Talk:A Treatise Concerning the Principles of Human Knowledge

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Long refuted needs references[edit]

I am currently reading "Treatise" and came across the "Long refuted by most philosophers" phrase in this article... maybe I don't know where to look, but it would be useful if a reference was provided for this claim so that I could research it further.

Berkeley's statements may or may not be true, but they are irrefutable.Lestrade (talk) 22:17, 14 February 2013 (UTC)Lestrade

Vote for Deletion[edit]

This article survived a Vote for Deletion. The discussion can be found here. -Splash 00:40, 14 August 2005 (UTC)

Attempt at correct representation[edit]

In adding a Contents section, I have begun an attempt to represent this book in a correct manner. It is my opinion that the present article is erroneous. It starts by claiming that "This book largely seeks to refute the claims made by his contemporary John Locke about the nature of human perception." I question the adverb "largely." Also, I miss the mention of the exact claims by Locke that Berkeley sought to refute. Is it true that "Berkeley sought to prove that the outside world was also composed solely of ideas?" This sentence suggests, for me, a whole world that contains and is made of immaterial parts, instead of material parts. Is this what Berkeley "sought to prove?" Was Berkeley's message that "the external world consisted not of physical form, but rather of ideas?" Did Berkeley write that "the world was given logic and regularity by some other force, which Berkeley did his best to conclude was God?" Has Berkeley been "Long refuted by most philosophers?" Is it true that "Berkeley's claims are often felt to have been a form of rationalisation?" Who felt this? How correct is it to say that "The Treatise's suggestion that the world was made of ideas with an omnipotent force guiding was his alternative to the Lockean Empiricism?" Who considers Berkeley to be an "entertaining thinker?" What is the truth of the statement that "Some doubt exists as to whether he truly believed his conclusion that the world at large was composed of ideas?" Who doubted this? Was this his conclusion? My attempt will be to present Berkeley's actual writing in a condensed manner, in contrast to the statements of the present article, which I believe to be incorrect.Lestrade 14:14, 9 August 2007 (UTC)Lestrade

I did not write this article, but I will address your questions:
1) The book very much (largely, if you prefer) is a response to Locke's scepticism. He reject's Locke's ideas of substratum, of the primary secondary quality distinction, of mind-independent body, and of abstract general ideas. If you read Berkeley's introduction up to the first sentence of §4, you will see that Berkeley is explicit in that his purpose is to refute Lockean scepticism. I won't push this point too hard, because to be fair the Principles respond to ideas found in Descartes, Bacon, and Malebranche as well. But whoever wrote that the work is largely a refutation of Locke is correct. 2) It is true that Berkeley sought to prove that the world was composed solely of ideas. That is what his philosophy, immaterialism, means. This also answers your following questions: Yes, Berkeley denies the existence of material bodies, yes this is what he sought to prove, yes his message was that the external world consists of ideas, not physical forms. 3) Yes, Berkeley wrote that God gives the world logic and regularity, see §29-30. 4) Yes, most philosophers reject immaterialism and thus refute Berkeley, but this claim is no longer present in the article. 5) I've never heard anyone say Berkeley's claim are a form of rationalisation, but this claim is no longer present in the article. 6) It is very correct to say his world of ideas was an alternative to Lockean Empirisism. To suggest otherwise implies the two philosophies are compatible. Plus, see my answer to your first group of questions. 7) I think Berkeley is an entertaining thinker! Although this is no longer in the article. 8) This claim, if it has been said, I don't think is true at all. I think its clear how much Berkeley did believe what he wrote. In any case, this statement is no longer present in the article. But, yes, again, his conclusion was that the world at large is composed of ideas. Hope this helps!Jkhall (talk) 03:07, 10 May 2008 (UTC)