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HOME UNIVERSITY LIBRARY OF MODERN KNOWLEDGE

THE PROBLEMS OF
PHILOSOPHY
BY

BERTRAND RUSSELL
M.A., F.R.S.

LONDON

WILLIAMS & NORGATE
HENRY HOLT & Co., NEW YORK CANADA: WM. BRIGGS, TORONTO
INDIA
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WASHBOURNE,

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..R.S. F.A. LECTURER AND LAT FELLOW OK TRINITY COLLEGE.THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY BY BERTRAND RUSSELL M. CAMBRIDGE .

PRINTED BY IUZELL. LONDON A. WATSON A.ND A. SCARBOROUGH COLLEGE LIBRARY .YLESBURY.ND VINET. LD.

J. and from the latter as regards prob I have also profited ability and induction. as re Mr. if at all. G.PREFACE IN the following pages. I have confined myself in the main to those problems of philosophy in regard to which it me possible to say something positive seemed to and constructive. since merely negative criticism seemed out of of place. I have derived valuable assistance from unpublished w ritings of Mr. greatly by the criticisms and suggestions of Professor Gilbert Murray. . Moore and from the former. M. E. For this reason. and some topics much discussed by philosophers are treated very briefly. theory knowledge occupies a larger space than metaphysics in the present volume. Keynes r : gards the relations of sense-data to physical objects.

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. 26 III IV . 72 93 GENERAL 109 127 *&amp. 42 58 V KNOWLEDGE KNOWLEDGE BY DESCRIPTION VI VII ON INDUCTION ON OUR KNOWLEDGE PRINCIPLES VIII .gt. OF IS .174 ... BY ACQUAINTANCE AND .... APPEARANCE AND REALITY THE EXISTENCE OF MATTER THE NATURE OF MATTER IDEALISM ..CONTENTS CHAPTER I PAGE ... . . IX THE WORLD OF UNIVERSALS 142 158 X ON OUR KNOWLEDGE OF UNIVERSALS XI . ... HOW A PRIORI KNOWLEDGE POSSIBLE ... 9 II ... ON INTUITIVE KNOWLEDGE vii . . . .

viii CHAPTER CONTENTS PAGB . XII XIII TRUTH AND FALSEHOOD .186 204 KNOWLEDGE. . ERROR. .251 253 INDEX . . 237 . LEDGE XV THE VALUE OF PHILOSOPHY BIBLIOGRAPHICAL NOTE . AND PROBABLE OPINION XIV THE LIMITS OF PHILOSOPHICAL KNOW 220 .

but ordinary critically. after exploring all that makes such carelessly 9 . When we have realised the obstacles in the way of a straightforward and confident answer. not life and dogmatically. as we do in and even in the sciences. is really one of the most difficult that can be asked. we shall be well launched on the study of philo Is there so certain that to sophy for philosophy is merely the attempt answer such ultimate questions.THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY CHAPTER I APPEARANCE AND REALITY any knowledge in the world which no reasonable man could is doubt it ? This question. which at first sight might not seem difficult.

owing to the earth s rotation. It am now sitting in a chair. on which I see sheets of paper with writing or print. are found to be so full of apparent contradictions that only a great amount of thought enables us to know what it is that we really it may is believe. By head I see out of the window turning my I believe buildings and clouds and the sun. In daily life. I believe that. it rises every morning. time in the future. at a table of a certain shape. that the sun is about ninety-three million miles from the earth . if any . we assume as certain many things which. and will continue to do so for an indefinite . In the search for certainty. But any statement as sense. and after realising all the vagueness and confusion that underlie our ordinary ideas. what us it is that our immediate experiences is make know seems to me that I very likely to be wrong. and in some to no doubt.10 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY questions puzzling. knowledge is to be derived from them. natural to begin with our present experiences. that it is a hot globe many times bigger than the earth that. on a closer scrutiny.

evident to so as be be hardly worth stating. except in answer to a man who Yet all of it doubts whether anything. let us con centrate attention on the table. be reasonably doubted. and I know all this may requires much careful discussion before we can be form that is sure that we have stated it in a wholly true. to the touch smooth and cool and hard when I tap it. no difficulty would arise but as soon as we try to be more precise our Although &quot. it gives out a wooden sound.APPEARANCE AND REALITY will see 11 other normal person comes into my room. Any one else who sees and feels and hears the table oblong. so that if it . To the eye . I believe that the all of the same colour over. he the same chairs and tables and books and papers as I see. and much some . the parts that reflect the light look brighter than the other parts. To make our it is difficulties plain. and that the table which I see is the same as the table which I feel All this seems to pressing against my arm. might seem as troubles begin. brown and shiny. table is really &quot. it is will agree with this description.

but to the painter the painter has to they are all-important unlearn the habit of thinking that things seem to have the colour which common sense have. of one of &quot.&quot. For most practical purposes these : differ ences are unimportant. the parts that re flect the light will be different.12 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY parts look white because of reflected light. so that the apparent distribution of colours on the table It follows that if will change. Here &quot. we have already the beginning philosophy &quot. any change in the point of view makes some change in the way the light is can see reflected. because no two it from exactly the same point of and view. and reality. &quot. and what they are. no two of them will see exactly the same distribution of colours. and to learn the really says they habit of seeing things as they appear. The to be seem things painter wants to know what things seem to pearance between ap between what . several people are looking at the table at the same moment. if I move. I know that. the distinctions that cause most trouble in the distinction &quot.

the practical 13 want to know sopher the practical s the philosopher what they are but the philo . we speak of the colour . that there no colour which pre-eminently appears to be the colour of the table. on the table.APPEARANCE AND REALITY be. Thus colour is not something which inherent in the table. is there artificial light. in ordinary light falls life. To return to the table. It is evident is from what we have found. or to a colour-blind man. but something de pending upon the table and the spectator is and the way the When. though and hearing the table will be un changed. man and wish to know this man s. and is stronger than more troubled by is knowledge as to the difficulties of answering the question. or even of any one particular part of the table it appears to be of different and no reason for regarding some of these as more really its colour than others. And we know that even from a given point of view the colour will seem different by colours from different points of view. while in the dark there will be no colour at to touch all. or to a man wearing blue spectacles.

then. we cannot trust what we see with the naked eye. but that in turn would be changed by a still more powerful microscope. and all sorts of differences that are imperceptible to the naked eye. see through a microscope Thus. the table has any one particular we colour. seem to have to a normal spectator from an ordinary point of view under usual conditions of light. The same thing applies to the texture. table ? We are natu tempted to say that what we see through the microscope is more real. even. If. in itself.14 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY we only mean the sort of colour it of the table. With the naked eye one can see the grain. to avoid will . Which of these rally is the &quot. But the other colours which appear under other conditions have just as good a right to be considered real and therefore. real &quot. which favouritism. the . why should we trust ? what we again. are compelled to deny that. we should see roughnesses and hills and valleys. but otherwise the table looks smooth and If we look at it through a microscope.

the apparent shape. shape is is not what we see . noticed in looking at a table. All these things are not commonly &quot. &quot. The shape are 44 of the table is no better. shape from &quot. in fact. a given thing looks different in shape from every different point of view. as we all have to learn if we try to draw. as from had two If angles and two obtuse angles. it almost acute points of view. We all &quot. If our table is really all rectangular. it will if look.APPEARANCE AND REALITY confidence in our senses with which 15 we be gan deserts us. if they are of equal spectator length. and we do this so unreflectingly that we come to think we real But. And what we see constantly changing in shape . actually see the real shapes. it is something inferred from what we see. in the habit of judging as to the shapes of things. and the real shape is what interests us as practical men. opposite sides are parallel. they will look as if they converged to a point away from the . &quot. But the tc real &quot. because experience has taught us to construct the real &quot. &quot. they will look as if the nearer side were longer.

by rapping the table. But the sensation we obtain depends upon how hard and also . and we feel that it resists pressure.16 as THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY we move about the room . so that here again the senses seem not to give us the truth about the table itself. we press the table of the body we press with upon what part thus the various sensations due to various pressures or various parts of the body cannot be supposed to reveal directly table. but at any definite property of the most to be signs of some property which perhaps causes all the sen sations. is not immediately known to us at but must . is one. Similar difficulties arise when we consider the sense of touch. but only about the appearance of the table. is not the same as what we immediately experience by sight or touch or hearing. but is not actually apparent in any And the same applies still more the sounds which can be elicited to obviously of them. if there is one. The real table. Thus it becomes evident that the real table. if there all. It is true that the table always gives us a sensation of hardness.

to of which the Let us give to the things that are immediately known in sensation such things as colours. It is plain that if colour sense-datum. brown been given. sounds. &quot. oblong shape. sense-data &quot.APPEARANCE AND REALITY be an inference from what is 17 immediately known. not is that of which a sensation. of : the name &quot. smoothness. The we we about the table. we cannot say that the table is the . roughnesses. etc. but the colour itself is a are immediately aware. sense-data it know anything must be by means of the are to colour. what sort of object can it be? It will help us in considering these questions have a few simple terms meaning is definite and clear. and so on. name sensation to &quot. smells. we have a sensation of the colour. hardnesses. which we associate with the table but for the reasons which have . difficult at once arise namely. two very . We the shall give the experience of being immediately aware of these things. Thus. at all ? Hence. and the awareness itself is the sensation. whenever we see a colour. (1) Is questions there a real table (2) If so.

Thus we have to consider the relation of sense-data to physical objects.&quot. : nature ? first brought pro forward the reasons for regarding minently the immediate objects of our senses as not The philosopher who existing independently of us was Bishop Berkeley (1685-1753). we will call a physical object. undertake to prove that there is no such thing as matter at all. is who mercilessly drives no match for him into . His Three Dialogues between Hylas and Philonous. supposing there is directly such a thing. Hylas has hitherto believed in matter. in Opposition to Sceptics and Atheists. Thus a problem arises as to the relation of the sensedata to the real table.&quot. what is its matter. real table. The 44 collection of all physical objects is called Thus our two questions may be re-stated as follows (1) Is there any such thing as matter ? (2) If so. but he Philonous.18 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY sense-data. and that the world consists of nothing but minds and their ideas. or even that the sense-data are properties of the table. if it exists. The &quot.

&quot. It is chiefly in this sense that Berkeley . as it were almost common of sense. denies matter that is to say. There are two different questions involved when we ask whether matter exists. &quot.APPEARANCE AND REALITY contradictions his 19 and paradoxes. he does not deny that the sense-data which we commonly take as signs of the existence of the table are really signs of the existence of something inde pendent of us.&quot. think of as occupying space and as radically incapable of any sort of thought or conscious ness. something which we opposed to &quot. but he does deny that this some- . The arguments employed are value others : very different some are are important and sound. and that if there are any things that exist independently is that the existence of matter of us of they cannot be the immediate objects our sensations. in the end. confused or quibbling. and makes own if denial of matter seem. and it is important to keep them clear. But Berkeley retains the merit of having shown capable of being denied without absurdity. We commonly matter mean by something which is mind.

it does depend upon being seen (or otherwise apprehended in sensation) by some . But he thinks that this something cannot be radi cally different in nature from what we see. we can only infer it. that nor ideas entertained by seeing the table does really give us reason for believing in something which persists even when we are not seeing it.20 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY it is neither mind some mind. &quot. although the table does not depend for its existence upon being seen by me. is has the required permanence and independence of ourselves. and T can never be directly and immediately aw are of it. and cannot be independent of seeing altogether. and that what we call thing is non-mental. without being as matter would otherwise be in the sense that something quite unknowable. Other philosophers since Berkeley have also held that. though it must be independent of our seeing. Such an idea &quot. He admits that there must be something which continues to exist when we go out of the room or shut our eyes. He thus led to regard the real table as an idea in the mind of God.

APPEARANCE AND REALITY 21 mind not necessarily the mind of God. in the mind of the person thinking of therefore nothing can be thought of except ideas in minds therefore anything else is incon . exist. and a idealists.&quot. in my opinion. they either say. very widely advanced in one form or another . perhaps have held that there is nothing real majority. minds and their ideas. as Berkeley does. This they hold. . ceivable. : can be thought of is an idea it . and w hat r is inconceivable cannot Such an argument.&quot. Such philo except very &quot. but more often the whole collective mind of the universe. is fallacious and of course those who advance it do not put it so shortly or so crudely. chiefly because they think there can be nothing real or at any rate nothing known to be real except minds and their thoughts and feelings. When they sophers are called come to explaining matter. But whether valid or not. We might state the argument by which they support their view Whatever in some such way as this &quot. many philosophers. the argument has been .

or they say. yet their oc currence a sign of of something existing something differing. though they deny matter as opposed to mind. shape. however much our sense-data colour. so. may depend upon is us. in another sense. like like Berkeley. But these philosophers. etc. nevertheless. and only diverge from the views of ordi nary mortals in their answer to our second In fact. almost all philosophers question. but Berkeley says it is certain ideas in the it is mind of God. smoothness. . (1) Is there a real table at it all ? (2) If what sort of object can be ? Now both Berkeley and Leibniz admit that there is a real table. independently us. and Leibniz says a colony of souls. admit matter. Thus both of them answer our first question in the affirmative.22 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY matter is really nothing but a collection of ideas. It will be remembered that we asked two questions namely. that what appears as is really a collection of more or less rudimentary minds. . seem to be agreed that there is a real table : they almost all agree that. that matter Leibniz (1646-1716).

depend upon the relations between us and the object. whatever its nature may be is vitally important. what the senses immediately tell us is not the truth about the object as it is apart from us. Our next chapter. that we have discovered so that. and yet to be regarded as causing those sense-data whenever we are in a suitable obviously this point in which the philosophers are agreed the view that there is relation to the real table. so far as we can see. Thus what we directly see . 23 completely from our sense-data. Now a real table. will be concerned with the reasons for supposing that there a real table at farther all. is therefore.APPEARANCE AND REALITY perhaps. but only the truth about certain sense -data which. Before we go it will it be well to is consider for a moment what far. if It has appeared we take any common object of the sort that is supposed to be known by the senses. and it will be worth while to consider what reasons there are for accepting this view before we go on to the further question as to the nature of the real table.

24 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY &quot. Beyond this modest result. it cannot answer so many . is wonderful. Among suggests that perhaps there these surprising possibilities. we have the most complete liberty is it of conjecture.&quot. if Philosophy. tells us it a community of souls Berkeley is an idea in the mind of God a scarcely vast collection less tells . has become a problem full surprising possibilities. merely appearance. appears. which has of roused but the slightest thoughts in us hitherto. But if the reality is not what and feel is &quot. us sober us it science. Leibniz . whether there so. which we believe to be a sign of some reality behind. The one thing we know about it is that it is not what it seems. so far. doubt is no table at all. of electric tells charges in violent motion. &quot. it knowing any reality at all ? And if have we any means of finding out what is have we any means of is like ? Such questions are bewildering. and it is difficult to know that even the strangest hypotheses may not be true. Thus our familiar table.

has at least the power the of asking interest questions which increase the world. .APPEARANCE AND REALITY questions as 25 we could of wish. and show the strangeness and wonder lying just below the surface even in the commonest things of daily life.

we 26 shall be left alone . and continues to exist when I am not looking. since we have no grounds for be minds except such as are derived from observing their bodies. we the independent cannot be sure of the independent existence of other people s bodies. and therefore still less of other people s minds. Thus we cannot be sure of the independent if lieving in their existence of objects. For we cannot be sure of existence of objects.CHAPTER II THE EXISTENCE OF MATTER IN this chapter we have to ask ourselves whether. in any sense at all. or is the table merely a product of my imagination. there is such a thing as matter. a dreamtable in a very prolonged dream ? This question if is of the greatest importance. Is there a table which has a certain intrinsic nature.

Descartes (1596-1650). a certain colour us. and that we alone exist. doubtful. a certain sensation of hardness experienced by us. while we look. the founder of modern philosophy. whatever may be some at least of our immediate experiences seem absolutely certain. we are not calling in else question.THE EXISTENCE OF MATTER in 27 a desert it is may be that the whole nothing but a dream. This is an uncomfort outer world able possibility strictly but although it cannot be proved to be false. and shape appear to and while we is is press. made us think there was a we are not doubting that. there is not the . us try to find some more or less fixed point from which to start. Before we have why this is let we embark upon doubtful matters. slightest reason to suppose that to see it is true. invented a method which may still be used with profit the method of . In this chapter the case. In fact. we are not doubting the existence of the sense-data which table . which psychological. All this. Although we are doubting the physical existence of the table.

If he doubted. no demon could he must exist deceive him. therefore I am. would believe nothing which he did not see quite clearly and distinctly to be true. if he had any experiences whatever. and on the basis of this certainty he set to work to build up again the world of knowledge which his doubt had laid in ergo sum) . .28 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY He determined that he systematic doubt. . until he saw reason for not doubting it. he said (Cogito. 44 1 think. senses pre a still it was possible. in He imagined sented unreal a deceitful demon. to his who things perpetual phantasmagoria it might be very improbable that such a demon existed. and therefore doubt senses concerning things perceived by the was possible. But doubt concerning his own existence was not possible. applying this method he gradually became convinced that the only existence of By which he could be quite certain was his own. What ever he could bring himself to doubt. he must exist. he would doubt. Thus his own ex istence was an absolute certainty to him. for if he did not exist.&quot. but .

and by showing that subjective things are the most certain.&quot. a brown colour something somebody) which (or who) sees the brown colour but it does not of itself involve that more or less permanent person whom we call (or . makes him still useful to and one which all students of the subject. 29 inventing the method of doubt. is &quot. &quot. seen.&quot. and does not seem to have that absolute. Descartes performed a By great service to philosophy. This of &quot. But some care cartes am&quot.THE EXISTENCE OF MATTER ruins. sure of being the same person to-day quite as we were yesterday. therefore / more than is strictly cer It might seem as though we were tain. So far as immediate certainty goes. see a certain brown is colour. and this is no doubt true in some sense. But the real Self is as hard to arrive at as the real table. &quot. says rather needed in using Des / think. what is quite cer tain at once colour. argument. con vincing certainty that belongs to particular When I look at my table and experiences. not / am seeing a is brown being but rather. course involves 1. .&quot.

which we can call the physical object ? When we have enumerated all the sensations which . and not the same as the something which has some different experience the next moment. we have. solid basis for exceptional cases. Thus it is our particular thoughts and sees the feelings that this applies to have primitive certainty. have we any reason for regarding them as signs of the existence of something else.30 it THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY might be that the something which brown colour is quite momentary. worth. we certainly do have the sensations various reasons we it think is we have. for what it is Here. The problem we have to consider is this Granted that we are certain of our own sensedata. but held that no physical object corresponds to these sensations. a from which to begin our pursuit : of knowledge. And dreams and hallucinations as perceptions : well as to normal when we for dream or see a ghost. Thus the certainty of our knowledge of our own experiences does not have to be limited in any way to allow therefore.

have we said all there is to say about the table. exist. This seems but whoever wishes to be plainly absurd . and so on. something which persists when we go out of the room ? Common there is. and therefore. it seems pre posterous to maintain that they are not sitting . is that we want the same object for different people. by a miracle. cannot be a mere collection of sensedata. One great reason why it is learn not to be felt that we must secure a physical object in addition to the sense-data. merely sense-data. When ten people are round a dinner-table. would have ceased to and the cloth would be suspended in it empty air.THE EXISTENCE OF MATTER 31 we should naturally regard as connected with the table. table. in the place where the table formerly was. If the shall cloth completely if hides the we derive no sense-data from the table were the table. come a philosopher must frightened by absurdities. sense unhesitatingly answers that What can be bought and sold and pushed about and have a cloth laid on it. or is there still something else something not a sensation. resting.

and therefore if see them slightly differently. and the variations in what they see follow the laws of perspective and reflection of light. What reason. have we for believing that there are such public neutral objects ? The first answer that naturally occurs to one is that. there must be something over and above the private and particular sense-data which ap pear to various people. then. the same knives and spoons and glasses. I bought my table room . they see more or less similar things when they look at the table.32 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY same tablecloth. so that easy to arrive at a permanent object underlying all the dif it is ferent people s sense-data. But the seeing the and forks sense-data are private to each separate person . Thus. from the former occupant of my I . what is immediately present to the sight of not immediately present to the they all see things from sight of another one is : slightly different points of view. there are to be public neutral objects. although different people still may all see the table slightly differently. which can be in some sense known to many different people.

such as the sight of them and if I had or the sound of their voices. when we are trying to show that there must be objects independent of our own sense-data. Now in so far as the above considerations depend upon supposing that there are other people besides ourselves. no reason to believe that there were physical objects independent of my sense-data. B . Thus. I should have no reason to believe that other people exist except as part of my dream. and that one person in a given place at different times has similar sense-data.THE EXISTENCE OF MATTER could not 33 buy his sense-data. different people have similar sense-data. Other people are repre sented to me by certain sense-data. they beg the very question at issue. which died when he went away. we cannot appeal to the testimony since this testimony itself of other people. but I could and did buy the confident expectation of more or less Thus it is the fact that similar sense-data. which makes us suppose that over and above the sensedata there is a permanent public object which underlies or causes the sense-data of various people and various times.

private experiences. In one sense it must be admitted that w e r can never prove the existence of things other than ourselves and our experiences. and yet on waking we find it was a delusion . we find that dream do not appear to have corresponded with such physical objects as we should naturally infer from our sensedata. (It is is true that. that the sense-data in the is to say. that there are in the world in own purely things other than ourselves and our private experiences. physical to find possible physical : when the causes for the sense-data in dreams a door . of us. We our must therefore. if find. No from the hypothesis of myself and my the world consists that logical absurdity results thoughts and feelings and sensations. other people s experiences unless our own sense-data are signs of things existing inde pendently possible.34 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY and does not reveal consists of sense-data. and that everything else is mere fancy. characteristics which show. it is world assumed. In dreams a very complicated world may seem to be present. or tend to show.

in of a naval engagement. may cause us to dream But although. there is spond. simplicity comes in from there supposing really are physical If the cat appears at objects is easily seen. in fact. But although is not logically impossible. it is natural to suppose that it has moved from the one to the other. and at The way in which that another in another part. for instance. viewed as a means of accounting for the facts of our own life. and it is. there no reason whatever to suppose that it is true . in which we ourselves create all the objects that this is come before us. this case. a less simple hypothesis.) There is no logical impossibility in the supposition that the whole of life is a dream.THE EXISTENCE OF MATTER 35 banging. whose action on us causes our sensations. passing over a series of intermediate . one moment in one part of the room. than the common-sense hypothesis that there really are objects inde pendent of us. there is a physical cause for the not a physical object corresponding to the sense-data in the way in which an actual naval battle would corre sense-data.

we can understand from our own experience how it gets hungry but if it between one meal and the next . since no hunger but my own can be a sense -datum to me. thus we shall all have while to suppose that did not exist at was not looking. But the difficulty in the case of the cat is nothing compared to the difficulty in the case . though it seems quite natural when regarded as an expression of hunger. does not exist I when am And if the cat consists only of sense-data. but suddenly sprang into being in a new place. which are as incapable is of hunger as a triangle of playing foot ball. data. it cannot be hungry. it seems odd that appetite should grow during non-existence as fast as during existence.36 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY it positions. not seeing it. Thus the behaviour of the sense-data which repre sent the cat to me. But if it is merely a set of sensecannot have ever been in any place not see it where I I did it . becomes utterly inexplicable when regarded as mere movements and changes of patches of colour. If the cat exists whether I see it or not.

see certain motions of lips it is very difficult and simultaneously and expressions of to suppose that what we hear is not the expression of a thought. But dreams are more or less suggested by what we call waking life.THE EXISTENCE OF MATTER of 37 human that is. Of course similar things happen in dreams. We find this belief ready in ourselves as soon as it is we begin an to reflect : what may be called instinctive belief. urges us to adopt the natural view. beings. When human beings speak when we hear certain noises which we face associate with ideas. where we are mistaken as to the existence of other people. . as we know it would be if we emitted the same sounds. it is not by argument that we come originally by our belief in an independent Of course external world. that there really are objects other than our selves and our sense-data which have an existence not dependent upon our perceiving them. and are capable of being more or less accounted for on scientific principles if we assume that there really is a physical Thus every principle of simplicity world.

ever This discovery. and is not wholly dependent for its existence upon our continuing to perceive clusion is it. there seems no good reason for rejecting it. but it is led us to this con doubtless less strong than typical of it is we could arguments. and many philosophical therefore worth while to . We may a slight though with doubt derived from dreams that therefore admit the external world does really exist. all how which is not at paradoxical in the case of taste and smell and sound. whereas argument shows that the object cannot be identical with the sense-datum. and only touch leaves un- slightly so in the case of diminished our instinctive belief that there are objects corresponding to our sense-data. but on the contrary tends to simplify and systematise our account of our experi ences. Since this belief does not lead to any diffi culties. at any rate it in the case of sight.38 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY We should never have been led to question this belief but for the fact that. seems as if the sense- datum itself were instinctively believed to be the independent object. The argument which has wish.

become entangled with other general character All knowledge. but is falsely supposed to be part of what instinctively. we beliefs. not really instinctive. and if these are rejected. But among our instinctive beliefs some are much stronger than others. belief if except that it clashes thus. There can never be any reason for rejecting do not clash. and presenting of each as much isolated and as free from irrele vant additions as possible. nothing is left. It should take care to show that. our instinctive beliefs but form a harmonious system. built up upon our instinctive beliefs. and therefore . while many have.THE EXISTENCE OF MATTER consider briefly its 39 and must be find. It is of course possible that beliefs all or any of our all may be mistaken. in the form in which they are finally set forth. beginning with those we hold most strongly. the whole system becomes worthy of acceptance. believed Philosophy should show us the hierarchy our instinctive beliefs. they are found to har monise. by habit and association. one instinctive with others . validity.

rightly or wrongly. the more modest function we have spoken of can certainly be performed by . by organising our instinctive beliefs and their consequences. This function. instinctively believe. Hence. believe that philosophy can do much more form.40 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY ought to be held with at least some slight element of doubt. by considering which among on data or them it is most of possible. at least. we can as the basis accepting our what we ledge. though its error remains. philosophy can per Most philosophers. case or not. otherwise attainable. likelihood of the possibility of is diminished parts arid by the the interrelation the by critical scrutiny which has preceded acquiescence. than not this that it can give us knowledge. to arrive. if necessary. and concerning the nature Whether this be the of ultimate reality. But we cannot have reason to reject a belief except on the ground of some other belief. concerning the universe as a whole. at an derly systematic organisation of our in know which. sole modify or abandon.

