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Definition of Solipsism

Solipsism: The doctrine that I alone exist. The self can know only its feelings and changes. There is only subjective reality.

Solipsism is of importance to philosophy and psychology. Rene Descartes (1596-1650), the French mathematician, physicist and "father of modern philosophy", made solipsism a central issue in philosophy. Since solipsism has to do with how we learn and know, it concerns cognitive psychology.

The word "solipsism" is a composite of the Latin "solus" ("alone") and "ipse" ("self") = the self alone.

Source: MedTerms™ Medical Dictionary
http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=8688
Last Editorial Review: 6/14/2012

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