Ideas

Ideas
   1) The Problem of Innate Ideas
   I never wrote or concluded that the mind required innate ideas which were in some sort different from its faculty of thinking; but when I observed the existence in me of certain thoughts which proceeded, not from extraneous objects nor from the determination of my will, but solely from the faculty of thinking which is within me, then . . . I termed [these] "innate." (Descartes, 1955, p. 442)
   2) The Source of the Mind's Complex Ideas
   [S]imple ideas are not fictions of our fancies, but the natural and regular productions of things without us really operating upon us. . . . Thus, the idea of whiteness or bitterness, as it is in the mind, exactly answering that power which is in any body to produce it there, has all the real conformity it can or ought to have with things without us. . . . [However], all our complex ideas except those of substances being archetypes of the mind's own making, not intended to be the copies of anything, as to their originals, cannot want any conformity necessary to real knowledge. For that which is not designed to represent anything but itself, can never be capable of a wrong representation, nor mislead us from the true apprehension of anything by its dislikeness to it; and such, excepting those of substances, are all our complex ideas: which . . . are combinations of ideas which the mind by its free choice puts together without considering any connection they have in nature. (Locke, 1956, B. IV, Chap. 4, Sec. 5)
   3) Our Moral Ideas
   [O]ur moral ideas as well as mathematical, being archetypes themselves, and so adequate and complete ideas, all the agreement or disagreement which we shall find in them will produce real knowledge, as well as in mathematical figures. (Locke, 1956, B. IV, Chap. 4, Sec. 7)
   4) An Idea Can Be like Nothing But an Idea
   Ideas . . . are real things, or do really exist; this we do not deny, but we deny they can subsist without the minds which perceive them, or that they are resemblances of any archetypes existing without the mind; since the very being of a sensation or idea consists in being perceived, and an idea can be like nothing but an idea. (Berkeley, 1996, Pt. I, No. 90, pp. 63-64)
   5) Ideas Create Information, Not the Other Way Around
   The empiricists were right to believe that facts and ideas are significantly connected, but they inverted the relationship. Ideas create information, not the other way around. Every fact grows from an idea; it is the answer to a question we could not ask in the first place if an idea had not been invented which isolated some portion of the world, made it important, focused our attention, and stimulated inquiry. (Roszak, 1994, p. 105)

Historical dictionary of quotations in cognitive science. . 2015.

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