THE EXISTENCE OF MATTER 41 philosophy. . for those who have once begun to doubt the adequacy of common sense. to justify the arduous and difficult labours that philosophical problems involve. and certainly suffices.

and so on. those which we associated with my table are for the existence of something independent of us and our perceptions. these things are appearances. that it is rational to believe that our sense-data regard really as signs example. the sound ceases to exist if I cease to rap the table with my knuckles. 42 .CHAPTER III THE NATURE OF MATTER preceding chapter we agreed. I assume that there is something else. over and above the sensations of of colour. which make up appearance me. noise. hardness. without though being able to find demonstra IN the tive reasons. exist if ceases to exist of if I shut my the sensation I hardness ceases to remove my arm from contact with the table. of which the of the table to The colour eyes. That is to say.

Physical science. somewhat incomplete still true. has drifted into the view that all natural phenomena ought to less be reduced to motions. unconsciously. The only properties which science assigns to . table exists believe that because the continuously that all these sense-data will reappear when I open my replace eyes. Light and heat and sound are all due to wave-motions.&quot.THE NATURE OF MATTER But I 43 these do not believe that when cease I all things the table ceases. but in either call case is what the philosopher would matter. rap with we have to to my arm. either eether or gross matter. and very hypothetical. The question consider in this chapter real is : What which is the nature of this table. who sees light or feels heat or hears is That which has the wave-motion &quot. which travel from the body emitting them to the person sound. it is On the contrary. but yet deserving it of respect so far as more or goes. persists independently of my per ception of it ? To part this question physical science gives it is an in answer. and begin again my knuckles.

other may have but if so. motion. but some something which it we all know if we we cannot describe are not blind.44 it THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY are position in space. of since he acquire space by knowledge the sense of touch and he can experience a wave-motion by a sea voyage almost . But this.&quot. on the contrary. man and in no way mena. not what we mean by light we mean by light just which a blind man can never understand. which we know directly by means of our senses. and the power of it of motion according to the laws Science does not deny that properties are not useful to the . such other properties of science. could quite well be can described to a blind man. light is is of wave-motion. is which a that blind man can understand. though so as to convey our knowledge to a man who is blind. It is assist him in explaining the pheno a form sometimes said that but this &quot. misleading. for the light which not a we immediately see. . A wavemotion. a as well as we : can. is form of thing quite different wave-motion.

It is on that are absent from the of matter. When it is said that light is waves. not only colours and sounds and so scientific world but also space as we get It is it through sight or touch. it is as we To begin with. according to science. is not supposed by the form any part of the world that And independent of us and our senses. its essential to science that matter should be in a space. but the space in which it is cannot be exactly the space we see see or feel. what is really meant is that waves are the physical cause of our sensations of light. 45 to which we can never describe Now this something. But light itself. space not the same as space as we . thing which seeing people experience and blind people do not. which all of us who : are not blind know. very similar remarks would apply to other science to is kinds of sensations. it is really to be found in the outer world something caused by the action of certain waves upon the eyes and nerves and brain of the person who sees the light. is not.THE NATURE OF MATTER and him.

In differ ent people s private spaces the same object seems to have different shapes thus the real .46 get THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY it it is only by we learn how to touch things we see. But . for example. must be in a real space. must be . Again. will look it. But this real shape. according to their point of view. space. by the sense of touch experience in infancy that the space of science is neutral as be tween touch and sight. we are judging that it has a real shape which is not its apparent shape. in which it has its real shape. or how to get a sight of things which we feel touching us. A circular coin. which what concerns science. oval unless we are judge that it is circular. thus it cannot be either the space of touch or the space of sight. not the space. different people see the same object as of different shapes. though we should always judge it to be circular. but belongs to it intrinsically apart from straight in front of its is When we appearance. the apparent space is private to the percipient. same as anybody is s apparent The real space public.

. We get a sensation of touch from an object when sical objects. The space science. or taste near to we only hear or smell an object when we are sufficiently it. but may be regarded as causing our sen sations. We see an object in physical (roughly is speaking) when no opaque body between the object and our eyes in phy sical space. when some part of our body occupies a place .THE NATURE OF MATTER different of 47 from the private spaces. must be a physical space containing these objects and our senseorgans and nerves and brain. though connected with the spaces we see and feel. It is &quot. therefore. our sensations are to be caused by phy space. Similarly. which we may call &quot. is not identical with them. or when it touches the tongue. space quite close to the space occupied by the object. agreed provisionally that physical objects cannot be quite like our sense-data. and the manner of its connection requires investigation. cal if important to notice that. We These physical objects are in the physi space of science. there we are in contact with it that is to say.

either the space of sight or the space of touch or such vaguer spaces as other senses may give us. it will be reached sooner if we walk along . our other senses will bear out the view that it is nearer for example. the relative positions of physical objects in physical space must more or less correspond to the relative positions of sense-data in our private spaces. If we see on a road one house nearer to us than another. There is no difficulty in supposing this to be the case. begin to state what different sensations some suitable We derive from a given object under different circumstances unless we regard the shall we object and our body it is as both in one physical space. . there public all-embracing physical space in one which physical objects are. Now our sense-data are situated in our private spaces. If.48 or THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY has position in physical our to cannot space relatively body. for mainly the relative positions and our body that determine what sensations we shall derive from the of the object object. as science is and common sense assume.

49 Other people will house which looks nearer to us the ordnance agree that the is nearer . Thus we may assume that there is a physical space in which physical objects have spatial re lations corresponding to those which the corresponding sense-data have in our private It is this physical space which is spaces. for example. map will take the same view and thus everything points to a spatial relation between the houses corresponding to the relation between the sense-data which we see when we look at the houses. though . That is to say. dealt with in geometry and assumed in physics and astronomy. spatial relations. we can know nothing of what but we can know the sort of physical objects it is like in itself. that the earth and moon and sun are in one straight line during an eclipse. Assuming that there is physical space. . of arrangement which results from their We can know.THE NATURE OF MATTER the road. what can we know about it ? can know only what is required in order to the secure correspondence. and that it does thus correspond to private We spaces.

We can know the relations required to preserve the cor respondence with sense-data. or with colours or sounds or other sense-data.50 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY we cannot know what a physical straight line is in itself. as we know the look of a Thus we straight line in our visual space. our -feeling of is duration or of the lapse of time notoriously an . know greater than the same straight another. come to know much more about the re lations about distances in physical space than the distances themselves we may of . We can know all those things about physical space which a man born blind might know through other people but the kind of about the space of sight things which a man born blind could never . but we cannot have that that one distance is it is immediate acquaintance with physical dis tances that we have with distances in our private spaces. but we cannot know the nature of the terms between which the relations hold. know about the space know about physical of sight we r also cannot space. With regard to time. or that along line as the other.

At any rate no reason can be given for supposing that the two orders are not the same. Times when we are bored or suffering pain pass slowly. the shape of the regiment will space : if look different from different points of view. Thus. and times when we are sleeping pass almost as if they did not exist. there is the same necessity for distinguishing a public and a private time as there was in the case of But in so far as time consists in space. which events seem to have can so far as we see. but the men will appear arranged in the from all points of view. The same is usually true of a regiment of men are marching along a road. the same as the time-order which they do have. Hence the order as true also in physical we regard space. no need make such a distinction the time-order is. in so far as time are is constituted by duration. an order to of before and after. times when we agreeably occupied pass quickly. whereas the shape is only supposed same order to correspond to the physical space so far . there is .THE NATURE OF MATTER 51 unsafe guide as to the time that has elapsed by the clock.

It must not be supposed that the various states of different physical objects have the same time-order as the sense-data which constitute the perceptions of those objects. But the sense-datum hearing the thunder does not take place until the disturbance of the air has travelled as far as to where we are. namely. where the lightning is. call which we Similarly. when we . it is necessary to guard against a possible misunderstanding. the thunder and lightning are simultaneous . that is to say. the lightning is simultaneous with the disturbance of the air in the place where the disturbance begins. afford evidence as to the physical sun they afford evidence as to the physical minutes So are seeing the sun of eight far as our sense-data sun of . In saying that the time-order which events seem to have is the same as the time-order which they really have. it the sun s light takes about eight minutes for to reach us thus. see the sun we ago.52 as THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY is required for the preservation of the order. Considered as physical objects.

THE NATURE OF MATTER . and this sounds familiar. looks blue and another red. Science tells us that this quality is a certain sort of wave- motion. call seeing the sun. we may presume difference a corresponding similarity. ably presume that there is some corresponding between the physical objects if two objects both look blue. that would make no difference to the sense- data which of we &quot. because we think of wave -motions in the space we But the wave-motions must really see. be in no physical space. . 53 if the eight minutes ago physical sun had ceased to exist within the last eight minutes. But we cannot hope to be acquainted directly with the quality in the physical object which makes it look blue or red. with which we have direct acquaintance thus the real . between sense-data and physical What we have found as regards much the same as what we find in their physical space is relation to the correspondence of the sense-data with counterparts. This affords a fresh illustration of the neces sity distinguishing objects.&quot. If one object we may reason .

this view. at any rate that. The most natural.motions have not that familiarity which we might have supposed them to have. as regards visual sense-data. Thus we find that. though not ultimately the most defensible. The colour which an object seems to . And what holds for colours is closely similar to what holds for other sense-data.54 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY wave . and we might. for the reasons considering. hypothesis to adopt in the first instance. The question remains whether there is any other method of discovering the intrinsic nature of physical objects. physical objects will. the physical objects themselves remain un known in their intrinsic nature. by good luck. though physical we have been sense-data. although the relations of physical objects have all sorts of knowable properties. yet be exactly like they may be more or less like. According to example. for really have colours. see an object as of the colour it really is. derived from their corre spondence with the relations of sense-data. so far at least as can be discovered by means of the senses. would be objects cannot.

though not quite the same. perhaps not capable of being definitely refuted. intermediate between the various shades which appear from the different points of view. and is therefore modified by the medium intervening between us and the object. whether the object from which the waves start has . thus suppose the of &quot.THE NATURE OF MATTER 55 have at any given moment will in general be very similar. Hence. and not simply a property of the object from which the ray comes. from many different points of view we might . real &quot. we shall see a certain colour. but it can be shown To begin with. unless it The intervening perfectly clear. also. as well as by the manner in which light is re flected from the object is in the direction of air alters colours strong- the eye. is Such a theory that the colour we see depends only upon the nature of the light-waves that strike the eye. reflection will alter and any them completely. Thus it the colour we see is a result of the ray as reaches the eye. it is plain to be groundless. colour to be a sort medium colour. provided certain waves reach the eye.

It remains to ask whether there are any general philosophical arguments enabling us to say that. and physical objects therefore there is no supposition.&quot. if matter is real. have is held that whatever must be in some some sense mental. &quot. &quot. idealists the matter. it must be of such and such a nature. though they do not deny that our sense-data are signs of something which exists inde- . real very many philosophers. Idealists tell us that Such philosophers are called what ap is really something mental . in idealists. we should com monly say. As explained above. justification for making such a arguments Exactly similar will apply to other sense-data.56 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY not. as &quot. or at any rate that whatever we can know anything about must be sense mental. either (as Leibniz held) more or less namely. or (as Berkeley contended) pears as matter ideas in the minds which. rudimentary minds. any colour or tuitous to Thus that it is quite gra suppose have colours. perhaps most. Thus perceive of matter as existence the deny something intrinsically different from mind.

THE NATURE OF MATTER pendently of ourprivate sensations. following chapter the reasons in 57 In the we shall consider briefly opinion fallacious which idealists advance in favour of their theory. my .

and is advocated on several different grounds.CHAPTER IDEALISM IV THE word philosophers &quot. The doctrine is so widely held. that even the briefest survey of philosophy must give some ac count of it. idealism &quot. or at known any must be some sense mental. There no doubt that common sense regards tables and chairs and the sun and moon and is 58 . which is very widely held among philosophers. and so in teresting in itself. the doctrine that rate whatever can in whatever exists. in somewhat it We be shall understand by to exist. is used by different different senses. has several forms. Those who are unaccustomed to philo sophical speculation may be inclined to dismiss such a doctrine as obviously absurd. This doctrine.

but if any philosopher it. they must differ very widely from sense-data. could It may be unattainable. Hence common sense leaves us completely in the dark as to the true intrinsic nature of physical objects. and as having an existence which might continue if minds ceased.IDEALISM 59 material objects generally as something radic ally different from minds and the contents of minds. We think matter as having existed long before there were any minds. We have seen that. believes that he has attained the fact that what he offers as the truth is strange ought . The truth about physical objects must be strange. in the same sort of way in which a catalogue has a correspondence with the things cata logued. and it is hard to think of it But as a mere product of mental activity. idealism is not to be of dismissed as obviously absurd. even if physical objects do have an independent existence. and if there were good reason to regard them as mental. whether true or false. we not legitimately reject this opinion merely because it strikes us as strange. and can only have a correspondence with sense-data.

in part at least. in &quot. and that whatever is known is to be &quot. He proved first. &quot. his contention was almost certainly valid. or hearing or touching or smelling or tasting. so. and that to be known to a mind. in the mind. even if some of his arguments were not But he went on to argue that sense-data were the only things of whose existence our perceptions could assure us. in the sense that their existence would not continue if there were no seeing of us. that our sense-data cannot be supposed to have an existence independent The but must be. The grounds on which idealism is advocated are generally grounds derived from the theory of knowledge.60 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY made a ground of objection to his not to be opinion. by arguments which were largely valid. and therefore Hence he concluded that nothing can ever be known except what is in some mind. So far. from a discussion of the conditions in order that which things must able to satisfy we may be know them. first serious attempt to establish idealism on such grounds was that of Bishop Berkeley. &quot. . be mental. that is to say.

But the term There is will not wholly confined to sense-data. such im He then common He shows 44 per the tree consists of ideas in his sense we know immediately when we of the word. to any thing which is immediately known. for example. 61 in my mind must be some In order to understand his argument. proceeds to consider such as a tree. sense-data are known.&quot. a voice which we hear. that ceive all &quot. also be things remembered or imagined. and he argues that there is not the slightest ground for supposing that there is anything real about the tree except what is perceived. and so on. Thus a par ticular colour which we see is an idea so is . objects. : &quot. All 44 mediate data he calls ideas. for instance. being perceived he says. men its &quot. He gives the name &quot.&quot. consists in in the Latin of the school per dpi. Its being. as. idea &quot. is He fully admits . it is necessary to understand his use of the word 44 idea. esse &quot.&quot.IDEALISM without being in other mind. for with such things also we have immediate acquaintance at the moment of remembering or imagining.

and it is because of this participation that different people see more or less the same tree. Thus apart from minds and their ideas there is nothing in the world. and which it will be In the first place. since is known necessarily an idea. he says. the to what we called the physical object. as well to bring to light. idea. but differing in the fact that they are permanent in God s mind so long as the tree to exist.&quot.62 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY when that the tree must continue to exist even we shut our eyes or when no human being is near it. according continues cipation in God s perceptions. nor is it possible that anything whatever else is should ever be known. is due to the fact that God continues to &quot. But this continued existence. sponds consists of ideas in the more or less like those mind of God. there is a confusion engendered by the use of the word &quot. &quot. to in a partial parti consist him. There are in this argument a good many fallacies which have been important in the history of philosophy. which corre perceive it . real tree. We think of an idea . ideas we have when we see the tree. All our perceptions.

the tree must be entirely in minds. This con may seem too gross to have been really committed by any competent philosopher. In order to see how it was . To is argue that the tree itself must be in our minds like arguing that a person whom we bear in mind is himself in our minds. but that a thought of him is in our biguous. it is natural to suppose that. and thus when we are told that a tree consists entirely of ideas. But in the mind is am the notion of being &quot.IDEALISM 63 as essentially something in somebody s mind. if so. We minds. &quot. tree all And so in must be when Berkeley says that the our minds if we can know it. but afterwards ceased to be in his mind. speak of bearing a person in mind. that he really has a right to say is that a thought of the tree must be in our minds. fusion but various attendant circumstances rendered it possible. but only that a thought of the business was formerly in his mind. not meaning that the person is in our minds. When a man says that some business he had to arrange went clean out of his mind. he does not mean to imply that the business itself was ever in his mind.

by mental. that must It is necessary to prove. For this But from the one this purpose arguments of detail as to the de pendence of sense-data upon us are useless. much if as upon the the tree were not is different an entirely by which point can be that whatever Berkeley seeks to prove immediately known must be in a mind. generally. that now concern us. Before taking up the general question of the nature of ideas. Berkeley was right in treating the sense-data which constitute our perception of the tree as more or less subjective. we must disentangle two entirely separate questions which arise con cerning sense-data and physical objects. We saw that. question as to the nature of ideas. to be shown are known. and not our previous question as to the difference between sense-data and the physical object. things being This is what Berkeley believes himself to have done. for various reasons of detail. in the sense that they depend upon us as tree. It is this question.64 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY we must go more deeply into the possible. . and would not exist being perceived.

in a certain light. they proved case. There is on the one hand the thing of which we are aware table say the colour of my and on the other hand the actual itself. the mental act of appre hending the thing. they only proved that its existence depends upon the relation of our sense organs to the physical object in our That is to say. that a certain colour will exist.IDEALISM Taking the word sense. 65 &quot. Berkeley s view. They did not prove that the colour is in the mind of the if percipient. the table. there are &quot. that obviously the colour must be in the mind. seems to depend for its plausibility upon confusing the thing appre hended with the act of apprehension. Either c . idea in Berkeley s two quite distinct things to be considered whenever an idea is before the mind. but is there any reason awareness to suppose that the thing apprehended is in any sense mental ? Our previous argu ments concerning the colour did not prove it to be mental . The mental act is un doubtedly mental. a normal eye is placed at a certain point relatively to the table.

The act is undoubtedly in the mind hence. fallacy upon which it This question of the distinction between act and object in our apprehending of things is vitally important. Thus. This seems to be the true analysis of Berkeley s argument. i. forgetting that this was only true when ideas were taken as acts of apprehension. since our of acquiring knowledge of being itself is is whole power bound up with it. &quot. . to the things apprehended by our acts of apprehension. Berkeley. we transfer the pro ideas are in the mind to position that &quot.66 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY &quot. Then. by an unconscious equivocation. &quot. and the ultimate rests. when we are thinking of the act. tially Acquaintance with objects essen consists in a relation between the mind . might be called an idea probably either would have been called an idea by of these .e. The faculty other than of a acquainted with things the main characteristic mind. we arrive at the conclusion that whatever we can apprehend must be in our minds. ideas in the other sense. we readily assent to the view that ideas must be in the mind.

It inferred that whatever can in any way be . in this i. 67 is of that the things knowing things. his there are any other grounds. is in the mind. We or we are uttering a mere tautology. known must be in the mind. and grounds for supposing that &quot. Thus when we realise the nature of knowledge. we shall have to admit that what.e. may nevertheless be not mental. mind.e. if sense. that we cannot know that anything exists is which we do not know. &quot. i. the objects apprehended must be mental. It is often said. But if we mean this. his Hence grounds in favour of idealism may It remains to see whether be dismissed.&quot.IDEALISM and something other than the mind it this that constitutes the mind s power .ideas&quot. as though it were a self- evident truism. mere tautology if we mean by the same as by in the mind before the &quot. we mean merely being appre hended by the mind. are uttering a &quot. we are either If we say unduly limiting the mind s power of knowing. Berkeley s argument is seen to be wrong in substance as well as in form. are found to have no validity whatever.

if it is not composed of minds or of mental ideas. if real.68 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY must be at least whence it capable of being known by us follows that if matter were essentially some thing with which we could not become ac quainted. is impossible and a at mere chimera. truth persons desirous of knowing the about the universe. reason there is no To begin at the end cannot have what any practical why : importance for us should not be true that. and which could have for us no importance whatever. and that therefore matter. of included. since it raises points requiring a considerable pre but certain reasons for liminary discussion the argument may be noticed at rejecting . is It is theoretical is everything real since. To go into this argument fully our present stage would be impossible. importance some importance to us. implied. It is relevant to our experience . matter would be something which we could not know to exist. we have some as . for reasons which remain obscure. that what can have no im generally also portance for us cannot be real. once.

it We exist. we cannot know that it exists. has the importance of either satisfying or thwarting this desire. and that we cannot know that anything exists which we do not know. The word know is here used in two differ Again. &quot. above. the sense which applies to our beliefs i.e. . (1) In its first use it is applicable to the sort of knowledge which is opposed to error.IDEALISM interest in 69 the of everything if that sort universe is contains. ledge may be described as knowledge of truths. know &quot. even can. suspect that wonder whether it does nected with our desire and hence it is con for knowledge. which we may call acquaintance. in it is is fact false. and may . and convictions. provided if exists. the sense in which what we know is true. the word applies to our knowledge of This things. know (2) In the second use of the word &quot. obviously. But it is this interest included. not the case that matter has no it importance for us. &quot. that to In this sense is of the what are called judg word we know This sort of something the case. ent senses. by no means a truism. ments.

my acquaintance gives it exists. This is We by no means a truism. It may be said. however. of course. or between wissen and kennen in German. This. &quot.&quot. If I am acquainted with a thing which exists. whenever I can know that a it is But . if the principle were true. but on the contrary a palpable falsehood. when re-stated. but I truly judge that he s exists. since. not true that. (The distinction involved roughly that between savoir and connaitre in French. This point is important. the following : can never truly judge that something with which we are not acquainted exists. But further there is no reason why I r : should not know of the existence of something which with nobody is acquainted. I have not the honour to be acquainted with the Emperor of China. would be an irrelevant retort. I could not cause of other people know that any one else is acquainted with him.) Thus the statement which seemed like a truism becomes. and demands elucidation.70 is THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY the sense in which we know is sense-data. me the know ledge that conversely. that I judge this be acquaintance with him.

IDEALISM 71 thing of a certain sort exists. in virtue of some general principle. is that the thing is known to me by description. . I or some one else must be acquainted with the thing. What happens. has the same kind of certainty as our knowledge of the existence of our own ex between knowledge periences. in cases where I have true judgment without acquaintance. if any. These subjects will be dealt with in the following chapters. and that. it will be well first to deal with the difference by acquaintance and knowledge by description. In order to understand this point fully. and then to con sider what knowledge of general principles. the existence of a thing answering to this de scription can be inferred of from the existence something with which I am acquainted.

preceding chapter we saw : that two sorts of knowledge knowledge and knowledge of truths. same time knowing Knowledge of things by description. though it would be rash to assume that human beings ever. call when it is of the knowledge by acquaintance. in fact. as we shall find in the course of the .CHAPTER V KNOWLEDGE BY ACQUAINTANCE AND KNOW LEDGE BY DESCRIPTION IN the there are of things. have acquaintance with things without at the some truth about them. and logically independent of knowledge of truths. In this chapter we shall be concerned exclusively with knowledge of things. on the contrary. Know kind we ledge of things. of which in turn we shall have to distinguish two kinds. always in 72 volves. is essentially simpler than any knowledge of truths.

without the intermediary of any process of inference or any knowledge of truths. knowledge of the as it. &quot. some knowledge of truths as But first of all we its source and ground. in the presence of table I am smoothness.&quot. Thus my acquainted with the sense-data that make up the appear ance of my table its colour. We shall say that we have acquaintance &quot. But such statements. though they make me know truths about the colour. with anything of which we are directly aware. truths about opposed to knowledge of I know the colour perfectly see is it.ACQUAINTANCE AND DESCRIPTION 73 present chapter. etc. hardness. and completely when I knowledge of it itself and no further even theoretically . shade of colour that I am seeing may have many things said about it I may say that it I is brown. . shape. all these are things of which am immediately conscious when I am The particular seeing and touching my table. must make clear what we mean by acquaint ance and what we mean by description. and so on. &quot. do not make me know the colour itself any better than I did before colour : so far as concerns itself. that it is rather dark.

on the contrary. things im to mediately known me just as they are. The table the physical object which causes such-and-such sense -data. In know anything at all about the must know truths connecting it we table. knowledge of the table as a physical object. is not direct know it is. Such as seen that it is possible. no state of mind in which we are all our know directly aware of the table is of the table ledge really knowledge of There is . shall call knowledge by &quot. to is doubt whether there it is a table at all. without absurdity. We have My ledge. with things with which we have acquaint such-and-such ance we must know that &quot. sense-data are caused .&quot. : by a physical object. This describes is the table order to by means of the sense-data.&quot.74 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY Thus the sense-data which make possible. My knowledge of the table is of the kind which we &quot. description. up the appearance of with which I my table are things have acquaintance. it is obtained through the sense-data that make with acquaintance up the appearance of the table. whereas not possible to doubt the sense-data.&quot.

