241011.doc

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18 Apr 2012
Department
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October the 24th 2011
talking about innate ideas now is sort of an anacronism the whole notion of innate ideas had sort of gone
by the wayside and part of the reason for that is the rise of empiricism
most profesional empistemologists now really do lean towards empiricism. It's become dominant but that
doesn't mean rationalism has been discredited.
Part of the process is to see Locke's criticism of innate ideas.
Ideas for Locke is essientially thinking
whatever goes on “up there
We want to figure out how all of the ideas get into our consciousness.
Whatever we think, how did it arrive to the consciousness?
These philsophers including Locke assumed the idea of a mind
The implications of getting rid of the mind was anti-religious
instead of using the word mind, we'll use the word consciousness. That which is available there for our
thinking to work upon.
What locke thinks is the first task is to show the origin of our ideas.
We'll see the same process as Hume in regards to sense impressions
If epistemology is to be established you must talk about the consciousness
If Locke is going to be a strict empiricist than he must eliminate innate ideas.
We saw how Descartes made use of innate ideas on paragraph 6 of meditation three
this is the passage where he first says that he
“among these ideas there appears to be some...innate”
Descartes has no justification for saying that he has an innate idea for it presupposes its being innate.
All science and judgements or both rest upon or consist in knowledge a priori either of unviersal
properties controling reality or transcedent beings.
These innate ideas seem to be ones taht we automatically agree with them as soon as we're presented with
them. Such as, a = a. An ideas that is a priori it is known just in virtue of its understanding and what it is.
Plato's dialogue the Meno is devoted to answering the question, “What is virtue? And is virtue innate or
learned?” Aristotle says we learn what is right or wrong
The epicureus' dilemna.
Socrates tries to show Meno by calling a slave child and gets out of him geometrical principles.
Socrates tried to prove that these ideas are innate and all he was doing was pulling them out.
This theory of innate ideas with us when we're born.
Propositions or judgements are knowledge claims.
As soon as well allow one innate idea like for God we allow the doctrine of innate idea
Descartes needed the idea of God to be innate in order to find a way to prove things that are outside of his
consciousness.
Just because an idea is universally held we cannot make an origin of its claim. Just cause everyone
believes something particular doesn't mean its innate. All we need is one who doesn't understand the idea.
If it is innate like the mark of the craftsman
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