body of the things that are harmful or beneficial to it specifically. He argues that the senses can therefore not be trusted to provide a complete picture of reality, as they may miss or distort reality that does not relate to harm or benefit to the body.
7. Descartes responds to the dream argument by stating that in real situations, his sense and his memory are able to make logical connections which are continuous with his life both physically and mentally, whereas in dreams this is never the case. This, he argues, makes it easy for him to distinguish between the reality of waking and the falsity of dreams.