In such a case. more restricted than it is. though the object itself not directly known to us. All our knowledge. strictly speaking. 75 the and the actual thing which is is table not. is known to us and we know which this that there just one object to is description applies. of the object is we say that our knowledge knowledge by description. things with which we are are ac in fact.ACQUAINTANCE AND DESCRIPTION truths. We should only by acquaintance. we have already seen. know what is now present to our senses we could not know anything about the past not even that there was a past nor could we know any truths about our sense-data. at all. We know a description. Sense-data. for all : . they supply the most quainted obvious and striking example of knowledge But if they were the sole our knowledge would be very much example. as among the . rests of things and knowledge upon acquaintance as fore foundation. It is there important to consider what kinds of things there are with which we have acquaint ance. its both knowledge of truths.

but we are often aware We are not . there could be knowledge of the past by : inference. The next extension to be considered is acquaintance by introspection. as knowledge we shall show. obvious that we often remember what seen or heard or had otherwise we have we present to our senses. since we should never know that there was anything past to be inferred. de mands acquaintance with things which are of different character from sensean essentially data. knowledge by memory is the source of all our knowledge concerning the past without no it. only aware of things.&quot. the things which are sometimes called &quot. but which we shall call &quot. The It is first extension beyond sense-data to is be considered acquaintance by memory. abstract ideas.&quot. We we have therefore to con sider acquaintance with other things besides sense-data if are to obtain any tolerably adequate analysis of our knowledge. in spite of the fact that it appears This immediate as past and not as present.76 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY of truths. and that in such cases are still immediately aware of what we remember. universals.

and of the events which happen in our generally minds. is an object with which acquainted. we . through the sense-data in us which are associated with their bodies. we should be unable to imagine the minds of others. It is may obvious that own is only what goes on in our minds that can be thus known imme it is diately. &quot. of Similarly we may be our feeling pleasure or pain. What goes on in the minds of others their known to us through our perception of bodies. and therefore we could never arrive at the knowledge that they have minds. is the source of all our knowledge of mental things. am often aware of my &quot. that is. When I see the sun.ACQUAINTANCE AND DESCRIPTION of being I &quot. When I desire food. which aware be called self-consciousness. 77 aware of them. This kind of acquaintance. I my am desiring food &quot. . But for our acquaintance with the contents of our own minds. seems natural to suppose that self-consciousness is one of the things that It distinguish men from animals : animals. I may be aware of my desire for food thus my seeing the I . seeing the sun thus sun is an object with which have acquaintance.

as opposed to particular thoughts and feelings. though the acquaintance is hard to disentangle from other things. the subjects sensations and feelings.&quot. and I which has the thought or not upon the Nevertheless there are some reasons feeling. of particular thoughts and The question whether we is are also acquainted with our bare selves. and thus never know of their may own do not mean that they doubt whether they exist. I never become conscious of the fact that they have sensations and feelings. never become aware of this acquaintance. of their have spoken of acquaintance with the contents of our minds as ^//-consciousness.I. of course. but self : We it is not. but that they have existence. . though they have acquaintance with sense-data. upon which it would be rash to speak positively. To make clear &quot. nor therefore of the fact that they. When we try to look into ourselves we always seem to come upon some particular thought or feeling. a very difficult one. &quot. consciousness of our is it consciousness feelings.78 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY suppose. for thinking that we are acquainted with the &quot. exist.

Thus. 79 let us consider for moment what our acquaintance with par ticular thoughts really involves. I am is ac quainted with to see this sense-datum.&quot. Further. the whole &quot. seems obviously a relation sense-datum.with-sense-datum. between the person acquainted and the object with which the person is acquainted. plain that the person acquainted fact with is myself. I am acquainted &quot. other.ACQUAINTANCE AND DESCRIPTION what a sort of reason there is. It hard or how we could know this truth. we know the truth &quot. On the one hand there is the sense- datum which represents the sun to me. When a case of acquaintance can be acquainted (as I is one with which I my am acquainted with the with sense-datum re acquaintance it is presenting the sun). it seems plain that I am acquainted with two different things in relation to each I When am &quot. on the other hand there is that which sees this All acquaintance. such as my with the sense-datum which acquaintance represents the sun.&quot. . when I am Self- acquainted with which my seeing the sun. my seeing acquainted with the sun. is acquainted.

and in introspection with the data of what may in be called the inner sense . We may therefore sum up as follows what has been said concerning acquaintance with things that exist.80 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY even understand what &quot. unless we were acquainted with something which we call I. It suppose that or less we does not seem necessary to are acquainted with a more permanent person. which sees the sun quaintance with sense-data. feelings. and complicated arguments can be adduced on either side. etc. sense it and has ac Thus. the same to-day as yesterday. but it does seem as though we must be acquainted with that thing. thoughts. is meant by it. Hence. We have acquaintance in sensation with the data of the outer senses. it is not wise to assert that it undoubtedly does occur. desires. we have acquaintance memory with things which have been data . whatever its nature. in some would seem we must be acquainted with our Selves as opposed to our particular But the question is difficult.&quot. although acquaintance with ourselves seems probably to occur. experiences.

it is probable. by what I call knowledge by which we must now consider. It will be seen that which we the objects with are acquainted are not included among physical objects (as opposed to sense-data). general ideas. and so on. These things are known to us description. nor other people s minds. Further. such as whiteness.ACQUAINTANCE AND DESCRIPTION 81 either oi the outer senses or of the inner sense. diversity. return to universals later on. Every com plete sentence must contain is at least one word which stands for a universal. since all verbs have a meaning which for the present.&quot. We shall IX . called conceiving. In addition to our acquaintance with parti we also have acquaint call universal^. . brotherhood. that we have acquaintance with Self. &quot. cular existing things. though not certain. in Chapter against the supposition that whatever cular is only necessary to guard we can be acquainted with must be something parti and existent. Awareness of universals and a universal of which we are aware is called a concept. it is universal. as that which is aware oi things or has desires towards things. ance with what we shall is that to say.

but I pass them by. is known by &quot. Thus a description will mean any phrase of the form the so-and-so in the singular. We shall say that &quot. which is the nature of our knowledge concerning objects in cases where we know that there is an object answering to a definite description.82 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY By a &quot. is Thus an ambiguous description. though we are not acquainted with any such object. nected with ambiguous descriptions. a &quot.the so-and-so. a so-and-so&quot. is a definite There are various problems con description. I mean any phrase of description the form a so-and-so or &quot. &quot. when we know that is the is there . a phrase singular) I shall call a &quot. the man man &quot. and definite &quot. This is a matter which is concerned exclusively with definite descriptions. since they do not directly con cern the matter we are discussing. an object &quot.&quot. : I shall call an &quot.e. with the iron mask &quot. when we know that it i. the sequel. description so-and-so. * description. &quot. of the ambiguous description form the so-and-so (in the &quot. A phrase of the form &quot. &quot. in &quot. &quot. I shall therefore. definite descriptions. &quot.&quot. descriptions when I mean &quot. speak simply of &quot. &quot. &quot.&quot.

and no more. having a certain and it will generally be implied property that we do not have knowledge of the same . we . the so-and-so. the so-and-so exists. by acquaintance. is the so-and-so. in fact. of merely descriptive knowledge the so-and-so when. we do not know where any proposition a is a &quot. the candidate who will get most votes but we do not know which of the candidates he is.e. &quot. and although we may possibly be acquainted with the object which is. We shall say that &quot. When we say the so-and-so exists. we do not know any A is the candidate proposition of the form who will get most votes where A is one of the candidates by name.ACQUAINTANCE AND DESCRIPTION 83 one object. something with which we are acquainted. although we know that we have &quot. We know that the with the iron mask existed. . and many propositions are known about him but we do object man not . and in this case we are very likely also acquainted (in the only sense in which one can be acquainted with some one else) with the man who is. in fact. We know that the candidate who gets the most votes will be elected. yet &quot. i.&quot.&quot. know who he was. &quot.

in fact. are usually really descriptions. which is the The proposition a is the so-andmeans that a has the property so-and-so. the thought in !he mind of a person using a proper name correctly can generally only be expressed explicitly if we replace the proper name by a description. date for this constituency.&quot. Thus. Moreover. even proper names. &quot.some one is a Unionist candi is. That is to say. when we are acquainted with an object which is the so-and-so. Mr. means &quot. we know that the may know that the we are not acquainted so-and-so exists when with any object which we know to be the soand-so. A. and nothing else has. but we with any object which.&quot. and no one else Unionist candidate for this constituency exists&quot. and no one else is. for is Mr. is the Unionist &quot. just one object &quot. The constituency.84 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY there is mean that so-and-so. the de scription required to express the thought will vary for different people. means constituency a Unionist candidate for this this &quot. and even when we are not acquainted so-and-so exists . so &quot. is the so-and-so. or for the same . candidate &quot. A. Common words.

His body. if made a judgment about himself.ACQUAINTANCE AND DESCRIPTION 85 person at different times. Bismarck himself might have used his name directly to desig nate the particular person with acquainted. he himself might be a constituent of the judgment. as simply standing for a certain object. we will suppose) with Bismarck s body. As tion in suming that there is such a thing as direct acquaintance with oneself. the case is different. and not for a description of the object. What this person was ac quainted with were certain sense-data which he connected (rightly. as a physical . Here the proper name has the direct use which it always wishes to have. Suppose some statement made about Bismarck. so long as this remains constant. whom he he was In this case. Let us take some illustrations. the particular description involved usually makes no differ ence to the truth or falsehood of the proposi which the name appears. The only thing constant (so long as the name is rightly used) But is the object to which the name applies. But if a person who knew Bismarck made a judgment about him.

of course. in most cases. they were object. The essential point is that he knows that the various descriptions all apply to the same entity.&quot. When we. make a judgment about him. who did not know Bismarck. man the description actually in the friend s mind is accidental. Here the words are abstract except &quot. The word look of Germany on the map. us assume that we think of him as the first &quot. were only body and the mind connected with these sense-data. for the sake of illustration. To some it will recall travels in Germany. and so on. known as the known by description.&quot. less the description in our minds will probably be some more or vague mass of historical knowledge far more. German. to some the German&quot. Chancellor of the all German Empire. in spite of not being ac quainted with the entity in question. very much a matter of chance which character istics of friend s appearance will come into a mind when he thinks of him thus a s . have differ ent meanings for different people. will. But .86 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY and still more his mind. again. let tify him. than is required to iden But. It is. That is. &quot.

from the description. matist.&quot. we can only be assured in virtue of of the truth of our judgment something with which we are acquainted usually a testimony heard or read. we be compelled. to bring in a reference to a particular with which we are acquainted. the German Empire was an astute diplo &quot. but we can make no judgments con cerning this man which involve knowledge about him beyond what the description gives. however. or of here and there. if thing described is our knowledge about the not to be merely what &quot. The first Chancellor of If.ACQUAINTANCE AND DESCRIPTION we know if 87 are to obtain a description which to be applicable. we say. or of what others have told us. is &quot. definite dates). Thus it would seem that. in some way or other. at some point. the most long-lived of men a description which must apply to some man. Apart from the information . follows logically For example. present. shall we involved in any mention of future (as opposed to and past. a description known to be applicable to a particular must involve some reference to a particular with which we is Such reference are acquainted.

when we make a statement about something only known by description. I suspect that even All names of the Universe. places London. That is to say. as considered by metaphysics. on the contrary. to make the judgment which Bismarck scribed. when used. which gives importance to our judgment. apart from the fact about the actual Bismarck. we often intend to make our It would seem that. not in the form involving the description. In logic. where we are r concerned not merely w ith what does exist. . England. descriptions which start from some one or more particulars with which we are acquainted. the Solar System simi larly involve. involves such a connection with particulars. the Earth.88 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY we convey to others. we should like. Europe. and otherwise consists wholly of concepts. no reference to actual particulars is involved. if we could. when we say any thing about Bismarck. the thought we really have contains the one or more particulars involved. but with whatever might or could exist or be. but about the actual thing de statement.

astute diplomatist. the first Chancellor of the German Empire. But we know is that there an object B.&quot. namely. . called Bismarck. which is is described and is known to be true. &quot. If we are describing Bismarck as &quot. and that however we may vary the description (so long as the description is correct) the proposition de This proposition. We can thus describe the proposition we should and that B was an like to affirm. In this we Bismarck are necessarily defeated. the proposition we should like to affirm may be described as the proposition asserting. enables us to communicate in spite of the varying descriptions we employ is that we know there is a true proposition concerning the actual Bismarck. scribed is still the same. concerning the actual object which was the &quot. that this What object was an astute diplomatist. the judgment of which he himself is a constituent.ACQUAINTANCE AND DESCRIPTION 89 alone can make.&quot. namely. B was an astute diplo B is the object which was where matist.&quot. what interests us but we are not acquainted . since the actual is unknown to us. first Chancellor of the German Empire. Bismarck.

and do not know It will in though we know it is true. be seen that there are various stages the removal from acquaintance with : particulars there is Bismarck to people who knew him. in the third. is we know nothing beyond what There is logically deducible from the definition of the man.who Bismarck as . he wore an iron mask . . a similar hierarchy in the region of universals. Bismarck to those who only know of him through history. with the proposition it. is know ledge concerning known by descrip- . These are progressively further removed from ac quaintance with particulars the first comes . are only known what to us by description. near to acquaintance as is possible in regard to another person in the second. But here. as in the case of particulars. finally. the man with the iron mask. Many universals.90 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY itself. the longest-lived of men. like many par ticulars. in the fourth. we shall still be said to know &quot. though we can know many propositions about him which are not logically deducible from the fact that &quot. we do not know who was was the man with the iron mask.

for it is scarcely conceivable that we can make a judgment what or entertain a supposition without knowing it is that we are judging or supposing about. this The fundamental principle in the analysis is : of propositions containing descriptions Every proposition which we can understand must be composed wholly of constituents with which we are acquainted. we make a state ment about Julius Caesar.ACQUAINTANCE AND DESCRIPTION tion is 91 ultimately reducible to knowledge is concerning what known by acquaintance. we we something with which we are acquainted. present. it must be possible to meet these objections. is . We must attach some meaning use. for example. it is plain that Julius Caesar himself not before our minds. if to the words are to speak signi and the ficantly and not utter mere noise to our attach words must we be meaning . in some way or other. We shall not at this stage attempt to answer all the objections which may be urged against this fundamental principle. For the we shall merely point out that. We since we are not acquainted with him. Thus when.

&quot. man whose name was Julius merely Ccesar. but means something involving. the beyond In spite of the fact that we can only know truths which are wholly composed of terms description which we have experienced in acquaintance. ) Thusour statement does not mean quite what it seems mean. Julius Ccesar is a noise or shape with which we are acquainted. some description of to him which is composed wholly of particulars and universals with which we are acquainted. The chief importance of knowledge by is that it enables us to pass limits of our private experience. have Caesar mind some the March.92 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY in &quot. this result is vital. Roman Empire. much of our know ledge must remain mysterious and therefore doubtful. and until it is understood. or. the (In this last description.&quot.&quot. . assassinated on the Ides of the founder of the &quot. perhaps. description of Julius : man who was &quot. instead of Julius Caesar. we can yet have knowledge by description of things which we have never experienced. In view of the very narrow range of our immediate experience.

to have existed in the This know ledge supplies our data. of other people. And past sense-data which are remembered are known past. These we know to exist. our answer has been that we are acquainted with our sense-data. of the past before our individual memory begins. probably. with our selves. and.CHAPTER VI ON INDUCTION our previous discussions we have been concerned in the attempt to -get IN almost all clear as to our data in the of existence. But if we are to be able to draw inferences to from these data if we are know of the existence of matter. we must know 93 general prin- . way of knowledge things are there in the universe whose existence is known to us owing to our being acquainted with What them ? So far. or of the future.

or be justified as a reasonable belief ? It not easy to find a test by which to judge belief of this whether a not. to us that the existence of some one sort of thing. Why ? Is this belief a mere blind outcome can is it of past experience. to will rise justify the judgment that the sun . as. If this were not known to us. will rise We are all convinced that the sun to-morrow. doubt. Let us take as an illustration a matter about which none of us. as we have seen. thunder beyond the sphere of our private experience and this sphere. in fact. The question we have now to consider is whether such an extension is possible. feel the slightest .94 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY some kind by means of which such It must be known inferences can be drawn. A. either at the same time as A or at some earlier or later time. we could never extend our knowledge is example. for ciples of a sign of the earlier existence of lightning. and if so. is exceed ingly limited. but kind is reasonable or we can at least ascertain what sort of general beliefs would suffice. is a sign of the existence of some other sort of thing. B. if true. how it is effected.

and such bodies do not cease to rotate unless something interferes from outside.&quot. we may appeal to the laws of the earth. &quot. is a freely rotating body. because it has risen in the past. is remain If this raised. we always has risen every day.ON INDUCTION to-morrow. we find ourselves in the same position as when the doubt about the doubt sunrise was first raised. We have a firm belief that it will rise in the future. and the 95 other similar judg ments upon which our actions are based. Of course between now and might be doubted whether we are quite certain that there is nothing outside to interfere. It is obvious that if we are asked why we many believe that the sun will rise to-morrow. Because it we it are challenged as to will continue to rise why we motion : believe that as heretofore. and there is nothing it outside to interfere with the earth to-morrow. The only reason for believing that the laws . The interesting interesting is as to whether the laws of motion in operation until to-morrow. If shall naturally answer. we shall say. but this is not the doubt will doubt.

make an important distinction. filled. . : But the real question is Do any number of cases of a law being it afford evidence that the past will be fulfilled in the fulfilled in future ? If not. It is true that we have a greater body of evidence from the past in favour of the laws of motion than we have in favour of the sun rise.96 of THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY motion will remain in operation is that they have operated hitherto. or for any of the other scarcely conscious expectations that control our daily lives. it becomes plain that we have no ground whatever for expecting the sun to rise to-morrow. or for expecting the bread we shall eat at our next meal not to poison us. merely a particular case of fulfilment of the laws of motion. Now in dealing with this question we must. to begin with. It is to be observed that . all such thus we have expectations are only probable not to seek for a proof that they must be ful but only for some reason in favour of the view that they are likely to be fulfilled. so far as our knowledge of the past enables us to judge. and because the sunrise is there are countless other particular cases.

hitherto. one of the horrors of a ghost (in many ghost-stories) is that it fails to give us any sensations of touch. Food that has a certain appearance generally has a certain taste. with certain tactile sensations which we expect we touch them .ON INDUCTION 97 without which we should soon become in volved in hopeless confusions. the frequent repetition of some uniform succession or coexistence has been a cause of our expecting the same succession or coexistence on the next occasion. and it is a severe shock to our expectations when the familiar appearance is found to be asso ciated with an unusual taste. by habit. And this kind of association is not confined to men in animals also it is very strong. A horse which has been often driven along a certain road resists the attempt to drive him in a different direction. Things which we if see become associated. . Experience* has shown us that. Domestic animals . Unedu cated people who go abroad for the first time are so surprised as to be incredulous when they find their native language not under stood.

showing that more refined views as to the uniformity of in spite of the misleadingness of such nature would have been useful to the chicken. The mere fact that something has happened a certain number of times causes animals it and men happen again. We know that all these rather crude expectations of uniformity are liable to be misleading.98 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY expect food when they see the person who usually feeds them. Thus our instincts certainly cause us to believe to expect that will that the sun will rise to-morrow. But expectations. but we may be in no better a position than the chicken which unexpectedly has its neck wrung. they nevertheless exist. We have therefore to distinguish the fact that past uniformities cause expectations as to the future. The man who has fed the chicken every day throughout its life at last wrings its neck instead. The problem we have to discuss there is any reason for believing is whether in what is . from the question whether there is any reasonable ground for giving weight to such expectations after the question of their validity has been raised.

also account for the fact that balloons and aeroplanes can rise . 99 called the uniformity of nature.&quot. which account for the fact that most bodies fall. The belief in the uniformity of nature is the belief that everything that has happened or will happen is an instance of some general law to which there are no exceptions. at least as working hypothesis. which have no exceptions. that general rules which have exceptions can be replaced by general &quot. is a general in air fall bodies Unsupported rule to which balloons and aeroplanes are rules &quot.ON INDUCTION &quot. The belief that the falsified if sun will rise to-morrow might be the earth came suddenly into contact with a large body which destroyed its rotation . But the laws of motion and the law of gravitation. and therefore liable to disappoint those who entertain them. exceptions. but the laws of motion and the law of gravitation would not be infringed by . But a science habitually assumes. thus the laws of motion and the law of gravi tation are not subject to these exceptions. The crude expectations which we have been considering are all subject to exceptions.

so far as our experience extends.100 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY The business of science is such an event. remarkably successful. We . and the question is Will future : futures resemble past futures ? This ques tion is not to be answered by an argument which starts from past futures alone. and has always been found to resemble the past. assuming that they have : always held in the past. But such an argument We really begs the very question at issue. but not of future futures.experience of the future. call have experience of past futures. Have This brings us back to the question we any reason. such as the laws of motion and the law of gravitation. and it may be conceded that such uniformities have held hitherto. to which. which we may past futures. to suppose that they will hold in the future ? It has been argued that we have reason to know that the future will resemble the past. namely of times which were formerly future. to find uniformities. so that we really have ol. there are no ex In this search science has been ceptions. because what was the future has constantly become the past.

and in fact practically all the beliefs upon which our daily life is based. does the occurrence of one of the two. The same question arises when we apply the laws that work in our experience to past things of which we have no experience as. It must be conceded. to begin with. the whole of the results obtained by induction. or in theories as to the origin of the Solar System. The is reference to the future in this question not essential. is : When two things have been found to be is often associated. ? On must depend the our answer to this question validity of the whole of our expectations as to the future. that the fact that two things have been found often together and never apart does not. give any good ground for expecting the other &quot. in geology.ON INDUCTION have therefore still 101 principle to seek for some which shall enable us to know that the future will follow the same laws as the past. The question we really have to ask &quot. in a fresh instance. and no instance known /A of the one occurring without the other. by itself. suffice to prove demonstratively that they . for example.

be sure that we have discovered that law and not one to which there are exceptions. we can never. and that our belief . The second is that the reign of law would seem to be itself only probable. we can see that only one law can possibly fit the facts of the case. and that.102 will THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY be found together in the next case we The most we can hope is that the examine. oftener things are found together. as in the case of the chicken whose neck is wrung. the more probable it becomes that they will be found together another time. on the basis of observa tion. the prob It ability will amount almost to certainty. that we know all natural phenomena to be subject to the reign of law. It might be urged. The first is that. even if some law which has no exceptions applies to our case. in practice. because we T know there sometimes that in spite of frequent repetitions is a failure at the last. if they have been found together often enough. as against the view we are advocating. Thus probability is all we ought to seek. Now to this view there are two answers. j can never quite reach certainty. and that sometimes.

be present (6) . or in unexamined is itself cases in the past. the principle applies only to the verification of our expectation in a single tesh instance. and has never been found When dissociated from a thing of the sort B. a suffi number of cases of association will make the probability of a fresh association nearly a certainty. is But we want also to know that there a probability in favour of the general law that things of the sort A are . As just stated. based upon the very are examining.ON INDUCTION that it 103 will hold in the future. and will make it approach cer tainty without limit. principle The principle we are examining called the principle oj induction* parts may be stated as follows : (a) we may its be and two a thing of a certain sort A has been found to be associated with a thing of a certain other sort B. the greater the number of cases in which A and B the greater is the that be associated in a will probability they fresh case in which one of them is known to have been associated. cient Under the same circumstances.

thus : (a) The greater the number of the sort of cases in which a thing A has been found associated with a thing of the sort B. since if the general law is true. the more probable it is (if no cases of failure of associa tion are known) that A is always associated with (&) B . may be true without the general law being Nevertheless is the probability of the general law increased by repetitions. and make . just is. the particular case must also be true. cient Under the same circumstances. and no cases of failure The probability of of association are known. provided a sufficient number of cases of known. a suffi number of cases of the association of A is with B will make it nearly certain that will A always associated with B. the general law is obviously less than the association are probability of the particular case. as the probability of the particular case We may therefore repeat the two parts of our principle as regards the general law. whereas the particular case true.104 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY always associated with things of the sort B.

a man who had seen a great many white swans might argue. and this might be a per The argument is fectly sound argument. many species ir that. by our prin was probable that all swans were white. In the case of the that colour is swans. 105 law approach certainty without noted that probability is always relative to certain data. not disproved by the fact that some swans ciple. For example. the data are merely the known cases of co It should be existence of A and B. that . which would gravely alter the probability. that on the data it are black. means no by proving that the probability to our relatively previous data had been this But wrongly estimated. a man might know and is a very variable characteristic in of animals. as to colour peculiarly liable knowledge would be a fresh datum. because a thing may very well happen in spite of the fact that some data render it improbable. The fact. therefore. therefore. an induction to error. In our case. which might be taken into account.ON INDUCTION this general limit. There may be other data.

on the basis of experience. by at The inductive experience. it is the in ductive principle alone that can justify any inference from what has been examined to what has not been examined. principle . argue as to the future or the unexperienced parts of the past or present. principle. or forgo all justification If the of our expectations about the future.106 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY fail things often is to fulfil no evidence that our expectations our expectations will not probably be fulfilled in a given case or a given Thus our inductive principle class of cases. Thus we must either accept the inductive principle on the ground of its intrinsic evidence. is equally incapable of being proved Experience confirm the inductive principle as regards the but cases that have been already examined . by an appeal to might conceivably as regards unexamined cases. no to have reason we is unsound. is any rate not capable of being disproved an appeal to experience. All arguments which. however. assume the inductive prin ciple . hence we can never use experience to prove the inductive principle without begging the question.

to expect bread to be more nourishing than a stone. or to expect that if we throw ourselves off the When we see what looks roof we shall fall. are as completely dependent upon the inductive life. hood. and this likeli hood is dependent for its validity upon the inductive principle. we shall have no reason to suppose that his body is not inhabited by the mind of our worst enemy like or of some total stranger. and which we therefore regard as likely to work in the future . Thus all knowledge which. our best friend approaching us.ON INDUCTION 107 expect the sun to rise to-morrow. on a basis of . truth in the principle is unless the inductive assumed. and the belief that every event must have a cause. All our_conduct is based upon associations which have worked in the past. such as the belief in the reign of law. and no instances of their false But this affords no evidence for their future. The general principles of science. principle as are the beliefs of daily All such general principles are believed because mankind have found innumerable instances of their truth.

is based upon a belief which experience can neither confirm nor confute. consider briefly what may be said to account for such knowledge. its and what is its scope and degree of certainty. We will.108 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY what is experience. existence and justification of such beliefs for the inductive principle. at least in its more concrete appli cations. yet which. as is we shall see. in the next chapter. not the only example difficult most raises some of the and most debated problems of philosophy. tells us something about not experienced. appears to be as firmly rooted in us The as many of the facts of experience. .

