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George Berkeley

Dátum narodenia: 12. marec 1685
Dátum úmrtia: 14. január 1753

George Berkeley bol írsky filozof, biskup v Cloyne, niekedy sa považuje aj za zakladateľa severoamerickej filozofie.


„Byť, znamená byť vnímaný.“

„Few men think; yet all have opinions.“


„If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?“

„... we ought to.“

„Philosophy being nothing else but the study of wisdom and truth, it may with reason be expected that those who have spent most time and pains in it should enjoy a greater calm and serenity of mind, a greater clearness and evidence of knowledge, and be less disturbed with doubts and difficulties than other men. Yet so it is, we see the illiterate bulk of mankind that walk the high-road of plain common sense, and are governed by the dictates of nature, for the most part easy and undisturbed. To them nothing that is familiar appears unaccountable or difficult to comprehend. They complain not of any want of evidence in their senses, and are out of all danger of becoming Sceptics. But no sooner do we depart from sense and instinct to follow the light of a superior principle, to reason, meditate, and reflect on the nature of things, but a thousand scruples spring up in our minds concerning those things which before we seemed fully to comprehend. Prejudices and errors of sense do from all parts discover themselves to our view; and, endeavouring to correct these by reason, we are insensibly drawn into uncouth paradoxes, difficulties, and inconsistencies, which multiply and grow upon us as we advance in speculation, till at length, having wandered through many intricate mazes, we find ourselves just where we were, or, which is worse, sit down in a forlorn Scepticism.“

„I know what I mean by the term I and myself; and I know this immediately, or intuitively, though I do not perceive it as I perceive a triangle, a colour, or a sound.“ Three Dialogues Between Hylas and Philonous

„It is indeed an opinion strangely prevailing amongst men, that houses, mountains, rivers, and in a word all sensible objects have an existence natural or real, distinct from their being perceived by the understanding. But with how great an assurance and acquiescence soever this principle may be entertained in the world; yet whoever shall find in his heart to call it in question, may, if I mistake not, perceive it to involve a manifest contradiction. For what are the forementioned objects but the things we perceive by sense, and what do we perceive besides our own ideas or sensations; and is it not plainly repugnant that any one of these or any combination of them should exist unperceived?' (Berkeley, 1710: 25)“ A Treatise Concerning the Principles of Human Knowledge

„If we admit a thing so extraordinary as the creation of this world, it should seem that we admit something strange, and odd, and new to human apprehension, beyond any other miracle whatsoever.“


„The only things we perceive are our perceptions.“

„From my own being, and from the dependency I find in myself and my ideas, I do, by an act of reason, necessarily infer the existence of a God, and of all created things in the mind of God.“

„Upon the whole, I am inclined to think that the far greater part, if not all, of those difficulties which have hitherto amused philosophers, and blocked up the way to knowledge, are entirely owing to ourselves--that we have first raised a dust and then complain we cannot see.“

„The same principles which at first view lead to skepticism, pursued to a certain point, bring men back to common sense“


„HE who says there is no such thing as an honest man, you may be sure is himself a knave.“

„Truth is the cry of all, but the game of few.“

„truly my opinion is, that all our opinions are alike vain and uncertain. what we approve today, we condemn tomorrow. we keep a stir about knowledge, and spend our lives in the pursuit of it, when, alas! we know nothing all the while: nor do i think it possible for us to ever know anything in this life. our faculties are too narrow and too few. nature certainly never intended us for speculation.“ Three Dialogues Between Hylas and Philonous

„In vain do we extend our view into the heavens, and pry into the entrails of the earth, in vain do we consult the writings of learned men, and trace the dark footsteps of antiquity; we need only draw the curtain of words, to behold the fairest tree of knowledge, whose fruit is excellent, and within the reach of our hand.“ A Treatise Concerning the Principles of Human Knowledge, and Other Selected Writings

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