John Locke

From Wiki. John Locke, (29 August 1632 - 28 October 1704), was an English philosopher and physician regarded as one of the most influential of Enlightenment thinkers. Considered one of the first of the British empiricists, following the tradition of Francis Bacon, he is equally important to social contract theory. His work greatly affected the development of epistemology and political philosophy. His writings influenced Voltaire and Rousseau, many Scottish Enlightenment thinkers, as well as the American revolutionaries. His contributions to classical republicanism and liberal theory are reflected in the United States Declaration of Independence. Locke's theory of mind is often cited as the origin of modern conceptions of identity and the self, figuring prominently in the work of later philosophers such as Hume, Rousseau, and Kant. Locke was the first to define the self through a continuity of consciousness. He postulated that, at birth, the mind was a blank slate or tabula rasa. Contrary to Cartesian philosophy based on pre-existing concepts, he maintained that we are born without innate ideas, and that knowledge is instead determined only by experience derived from sense perception.

Essay Concerning Human Understanding

"it is as impossible to conceive that ever pure incogitative Matter should produce a thinking intelligent Being, as that nothing should of itself produce Matter." IV, x, 10

Cited by Plantinga on p17 of "Where the Conflict Really Lies" as an example of an assertion that materialists typically do not address.

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