CHAPTER

VII

ON OUR KNOWLEDGE OF GENERAL PRINCIPLES
saw in the preceding chapter that the principle of induction, while necessary to the validity of all arguments based on
experience,
is

WE

itself

not capable of being

proved by experience, and yet is unhesitat ingly believed by every one, at least in all its concrete applications. In these character
the principle of induction does riot stand There are a number of other prin ciples which cannot be proved or disproved by
istics

alone.

experience, but are used in arguments which
start

from what

is

experienced.

Some

of these principles

have even greater
of

evidence than

the

principle
of

induction,

and the knowledge

them has the same

degree of certainty as the knowledge of the existence of sense-data. They constitute the
109

110

THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY
of

means

drawing inferences from what
;

is

given in sensation
to be true,
it is

and

if

what we

infer is

just as necessary that our principles of inference should be true as it
is

that our data should be true.

The prin

apt to be overlooked because of their very obviousness the as sumption involved is assented to without our
ciples of inference are

realising that

it is

an assumption.

But

it is

very important to realise the use of principles of inference, if a correct theory of knowledge
is

to be obtained

;

for our

knowledge

of

them

raises interesting

and

difficult

questions.

our knowledge of general principles, what actually happens is that first of all we
all

In

some particular application of the principle, and then we realise that the particu larity is irrelevant, and that there is a generality which may equally truly be affirmed. This
realise
is

of course familiar in such matters as teach
"
"

two and two are four is ing arithmetic first learnt in the case of some particular pair
:

of couples,

case,

and then in some other particular and so on, until at last it becomes possible
it is

to see that

true of any pair of couples.

GENERAL PRINCIPLES

111

The same thing happens with logical prin ciples, Suppose two men are discussing what day of the month it is. One of them At least you will admit that if yester says, the 15th to-day must be the 16th." was day
"

"Yes,"
"

says

the

"

other,

I

admit

that."

And you

know,"

the

first

continues,

"that

yesterday was the 15th, because you dined with Jones, and your diary will tell you that

was on the
"

"

15th."

Yes,"

says the second

;

therefore to-day is the

16th."

Now such an argument is not hard to follow
and
if it is

;

granted that
will

its

premisses are true

in fact,

no one

must

also be true.

deny that the conclusion But it depends for its
is

truth upon an instance of a general logical
principle.
"

The
it

logical principle

as follows

:

Suppose
that
is

known
it

that
it

if

this

is

true, then

true.

Suppose

also

known
is

that this
is
true."

is true,

then

follows that that
if

When
is

it is

the case that
shall

this
"

true, that
"

true,

we

say that this
"

implies
"

that,

and that that and
this is

follows from
if

this.

Thus,
other

our principle states that

this implies that,

tmheaJJmtJaJrjyie^ In

112

THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY
" "

anything implied by a true pro whatever follows from position is true," or a true proposition is true."
words, This principle
demonstrations.
is

really involved
it

at least,
in all

concrete instances of

are involved

Whenever one thing which
else,

we
is

believe

is

used to prove something
If

which we consequently
relevant.

believe, this principle

any

one
"

asks

"

:

Why

should I accept the results of valid arguments based on true premisses ? we can only answer by appealing to our principle. In
the truth of the principle is impossible to doubt, and its obviousness is so great that
fact,

at

first

sight

it

seems almost

trivial.

Such
to the

principles,

however, are not

trivial

show that we may have indubitable knowledge which is in no way derived from objects of sense. The above principle is merely one of a certain number of self-evident logical prin Some at least of these principles must ciples.
philosopher, for they

be granted before any argument or proof becomes possible. When some of them have

been granted, others can be proved, though

GENERAL PRINCIPLES
just as obvious as the principles

118

these others, so long as they are simple, are

taken for

granted. For no very good reason, three of these principles have been singled out by Laws of tradition under the name of
"

Thought/ -"*

They
(1)
is."

are as follows

:

The

law of identity:

"Whatever

is,

The law of contradiction : can both be and not (3) The law of excluded middle thing must either be or not
(2)
be."

"

Nothing
"

:

Every

be."

These three laws are samples of self-evident logical principles, but are not really more

fundamental or more self-evident than various
other similar principles for instance, the one we considered just now, which states that
:

what follows from a true premiss is true. The name laws of thought is also mis for is what is not the fact important leading,
"

"

that

we think
;

in accordance with these laws,

but the fact that things behave in accordance with them in other words, the fact that when we think in accordance with them we think

two schools called respectively empiricists The empiricists who rationalists. by the British philo Locke. from a given premiss. to which later stage. our knowledge the rationalists is derived from in addition to what we know by &quot. and Hume main all . is the controversy between the &quot. tained that who are repre experience sented by the Continental philosophers of the seventeenth century. innate ideas &quot. and &quot. . there are certain innate principles. and are best represented sophers. One of the great historic controversies in philosophy &quot.&quot. THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY large question. An example of such principles perhaps the most important example is the inductive principle. &quot. especially Descartes and Leibniz.&quot. that there is a greater or less probability that something is true.114 truly. there are other logical principles which enable us to prove. experience. But this is a we must return at a In addition to the logical principles which enable us to prove from a given premiss that something is certainly true. maintained that. Berkeley. which we considered in the pre ceding chapter.

JnjnjiteJ^ would not now be employed to describe our knowledge of . to decide with possible confidence as to the truth or falsehood of now become these opposing schools. In this. the men know and which is cannot be deduced from what experienced. even that part of our is knowledge which logically independent of experience (in the sense that experience can not prove it) is yet elicited and caused by experience. which was the most important point of the controversy. for the reasons already stated. therefore. and cannot be themselves proved by experience. It must be admitted. It would certainly be absurd to suppose that there are innate principles in the sense that babies are born with a knowledge of every thing which reason.GENERAL PRINCIPLES which we know independently It has 115 some of experience. that logical principles are known to us. For this word &quot. the rationalists were in the right. It is on occasion of particular ex periences that we become aware of the general laws which their connections exemplify. since all proof presupposes them. On the other hand.

Nothing can be proof from experience. rests upon testimony. from general consideration as to what must be. of sense-data to. and testimony consists. but merely so directs our attention that we see its truth without requiring any of great importance. we must have among our premisses the existence of one or more things of belief that the which we have direct experience. if we wish to prove that something of which we have no direct experience exists. There is another point known ence.a The phrase is priori&quot. for example. Thus. they could . less objectionable.116 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY &quot. the in which empiricists were in the right as against the rationalists. we shall nevertheless hold that some knowledge logical principles. while admitting that all know ledge is elicited and caused by experience. seen or heard in reading or being spoken Rationalists believed that. is a priori. to exist except by the help of experi That is to say. and is more usual in modern writers. Our Emperor of China exists. in the last analysis. in the sense that the experience which makes us think of it does not suffice to prove it.

they will prob ably be connected in the next instance in which one limited. known immediately. it. then that or &quot. such if this is is true. another must be true. exemplified by we have already dealt with. more that if generally. anything is proved to exist.&quot. is must be in part When anything is existence known immediately. rests wholly or partly upon experience. . and if this implies that. its known by experience alone when . one proposition This is is true. true.when. All the knowledge that we can acquire a one thing priori concerning existence : seems to be hypothetical it tells us that if exists. this and that have been repeatedly found connected. of them is found. another must exist. Thus the scope is and power of a priori principles strictly All knowledge that something exists dependent on experience.GENERAL PRINCIPLES actual world. the principles as &quot. or. both priori principles must be required in the Knowledge is__callgd_gmpiricflZ . without being experience and a proof.&quot. 117 deduce the existence of this or that in the In this belief they seem to have been mistaken. Thus all knowledge which asserts existence is empirical.

goodwill than hatred. A priori knowledge is not the logical considering. be valuable on count. it must be useful because some end the end must. knowledge than ignorance. We more judge. If is secures something is useful. Like our previous . in part at least. but all of not giving actual existence. that happiness is desirable than misery. and not merely because it its is own ac useful for some further end. judgments what is do require I am speaking of judg empirical premisses ments as to the intrinsic desirability of things. am is not speaking of judg useful or as to ments as to what virtuous.118 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY priori and the only a existence is knowledge concerning among hypothetical. for such . gone far enough. be immediate and a priori. if we have . giving connections things that exist or may exist. and so on. Such judgments must. for example. kind we have been logical a priori hitherto Perhaps the most important example of non- knowledge I is knowledge as to ethical value. Thus all judgments as to what is useful depend upon judgments as to what has value on its own account.

like logic. In the present con only important to realise that knowledge as to what is intrinsically of value is a priori in the same sense in which logic is of a priori. fairly obvious that they cannot be . seems not possible to judge whether anything is intrinsically valuable unless we have experienced But it is something of the same kind. they may be elicited by for it experience. namely in the sense that the truth such knowledge can be neither proved nor disproved by experience. The pursuit belongs of to ethics. where the impossibility is deducing what ought to be from what it is has to be established. and indeed they must be . All pure mathematics is a priori. This was strenuously denied by the empirical philosophers. nection. proved by experience it is for the fact that a thing exists or does not exist cannot prove either that good that it should exist or of this subject that it is bad.GENERAL PRINCIPLES 119 a priori judgments. who maintained that experience was as much the source of our knowledge of arithmetic as of our knowledge of geography. They maintained that by the repeated ex- .

we were led by induction to the conclusion that two things and two other things would always make four things alto gether. If. we become able to see the general principle that two and two are four any one instance is seen to be typical.* The same thing is exemplified in geometry. we should proceed ourselves of its truth. and the . If we want to prove some property of all triangles. a certain number of instances are needed to make us think of two abstractly. Introduction to Mathematics (Home University Library). Whitehead. or two of any other specified kind. N. But as soon as we coins or are able to divest our thoughts of irrelevant particularity. we draw some one triangle and * Of. examination of other instances becomes un necessary. A. and finding that altogether they made four things. from the way in which we do actually proceed. in persuading our knowledge that two and two are four.120 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY perience of seeing two things and two other things. In fact. however. this were the source of differently. . rather than of two two books or two people.

do not. we that two and world. . they were to be true. in the first place.&quot. our certainty becomes so great as to be incapable of growing Moreover.GENERAL PRINCIPLES reason about it . as soon as we have seen the truth of this proposition. we obtain a general result. : but a necessity to which everything actual and possible must conform. 121 but we can avoid making use of any property which it does not share with all other triangles. in fact. It is plain that 4 we believe this proposition. Such generalisations always remain mere facts : we feel that there might be a world in which though in the actual world In any possible they happen on feel the contrary. best attested empirical generalisations. such as All men are mortal. false. The case may be made clearer by con sidering a genuinely empirical generalisation. two and necessity about the proposition two are four. feel our certainty that two and two are four increased by fresh We instances. which is absent from even the &quot. from our particular case. two would be four this is not a mere fact. because. and thus. we feel some quality of greater.

in attempt of which there are men who are not one mortal. Neglecting the second ground. . when carefully considered. one instance does &quot.122 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY is because there no known instance of men living beyond a certain age. and in the second place because there seem to be physiological grounds for thinking that an organism such as a man s body must sooner or later wear out. on reflection. where two and two make a different level. to persuade us that the same must happen in any other Also we can be forced to admit. five seems quite on if We feel that such a world. and considering merely our experience of men s mortality. instance. as to whether all men are This may be made plain by the to imagine two different worlds. we are But a world able to acquiesce in imagination. whereas. suffice. make When Swift invites us to consider the race of Struldbugs who never die. it is plain that we should not be content with one quite clearly understood instance of a man dying.&quot. slight. in the case of two and two are four. however mortal. while in the other two and two five. that there may be some doubt.

It is from the particular an old debate among philosophers new knowledge. The fact is that. two and two are four.&quot. in simple mathematical &quot. the general to the particular. and so are Robinson and Smith. . at least. would upset the whole fabric of our knowledge and reduce us to utter doubt.GENERAL PRINCIPLES 123 there were one. If we that know two and two already always make four.&quot. we can deduce that Brown and Jones and Robinson and Smith are four. as well as in the process of induction. not contained in our premisses. or to the general. general proposition. which goes from the par ticular to the particular. we can know the general it proposition without inferring from instances. whether deduction ever gives We can now see that in it does do so. certain cases. This is new knowledge. although some instance is usually necessary to make clear to us what the general proposition means. This is why there which from the to the or from general goes general is real utility in the process of deduction. two and two are four. and we know that Brown and Jones are two. judgments such as and also in many judgments of logic. because the &quot.

&quot. to Socrates.124 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY never told us there were such people as Brown and Jones and Robinson and Smith. A. foolish to all men are mortal go the roundabout way through to arrive at the con &quot. in fact. stock instance of deduction that logic. If induction is based. a man. clusion that probably Socrates Socrates is not one of the men is mortal. Socrates is mortal. B. &quot. we shall on whom our still do better to argue straight from our A. than to go round by the general proposition.&quot. all than the probability that men are mortal. . it is &quot. and the particular premisses did not tell us that there were four of them. C. that Socrates is mortal is For the probability greater. died. all men are mortal. C. is namely. whereas the particular proposition deduced does things. what we really know beyond reasonable doubt is that certain men. they have If Socrates is one of these men. since. therefore always given in books on All men are mortal Socrates . B. on our data. tell us both these But the newness less certain if of the knowledge is much we take the is &quot. were mortal. In this case.

generalisations such as In regard to the former. as well as the fundamental propositions of ethics. and then use deduction. &quot. deduction is the right mode of argument. always theoretically and warrants a greater confidence in the truth of our conclusion. induction preferable. because if all men are mortal. a priori.GENERAL PRINCIPLES . the difference This &quot. and that among them are the propositions of logic and pure mathematics. but if Socrates is mortal.&quot. 125 (This is obvious. because all empirical generalisations are than the instances of them.) Hence we Socrates is shall reach the conclusion that mortal with a greater approach to certainty if w e make our argument purely inductive than if we go by way of all men r &quot.&quot. whereas in regard to is the latter. more uncertain We tions have now seen that there are proposi known a priori. such as and empirical all men are mortal. it so is Socrates does not follow that all men are mortal. illustrates between general propositions two and two are known four. are mortal &quot. The question which must next occupy this : us is How is it possible that there .

which brought prominently forward by (1724-1804). and indeed all.126 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY should be such knowledge ? And more par ticularly. German philosopher Kant and are very difficult. portant. historically very im . how can there be knowledge of not examined general propositions in cases where we have all the instances. never can examine them because their number were the is infinite ? first These questions.

and deduced. for having per ceived that we have a priori knowledge which : 127 . he called the &quot. he never his interrupted teaching of Konigsberg in East Prussia. Though he lived through the Seven Years War and the French Revolution. critical assuming as a datum that philosophy. inquired how such know ledge comes to be possible. from the answer to this inquiry. But Kant undoubtedly deserves credit for two things first.CHAPTER HOW A PRIORI VIII IS KNOWLEDGE is POSSIBLE IMMANUEL KANT the generally regarded as greatest of the modern philosophers. many metaphy sical results as to the nature of the world. Whether these results were valid may well be doubted. which. tinctive contribution philosophy at His most dis was the invention of what &quot. there is knowledge of various kinds.

analytic. and would never be enunciated in real life except way 44 for by an orator preparing the a piece of sophistry. : make spoken about is the subject as at least two given having properties. &quot. &quot. are trivial.&quot.&quot.&quot. A plane figure I bad poet is a figure.&quot. Before the time of Kant it was thought that all judgments analytic of w hich we could be r : of this kind certain a priori were that in all of them there was a predicate which was only part of the subject If this were so. it was generally held that whatever knowledge was a priori must be will &quot. say. such that . is A bald &quot. What this word means If I be best illustrated by examples. having made of evident the philosophical importance the theory of knowledge.128 is THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY not &quot. man is a man.&quot. because the predicate is obtained by merely analysing the subject. . of which one is singled out to be Such propositions as the above asserted of it. i. the opposite would be self -contradictory and secondly. a purely analytic judgment a A poet. They are called &quot. Before the time of Kant.e. we of which it was asserted. purely for analytic.

not bald of the tradict would assert and deny baldness same man. the connection was really synthetic. if only we had sufficient knowledge. cases Before Hume. as would now be generally admitted that this could not be done. who preceded Kant. Hume argued cor rectly. (1711-1776). which asserts that nothing can at the same time have and not have a certain property. and would therefore con Thus according to the philo itself. &quot. and notably in the case of cause and effect. sufficed to establish the truth of all a priori knowledge. Hence he inferred the far more doubtful proposition that nothing could be E known a priori about . accepting the usual view as to what makes knowledge a priori. discovered that. in many Hume which had previously been supposed analytic. rationalists at least had supposed that the effect could be logically deduced from the cause. the law of contradiction. &quot.A PRIORI KNOWLEDGE should diction 129 contra be if involved in a definite that could be is we attempted to deny anything A bald man known a priori. sophers before Kant.

The question which Kant put at the be How is ginning of his philosophy.&quot. that 7 and 5 pointed out. the have to be put together to give 12 : = idea of 12 is not contained in them. namely ? is an mathematics inter possible pure esting and difficult one. &quot. will and geometry. syn and of this conclusion raised a new problem which he endeavoured to find the solution. nor of even in the idea adding them together. and endeavoured to find an answer perceived that not only the con nection of cause and effect.130 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY effect. was much perturbed by Hume s scepticism. is all Thus he was thetic led to the pure mathematics. He of arithmetic i. . His stock in stance was He the proposition 7 -f 5 12. the connection of cause and Kant. are in all these not analytic no analysis of the subject : reveal the predicate. but all the propo sitions &quot. to which every philo sophy which is not purely sceptical must find &quot. to it.e. though a . synthetic. quite truly. who had been educated in the rationalist tradition. propositions. conclusion that priori.

that the : general propositions of mathematics. seems strange that able to we should apparently be know some truths in advance about particular things of which we have as yet no experience . is that our mathematical know derived by induction from particular instances. The answer of the pure empiricists. that the validity of the inductive principle itself cannot be proved by induction .&quot. and gain nothing by enumeration of other cases in which they have been found to be true. but it . we have already seen to be inade quate.&quot. secondly. such as 44 two and two always make four. Thus our knowledge of the general propositions of mathematics (and the same applies to logic) must be accounted for otherwise than our (merely pirical knowledge of em all men are generalisations such as probable) &quot. mortal. for two reasons first. can obvi ously be known with certainty by considera tion of a single instance.A PRIORI KNOWLEDGE some ledge 131 answer. The problem such knowledge perience is arises is through the fact that general. whereas all ex It particular.

the one due to the object (i.e. the We saw. very difficult.). only give the merest outline of it. though not valid in my opinion.132 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY cannot easily be doubted that logic and arith metic will apply to such things. that the physical object is different from the associated sense-data. What Kant maintained was there are that in our two elements to be experience distinguished. in discussing matter and sensedata. It is. and that the sense-data are to be regarded as resulting . We do not know who any two will will be the inhabitants . therefore. object&quot. We can. to what we have called the &quot. of anticipating facts apparent about things of is This Kant s certainly solution of the problem. and is differently understood by different philosophers. power which we have no experience surprising. however. and even that will be thought mis of leading by many exponents Kant all s system. is interesting. of London of a hundred years hence of but we know that them and any other two four of them make them.physical other due to our own nature.

the crude material given in sensation colour. But what is distinc tive of Kant is the way in which he appor tions the shares of ourselves and the physical He considers that the object respectively. view is His that chief reason in favour of this we seem to have a priori knowledge as to time and causality and compari and space son. because these characteristics are due to our own nature. . hardness. etc. but not as to the actual crude material of sensation. he says. and all the relations be tween sense-data which result from com parison or from considering one as the cause of the other or in any other way.A PRIORI KNOWLEDGE 133 from an interaction between the physical So far. and that what we supply is the arrangement in space and time. agreement with Kant. is due to the object. we are in object and ourselves. We can be sure. that anything we shall ever experience must show the characteristics affirmed of it in a priori knowledge. our and therefore nothing can ever come into our experience without acquiring these characteristics.

reconcile In this way he tries to and harmonise the contentions of the rationalists with the arguments of the empiricists. The thing to be accounted for is our certainty that the facts . must not be supposed to apply outside experience. The physical &quot.&quot. Thus in spite knowledge. Hence this knowledge. which he calls the he regards as essentially itself. which he calls the phenomenon. we cannot know anything about the thing in itself or about what is not an actual or possible of the existence of a priori object of experience. Apart from minor grounds on which Kant s philosophy may be criticised.134 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY object. there is one main objection which seems fatal to any attempt to deal with the problem of a priori knowledge by his method. it in experience. be ing a joint product of us and the thing in itself. unknowable what can be known is the object thing in . The phenomenon. as we have &quot.&quot. and is therefore sure to conform to our a priori knowledge. is sure to have those characteristics which are due to us. though true of all actual and possible experience.

any must they apply is truth in our arithmetical to things equally . possibility. so that our real Self is not in time and has no to-morrow. that if it will is remain constant. yet it is one which utterly destroys the certainty and univer sality which he is anxious to vindicate for It is true that this arithmetical propositions. if suffices for the Reflection. Our nature is as much a fact of the existing world It as anything. seems to make it clear there beliefs. formally. and there can be no certainty might happen. is But he will still have to suppose that the time-order of phenomena determined by characteristics of what is behind phenomena. right. This possibility seems never to have occurred to him. To say that logic and arithmetic are contri buted by us does not account for this. moreover. and this substance of our argument. that to-morrow our nature would so change as to make two and two Kant become five. is inconsistent with the Kantian view that time itself is a form imposed by the subject upon phenomena.A PRIORI KNOWLEDGE 135 must always conform to logic and arithmetic. that.

