Single Idea 16688

[catalogued under 12. Knowledge Sources / D. Empiricism / 1. Empiricism]

Full Idea

All evidence is conception, as it is said, and all conception is imagination and proceeds from sense. And spirits we suppose to be those substances which work not upon the sense, and therefore not conceptible.

Gist of Idea

Evidence is conception, which is imagination, which proceeds from the senses


Thomas Hobbes (The Elements of Law [1640], I.11.5), quoted by Robert Pasnau - Metaphysical Themes 1274-1671 16.2

Book Reference

Pasnau,Robert: 'Metaphysical Themes 1274-1671' [OUP 2011], p.326

A Reaction

This is exactly the same as Hume's claim that all ideas are the result of impressions, and is the very essence of empiricism. We see here that such an epistemology can have huge consequences.