Emphasizing the debatable nature of the impersonal reception of Descartes' metaphysics, the author proposes to focus on its interpretation as a condition of personal self-realization. The presence of constructive potential in the legacy of the thinker is evidenced by the movement "Back to Descartes" represented by well-known philosophers of the twentieth century. The reasons for the popularity of "Meditations" are associated with the presence of invariant values and meanings in it. Interpretation of the thinker's legacy in the context of the unfinished Copernican revolution allows us to understand the factors of actualization of the proper principles of human behavior. In the process of appealing to private correspondence, the legitimacy of a) attribution of the period of work on incomplete "Rules" to the stage of formation of Descartes' metaphysics and b) personal nature of motives for starting and stopping work on unfinished text is substantiated. Analysis of Descartes' legacy as an understanding of the preconditions for the self-development of the personality allows the author to emphasize the substantive affinity of his position with the teachings of Kant. We are talking about a) the limits of human knowledge as a prerequisite for freedom and b) the fundamental difference between human knowledge and external things. Forms of distancing metaphysics from science and religion are distinguished. Descartes' study of metaphysics testifies to his balanced attitude to the temptations to exaggerate the significance of human being in the universe and the absolutization of his thinking. Awareness of the peculiarity of knowledge about the metaphysical nature of human being determines his appeal to art. The author connects further prospects of research of metaphysics of the thinker with studying of its poetic component.
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