Apart from the special doctrines advocated by Kant. Two even objects and two other physical must make four physical objects. We noted in the preceding chapter the three principles commonly called laws of thought. Let us take as an illustra tion the law of contradiction. Thus Kant s solution un duly limits the scope of a priori propositions. Its truth is of state that two and just as indubitable as the truth of the assertion that two phenomena and two other phenomena make four phenomena.136 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY of whether we think physical objects if them or not. To assert this is certainly within the scope what we mean when we two are four. physical objects cannot be experienced. but there are strong reasons for thinking that it is erroneous. This is . it is very common among philo sophers to regard what is a priori as in some sense mental. their being so named is a natural one.&quot. in addition to failing in the attempt at ex plaining their certainty. The view which led to &quot. as concerned rather with the way we must think than with any fact of the outer world.

form which &quot. have and not have a given quality. when we believe the law of contradiction. it cannot also be not rectangular. if my table is rectan gular so on. which presupposes the belief in the law of contradiction. Thus. is not that the mind is so made that it must believe the law of contradiction. to ascertain whether it is to look again in order also not a beech .&quot. of contradiction is this is But the conclusion that the law a law of thought is never theless erroneous. When we have we do not need seen that a tree is a beech. This belief is a subsequent result of psychological reflection.A PRIORI KNOWLEDGE commonly stated in 137 the be. Nothing is can both be and not intended to express the fact that nothing can at once for example. What we believe. if a tree is a beech it cannot also be not a beech . The belief in the law of . and it Now what makes natural to call this is principle a law of thought that it is by thought rather than by outward observation that we persuade ourselves of its necessary truth. thought alone makes us know that impossible.

138 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY is contradiction a belief about things. judge that are not making a all judgment about our thoughts. but a fact concerning the things in the world. the fact that we were compelled to think it true would not save the law of contradiction from being false . e. and not and although belief merely about thoughts in the law of contradiction is a thought. law of contradiction itself is not a thought. and this shows that the law is not a law of thought. were not true of the things in the world. If this. belief that It not. not is only about thoughts. it cannot at the same time be not a beech.. the . it is the belief a beech. A similar argument applies to any other a priori judgment. but about or possible couples. Thus the that the tree law of contradiction is about things. if we think a certain tree is a we cannot at the same time think that it if is not a beech is . which we believe when we believe the law of contradiction. The fact that our minds are so constituted as to believe . When we we two and two are actual four. the beech.g.

that I exist. Sup pose. is not merely knowledge about the -constitution of our minds. in my &quot. properly speaking. exist. &quot. both what mental and what non-mental^ The fact seems to be that all our a priori knowledge is concerned with entities which do not. but is applicable to whatever the world is may is contain. though it is true. it Thus our a priori not erroneous. is make true that two and two are knowledge. room. I &quot. and my room exists but does in exist ? Yet obviously the word in has a meaning it denotes a relation which holds between me and my room. am . either in the mental or in the physical world. something. although exists in the we cannot say that it same sense in which I and my . for instance. &quot. This relation is .A PRIORI KNOWLEDGE 139 that two and two are four. is emphatically not what we assert when we assert that fact two and two are it four. /And no minds if about the constitution of our could four. These en tities are such as can be named by . parts of speech which are not substantives they are such entities as qualities and relations.

it. for this truth concerns only the earwig and the room. I am my Many philosophers. in &quot. even if neither I nor the earwig nor any one else is It am aware of this truth . maintained that relations are the work have of the no mind.&quot. that things in themselves have relations. must be placed in a world which is neither mental nor physical. This world is of great importance to philosophy. it is not the thought which produces the truth I of my may be proposition true that an earwig is in my room.&quot. we could not understand &quot. This view. and in particular . is something which we if can think about and understand. It seems plain that in room. seems open to objec tions similar to those which we urged before against Kant. &quot.140 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY exist. room for. we could in not understand the sentence room. however. following Kant. Thus relations. but that the mind brings them together in one act of thought and thus pro duces the relations which it judges them to have. The relation &quot. as we shall see more fully in the next chapter. and does not depend upon anything else.

In the next chapter we shall proceed to develop its nature and its bearing upon the questions with which we have been dealing.A PRIORI KNOWLEDGE 141 to the problems of a priori knowledge. .

and also what objects there are that have this kind of being. since it was brought into philosophy by Plato. The theory to be advocated in what follows is of ideas &quot. 142 . are now con a very old one.CHAPTER IX THE WORLD OF UNIVERSALS AT the end of the preceding chapter we saw that such entities as relations appear to have a being which is in some way different from that of physical objects. and also different from that of minds and from that of sensedata. Plato s theory The problem with which we is cerned &quot. is an attempt to solve this very in my opinion it is one of the and problem. We will begin with the latter question. In the present chapter we have to consider what is the nature of this kind of being. most successful attempts hitherto made.

and the other just act. 143 tions as time has with merely such modifica shown to be necessary. Let us consider. it is If we ask ourselves natural to proceed by justice is. may &quot. partake of a common nature. though they may &quot.&quot. The word will be whiteness applicable to a number of particular things because they all participate in a common nature or essence. Plato calls an idea or (It must &quot. ideas. idea be appre justice is not . what with a view to discovering what they have in common. This pure essence is what form. The way the problem arose for Plato was more or less as follows. all just. such as for example. in virtue of which they are ordinary acts. be applicable to common facts. not be supposed that exist in minds. &quot. that. will be justice itself. &quot. which will be found in whatever is just ami in nothing else. in his sense. considering this. This common nature.THE WORLD OF UNIVERSALS largely Plato s. &quot. in some sense. hended by minds.) The &quot. such a notion as justice.&quot. the pure essence the admixture of which with facts of produces the multiplicity of just Similarly with any other word which life &quot. say. They must all.

constitute all their character. cannot itself exist in the world it is sense.144 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY is identical with anything that just : it is some thing other than particular things it things. of Not being partake of. the unchangeable world of ideas. We may hope. imagine These mystical developments are very natural. but the basis of the theory is in logic. which alone gives to the world of sense whatever pale reflection of reality belong to it. and it is that the ideas exist as based in logic that we have to consider it. and we may in heaven. which particular particular. immutable and indestructible. in a mystic illumination. The truly real world. Hence it is easy to pass on into a mysticism. Thus Plato is led to a supra-sensible world. is the world of may ideas attempt to say about things in the world of sense. more real than the common world of sense. for whatever we may only succeed in saying that they participate in such and such ideas. Moreover like not fleeting : or is changeable eternally the things of sense it itself. we can . to see the ideas as we see objects of sense . for Plato. . which. therefore.

&quot.universal&quot. We applied to Plato s shall therefore use the word &quot. but are ambiguous : it is only by the context or the circumstances that we know what particulars they stand for. proper names for other sub particulars. has acquired. and verbs stand for universals. as we saw. as things given in sensation. The word now stands for a particular. We speak of whatever is given in sensation. many misleading when ideas. When we examine common words. or is of the same nature . 145 idea &quot. . &quot. prepositions. describe the sort is to word what Plato meant. we find that. may be shared by many parti and has those characteristics which. distinguish justice and whiteness from just acts and white things.&quot. a universal will be any thing which culars. while stantives. adjectives. &quot. quite &quot.&quot. Pronouns stand for particulars. in the associations which are course of time.THE WORLD OF UNIVERSALS The word &quot. The essence of of entity that Plato meant is that it instead of the opposed to the particular things that are given in sensation. as a particular by opposition to this. stand broadly speaking.idea.

&quot. for example. We do not naturally dwell upon those words in a sentence which do not stand for particulars and if we are forced to dwell upon a word which stands .&quot. and truths involves knowledge acquaintance with uni versals. it is strange that hardly anybody except students of philosophy ever realises that there are such entities as universals. s head was . When. all Thus all truths involve universals. I like would be some such statement as this. and other people may of like things. It will be seen that no sentence can be made up without at least one denotes a universal. we naturally think of it as standing for some one of the particulars that &quot. come under the universal. namely the present moment but like pro nouns. because the present is always changing. word which The nearest approach &quot. it stands for an ambiguous particular. Charles I. Seeing that nearly all the words to be found in the dictionary stand for universals. for a universal. we hear the sentence.146 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY . But even here the word like de &quot. for I may like other things. notes a universal.

&quot. &quot. anything can be done with them. We such words to be incomplete and insub stantial they seem to demand a context . cut. all upon what the word feel is but we do not naturally dwell meant by the word head or &quot.&quot. Charles L. The way this has occurred is. and of the off his operation of cutting particulars . until the study of philo sophy forces them upon our attention. adjectives and nouns express qualities or properties things. that only those universals which are named by adjectives or substantives have been Even among much or often recognised. This omission has had a very it is great effect upon philosophy hardly too much to say that most metaphysics. we may say. Spinoza. while those named by verbs and prepositions have been usually overlooked. of Charles I. s head. philosophers. in outline. which are &quot. as follows : common of Speaking generally. head. since . single whereas prepositions and .THE WORLD OF UNIVERSALS cut 147 we may naturally enough think of off. Hence we succeed in avoiding all notice of before universals as such. which is a universal. has been largely determined by it. broadly.

these opposing philosophies. but not very common Both nowadays. namely the sort represented by adjectives and substan- . they cannot possibly interact in any way. called monadism. it Hence there are can be only one thing in the universe. in my opinion. led to the belief that and verbs positions every proposition can be regarded as attri buting a property to a single thing. interesting as they are. is called monism is . things. or. from an undue attention to one sort of universals. and is held in our own day by Mr. the second. and relations are any interaction im The first of these views. if many things. since would be a possible. because each of the isolated things is called a monad.148 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY verbs tend to express relations between two Thus the neglect of pre or more things. ultimately. Bradley and many other philosophers. which was advo cated by Spinoza. relation. there can be no such entities as Hence either there relations between things. result. which was is advocated by Leibniz. rather than as expressing a relation between two or more was supposed that.

any one were anxious find that deny altogether that there are such things we should we cannot prove that there are such entities as i. When we want things as to think of whiteness. that there such a universal. taking care not to deduce anything concerning it which we cannot see to be equally true of any other . the sort of universals generally represented by verbs and prepositions. they said. strictly of fact.e.&quot.e. the universals represented by adjectives and substantives. we form an image of some particular white thing. 149 rather than by verbs and preposi if As a matter to as universals. This view. and empiricists.THE WORLD OF UNIVERSALS tives tions. however. qualities. prove that there must be relations. was strenuously denied by Berkeley and is Hume. reason concerning this particular. Let us take in illus If we believe tration the universal whiteness. who have been later followed in this by The form which their was to deny that there are such abstract ideas. whereas we can i. we shall say that things are white because they have the quality of whiteness. denial took &quot.

has the right sort of resemblance to our But then the resemblance required will have to be a universal. of a universal. If we we shall choose some particular patch of white or some particular triangle. As an account of our actual mental processes. the resemblance must hold between many pairs of particular and this is the characteristic white things . wish to prove something about we draw a particular triangle and reason about it. But a difficulty emerges as soon as we ask ourselves that a thing is white or wish to avoid the universals whiteness and triangularity. and say that anything is white or a triangle if it chosen particular. taking care not to use any characteristic which it does not share with other triangles. as unlike each other as possible. The beginner. how we know a triangle.150 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY white thing. this is no doubt largely true. often useful to draw several triangles. Since there are many white things. It will be useless to say that . in order to make sure that his reasoning is equally applic able to all of them. for example. finds it in order to avoid error. when we all triangles. In geometry.

owing to the neglect or denial of relations. And having been forced to admit this uni versal. for at last we shall be forced to admit resem blance as a universal. Having now seen that there must be such if made by rationalists were. must be a true universal. although. the next point to be . and thus pair. therefore. they of qualities. perceive abstract because.THE WORLD OF UNIVERSALS there is 151 a different resemblance for each then we shall have to say that these resemblances resemble each other. we to find that it is while invent difficult no longer worth and unplausible of theories to avoid the admission such universals as whiteness and triangularity. the deductions thing. like their adversaries. The relation of re semblance. and altogether ignored relations as universals. this refutation of their rejection of ideas.&quot. Berkeley and Hume failed to &quot. entities as universals. We have therefore here another respect in which the rationalists appear to have been in the right only thought as against the empiricists. any more apt to be mistaken than those made by empiricists.

of course.152 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY proved is that their being is not merely mental. denied by many . The to : part of the earth s surface where Edinburgh stands would be north of the part where London stands. and it seems plain that the relation subsists independently of our knowledge of it. but we must now consider more fully what sort of being it is that belongs to universals. When we come to know that Edinburgh is north of London. We is north of London. By this is meant that whatever being belongs to independent of their being thought of or or in any way apprehended by minds. we come know something which has to do only with Edinburgh and London we do not cause the truth of the proposition by coming to know it. on the contrary we merely apprehend a fact which was there before we knew it. even if there were no human being to know about north and south. This is. and even if there were no minds at all in the universe. is them have already touched on this subject at the end of the preceding chapter.&quot. Consider such a proposition as Edinburgh &quot. lation between two Here we have a re places.

gt. not seem to exist in the same sense in which Edinburgh and London exist. There is no place or time where we can find &quot. north of.THE WORLD OF UNIVERSALS philosophers. &quot.&quot. and decided that they are inadequate. however. Hence we terms l^. the relation &quot. It does not exist in for it Edinburgh any more than in London. 153 for Berkeley s reasons sidered But we have already con these reasons. is met by the north of does difficulty that the relation &quot. &quot. . but relates. did involve anything mental. north of. -&amp. and it would be impossible for the whole fact to involve nothing mental if the relation north which is a constituent part of the fact. &quot. But this fact involves the relation &quot. which is a universal . like the not dependent upon thought. or for Kant either s.&quot. If we ask Where and when does this relation exist ? the answer must be Nowhere and nowhen. We may therefore now assume it to be true that nothing mental is presupposed in the fact that Edinburgh is north of London.&quot. of.&quot. must admit that the it relation. This conclusion. belongs to the independent world which is thought apprehends but does not create. &quot.

Then in one sense it may be said that white ness &quot. north of is radically from it such things. We can think of a universal. namely the . is in our mind.154 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY two and is relates the neutral as between it them. not whiteness that In the in our mind. The connected which we idea. but the act of thinking of whiteness. same ambiguity it is as we noted is Berkeley in Chapter IV. also causes confusion here. like any other mental act. time.&quot. Nor can we say that exists at any particular time. neither material nor mental It is .&quot. Now be apprehended by spection exists at Hence the relation different everything that can the senses or by intro some &quot. and our thinking then exists in a perfectly ordinary sense. In one sense of this word. Suppose. &quot. is It is neither in space nor in time. largely the very peculiar kind of that belongs to universals which has led being many people to suppose that they are really mental. particular &quot. yet something. ambiguity in the word noted at the same time. that we are thinking of whiteness. We have here the in discussing strict sense. for example.

we whiteness is of its essential quality of universality.THE WORLD OF UNIVERSALS sense in which it &quot. in the other sense. Thus universals known they We is are not thoughts. and this object is different from all of them. s One man different act of thought is necessarily a thing from another man s . an act thought rob it and thus we come to think that mental. Hence. to think that whiteness i. But in so thinking.&quot.e. though when are the objects of thoughts. and no one man could think of it twice. of thought. is an of idea &quot. shall find it convenient only to speak of things existing to say. one neces man s act of thought at one time is sarily a different thing from the same man s thought at another time. if whiteness were the thought as opposed to its act of object. that when we can point to some time at possi- which they exist (not excluding the . when they are in time. no two different men could tkink of it. . That which many different thougkts of white ness have in common is their object. whiteness is an Hence. is not guarded against. we if the ambiguity may come &quot. 155 denotes the object of an act idea.

thoughts and objects exist. or have being. But the truth is that both have the same . and hardly worthy to be regarded as in any sense real. all all physical objects. therefore. and value of According to our temperaments. The world &quot. is The world unchangeable. The life and the world. without any clear plan or arrange ment. in this sense . that can do either everything good or harm. and all who love perfection more than life. but it contains all thoughts and feelings. may also be described of being as the world of being. of universals. exact.156 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY Thus minds and feelings. without sharp boundaries. where is opposed to being existence as being timeless. the logician. &quot. one we do not prefer will probably seem to us a pale shadow of the one we prefer. the builder of metaphysical systems. The world of existence is fleeting. vague. we shall &quot. say that they subsist &quot. rigid. physical But universals do not exist bility of their existing at all times). everything that makes any difference to the the data of sense. delightful to the mathematician. we shall prefer the con templation of the one or of the other.

both are real. occupy us in the following chapter. and both are important to the meta physician. where we shall find that it solves the problem of a priori knowledge. . But will first of all we must examine our This consideration knowledge of universals.THE WORLD OF UNIVERSALS 157 claim on our impartial attention. from which we were first led to consider universals. Indeed no sooner have we dis tinguished the two worlds than it becomes necessary to consider their relations.

loud. we the . sweet. acquaintance. When we in see a white patch. to begin with. etc. may known by known only by not known either by acquaintance scription.. 158 and in . universals. i. sour. that we are acquainted with such universals as white.e. and those or by de Let us consider universals first the knowledge of by acquaintance. like particulars. hard. red. the particular patch but by seeing all many we easily learn to abstract white patches. description. black. the whiteness which they have in common. with qualities which are exemplified in sense-data.CHAPTER X ON OUR KNOWLEDGE OF UNIVERSALS IN regard to one given be divided into those those man s knowledge at a time. with are acquainted. first instance. It is obvious.

ON KNOWLEDGE OF UNIVERSALS learning to 159 are learning to be similar pro acquainted with whiteness. parts of the page are to the left of other parts. sensible quali They can be apprehended with less effort of abstraction than any others. and they seem less removed from particulars than other universals are. as in . Universals may be called &quot.&quot. cess will make us acquainted with any this do we A other universal of the same sort. The easiest relations to apprehend are those which hold between the different parts of a single complex sense-datum. I can see at a glance the whole of the page on which I am writing thus the whole page is included in one sense-datum. For example. and by abstraction I find that what . the case of different white patches. of this sort ties. and some parts are above other parts. that all these sense-data have something in com mon. We come next to relations. The process of abstraction in this case seems to proceed somewhat as follows I see success : ively a number of sense-data in which one part is to the left of another I perceive. But I perceive that some .

of green.&quot. if I also see a can see that they resemble each shade of red at the same . : Suppose hear a chime of bells when the last bell of the chime sounds.&quot. namely the relation which I call In being to the left &quot. universal relation - being to the left like Thus time are relations. and I can perceive that the earlier bells came before the later I Also I memory what am remembering came perceive that before the present time. those with which we are ac quainted. as I abstracted the of. I much the same way is resem If I see simultaneously two shades other . just &quot. In like manner I become aware of the relation of before I and after in time. From either of these sources I can abstract the universal relation of be fore and after.160 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY they have in common is a certain relation between their parts. my in mind. this way I become acquainted with the universal relation. of. Another relation with which we become acquainted in blance. I can retain the whole chime before ones. among space relations.

appears to be equally immediate. Between universals. greater than the re semblance between a shade of red and a shade of green is Here we are dealing with a relation. namely greater than. which we left unsolved when we began the consideration F of universals. and (at least in some is cases) equally indubit able. though it requires more power of abstraction &quot. between two re lations. We have just seen that we can perceive that the resemblance between two shades of green.&quot. we it find in a ourselves in a position to deal with . as between parti culars. than is required for perceiving the qualities of sense-data.ON KNOWLEDGE OF UNIVERSALS time. that the two greens have to each other than either In this way I become acquainted with the universal resemblance or similarity. Our knowledge of such relations. Thus there immediate knowledge - concerning universals as well as concerning sense-data. there are relations of which we may be immediately aware. I can see 161 more resemblance has to the red. Returning now to the problem of a priori knowledge.

in it which the case in which an a of priori proposition states that all one class of particulars belong to some other class. and goes a long way towards solving our previous difficulties concerning a priori ledge.&quot. that this proposition states between the universal versal &quot. manner than was possible before. at our proposition were untrue. is as if might seem. or (what comes to the same thing) that all particulars having some one property also have some other.two&quot. and the uni to esta This suggests a proposition which we blish . The &quot.four. in view of what has been a relation &quot. shall now endeavour the is namely. In this case it might seem as though we were dealing with the particulars that have the property rather than with the property.162 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY satisfactory much more &quot. proposition two and two are four &quot. is really . Let us revert to the pro position fairly two and two are four. This proposition great importance. know The only case first sight. It is obvious. All a priori knowledge deals with relations of of exclusively universals. said.&quot.

any collection formed of two twos is a &quot. any twc and any other two are four. even when we interpret it as formed of two twos any collection four. In the particular case of two and &quot.&quot. a collection of it is plain that i. even of discovering if One way or we do not yet know whether it is true false. what a proposition deals with is to ask ourselves what words we must understand in other words. it is evident that we must have acquaintance with whatever is really dealt with by the proposition. we we can . By applying this test.e. it appears that many propositions which might seem to be concerned with par ticulars are really concerned only with uni versals. If we can show that such statements as this really deal only with universals.&quot. collection of four.&quot. our proposition may be regarded as proved. what ob in order jects we must be acquainted with to see what the proposition means. 163 oint. As soon as we see what the proposition means. for this may be stated in the form or &quot.ON KNOWLEDGE OF UNIVERSALS a case in . &quot. can understand the proposition. two are meaning is four.&quot.

164
see

THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY
what
"

it is is
"

that

it

asserts, as
"

soon as we
"

know what
"

meant by

collection

and

four." It is quite unnecessary the couples in the world if it were necessary, obviously we could never

two

and
all

to

know

:

understand the proposition, since the couples are infinitely numerous and therefore cannot
all

be known to us.

Thus although our general

statement implies statements about parti cular couples, as soon as we know that there are
such particular couples, yet it does not itself assert or imply that there are such particular
couples,

and thus

fails

to

make any statement
"

whatever about any actual particular couple. The statement made is about couple,"
the universal, and not
couple.

about

this or that

two and two are four deals exclusively with universals, and therefore
"
"

Thus the statement

may

be known by anybody who is acquainted with the universals concerned and can per
ceive the relation between

statement asserts.
fact,

It

them which the must be taken as a

discovered by reflecting upon our know ledge, that we have the power of sometimes

ON KNOWLEDGE OF UNIVERSALS

165

perceiving such relations between universals, and therefore of sometimes knowing general

metic and

a priori propositions such as those of arith The thing that seemed logic.

mysterious,

when we formerly considered such
it

knowledge, was that

seemed to anticipate

and control experience. This, however, we can now see to have been an error. No fact
concerning anything capable of being ex

known independently of We know a priori that two things experience. and two other things together make four things, but we do not know a priori that if Brown and Jones are two, and Robinson and Smith are two, then Brown and Jones and
perienced can be

Robinson and Smith are four. The reason is that this proposition cannot be understood
at

we know that there are such Brown and Jones and Robinson and Smith, and this we can only know by
all

unless

people as

experience.

Hence, although our general proposition is a priori, all its applications

to actual particulars involve experience and In therefore contain an empirical element. this way what seemed mysterious in our a

166
priori

THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY
is

knowledge upon an error.

seen to have been based

It will serve to make the point clearer if we contrast our genuine a priori judgment with an empirical generalisation, such as all men are
"

Here as before, we can understand what the proposition means as soon as we
mortals."

understand the universals involved, namely

man and mortal.

It is obviously unnecessary

to have an individual acquaintance with the whole human race in order to understand

what our proposition means.
sition

Thus the

dif

ference between an a priori general propo

and an empirical generalisation does not come in the meaning of the proposition it comes in the nature of the evidence for it.
;

in

In the empirical case, the evidence consists We believe the particular instances.
all

that

men

are mortal because

we know

that there are innumerable instances of

men

dying, and no instances of their living be yond a certain age. We do not believe it

because we see a connection between the
universal
is

man and
if

the universal mortal.

It

true that

physiology can prove, assum-

ON KNOWLEDGE OF UNIVERSALS

167

ing the general laws that govern living bodies, that no living organism can last for ever, that
gives a connection between man and mortality which would enable us to assert our proposi
tion without appealing to the special evidence

But that only means that our generalisation has been subsumed under a
of

men

dying.

wider generalisation, for which the evidence is still of the same kind, though more exten
sive.

The progress

of science is constantly

producing such subsumptions, and therefore giving a constantly wider inductive basis
for scientific generalisations.
this gives

But although a greater degree of certainty, it does not give a different kind the ultimate
:

ground remains inductive, i.e. derived from instances, and not an a priori connection of universals such as we have in logic and
arithmetic.

opposite points are to be observed concerning a priori general propositions. The
particular instances are known, our general proposition may be arrived at in the first instance by induction, and the
first is

Two

that,

if

many

connection of universals

may

be only sub-

168

THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY

sequently perceived. For example, it is known that if we draw perpendiculars to the sides of
a triangle from the opposite angles,
all

three

perpendiculars meet in a point. It would be quite possible to be first led to this proposition

by

actually drawing perpendiculars in

many

and finding that they always met in a this experience might lead us to look point Such cases for the general proof and find it. in of the experience are common every mathe
cases,
;

matician.

The other point is more interesting, and of more philosophical importance. It is, that we may sometimes know a general proposition in cases where we do not know a single in stance of it. Take such a case as the following We know that any two numbers can be multiplied together, and will give a third
:

called their product.

We know

that

all

pairs

of integers the product of

which

is less

than

100 have been actually multiplied together, and the value of the product recorded in the multiplication table. But we also know that the number of integers is infinite, and that only a finite number of pairs of integers ever

proposition. we can never give an in is because any two numbers we may think of are excluded by the terms of the stance . Here is a general proposition of which the truth undeniable. because it is not perceived that the knowledge of such propositions only requires a knowledge of the relations of uni- and does not require any knowledge of instances of the universals in question. : thought of by any human being. of integers which never have been and never will be thought of by human beings. For example. and yet. Yet versals. proposition which never have been and never will be &quot. we . of knowledge of general propositions of which no instance can be given. is often denied. from the very nature of the case.&quot. This possibility. and that all of them deal with integers the product of which is over 100. Hence we arrive at the All products of two integers. the knowledge of such general propositions is quite vital to a great deal of what is gener ally admitted to be known. are over 100.ON KNOWLEDGE OF UNIVERSALS have been or ever will 169 be thought of by human Hence it follows that there are pairs beings.

