This does not seem quite right, though. We certainly can get a much better grasp of A's nature by attempting to account for how A really might have come into being, but by merely telling a fictional story about how A could-have-but-did- not-really come into being, we do not learn anything new. All that we get out, in that case, is what we put in: the facts about A's nature that we already knew and used in order to develop a plausible fictional account of A's origin. Once we arrive at the plausible fiction, though, we do not learn anything new. We just learn that we have come up with an account that logically coheres with the facts we already knew. It is only if we then further suppose that this account might be true that we have potentially learned something new about A. using this new knowledge (however tentative) we can deduce further hypotheses about A's nature. In the absence of any level of commitment to the truth of this account, however, the account itself is a dead end.

Of course, it is possible that Descartes only intended to lead us to this dead end. There is still some use to a pure fiction, even if it does not lead us to new knowledge. In order to come up with the story at all, we need to take stock of all the facts we already know about A's nature. Coming up with the fiction, then, can be seen as a useful way to focus us on all the facts we already know about A. Perhaps Descartes' purpose is only this. It seems, though, that he has higher hopes pinned on his account of the origin of the universe. It sounds—both from his statement of purpose and from the account itself—that he believes that he is arriving at new knowledge concerning the nature of the universe. If this is the case, then he must certainly believe that this account is more than just a useful fiction. He must believe that it is a plausible candidate for the truth. Even more than that, given his confidence in his clear and distinct perceptions, he probably believes that it is the truth.