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This treatise published in 1689 was listed in Good Reading's "100 Significant Books." It's a work of epistemology--the branch of philosophy that examines knowledge. Rejecting Descartes' argument of ... Read full review
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abstract ideas affirmed agree agreement or disagreement aqua regia argument assent bishop of Worcester body called capable cerning certainty changeling clear co-exist colour complex idea conceive concerning connexion consider demonstration discourse disputes distinct ideas doubt earth equal errour eternal evidence examine existence faculty of thinking faith farther fusibility gism give gold hath ideas they stand ignorance immaterial substance immortality inquiry intermediate ideas intuitive knowledge language ledge lordship matter maxims men's mind mixed modes moral motion names of substances natural philosophy nature never nexion observe omnipotent opinions particles particular perceive perception perfect principles probability produce proofs propositions qualities rational real essence reason religion revelation Secondly sense signification simple ideas soever sort soul sounds species spirit stances supposed syllogism tain things thought tion true truth understanding universal propositions unquestionable truths whereby wherein whereof words
Page 273 - Reason is natural revelation, whereby the eternal Father of light, and fountain of all knowledge, communicates to mankind that portion of truth which he has laid within the reach of their natural faculties: revelation is natural reason enlarged by a new set of discoveries communicated by God immediately, which reason vouches the truth of, by the testimony and proofs it gives, that they come from God.
Page 339 - I have mentioned mathematics as a way to settle in the mind a habit of reasoning closely and in train; not that I think it necessary that all men should be deep mathematicians, but that having got the way of reasoning, which that study necessarily brings the mind to, they might be able to transfer it to other parts of knowledge as they shall have occasion.30 For in all sorts of reasoning every single argument should be managed as a mathematical demonstration; the connection and dependence of ideas...
Page 163 - For example, does it not require some pains and skill to form the general idea of a triangle, (which is yet none of the most abstract, comprehensive, and difficult,) for it must be neither oblique, nor rectangle, neither equilateral, equicrural, nor scalenon; but all and none of these at once.
Page 103 - We have the ideas of matter and thinking, but possibly shall never be able to know whether any mere material being thinks or no; it being impossible for us, by the contemplation of our own ideas, without revelation, to discover whether Omnipotency has not given to some systems of matter, fitly disposed, a power to perceive and think...
Page 356 - Reading furnishes the mind only with materials of knowledge ; it is thinking makes what we read ours. We are of the ruminating kind, and it is not enough to cram ourselves with a great load of collections ; unless we chew thorn over again, they will not give us strength and nourishment.
Page 101 - Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament ; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.
Page 41 - But yet if we would speak of things as they are, we must allow that all the art of rhetoric, besides order and clearness, all the artificial and figurative application of words eloquence hath invented, are for nothing else but to insinuate wrong ideas, move the passions, and thereby mislead the judgment, and so indeed are perfect cheats...
Page 112 - ... the sciences capable of demonstration; wherein I doubt not but from self-evident propositions, by necessary consequences as incontestable as those in mathematics, the measures of right and wrong might be made out to any one that will apply himself with the same indifferency and attention to the one as he does to the other of these sciences.
Page 201 - ... deserves the name of knowledge. If we persuade ourselves that our faculties act and inform us right concerning the existence of those objects that affect them, it cannot pass for an ill-grounded confidence: for I think nobody can, in earnest, be so sceptical as to be uncertain of the existence of those things which he sees and feels.