Hence our given.&quot. this is a physical object. one immediate and one derivative. that all our knowledge concerning physical objects is such that no actual instance can be We can give instances of the associ ated sense-data. this It &quot.170 saw. and are not things with which we are acquainted. take a survey of the sources our knowledge. or of any other class of is things of which no instance known to us by acquaintance. THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY in our early chapters. Hence we can never know any proposition of the form &quot. And other people the same applies to our knowledge of s minds. as they have appeared in the course of our analysis. In each there are first and two kinds. We have of We may now to distinguish knowledge of things knowledge of truths. where &quot. that physical objects. is follows something immediately known. knowledge as to physical objects depends throughout upon this possibility of general knowledge where no instance can be given. as opposed to sense-data. . but we cannot give instances of the actual physical objects. are only obtained by an inference.

and also certain abstract logical and arithmetical prin ciples. Among universals. consists of which we two sorts. and the truths so known may be called self-evident truths. Our derivative knowledge of which we call knowledge by descrip involves always both acquaintance with something and knowledge of truths. Among such truths are included those which is merely state what given in sense. Our derivative know ledge of truths consists of everything that we can deduce from self-evident truths . but it is clear that among those that can be so known to be are sensible qualities. we have acquaintance with sense-data and (probably) with ourselves. and certain abstract logical universals. there seems no principle by which we can decide which can be known by acquaintance. tion. and (though with less certainty) some ethical propositions. according as the things or universals. 171 acquaintance. things. Our immediate knowledge of truths may be called intuitive knowledge. known are particulars Among particulars. similarity.ON KNOWLEDGE OF UNIVERSALS Our immediate knowledge called of things. relations of space and time.

even in dreams is and hallucinations. If self-evident principles of the above account is correct. Thus the problems con nected with knowledge of truths are more physical . from if becomes necessary to consider at all. Some of our beliefs turn out to be erroneous. which does not arise in regard to knowledge of things. as the mark of some object.e. and therefore how. all our know ledge of truths depends upon our intuitive knowledge. we considered the nature and scope of knowledge by acquaintance. It therefore becomes important to consider the nature and scope of intuitive an earlier stage.172 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY of by the use deduction. the sense-datum. when we regard the immediate object. namely the problem it of error. in much the same way as. at knowledge of truths raises a further problem. whatever may be the object of acquaint ance. not arise with regard to knowledge by acquaintance. for. But knowledge. we can distinguish knowledge This problem does error. there no error involved so long as we do not go beyond the immediate object error can only : arise i.

ON KNOWLEDGE OF UNIVERSALS difficult 173 than those connected with know ledge of things. . As the first of the problems connected with knowledge of truths. let us examine the nature and scope of our intui tive judgments.

As a rule. from other beliefs which may be regarded as the reason for them.CHAPTER XI ON INTUITIVE KNOWLEDGE THERE is a common impression that every thing that we believe ought to be capable of proof. or at least of being shown to be highly probable. just. the giving reason has been forgotten. Yet we feel. It is felt by many that a belief for reasonable belief. that a perfectly reason there is good reason could be found. this view is Almost all our common beliefs are either inferred. when challenged. Few of us ever ask ourselves. what to suppose the food we are just going to eat will not turn out to be poison. even 174 if we are . for example. which no reason can be given is an un In the main. or has even never been consciously present to our minds. or capable of being inferred.

sometimes consciously. we be driven back to the inductive principle. In most ques tions of daily likely to shall life. times unconsciously but there is no reasoning which. . some regress. let us imagine some insistent Socrates. We must sooner or later. But be yond that. And we are usually justified. continues whatever who. such as whether our food is be nourishing and not poisonous. Starting common beliefs of daily life. certain that retically and where it becomes almost is no further reason even theo with the discoverable. until we come to some general principle. there seems to be no further The principle itself is constantly used in our reasoning. we can be driven back from point to point. luminously evident. be driven to a point where we cannot find any further reason.ON INTUITIVE KNOWLEDGE not ready with this belief it 175 in at the moment. and is not itself capable of being deduced from anything more evident. reason we give him. But to demand a reason for the reason. which we discussed in Chapter VI. starting from some simpler self-evident . and probably before very long. or some instance of a general seems which principle.

176

THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY
And
the same holds for

principle, leads us to the principle of induction

as its conclusion.

other logical principles. to us, and we employ

Their truth is evident

them

in constructing

demonstrations

but they themselves, or at some of least them, are incapable of demonstration.
;

Self-evidence, however,

is

not confined to

those

among

general

principles

which are

incapable of proof.
of logical principles

When

a certain number

rest

have been admitted, the but the propositions deduced are often just as selfevident as those that were assumed without
can be deduced from them
;

proof.

All arithmetic, moreover, can be deduced from the general principles of logic,
"

yet the simple propositions of arithmetic, such as two and two are four," are just
as self-evident as the principles of logic.

though this is more disputable, that there are some self-evident
It
also,

would seem,

ethical

principles,

such as

"we

ought to
cases of

pursue what is good." It should be observed that, in

all

general principles, particular instances, dealing

ON INTUITIVE KNOWLEDGE
the

177

with familiar things, are more evident than For example, the general principle,

law of contradiction states that nothing can both have a certain property and not have
evident as soon as it is understood, not so evident as that a particular rose which we see cannot be both red and
it.

This

is

but

it is

not red.

(It is of

of the rose

may

course possible, that parts be red and parts not red,

be of a shade of pink which we hardly know whether to call red or not but in the former case it is plain that
or that the rose

may

;

the rose as a whole
latter case the

is

not red, while in the
theoretically definite

answer

is

as soon as
finition

we have decided on
"

a precise de

red.") usually through particular instances that we come to be able to see the general principle. Only those who are practised in dealing with abstractions

of

It

is

can readily grasp a general principle without
the help of instances. In addition to general principles, the other kind of self-evident truths are those imme
diately derived

from sensation.

We

will call

such truths

"

truths of

perception,"

and the

178

THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY
expressing
of

judgments
"

judgments
certain

them we will call But here a perception."
is

required in get ting at the precise nature of the truths that are self-evident. The actual sense-data are
neither true nor false.

amount

of care

A
for

particular patch of

colour
exists
:

which
it is

true or false.

see, example, simply not the sort of thing that is It is true that there is such
it

I

a patch, true that

degree of brightness, true that

has a certain shape and it is surrounded

by certain other
itself,

colours.
else

But the patch
in the

like
is

sense,

world of everything of a radically different kind from

the things that are true or false, and therefore cannot properly be said to be true. Thus

whatever

self-evident

truths

may

be

obtained from our senses must be different

from the sense-data from which they are
obtained,
It

would seem that there are two kinds
truths
of

of

perception, though perhaps in the last analysis the two kinds may coalesce. First, there is the kind

self-evident

which simply asserts the

existence

of

the

ON INTUITIVE KNOWLEDGE

179

sense-datum, without in any way analysing it. We see a patch of red, and we judge there is such-and-such a patch of red," or
"

more
kind

"

strictly
ojf^

there

is

that

"

;

this is

one

j_ntujtive

judgment

of _ perception.

when the object of sense is complex, and we subject it to some degree of analysis. If, for instance, we see that a round patch of red, we may judge
The other kind
arises
"

patch of red

is

round."

This

is

again a

judgment

of perception,

but

it

differs

from

our previous kind. In our present kind we have a single sense-datum which has both
colour and shape the shape is round.
:

the colour

is

red and

the

datum

into colour

Our judgment analyses and shape, and then

recombines them by stating that the red colour is round in shape. Another example
of this

kind of judgment
that,"

"

is
"

this is to the

right of

where

"

this

and

"

that

"

seen simultaneously. In this kind of judgment the sense-datum contains con
are

which have some relation to each and the judgment asserts that these constituents have this relation.
stituents
other,

180

THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY
class of intuitive judgments,

Another

ana

logous to__those of sense and yet quite dis tinct from them, are judgments of memory.

some danger of confusion as to the memory, owing to the fact that memory of an object is apt to be accompanied by an image of the object, and yet the image cannot be what constitutes memory. This
There
is

nature of

is

easily seen

by merely

noticing that the

image is in the present, whereas what is remembered is known to be in the past. More over, we are certainly able to some extent
to compare our image with the object re membered, so that we often know, within

somewhat wide
accurate
;

limits,

how

far our

image

is

but this would be impossible, unless the object, as opposed to the image, were in some way before the mind. Thus
the essence of

memory

is

not constituted by

the image, but by having immediately before

the

mind an object which is recognised as But for the fact of memory in this past. sense, we should not know that there ever was a past at all, nor should we be able to understand the word than past," any more
"

I am absolutely certain that half a minute ago I was sitting in the same chair in which I am sitting now. no light one.&quot. raises a difficulty. But let us is This first narrow memory Broadly speaking. and it is upon them. memory of what I so long as they are recent. 181 man born blind can understand the word of light. trustworthy in proportion to the vividness of the experience and to its near ness in time. and diffi thus throws doubt on the trustworthiness of intuitive culty its is judgments in general. ulti all mately. my saw and heard will be so reliable that it would be preposterous to doubt whether there had been a flash at all. Going backward over the day.ON INTUITIVE KNOWLEDGE a &quot. I find things of which I am quite certain. And the same applies to less vivid experiences. the house next door was struck by lightning half a minute ago. other things of . ments Thus there must be intuitive judg memory. for it is notoriously fallacious. The case of memory. If scope as far as possible. however. other things of which I am almost certain. that our knowledge of the past depends.

however. and some things of which I am by no means which certain. is cases. and a corresponding gradation in the trustworthiness of my memory. in the It is . in the degree of self-evidence of what I remember. what probable that. that there are cases of very firm belief in a is memory which wholly false. in these really remembered.182 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY I can become certain by thought and by calling up attendant circumstances. but if I were as indifferent to my breakfast as a philosopher should be. some only with a large element of doubt. I am quite certain that I ate my breakfast this morning. and some not Thus there is a continual gradation at all. difficulty of Thus the fallacious first answer to the is memory to say that memory has degrees of self -evidence. I can recall some of it easily. and that these coffespond to the degrees of its trustworthi ness. reaching a limit of perfect self-evidence and perfect trustworthiness in our memory of events which are recent and vivid. As to the conversation at breakfast. I should be doubtful. some with an effort. It would seem.

i. In this case.ON INTUITIVE KNOWLEDGE 183 sense of being immediately before the mind. One important point about self-evidence is made clear by the case of memory. they can be shown to be not cases of memory in the strict sense at all. but a quality which may be more or less present. It would seem that cases of fallacious memory can . last believed that he was at the battle of Waterloo. probably all be dealt with in this way. and that is. 1 . that self -evidence has degrees : it is not a quality which is simply present or absent.e. is said to have at in. is something other than what is falsely believed though something generally asso ciated with it. George IV. because he had so often said that he was. and would therefore not be a genuine case of memory. in gradations ranging from absolute certainty down to an almost imperceptible Truths of perception and some of the principles of logic have the very highest faintness. what was immediately remembered was his repeated assertion the belief in what he was asserting (if it existed) would be produced by association with the remembered assertion.

but merely of self-evidence to say that. It seems. must be true. self- evidence as above explained that one of them. in &quot. Memories have a diminish ing self-evidence as they become remoter and fainter the truths of logic and mathematics .184 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY . highly probable that different notions are &quot. where there is a conflict. tions if proposi may (as seems likely) have some degree without being true. have (broadly speaking) less self-evidence as they become more complicated. which corresponds to the highest . The inductive principle has less self-evidence than some of the other principles of logic. to have Judgments of intrinsic ethical or aesthetic value are apt some self -evidence. Degrees of self-evidence are important in the theory of knowledge. however. the more self-evident proposition is to be retained and the less self-evident rejected. since. such as what follows from a true premiss &quot. two combined . it will be not necessary to abandon all connection between self-evidence and truth. truths of immediate degree of self-evidence have an almost memory equally high degree.&quot. but not much.

is / I This. . only a suggestion. does not give an infallible guarantee. is really an infallible \ guarantee of truth. we shall return to the subject of self -evidence. however. in connection with the distinction between knowledge and error. but only a greater or less presumption. which we cannot as yet develop further. After we have dealt with the nature of truth. which \ corresponds to all the other degrees. while the other.ON INTUITIVE KNOWLEDGE 185 degree of self-evidence.

But as regards knowledge is cannot be decep no dualism as regards itself of truths. namely by acquaintance.CHAPTER XII TRUTH AND FALSEHOOD OUR knowledge of truths. Whatever we : are ac we may quainted with must be something draw wrong inferences from our acquaintance. we may error. has an opposite. We know that on very many subjects differ ent people hold different and incompatible 186 . as we confine ourselves to knowledge of things. but the acquaintance tive. so long. but there is no positive state of mind which can be described as erroneous knowledge of things. as We may is believe what is false as well what true. Thus there is acquaintance. unlike our knowledge So far as things are concerned. there a dualism. at any rate. know them or not know them.

&quot. Since erroneous beliefs are often held just as strongly as true beliefs. but for the present &quot. we ask only is What not &quot. a preliminary question which What do rather less difficult. It is very important to keep these different questions . ? What What beliefs are true ? is truth ? and &quot. in a given case. &quot. and What beliefs are false ? &quot. is ? It is this to be considered In this chapter we are not asking how we can know whether a belief is true or false we : are asking what belief is is meant by the question It is whether a true or false. to be hoped that a clear answer to this question may help us to obtain an answer to the ques tion what beliefs are true. it becomes question how they are to be dis tinguished from true beliefs. and that is however. falsehood &quot. to which no completely satisfactory answer possible. is : we mean by truth and falsehood preliminary question which in this chapter.TRUTH AND FALSEHOOD : 187 hence some beliefs must be erro opinions neous. How are we to know. that our belief is not a difficult erroneous ? This is a question of the very is greatest difficulty. &quot. There is.

belief must differ from our theory of acquaint ance. three requisites which any theory must fulfil.188 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY any confusion between is entirely separate. we imagine a world of mere matter. falsehood. (2) It any were no truth beliefs there could seems fairly evident that if there be no falsehood. and although it would contain what may be . failed A good many philosophers have : adequately to satisfy this condition they have constructed theories according to which all our thinking ought to have been true. since in the case of acquaintance of it was not necessary to take account opposite. and have then had the greatest difficulty in rinding a place for In this respect our theory of falsehood. (1) Our theory of its of truth must be such as to admit opposite. since them sure. in the sense in and no truth is which If correlative to falsehood. there would be no room for falsehood in such a world. is There are three points to observe in the attempt to discover the nature of truth. either. to produce an answer which not really applicable to either.

TRUTH AND FALSEHOOD called &quot. would also contain no truth or it falsehood. or of care in arriving at false. not because of any intrinsic quality of my belief. although truth and falsehood are properties of beliefs. in the sense in of would not contain any which truths are things In fact. property of my belief. If I believe that Charles falsely : no degree died in his bed. I believe truly. lieve that Charles died on the scaffold. but because of an historical event which happened two and a half centuries ago. truth and falsehood are properties of beliefs and statements hence a world of mere : matter. as against what we have just said. I. it. If I be I. which could be dis covered by merely examining the belief. to be observed that the truth or falsehood of which a belief always depends upon something lies outside the belief itself. I believe of vividness in my belief. they . 189 facts. Hence. it truths. (3) it is But. prevents it from because of what happened being again and not because of any intrinsic long ago.&quot. since would contain no beliefs or statements. the same kind as falsehoods.

truth to form part of the completely rounded system which is The Truth. It is at a definition of this sort is the theory that truth consists said that the mark of falsehood failure to cohere in the body of that it is the essence of a and beliefs. not upon any internal quality of the beliefs. By this partly and partly by the feeling that. by no means an easy matter to discover a form of correspondence to which there are no irrefutable objections. The most important attempt in coherence. however. thought can never know when truth has been attained many philosophers have been led to try to find some definition of truth which shall not consist in relation to something wholly outside belief. if truth consists in a correspondence of thought with some thing outside thought. The third of the above requisites leads us to adopt the view which has on the whole been commonest among philosophers that truth consists in some form of correspondence between belief and fact. is our . It is.190 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY are properties dependent upon the relations of the beliefs to other things.

men of science endeavour to find facts which will rule out all the hypotheses except one. for example. there is no reason to prefer it to the common-sense view. possible that life is one long dream. it is certain that there are often two or account for ject. . 191 however. in such cases. it seems not un common for two rival hypotheses to be both all able to account for it is the facts. and yet be quite different from the real past. a great difficulty in this view. there is no reason why they should always succeed. again.TRUTH AND FALSEHOOD There is. or rather first is two great difficulties. according to which other people and . It may be that. and that the outer world has only that degree of reality that the objects of dreams have but although such a view does not seem inconsistent with known facts. with sufficient imagination. Thus. The that there is no reason to suppose that only one coherent body of beliefs is possible. all the known more hypotheses which facts on some sub and although. In philosophy. that would perfectly In more scientific matters. a novelist might invent a past for the world fit on to what we know.

&quot. The other objection truth is to this definition of of &quot. assumes the meaning known. whereas. . will if we should we choose to suppose it false. because of the law of contradiction. that. &quot.&quot. Thus coherence as the definition of truth fails because there is no proof that there can be only one coherent system. this example. For tree propositions &quot. we must know such truths as the law of contradiction. nothing any longer be incoherent with anything Thus the laws of logic supply the else. are not coherent. in fact. if But find the law of contradiction itself were sub jected to the test of coherence. it co coher presupposes the truth of the laws of Two propositions are coherent when both may be true. and are incoherent when false. two and this tree is not a beech. &quot. skeleton or framework within which the test of coherence applies. that &quot. one at least must be Now in order to know whether two propositions can both be true. and they themselves cannot be established by this test. herence ence logic. the is a beech &quot.192 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY things do really exist.

in order that belief may be &quot.TRUTH AND FALSEHOOD For the 193 above two reasons. If were so regarded. constituting It remains to define precisely what we mean zvith jact as Hence we are driven back and what is the nature of the correspondence which must subsist between belief and fact. though it is often a most important test of truth after a certain amount of truth has become known. acquaintance. it would not admit of the . true. (2) to outside things. to seek a theory of truth which (1) allows truth to have an opposite. but (3) makes it a property wholly dependent upon the relation of the beliefs falsehood. by fact. we should find that. coherence cannot be accepted as giving the meaning of truth. namely we have makes truth a property of beliefs. The makes allowing for falsehood it impossible to regard belief as a relation of the mind to a single object.&quot. to correspondence the nature of truth. which necessity of could be said to be what belief like is believed. In accordance with our three requisites.

but in Some refact this is not always the case. common to think of relations as though they always held between two terms. namely but it is almost as mona loves Cassio difficult to suppose that there is such an It &quot. &quot.194 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY opposition of truth and falsehood. Desdemona s love for Cassio. &quot. Hence it will be better to seek for a theory of belief which does not make it consist in a relation of the It is mind to a single object. when Desdemona does not love Cassio. This may be made by examples.&quot. Hence his belief cannot possibly consist in a relation to this object.&quot. We cannot clear say that this belief consists in a relation to a Desdemona s love for Cassio. as it was to suppose that there is &quot. but would have to be always true. object as this. and therefore Othello cannot have any relation to such an object. the belief would be true. single object. might be said that his belief is a relation that Desde to a different object. . for if there were such an object. . Othello believes falsely that Desdemona loves Cassio. There is in fact no such object.

&quot. and for so 44 on. there could be nothing which was between one place and another. instance. : Such a proposition C s marriage with four terms . some four. . A wishes B to promote involves a relation of D &quot. York but if is London and Edinburgh London and Edinburgh were the only places in the world. but enough has been said to show that there are relations which re quire occur. that is D all come in. possible three terms are the smallest it number between that render possible. more than two terms before they can relation The lieving for. come in. as &quot. three terms. and to say. Similarly jealousy there can be no such requires three people relation that does not involve three at least. A and B and C and the relation involved cannot be expressed otherwise than in a form in volving all four. &quot. if be taken to be a relation between several involved in judging or be falsehood is to be duly allowed . the relation between. must. : So long as only two terms is im the relation between &quot. Instances might be multi plied indefinitely.TRUTH AND FALSEHOOD lations 195 demand Take.

. Thus it is though not logically re a theory to be avoided if possible. we take judgment the mind and the to be a relation in which various objects concerned that is to say. is a relation of four terms. Desdemona all occur severally and loving and Cassio must all be terms in . the relation which subsists when Othello believes that Desdemona is loves Cassio. easier to account for falsehood if this. for that would &quot. he must not have before his mind a single object.&quot. and is futable. This relation. Desdemona s love for Cassio. is not a which Othello has to each of the three . may be true of some other relation than believing relation but believing. one of the terms of the When we we four terms. plainly. or that Desdemona loves Cassio. When Othello Desdemona loves Cassio.196 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY not that terms. require that there should be objective false hoods. therefore.&quot. which subsist independently of any minds . &quot. say that it is a relation of do not mean that Othello has a certain relation to Desdemona. since Othello also relation. believes between two. and has the same This relation to loving and also to Cassio.

are now in a position to understand We what it from a is that distinguishes a true judgment false one. judgment. Thus the actual Othello is occurrence.TRUTH AND FALSEHOOD 197 : terms concerned. We will call the mind the subject in the and the remaining terms the Thus. What is judgment is nothing but this relation of believing or judging. objects. and there are terms concerning which it judges. loving. of the relation of believing or judging. and Cassio. that the relation knitting together into one complex whole the four terms Othello. purpose we will In every act of judgment there is a mind which judges. at the moment when is is entertaining his belief. Othello is the subject. Desdemona. For this adopt certain definitions. which relates a mind to several things other than itself. called &quot. when Othello judges that Des demona loves Cassio. . An called belief or act of belief or of judgment is the occurrence between certain terms at some particular time. but to all of them together there is only one example of the relation of believing involved. but this one example knits together four terms.believing&quot.

) Othello s judgment that Cassio loves Desde mona mona differs from his judgment that Desde consists of the relation in loves Cassio.g. is called say. (In will an inflected language. This property of having a sense &quot. a sense &quot. or direction. but their order is different. It will be observed that the relation tc of judging has what &quot. because the of judging places the constituents a different order in the two cases. in spite of the fact that it same constituents. Simi if larly. still the same. Cassio judges that Desdemona loves the constituents of the judgment are Othello. &quot. by the differ ence between nominative and accusative.198 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY Cassio. it puts its objects in a certain which we may indicate by means the order of the words in the sentence. shares with all other relations. the same thing be indicated by inflections. sense &quot.di is one which the relation of judging rection &quot. while the objects are and Desdemona and loving The subject and the objects together are called the constituents of the judgment. that order. The &quot. of relations is the ultimate source of order . e.or &quot. We may meta of phorically.&quot.

sense &quot. there is such a complex Othello s love for Desdemona.&quot. there relates its a relation which constituents. of the . judging is exactly like every other relation. there is a complex.TRUTH AND FALSEHOOD and series . of and conversely. between two or terms into Whenever a more terms. The terms united by the relation may be themselves complex. &quot. &quot. and subject and objects are arranged &quot. 199 and a host of mathematical con cepts further with this aspect. in which re is the uniting believing lation. in a certain order by the &quot. but the whole which results from their being united must be complex. or may be simple. judging believing as knitting together into one complex whole the subject and the objects. Wherever there is is a relation which relates certain terms. there a complex object formed of the union those terms is . whole as &quot. but we need not concern ourselves &quot. wherever is there a complex object. &quot. relation holds it unites the a complex whole. In this respect. We spoke of the relation called or &quot. If Othello loves Desdemona. When an act of believing occurs.

we saw in considering Othello believes that Desdemona loves Cassio. one must be as a &quot. On belief is false.&quot. in which the relation which was one is of the objects of the belief relates the other objects.&quot. The in the structure. loving. if Othello believes truly is that Desdemona loves Cassio. when a no such complex unity . believing. Among &quot. then there &quot.&quot. there is the other hand.g. not the cement.&quot.&quot.. The relation &quot. as occurs in the act of one of the objects it is a brick believing. Thus. is cement is the relation true. the objects. composed exclusively of the objects of the belief. Desdemona s love for complex unity. as occurs in the act of believing.200 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY of relation believing. in the same order as they had in the belief. is not the relation which creates the unity of the complex whole con sisting of the subject and the it objects. When another complex the belief is unity. in this instance. e. relation loving. the it relation But this relation. there &quot. is which Cassio. with the relation which a was one of the objects occurring now as the cement that binds together the other objects of the belief.

yet they are in a sense extrinsic properties. it is false. Thus although truth and falsehood are properties of beliefs. then there no such complex Desdemona s love for Cassio. the &quot. taken in the order which they have in the belief. Assuming.TRUTH AND FALSEHOOD composed only If 201 of the objects of the belief. form a complex unity. it is false. but . a mind the remaining constituents. Othello believes falsely that is &quot.&quot. This false constitutes the definition of truth and hood that we were in search believing is Judging or a certain complex unity of which of. . then relation. if not. terms being put &quot. if are united by the is the belief true . not. or (in general) something not involving any mind at all. for the sake of definiteness. that the objects of the belief are two terms and a believing. is if a constituent then the belief is true . and false when it does not. Desdemona loves Cassio. for the condition of the truth of a belief is beliefs. unity as Thus a belief is true when it corresponds to a certain associated complex. in a certain order if sense of the by the the two terms in that order relation into a complex.

