The First form of this theory is inconsistent with the fact that the idea of God is not the idea of a sensible or material object, not a combination of such ideas. Since the spiritual and infinite are direct opposites of the material and finite, no experience of the latter can account for our idea of the former.
With Lock (Essay of Hum, Understanding, 2:1:4), experience is the passive reception of ideas by sensation or by reflection. Locke?s ?tabula rasa? theory mistakes the occasion of our primitive ideas for their cause. To his statement: ?Nihil est in intellectu nisi quod ante fuerit insensu,? Leibnitz replied: ?Nisi intellectu ipse.? Consciousness is sometime called the source of our knowledge of God. But consciousness, as simply an accompanying knowledge of ourselves and our states, is not properly the source of any other knowledge. The German Gottesbewusstein = not ?consciousness of God? but ?knowledge of God?; Bewesstein here = not a ?conknowing? but a ?beknowing?; see Porter, Human Intellect, 86; Cousin, True, Beautiful and Good, 48, 49.
Fraser, Locke, 143-147 ? Sensations are the bricks, and association the mortar, of the mental house. Bowne, Theory of Thought and Knowledge, 47 ? ?Develop language by allowing sounds to associate and evolve meaning for themselves? Yet this is the exact parallel of the philosophy, which aims to build intelligence out of sensation.?52 ? One who does not know how to read would look in vain for meaning in a printed page, and in vain would he seek to help his failure by using strong spectacles.? Yet even if the idea of God were a product of experience, we should not be warranted in rejecting it as irrational. See Brooks, Foundations of Zooilogy, 132 ? ?There is no antagonism between those who attribute knowledge to experience and those who attribute it to our innate reason; between those who attribute the development of the germ to mechanical conditions and those who attribute it to the inherent potency of the germ itself; between those who hold that all nature was latent in the cosmic vapor and those who believe that everything in nature is immediately intended rather than predetermined.? All these may be methods of the immanent God.
The second form of the theory is open to the objection that the very first experience of the first man, equally with man?s latest experience, presupposes this intuition, as well as the other intuitions, and therefore cannot be the cause of it. Moreover, even though this theory of its origin were correct, it would still be impossible to think of the object of the intuition as not existing, and the intuition would still represent to us the
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