In the Synopsis to the Meditations Descartes assures us that ‘extensive doubt… [provides] the easiest route by which the mind may be led away from the senses’ (12). And in the Fifth Replies Descartes adds that it is essential to a proper understanding of the Meditations that ‘the entire testimony of the senses should be regarded as uncertain and even as false’ (350). But to deny our ordinary trust in the senses on the grounds of such ‘hyperbolic’ or ‘metaphysical’ doubts as that one might be dreaming or the victim of an evil demon is, as Descartes himself puts it, quite mad: ‘no sane person has ever seriously doubted that there really is a world and that human beings have bodies’ (16). We seem, then, to be confronted with a dilemma: on the one hand, the skepticism about the senses that we find in the First Meditation must be taken seriously. On the other hand, it is, in some sense, a sham. How, then, are we to understand these doubts?