It will be seen that minds do not truth or falsehood. but when once the beliefs are created. only the objects of the believes. This correspondence ensures truth.&quot. If there is a com Desdemona s love for Cassio. plex unity Othello believes &quot. We may restate our theory as follows &quot. the mind . consisting of the object-terms related by the object-relation in the same order as they have in the belief. there is which when a corre sponding complex not involving the mind. but only its objects. and its absence entails falsehood.&quot. and loving the object-relation. They create beliefs. believes truly A mind. (b) do not depend on minds for their truth. : If we take such a belief as that Desdemona loves Cassio.202 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY belief. and is false when there is no correspond create ing fact. Thus a belief is true when there is a corresponding fact. Hence we account simultaneously for the two facts that beliefs (a) depend on minds for their existence. then this complex unity is called the fact corresponding to the belief. we will call Desdemona and Cassio the object-terms.

This considera occupy the next chapter. we have next to consider what ways there are of knowing whether this or that belief tion will is true or false.TRUTH AND FALSEHOOD cannot make them true or false. 203 except in the special case where they concern future things which are within the power of the person believing. . Having now decided what we mean by truth and falsehood. such as catching trains. and this fact does not (except in exceptional cases) in any way involve the mind of the person who has the belief. What makes a belief true is a fact.

&quot. or do we merely sometimes by good luck believe what Before we can attack this question.CHAPTER XIII KNOWLEDGE. can we ever know anything at all. and this question is not so by &quot. however. first decide what we mean knowing. is true ? we must. There can be no doubt that some of our beliefs are is false. true and what erroneous certainty thus we are led to inquire what we can ever have that such and such a belief is not erroneous. easy as might be supposed. than the question as to how we can know what is This question will occupy us in the present chapter. which we considered of much less interest preceding chapter. 204 . AND PROBABLE OPINION THE question as to what is we mean by truth in the and falsehood. In other words. ERROR. .

since the late not be thought to constitute knowledge. he Prime Minister believes name began with Minister was Sir Prime Bannerman. If a newspaper. and it may produce belief in some of its less experi enced readers. might be supposed that we had achieved a knowledge of what we believe. that know could be defined as believe is true belief. yet this belief. Henry Campbell But if he believes that Mr. it ma Y by good fortune announce what after wards turns out to be the right result. Thus it is clear that a true belief not . But in spite of the truth of their belief.KNOWLEDGE AND ERROR At ledge first 205 sight we might imagine &quot. Balfour was the late Prime Minister. would what true. they cannot be said to have know is ledge. it When what we commonly stance : used. To take a very believes trivial in If a man s last is that the late a B. though true.&quot. But this would not ac cord with the way in which the word is true. he will still believe that the late Prime Minister s last name began with a B. by an intelligent anticipation. announces the result of a battle before any telegram giving the result has been received.

because not enough that our premisses should be true. a true belief cannot be called knowledge when it is deduced by a fallacious process of reasoning. deduced from a false In like manner. even if the premisses from which it is deduced are true. The man who was the late Prime Minister may proceed to draw valid deductions from the true premiss that the late Prime Minister s name began with a B. If I know that all Greeks are men and that Socrates was a man. and I infer that Socrates was a Greek. Such a definition is at once too wide and too narrow. they must also be known. because. Thus we shall . although my premisses and my conclusion are true. But are we to say that nothing is knowledge except what is validly deduced from true premisses ? Obviously we cannot say this. the conclusion does not follow from the premisses. I cannot be said to know that Socrates was a Greek. Balfour but he cannot be said to know the conclusions reached by these deductions.206 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY it is knowledge when belief. believes that Mr. In the it is first place. it is too wide.

for Leaving on one the moment. but from which it has not. but it leaves the definition of intuitive still know ledge to seek. let us con sider the above suggested definition of de rivative knowledge. It that entertain a constantly happens people true belief. It can. it is The chief objection to limits knowledge. Take. cular definition : This.&quot. however.&quot. therefore. at best define one sort of as knowledge. opposed to intuitive knowledge. side.KNOWLEDGE AND ERROR 207 have to amend our definition by saying that knowledge is what is validly deduced from known premisses. say : We may is Derivative knowledge is what validly deduced from premisses known intuitively. derivative. In this statement there is no formal defect. the beliefs produced by . the sort we &quot. know what is meant by known call premisses. for example. it is been inferred by any logical process. which has grown up in them be it that unduly cause of some piece of intuitive knov/ledge from which capable of being validly inferred. the question of intuitive knowledge. it is a cir assumes that we already &quot. as a matter of fact.

we are fairly well justified in believing that the is King is dead. who cannot read aware except in a person A child may be easily. But anybody accustomed to reading passes at once to what the letters mean. and could be performed by the reader. sense-data called seeing the printed letters. And we is are quite amply justified in believing that the paper asserts that the is the intuitive knowledge King upon which our dead.208 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY reading. news But here belief based is knowledge of the existence of sense- data derived from looking at the print which This knowledge scarcely gives the news. and pass of and to realisation a gradually painfully their meaning. except on reflection. since he does not in fact perform any operation which can be called logical . If the newspapers announce the death of the King. Thus although a valid inference from the meaning is possible. since this the sort of announcement which would not be made if it were false. it is not in fact letters to their performed. and is not aware. that he has derived this knowledge from the of the shapes of the letters. rises into consciousness.

admit such psychological inference as a means of obtaining derivative knowledge. This renders our definition of derivative know ledge less precise than we could wish. : it probable as we shall .&quot. therefore.KNOWLEDGE AND ERROR inference. : not &quot. tell us in order to how much reflection may be needed make the discovery.&quot. knowledge merges into &quot. These ways may be called &quot. We shall. then. 209 would be absurd to say that the reader does not know that the news paper announces the King s death. ways. admit as derivative Yet it knowledge whatever is the result of intuitive knowledge even if by mere association. since it does discoverable is vague the word &quot. besides logical inference. pro vided there is a valid logical connection. is not a precise conception opinion. and the person in question could become aware of There are in this connection by reflection. But in fact &quot. We must. psychological inference. &quot. by which we pass from one belief to another the fact many : passage from the print to its meaning illus trates these ways. provided there is a discoverable logical inference which runs parallel to the psychological inference.

210 see THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY more fully in the course of the present chapter. we have the test of intuitive knowledge to fall back upon. does not arise over derivative know So long ledge. however. it is by no means easy to discover any criterion by which to distinguish some as true and In this question it is scarcely possible to reach any very precise result all our knowledge of truths is infected others as erroneous. as we are dealing with derivative knowledge. Something may be done. Our theory of truth. : with some degree of doubt. But in regard to intuitive beliefs. there is a corresponding fact. When a belief is true. to mitigate the difficulties of the question. since any such definition must be more or less misleading. however. in several objects of the belief which the form a single . A very precise definition. should not be sought. supplies the possibility of distinguishing certain truths as self-evident in a sense which ensures in fallibility. therefore. The chief difficulty in regard to knowledge. but over intuitive knowledge. and a theory which ignored this fact would be plainly wrong. we said. to begin with.

. if the weather is fine. in several parts are judged to be (1) by means of related as they are in fact related . there are. look to the west and actually see the setting sun : you then know the same fact by the way of knowledge of things. Thus in regard to any complex fact. if you know the hour sense). any fact. theoretically. provided it fulfils those further somewhat vague conditions which we have been considering in the present chapter. two ways in which it may be known : which its a judgment. though it is by no means confined Now it will be to objects of the senses. (2) by means itself. we may also have the kind of knowledge constituted by per ception (taking this word in its widest possible For example. of acquaintance which may (in with the complex fact a large sense) be called perception. fact that the sun of the fact you can at that hour know the this is knowledge is setting by way of knowledge of truths : . but you can also.KNOWLEDGE AND ERROR complex. besides the know ledge constituted by belief. But in regard to of the sunset. 211 The belief is said to constitute knowledge of this fact.

. on the con r w hen its and the relation and demands severally. When Othello Desdemona loves Cassio. only the reality of the parts and the relation the relation may trary. It will be remembered that at the end of Chapter XI we suggested that there might be two kinds of self-evidence. is fact. is liable to error. The first way. and yet the judgment may occur. be distinguished. The second way gives us when there really such a the complex whole.212 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY way of observed that the second knowing a is complex fact. the way of acquaintance. only possible while the first way. one giving an absolute guarantee of truth. and most absolute sense. We may in the first say that a truth is self-evident. and is therefore only possible parts do actually have that relation which makes them combine to form such a complex. like all judgment. gives us the parts : not relate those parts in that way. when fact we have acquaintance with the corresponds believes that which the to the truth. the other only a These two kinds can now partial guarantee.

hence sidering. we are con the truth that Desdemona loves were a truth) could only be selfevident to Desdemona. since there is only one person who can be acquainted w ith the mental things or the r whom sense-data concerned. facts about universals do not privacy. On the other hand. This would be a fact with which no one could have acquaintance except Desdemona in the sense of self-evidence that . have this same privacy there is only one person to : they can be self-evident in our present sense.&quot. we say that the truth that these terms are so related has the first or . if his belief were true. Cassio (if it and all facts concerning sense-data. In all cases where we know by acquaintance a complex fact consisting of certain terms in a certain relation. a relation between universals may be known by acquaintance to many different people. All mental facts. Thus no fact about any particular existing thing can be selfevident to more than one person.KNOWLEDGE AND ERROR &quot. 213 corresponding fact. acquainted with the have this Many minds may be same universals hence . would be Desdemona s love for Cassio.

shining as In this process it is possible to commit an error hence even where a fact has the first or absolute kind of . &quot.&quot. it not absolutely infallible. it is necessary to we have to analyse the given complex fact : the sun separate out constituents of the fact. &quot.214 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY absolute kind of self-evidence. in the case of any given judgment. a judgment believed to corre is spond to the fact because fact. does not enable us to be absolutely certain. that the judgment in ques tion is true. which is a complex fact. sun is shining. evidence is an absolute guarantee it of truth. and &quot. Suppose we first perceive the sun shining. may if it But not really correspond to the does correspond (in the sense it explained in the preceding chapter). The second sort of self -evidence will be that . self-evidence. &quot. then must be true. and in these cases the judgment that the terms are so Thus this sort of selfrelated must be true. is But although this sort of self-evidence an absolute guarantee of truth. In passing from the per ception to the judgment. and the thence proceed to make the judgment &quot.

but if the green colour is gradually . At first our certainty that we hear the we listen intently. but in the judgments based on them. if . This second kind of self-evidence will have degrees. and at last we know we no longer hoofs is complete . In this process. there comes a moment when we think perhaps it was imagination or the blind at last we upstairs or our own heart-beats become doubtful whether there was any noise then we think we no longer hear at all anything. : We can be quite sure they are different shades of colour . for example. . from the highest degree to the least. and is not derived from direct perception of a fact as a single complex whole. one blue and one green. not in the sensedata themselves. to a bare inclination in favour Take. the case of a horse trotting away from us along a hard road. gradually. from the very highest degree of the down belief. there is a continual gradation of self -evidence.KNOWLEDGE AND ERROR which belongs to judgments in the first instance. Or again shades of Suppose we are comparing two colour. hear anything.

the connection of premiss and conclusion should be self-evident. In difficult reasoning. at each step in the reasoning. then blue. to be trusted than the lower degrees. It is not enough that the axioms from which we start should be self-evident it is necessary : also that. becoming first a blue-green. and so must their connection with the conclusions deduced from them. .216 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY more and more like altered to be the blue. Thus self -evidence of this sort is a matter of degree and it seems plain that the higher degrees are more . The same thing happens in tuning a musical instrument. Take for premisses example a piece of reasoning in geometry. In derivative knowledge our ultimate must have some degree of selfevidence. there will when we are doubtful whether difference. not improbable where the difficulty is great. then a greeny- blue. come a moment we can see any and then a moment when we see know that we cannot any difference. or in any other case where there is a continuous gradation. this connection has often only a very small degree of self-evidence hence errors of reasoning are .

there w ill be a gradation r in trustworthiness. may be called probable opinion. because it is. provided it is either intuitive or in ferred (logically or psychologically) it from not intuitive logically. knowledge from which follows What we firmly believe. both as regards intuitive knowledge and as regards derivative knowledge. is if it is what or is called error. if it is true. from the existence of noteworthy sense-data and the simpler truths of logic and arith metic. if we assume that intuitive knowledge is trustworthy in proportion to the degree of its self-evidence. ledge is commonly know probable opinion.KNOWLEDGE AND ERROR From what has been said it is 217 evident that. derived from. down to judgments which seem only just more probable than their opposites. neither knowledge nor error. and also we believe hesitatingly. something which has not the highest degree of self-evidence. is called know ledge. which may be taken as quite certain. In regard to probable opinion. What we firmly believe. if it is true. Thus the greater pass as part of what woulJ. What we firmly believe. we can more or less .

they are mutually coherent. to such matters as the distinction between dreams and waking life. case such hypotheses ful. the test of coherence condemns the dreams and confirms the waking life. But this test. may Often in a single seem highly doubt while yet. If our dreams. As it is. A if body of individu ally probable opinions. were as coherent one with another as our days. and thus become more probable than they would be in isola tion. night after night.MS a criterion. probable opinion. The same thing applies to general philosophical hypotheses. They fit hypotheses acquire into a coherent system of probable opinions. way that many scientific their probability. though it increases probability . which we rejected as the definition of truth. they become pretty This applies. become more probable than any one It is in this of them would be individually. we should hardly know whether to believe the dreams or the waking life. but may often use &quot. when we consider the order and coherence which they introduce into a mass of nearly certain.218 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY derive great assistance from coherence. in particular.

KNOWLEDGE AND ERROR where at it is 219 successful. transform it into in dubitable knowledge. Thus the mere organisation of probable opinion will never. . never gives absolute is certainty. by itself. unless there certainty already some point in the coherent system.

Most philo sophers or. There can be no doubt that the hope of finding reason to believe such theses as these has been the chief inspiration of many life-long students This hope. I believe. by a priori metaphysical reasoning. the unreality of all evil. universe as a whole is not to be obtained by 220 . such things as the fundamental dogmas of religion. It would seem that knowledge concerning the of philosophy. very many profess to be able to prove. matters that writings of we have said hitherto concerning we have scarcely touched on many occupy a great space in the most philosophers. at any rate. the essential rationality of the universe. and so on.CHAPTER XIV THE LIMITS OF PHILOSOPHICAL KNOW LEDGE IN all that philosophy. the illusoriness of matter. is vain.

such and such things must exist and such and such others cannot. so the metaphysician. with a view we can hope that it may be valid. from any one piece o reality. In this chapter we shall briefly consider the kind of way in which such reasoning is to discovering whether attempted. without going into details. in virtue of the laws of logic. was Hegel (1770-1831).THE LIMITS OF KNOWLEDGE 221 metaphysics. what the whole of reality must be . are not capable of surviving a critical scrutiny. and it is impossible here to do anything like justice to it. sees what kind of animal the whole must have been. from a single bone. Just as a comparative anatomist. of the kind of view which we wish to examine. and obviously incapable of existing without the complement supplied by the rest of the world. His main thesis is that everything short of the Whole is obviously fragmentary. But we may. The great representative. obtain some con ception of the nature of his methods and his results. and that the proposed proofs that. sees. Hegel s philosophy is very difficult. according to Hegel. in modern times.

has fresh hooks. . never still theless. combined in a new In this &quot. on examination. as it were. that. accord ing to Hegel. we become involved dictions in contradictions . Every ap . though less incomplete than started with. and no need of . has no in Idea. This essential incompleteness appears. less incomplete idea. In the world of we take any idea which is abstract thought. which. way Hegel advances until he reaches the Absolute to him.&quot. will be found. to be pass into its antithesis. we find. cr incomplete. parently separate piece of reality has. we have which This is to find a new. these contra turn the idea in question into its opposite. not wholly complete. in turn. equally in the world of thought and in the if world of things.222 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY in its at least large outlines. hooks which grapple it to the next piece the next piece. the idea new we idea. if we forget its incompleteness. the synthesis of our original idea and its antithesis. or antithesis and in order to escape. and so on. but to with which it must be synthesis. until the whole universe is reconstructed. opposite. according no completeness.

not in space or time. when the : In this conception. and wholly the contrary. evil. there arguments in support of it are carefully examined. not as all Reality . Thus Hegel reaches the conclusion that Absolute Reality forms one single har monious system. adequate to describe Absolute lower ideas only describe appears to a partial view. The fundamental tenet upon which the system . can be proved to be entirely believes due to our fragmentary piecemeal view of the universe. not in. they appear to involve much con fusion and many unwarrantable assumptions. is The Absolute therefore. is undeniably some sublime to which we could thing something wish to yield assent. but it reality as it is to one who simultaneously surveys the Whole. and we should see instead an eternal evil perfect unchanging spiritual unity. wholly rational. as we may suppose God sees it. space and time and matter If and and all striving and struggling would disappear. in logically Any appearance to the world so he we know. we saw the universe whole. any degree spiritual. development.THE LIMITS OF KNOWLEDGE further 223 Idea. Nevertheless.

nature of a thing.&quot. turns upon the notion of the &quot. but must need the support of other things before it can exist. of the thing. for example. he could not be what he is. is constituted by his memories and the rest of his knowledge. be part &quot. is But a truth about a thing not part of the thing itself. all the truths about It is of course the case that a truth which connects one thing with another thing could not subsist if the other thing did not subsist. which seems to mean the thing. &quot. of the nature &quot. although it must. but for the objects which he knows or loves or hates. and could what it is if those outside things did not exist. A man s nature. &quot. he would be This whole point of view. obviously a fragment of reality : taken as the sum-total self -contradictory. be its own nature. It is held that whatever has relations to things outside itself must contain some reference to those outside things in not. If we mean . He is essentially and hatreds.224 is THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY built up is that what is incomplete must be not self-subsistent. by his loves and and so on thus. however. according to the above usage. . therefore.

We may have knowledge of a thing by acquaint ance even if we know very few propositions about it theoretically we need not know any Thus. or at any rate is not known completely. about it. between know sense. 225 &quot. acquaintance with a thing is involved in our knowing any one proposition about a thing.&quot. lations to all the other things in the universe. then plainly nature &quot. s nature &quot. acquaintance with a thing does not logically involve a knowledge of its relations. nature And although propositions &quot. &quot.THE LIMITS OF KNOWLEDGE by a thing &quot. Hence. knowledge is of its &quot. we shall have to hold that the thing may be known when its nature is not known. ledge of things and knowledge of truths. 1) ( its relations does not involve a knowledge of all of its relations nor a knowledge of its H . is used in this &quot. acquaintance with a thing does not involve knowledge of its in the above sense. when this use of the word nature is employed. all the truths about the thing. &quot. in the above sense. &quot. There is a confusion. and (2) a knowledge of some of not involved. unless we cannot know a thing s we know all the thing s re &quot. nature. But if the word nature &quot. &quot.

for this is deduced by Hegel from the fragmentary and relational character Thus we are left to the of these things. we also cannot prove the unreality of space and time and matter and evil. It follows that we know we cannot prove that the universe as a whole forms a single harmonious system such as Hegel believes that it forms. and are unable to know the characters of those parts . This it only seems to follow because already. Thus the fact that a thing has relations does not prove that its relations are logically necessary. I may be ac quainted. and without therefore knowing &quot. And if we cannot prove this. and be as complete as knowledge by acquaintance ever can be. from the mere fact that it is the thing it is we cannot deduce that it must have the it various relations which in fact has. its its nature &quot.226 &quot. in the above sense. with out knowing all that the dentist (who is not this knowledge may acquainted with it) can tell me about cause. with my toothache. nature in the above sense. That is to say. piecemeal investigation of the world. THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY &quot. for example.

however. disappointing as is to those whose hopes have been raised by the in systems of philosophers. and that very little can be proved a priori from considerations time. and therefore could not be real.THE LIMITS OF KNOWLEDGE of the universe that are 227 remote from our ex it is perience. is if . harmony with the inductive and scientific temper of our age. Similarly. A good illustration of this is afforded by space and and time Space appear to be infinite If we extent. and infinitely divisible. and is borne out by the whole examination of human knowledge which has occupied our previous chapters. travel along a straight line in either direction. This result. it is difficult to believe that we shall finally reach a last point. in of what must be. Most of the great ambitious attempts of metaphysicians have proceeded by the at tempt to prove that such and such apparent features of the actual world were self-contra dictory. The whole tendency of modern thought. beyond which there nothing. not even empty space. is more and more in the direction of showing that the supposed contradictions were illusory.

empty time beyond Again. we take any two seems evident that there must be other points between them. however small the dis tance between them may be every distance : can be halved. it seems evident that there will be other moments between them. infinite extent and infinite divisibility philosophers have advanced arguments tend ing to show that there could be no infinite collections of things. must be finite. . appear to be infinite in extent. and the halves can be halved In time.228 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY we travel backwards or for to believe that it is difficult in imagination wards in time. it if Thus space and time points on a line. emerged between the apparent nature of space and time and the supposed impossibility of infinite collections. or of instants in Thus a contradiction time. again. however little time may elapse between two moments. and so on ad infinitum. similarly. shall reach we a first or last time. Thus space and time appear to be infinitely But as against these apparent facts divisible. and that therefore the number of points in space. with not even it.

however. which he declared to be merely sub and since his time very many philo jective . Some of Euclid s axioms. notably Georg Cantor. Now. have not been content with showing that space as it is commonly supposed to be is possible they have shown also that many other forms of . sophers have believed that space and time are mere appearance. and were formerly supposed to be necessary by philo sophers. deduced the impossibility of space and time. who first emphasised this contradic tion. however. which appear to sense to be necessary. and one of the great sources of metaphysical constructions is dried up. but only contradictory of certain rather obstinate mental prejudices. owing to the labours of the mathematicians. not characteristic of the world as it really is. it They are not in fact self-contradictory.THE LIMITS OF KNOWLEDGE 229 Kant. are now known to derive their appear- common . space are equally possible. so far as logic can show. Hence the reasons for regarding space and time as unreal have be come inoperative. The mathematicians. sibility has appeared that the impos of infinite collections was a mistake.

and experience only Thus. and not from any a priori logical foundation. which these axioms are the mathemati cians have used logic to loosen the prejudices of common sense. of which every nook and cranny could be . our knowledge of what it is has become less than of was formerly supposed to be. Formerly it appeared that experience left only one kind of space to logic. some less from that in which we live. while partially decides between them. where distances such as w e can measure are of spaces differing r impossible to discover by observation whether our actual space is strictly concerned.230 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY ance of necessity from our mere familiarity with actual space. and logic one kind to be impossible. In stead of being shut in within narrow walls. logic presents many kinds of space as possible this showed apart from experience. that it is Euclidean or of one of these other kinds. our knowledge what may be is enormously increased. Thus the position is completely reversed. And some of these spaces differ so little from Euclidean space. Now. and to show the possibility some more. By imagining worlds in false.

But in all cases of knowledge by description. to the universe The attempt to prescribe of a priori principles means by . of universals.THE LIMITS OF KNOWLEDGE explored. there description concerning things of which we have no direct experience. between the many worlds which Thus knowledge as logic offers for our choice. What has happened in the case of space and time has happened. much knowledge by we need some connection ling us. has broken down logic. for. Thus in regard to physical objects. present ing innumerable alternatives which are closed and leaving to experience the task of deciding. has become the great liberator of the imagination. in other directions as well. as is we have seen. as formerly. open where much remains so in an unknown because there is much to know. where decision is possible. instead of being. the bar to possibilities. common actually experience. . enab from such and such a datum. to some extent. to infer an object of a certain sort as implied by our datum. to what exists becomes limited to what we can learn from experience not to what we can to unreflective sense. 231 we find ourselves world of free possibilities.

is of two sorts pure empirical knowledge. and enables us to draw inferences from the particular facts given in empirical knowledge. Principles such as the law of gravitation are proved. The same applies to the law of causality. to such prin ciples as the law of gravitation. which gives us connections between universals. knowledge concerning physical objects. such as the Thus our intuitive principle of induction. which tells us of the existence and some of the properties of parti cular things with which we are acquainted.232 for THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY example. and pure a priori knowledge. is which the source of all our other knowledge. Our deri vative knowledge always depends upon some pure a priori knowledge and usually also de pends upon some pure empirical knowledge. or. : . probable. or rather are rendered highly by a combination of experience with some wholly a priori principle. the principle that sense-data are signs of physical objects is itself a connection and it is only in virtue of this that experience enables us to acquire principle of universals . to descend to what is less general. knowledge of truths.

w hich makes r it a study distinct from science. as the result of a critical inquiry. has had a mainly negative result. the principles underlying the sciences were capable. and therefore. and the results obtained by source of philosophy are not radically different from those obtained from science.THE LIMITS OF KNOWLEDGE said 233 Philosophical knowledge. does not differ essentially scientific from knowledge . it searches out any in consistencies there may be in these principles. of giving us knowledge concerning the universe as a whole. If. as many philosophers have believed. The essential characteristic of philosophy. when disengaged from irrelevant detail. if what has been above is true. But as regards what would be com- . belief as scientific but our inquiry has not re knowledge has vealed any such knowledge. no reason for rejecting them has appeared. is criticism. such knowledge would have the same claim on our . there is no special wisdom which is open to philosophy but not to science. and it only accepts them when. It examines critically the principles employed in science and in daily life . as regards the special doctrines of the bolder metaphysicians.

If we adopt the attitude of the complete sceptic. and asking. from this outside position. reason to reject such knowledge as the result and we have seen no reason incapable of the kind of knowledge which he is generally believed to suppose to possess. if any result is to be achieved. But it not difficult to see that scepticism of this . our result is in we have seldom found the main positive of our criticism. Against this absolute scepticism. placing our selves wholly outside all knowledge. this destructive kind. however. and our scepticism can never be For all refutation must begin with some piece of knowledge which the dispu tants share from blank doubt. no argument can begin. to be of compelled to return within the knowledge. circle is are demanding what im refuted. Hence the criticism of knowledge which philosophy employs must not be of . we speak of philosophy as a criticism of knowledge. it is necessary to im pose a certain limitation. no is logical argument can be advanced. man When. we possible.234 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY : monly accepted as knowledge.

however calmly and thoroughly we it.&quot. methodi doubt. on reflection. Such beliefs philosophy will bid us reject. unless some new line of them. Descartes &quot. seemed doubtful . His consisted in doubting whatever doubt &quot. but rather the we are asserting to be &quot. for example.THE LIMITS OF KNOWLEDGE kind cal is 235 unreasonable. with which modern philosophy is began. such as knowledge of the existence of our sense-data. to ask himself whether. but are found to melt away when subjected to a close inquiry. with each ap parent piece of knowledge. appears quite indubitable. he could feel certain that he really criticism knew it. philo upon sophical criticism does not require that we should abstain from belief. reflect In regard to such knowledge. kind of criticism which is not of this kind. This is the kind of which constitutes philosophy. methodical the essence of philosophy. as the belief that physical objects exactly resemble our sensedata which are entertained until we begin to reflect. Some knowledge. argument is found to support But to reject the beliefs which do not . But there are beliefs such. in pausing.

and retains whatever still appears to be knowledge when this consideration is completed. in a word. not reasonable. determines to re ject. and that in some cases it renders the risk so small as to be practically negligible.236 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY to appear open closely any objections. prudent advocate of to have performed. The criticism aimed at. Philosophy may claim justly that it diminishes the risk of error. without reason. but that which considers each piece of apparent knowledge on its merits. To do more than this is not possible in a world where mistakes must occur . is not that which. and is not what philosophy advocates. since human beings are fallible. and more than this no philosophy would claim . That some risk of error remains must be admitted. is however we examine them.

possible. 237 . It is the more necessary to consider this question.CHAPTER XV THE VALUE OF PHILOSOPHY HAVING now come to the end of our brief of the and very incomplete review conclusion. This view of philosophy appears to result. in view of the fact that many men. it will be well to consider. are inclined to doubt whether philosophy is any thing better than innocent but useless trifling. partly from a wrong conception of the ends partly from a wrong conception of the kind of goods which philosophy strives to of life. under the influence of science or of practical affairs. and controversies on matters concerning which knowledge is im hair-splitting distinctions. problems of philosophy. in what is the value of philosophy and why it ought to be studied.

thus people who are wholly ignorant of it the study of physical science is to be recom mended. first free our minds from the pre judices of what are wrongly called The practical man. it its effects it. But further. but is oblivious of the necessity of providing food for the mind. me dium of inventions.238 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY Physical science. therefore. deavour to determine the value of philosophy. &quot. if were well . of those of philosophy. as &quot. is who realises that one who recognises only material men must have food for the body. anywhere. practical this word is often used. of philosophy has any value at This utility If the study all for others than students indirectly. needs. is useful to innumerable . &quot. but rather because of the effect on mankind in general. through if must be only upon the lives who study It is in these effects. not only. or primarily. if we are not to fail in our en we must men. &quot. there off. If all men poverty and disease had been reduced to their lowest possible point. because of the effect on the student. that the value of philosophy must be primarily sought. does not belong to philosophy. through the achieve.

and the kind which results from a critical examination of the grounds of our convictions. a historian. prejudices. Philosophy. he will.THE VALUE OF PHILOSOPHY would still 239 remain much to be done to produce . If you ask a mathematician. his answer will last as long as you are willing to listen. It is exclusively among the goods of the mind that the value of philosophy is to be found and only those who are not indifferent to these . and beliefs. if he is . a mineralogist. and even in the existing a valuable society world the goods of the mind are at least as important as the goods of the body. what definite body of truths has been ascertained by his science. But if you put the same question to a philosopher. or any other man of learning. goods can be persuaded that the study of philosophy is not a waste of time. like all other studies. aims primarily at knowledge. j But it cannot be maintained that philosophy has had any very great measure of success in its attempts to provide definite answers to its questions. The knowledge it aims at is the kind of knowledge which gives unity and system to the body of the sciences.

natural philosophy. was once Newton s great work included in philosophy the mathematical principles of was called . only a part of the truth concerning the uncertainty of philosophy. There are many questions and among them . It is true that this is partly accounted for by the fact that. and becomes a sepa The whole study of the heavens. until very lately. has now been separated from philosophy and has become the science of psychology. the study of was.240 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY candid. which Similarly. Thus. This is. the human mind. this subject ceases to be called philosophy. which now belongs to astronomy. as soon as definite knowledge concerning any subject becomes possible. remain to form the residue which is called philosophy. at present* no definite answer can be given. rate science. the uncertainty of philosophy is more apparent than real : capable of definite those questions which are already answers are placed in the sciences.&quot. however. a part of philosophy. &quot. have to confess that his study has not achieved positive results such as have been achieved by other sciences. while those only to which. to a great extent.

philosophers. to examine all the approaches to them. so far insoluble to the can see. or is it a fortuitous concourse of atoms ? Is consciousness a permanent part of the uni giving hope of indefinite growth in wisdom. may it is part of the business of philosophy to continue the consideration of such questions. the answers suggested by philosophy are none of them demonstrably true. But it would seem whether answers be otherwise discoverable or not. become impossible ? Are good and evil of importance to the universe or only to man ? Such questions are asked by philosophy. to make us aware of their importance. or is it a transitory accident on a small planet on which life must ultimately verse. Yet.THE VALUE OF PHILOSOPHY those that are of to our spiritual life 241 the profoundest interest which. and variously answered by various that. Has the universe any unity of plan or purpose. must remain we human as intellect unless its different powers become of quite a from order what they are now. and to keep alive that is speculative interest in the universe which . however slight be the hope of discovering an answer.

The . it is demonstration to be true. it is true. We cannot. The value of philosophy is. Many philosophers. have held that philosophy could establish the truth of certain answers to such fundamental questions. in fact. They in religious beliefs could have supposed that what is of most importance be proved by strict such attempts. us astray. we shall be compelled to renounce the hope of finding philosophical proofs of religious beliefs. once more. in clude as part of the value of philosophy any definite set of answers to such questions.242 THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY apt to be killed by confining ourselves to definitely ascertainable knowledge. and opinion as to its but if the investi pronounce dogmatically gations of our previous chapters have not led . Hence. of In order to judge necessary to take a to form an methods and its limitations. the value of philosophy must not depend upon any supposed body definitely ascertainable of knowledge to be ac quired by those who study it. On such a subject it would be unwise to survey of human knowledge. to be sought largely in its very uncertainty. therefore.

as we saw in our opening chapters. tends to become obvious . we begin to philosophise. though unable to tell us with certainty what is the true answer to the doubts which able to suggest it raises.THE VALUE OF PHILOSOPHY man who 243 has no tincture of philosophy goes through life imprisoned in the prejudices de rived from common sense. that even the most every day things lead to problems to which only very incomplete answers can be given. is many possibilities which enlarge our thoughts and free them from the tyranny of custom. Thus. finite. what they may be it never travelled into the region of liberating . common As soon as on the contrary. objects rouse no questions. Philo sophy. from the habitual beliefs of his age or his nation. without the co-operation or consent of his To such a man the world definite. while diminishing our feeling of certainty as to what things are. it greatly increases our knowledge removes the some what arrogant dogmatism of those who have as to . we find. and from convictions which have grown up in his mind deliberate reason. and un familiar possibilities are contemptuously re jected.

244

THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY
it

doubt, and

keeps alive our sense of wonder

by

showing familiar things in
its

an unfamiliar

aspect.

Apart from
pected

utility in

showing unsus

possibilities,
its chief

perhaps

philosophy has a value value through the greatness
it

of the objects

which

contemplates, and the

freedom from narrow and personal aims re The life of sulting from this contemplation.
the instinctive
circle of

man

is

shut up within the
:

his

private interests

family and

friends
is

may

be included, but the outer world

not regarded except as it may help or hinder what comes within the circle of instinctive
wishes.
feverish

In such a

life

there
in

and confined,

something comparison with

is

which the philosophic life is calm and free. The private world of instinctive interests is a small one, set in the midst of a great and power
ful

world which must, sooner or later, lay our private world in ruins. Unless we can so
enlarge our interests as to include the whole outer world, we remain like a garrison in a

beleaguered fortress, knowing that the enemy prevents escape and that ultimate surrender

THE VALUE OF PHILOSOPHY
is

245

inevitable.

In such a
strife

life

there

is

no peace,

between the insistence of In one desire and the powerlessness of will. way or another, if our life is to be great and
but a constant
free,
strife.

we must escape

this prison

and

this

One way

of escape is

by philosophic con

templation. Philosophic contemplation does not, in its widest survey, divide the universe

two hostile camps friends and foes, helpful and hostile, good and bad it views
into

the

whole

impartially.

templation, when it is aim at proving that the rest of the universe
is

Philosophic con unalloyed, does not

akin to man.

All acquisition of
of the Self,

knowledge

is

an enlargement
is

but

this enlarge

ment

best attained

sought.

It is obtained

when it is not directly when the desire for

knowledge is alone operative, by a study which does not wish in advance that its
objects should have this or that character,

but adapts the Self to the characters which
it

finds in its objects.

Self is
it is,

This enlargement of not obtained when, taking the Self as we try to show that the world is so similar

246

THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY

to this Self that knowledge of it is possible without any admission of what seems alien.

The

desire to prove this

is

a form of self-asser

tion,

and like

all self-assertion, it is
it
is

an obstacle

to the growth of Self which which the Self knows that it

desires,

and

of

capable.

Self-

assertion, in philosophic speculation as else

where, views the world as a means to its own ends thus it makes the world of less account
;

than

Self,

and the

Self sets

bounds to the

greatness of its on the contrary,

goods.

In contemplation,

we

start

from the

not-Self,

and through
universe

greatness the boundaries of Self are enlarged through the infinity of the
its
;

the

mind w hich contemplates
r

it

achieves some share in infinity. For this reason greatness of soul
fostered

is

not

as philosophies similate the universe to Man. Knowledge is

by

those

which

a form of union of Self and not-Self
all

;

like

union,

it

is

impaired by dominion, and
to force the uni

therefore

by any attempt

verse into conformity with what we find in ourselves. There is a widespread philosophi cal tendency towards the view which tells

THE VALUE OF PHILOSOPHY
us that

247

man
is

is

the measure of

all

things,

that truth

man-made, that space and time
of universals are properties of

and the world the mind, and

that,

if

there be anything not

created by the mind, it is unknowable and of no account for us. This view, if our previous
discussions were correct,
is it

untrue
has

;

but

in

addition to being untrue,
value, since
it calls

the effect of
all

robbing philosophic contemplation of
gives
Self.
it

that

it fetters

What

contemplation to knowledge is not a union

with the not-Self, but a set of prejudices,
habits,
veil

and desires, making an impenetrable between us and the world beyond. The
finds pleasure in such a theory of
is

man who
knowledge

like the

man who

never leaves

the domestic circle for fear his word might not be law.

The true philosophic contemplation, on the
contrary, finds its satisfaction in every en largement of the not-Self, in everything that

magnifies the objects contemplated, and thereby the subject contemplating. Every
thing, in contemplation, that
is personal or that private, everything depends upon habit,

248

THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY
and

self-interest, or desire, distorts the object,

hence impairs the union which the intellect seeks. By thus making a barrier between
subject and object, such personal and private things become a prison to the intellect. The
free intellect will see as

God might see, without

a here and now, without hopes and fears, without the trammels of customary beliefs

and

traditional prejudices, calmly, dispassion ately, in the sole and exclusive desire of know

ledge
attain.

knowledge as impersonal, as purely
it
is

contemplative, as

possible for

man

to

Hence also the free intellect will value more the abstract and universal knowledge
into

which the accidents

of private history

do

not enter, than the knowledge brought by the senses, and dependent, as such knowledge

must
of

upon an exclusive and personal point view and a body whose sense-organs distort
be,

as

much

as they reveal. to

The mind which has become accustomed

the freedom and impartiality of philosophic contemplation will preserve something of the

same freedom and impartiality in the world of action and emotion. It will view its purposes

is unaffected by any one The impartiality which. in con templation. Thus contemplation enlarges not only the ob jects of our thoughts. man hopes and fears. since no definite answers can. not only of one walled city at war w ith r the universe consists In this citizenship of s true freedom. and his liberation from the thraldom of narrow the rest. to sum up our discussion of the value of philosophy Philosophy is to be studied. with the absence of insistence that results from seeing them which as infinitesimal fragments in a world of all the rest man s deeds. as a rule. and not only to those who are judged useful or admirable. in action.THE VALUE OF PHILOSOPHY and 249 desires as parts of the whole. is the very same quality of mind which. : not for the sake of any definite answers to its questions. be known to be true. is justice. but also the objects of our actions and our all affections : it makes us citizens of the universe. but rather for the . Thus. is the unalloyed desire for truth. sake of the questions themselves because these questions enlarge our conception of what . and in emotion is that universal love which can be given to all.

the all because. . enrich our intellectual imagination. the greatness of the universe which philosophy contemplates. and diminish the dogmatic assurance which closes the mind against speculation but above . and becomes capable of that union with the universe which is constitutes its highest good.250 is THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY possible. through also mind rendered great.

Translated by HALDANE and Ross. by DAVIES and VAUGHAN. Translated by R. BERKELEY HUME KANT : : Three Dialogues betweenHylas and Philonous. Prolegomena to every Future Metaphysic. LATTA.BIBLIOGRAPHICAL NOTE THE student who wishes to acquire an elementary know ledge of philosophy will find it both easier and more profitable to read some of the works of the great philo sophers than to attempt to derive an all-round view from hand-books. SPINOZA Ethics. LEIBNIZ Oxford. Enquiry concerning Human Understanding. 1898. Translated by HALE WHITE and : AMELIA STIRLING. Cambridge University Press. : : lated Series. The following are specially recom mended PLATO Republic. : 251 . 1911. Trans especially Books VI and VII. The Monadology. Golden Treasury : DESCARTES : Meditations.

.

61 extended by descriptions. 49. 125. 214 Cogito. 62 253 . 244 Contradiction. Act. law of. 217. of. 148 Cat. 125. 149. not asserted. 222 Acquaintance. 22. 128 Appearance. 54-6. 151 Bismarck. 101 Being. 127ff. 9. 172 Hegol. 68.. 166 215 Contemplation. 114. Emperor 11. 71. 50 Empiricists. 116 Facts. 211 with Self ? 78 ff. 37. 190-3. 191 A priori. 235 Description. 81 ft. 24 places where a view discussed. 186ff. 201 Generalisation. 36 Causality. 126 Deduction. 236 Excluded Middle. 221 ff. 94. 120. ? 1 18. 190 ff. 114. 24. 187ff. 89 mental Duration. Correspondence of belief and fact. 114. mental. 156 Belief. ff. 218 Colours. 92. 74. Hume. 28 Coherence. Critical Philosophy. 35. 85. 70. 28. 38. 27. Geometry. instinctive. 93. 107. 23. 97. 234 Dreams. 129. 13. Falsehood. 129 Correspondence of sensedata and physical ob jects. 113 Existence. 149. 136 Arithmetic. 65 Analytic. 130 Hallucinations. 12. i ff. 121. 155 : Bradley. 113. 123 Descartes. 27. 40. empirical. 129 116 Experience immediate. 69. 161 1 16. 186 ff. 134 Error. China. 30. 30. 151 52-3. 34-5. 18... 35. 60 ff. 172. 72 170. 56.INDEX The interrogations indicate Absolute idea. 59. 170 Divisibility. 231 knowledge : of. definition of. 27. 114. 227-8 Doubt. 12. 172.. 39 Berkeley. infinite. 130 Association.

Idealists. 149 innate. 104. 134 Philosophy. 18. 76. 26-41 nature of. 95. 175 Inference. what 154 in the. 30 ff. Idealism. of. Gift. 58-71 defined. 42-57 Memory. Phenomena. value of. 239 Proper names. 81 the only reality is ? 21 227 ff. ? 8. 177-9. ideas and principles. theory of. 18. derivative. 68 existence of. 171. Mind. 2?0. 1Q philosophical. 209 Infinity. 60 ff. 114 Platonic. 53. 149. 72. 114. 155 abstract. 142 ff. 207-9 Objectof apprehension. 84 Propositions.. of principles. Innate. 224 Knowledge by acquaintance : Necessity. 94 ff. 204 if. 145 Perception. 121 by description. 76 Monad.. 113 Induction. 24. 104. 69. 197 Particular. 14 grounds of. 76. 70. 105. Logic. 19. 134 . 81. logical and psy chological. 126-41. 56 Identity. 195-7 Kant. 102. 114 Introspection. 167 principle of. Judgment. 225 of universe. 233. Principles. general. 114. ff. 72-92.254 Ideas. 142 ff. 214 indubitable intuitive. 229 99 Nature arid of a thing. law of. 148 Rationalists. 93-108. 11 Iff. 148 Motion. 22. laws of. 96. 239-44 Physical objects. 170 definition of. 115 Leibniz.. 22.. 114 171. 123. 131 of things and of truths. 170 Plato. general. 192. 217 Probability. 109-26 Probable opinion. 145 constituents 90 Qualities.. 241 only of mental things ? 64 ff. 237-50 uncertainty of. 232 of future. 58 INDEX 43-5 Locke. 180-4 Microscope. 235 174-85. 148 Monadism. 144. 170. 148 Monism. 130 Matter. 65-7 of judgment. 40. 103. 19. 132. 114 Light. 231 Mathematics. 119. 159 Laws. general 68 109-26. 210ff. 62 ff. 56. 20.

159.. 73. 148. 147 ff. Self -consciousness. 134 78 ff. 136 Time. 227 ff. 98 Universals. 132. 45 if. Thing in itself. 201 Uniformity of Nature. 194-7 sense of.. 15 Solipsism. 122 Resemblance. 215 two kinds of. 213 not mental. 176ff. 229 . Self-evidence. 113. 198 | Space.INDEX Reality. Touch. 10 Truth. 50 ff. 142-57. 158-73. ! 224-6 | multiple. 17. 36. 213 certainty of. 151 Verbs. 23. 47 Spinoza. definition of. 42. laws of. degrees of. 227 ff. 183. 160. 81. 186ff. Euclidean and non-Eu clidean. 147-8 Subject. 139. 151. ff. 160 Self. 33-8 Space. 28-30 Shapes. 231 knowledge of. 212 Sensation. 132 Sense-data. 150. 135. physical. 12. 77 Thought. 17. 76. 24 Relations. ! 255 ff. 27. 197 Swift. 17.

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D.The best book on the history and practice of the House of Commons since Bagehot s Constitution. GEORGE LL. A HISTORY OF FREEDOM OF THOUGHT. vigorous. MOORE. BETWEEN THE OLD AND NEW TESTAMENTS... LL. spirit.A magnificent demonstration of the deserved vitality of the Gaelic &quot. BURY. SELBIE. D. :THL ETHICS. &quot. Clerk of the House of Commons. A powerful study. Social Science i. No .Litt. Yorkshire Post. . .C. and T^ligion MOHAMMEDANISM By Prof. IRISH NATIONALITY By Mrs J. By Mrs CREIGHTON. B. 40. K. a boon. MISSIONS.I.. D. D. R. and most responsible tractate by an illuminative professor. ESTLIN CARPENTER.D. By G.As could be more timely.This generous shilling s worth of wisdom. Daily Mail.&quot. GREEN.&quot.S.&quot.S. BERTRAND RUSSELL. &quot. &quot.Philosophy 15. 47.A. Con Christian World. D. Editor of &quot.. and non-technical throughout. than which there is no higher compliment. . . BUDDHISM By Mrs RHYS DAVIDS. glowing as it is learned. MARGOLIOUTH.The Economist. M. J B. Daily News. By Prof.D. . &quot. Constitution. Freeman s Journal.A book that the . By Prof. IN PREPARATION THE OLD TESTAMENT. PARLIAMENT Its History. D. M. MOORE.D. NONCONFORMITY: ITS ORIGIN AND PROGRESS Principal By W.&quot. 50. BACON. Morning Leader. The book as clear. F. man in the street will recognise at once to be sistently lucid &quot.R. W. and sane as Bagehot s Lombard Street.. ILBERT. By Prof. . F.D. W.A. By Prof.. COMPAR A TIVE RELIGION. M.. THE PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY By the Hon. and Practice.A.D. By Sir COURTENAY P. . THE STOCK EXCHANGE By is which 6. &quot. book .&quot.A little treatise to an unfinancial mind must be a revelation. humorous. D. B. By THE MAKING OF THE NEW TESTAMENT.Litt. E.CHARLES.&quot. Litt. C. J.B. S. R. . HIRST. A delicate. K. H. .

S. SOMERVILLE.Mr J. THE CIVIL SERVICE. altogether admirable.L. M. GELDART. M.&quot. NEWSPAPERS.. PATRICK GEDDES. LIBERALISM L.. M. 11.. THE SCIENCE OF WEALTH &quot. The Nation. By Prof. of the arguments from sum praise for the rapid pid and masterly summaries Westminster first prin principles which form a large part of this book. and we can recom mend it to all who wish to become acquainted with these elementary principles with a minimum of trouble. 26.A. The volume will be of great use in dispelling illusions exponent.FINDLAY. By G.&quot.&quot.L. By W. Ph.A. J.&quot.C. A. ENGLISH VILLAGE LIFE. . Morning Post. RAMSAY MACDONALD. Prof. By Mrs CREIGHTON.10. Professor of Sociology in the University have nothing but book of rare quality. Manchester University. A We 24. about the tendencies of Socialism in this country. By . of London. Scots Law Times. . By &quot. distinguished in its crisp. It is a remarkable performance. A. . VINOGRADOFF.Admirably adapted for the pur Mr MacDonald is a very lucid pose of exposition. IN PREPARATION THE EVOL UTION OF CITIES. The 7 imes. By MAURICE HEWLETT. CONSERVATISM By Lord HUGH CECIL. &quot. &quot. M. 38.. .. AGRICULTURE By 30. J. the University of Leeds. M. By J. HOBSON. principles underlying the rules of English law .P. Gazette.An amazingly comprehensive volume.A. Professor of Education in &quot.&quot. THE SCHOOL An Introduction to the Study of Education. CHAPMAN. PRACTICAL IDEALISM. THE EVOLUTION OF INDUSTRY By D. B. M. DIBBLEE. By J.A. BENNETT. D.D. T. M. . By Prof. H.A.L. . Original. . F..&quot. reasonable. HOBHOUSE. COMMONSENSE IN LA W. And . striking phraseology as well as its inclusiveness of subject-matter. ELEMENTS OF ENGLISH LA W &quot.. N. M. London: MISSIONS. . The Nation. MACGREGOK. P. W. M. all Professor of Political Economy in volume so dispassionate in terms may interested in the present state of unrest. M. . 21.A.A be read with profit by Aberdeen Journal. S.. Hobson holds an unique J.. B. ELEMENTS OF POLITICAL ECONOMY. M. WILLIAMS AND NORGATE of all Bookshops and Bookstalls.P. Vinerian Professor of English Contains a very clear account of the elementary Law at Oxford.C. THE SOCIALIST MOVEMENT &quot. A. By GRAHAM WALLAS. By Prof. The text-book produced is position among living economists. By E. and illuminating.A. 1 6.

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3d earl The problems of philosophy 19 PLEASE DO NOT REMOVE FROM THIS CARDS OR SLIPS POCKET SCARBOROUGH COLLEGE LIBRARY . Bertrand Russell.HAY i 1969 BD Russell.

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