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Humanities - Essay Example

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Locke began publishing his philosophical thoughts in 1671. Some of Locke’s major works include An Essay Concerning Human understanding and the Two Treaties…
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Question Four One of the most popular thinkers of the 15th century was John Locke, who is regarded as among the fathers of philosophy. Locke began publishing his philosophical thoughts in 1671. Some of Locke’s major works include An Essay Concerning Human understanding and the Two Treaties on Government that were all published by the end of the 15th century. The former became one of Locke’s famous and most influential publications of all time. An Essay Concerning Human Understanding was and remains highly regarded for the fact that it one of the first empiricist’s work of philosophy regarding human cognition and mind. The Literature is a long and complex and tackles a combination of themes centered on the limits of the human knowledge, the origin of the human ideas as well as religion and morality (Ben-Chaim).
The literature presents a theory of belief and knowledge that was established on the principle that most human feelings or ideas are normally obtained through experience. In particular, he names describes this phenomenon as the “tabula rasa” or the black slate philosophy. This philosophy presumes that human beings are born with a blank mind that is almost similar to a white sheet of paper. However, the various experiences that human beings normally face when growing up serves to fill up the blank min with new thoughts and ideas.
In this literature, Locke contests Descartes idea that human ideas are innate. He asserts that most human thoughts cannot be considered as correct unless there is another explanation for the same idea. This means that the fact that two or more individuals can have the same thoughts pertaining to a given situation, their thoughts is not necessary correct (Newman). He explains that understanding is what sets man above the rest of all other sensible beings, which further confers him all the advantage and dominion that he has over them. This therefore implies that human beings are rational agents capable of choice and, hence, acting responsibly.
He therefore insisted that learning should be made pleasant so as to facilitate the acquisition of new and meaningful experience bearing in mind that the formation of character for an individual is deemed as very crucial than just mere information (Ward). Indeed, in his paper, Locke further argued that the both human adults and children tend to share a common disposition that motivates them to pursue pleasure while avoiding painful experiences. Moreover, he also presented that there are no innate moral ideas; instead, human knowledge consists only of the progressive accumulation of he evidence of the senses. Fiero posits that locke’s principles pertaining to knowledge had a great impact on the European and American thoughts towards the adoption of an optimistic view in regard to human destiny.
In the modern 21st century world, some aspects of John Locke’s philosophical writing concerning human understanding are widely accepted. As a matter of fact, most learning institutions find Locke’s idea very important in curriculum formation and development. Just as Locke’s stipulates, education experts also regard the human mind as a blank and should only be filled by good experiences acquired through learning (The Gale Group, Inc). Moreover, owing to the fact that the acquisition of these new ideas tend to occur through a series of steps, curriculum developers normally take this into account such that virtually all school curricula tend are formed in such a manner that the difficulty level of learning content raises progressively.
Works Cited
Ben-Chaim, Michael. Experimental philosophy and the birth of empirical science: Boyle, Locke
and Newton. Burlington, VT: Ashgate Publishers, 2004.
Fiero, Gloria K. Humanistic Tradition. McGraw Hill Publishing, 2005.
Forstrom, Joanna S. John Locke and Personal Identity: Immortality and Bodily Resurrection in
17 century Philosophy. New York: Continuum International Publishing Group, 2010.
Ineternational World HIstory Project. "John locke." 2012. Ineternational World HIstory Project.
29 March 2012 .
Leibnitz, Gottfried Wilhelm. New Essays Concerning Human Understanding. Kessinger
Publishing, 2003.
Newman, Lex. The Cambridge Companion to Lockes "Essay Concerning Human
Understanding. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2007.
Nothen, Kay. Understanding John Lockes Essay Concerning Human Understanding. New
York: Grin Publications, 2007.
The Gale Group, Inc. "Locke, John (1632–1704)." 2011. Encyclopedia of Children and
Childhood in History and Society. 29 March 2012 .
Ward, Lee. John Locke and Modern Life. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010.
Yolton, Jean S. A Locke miscellany: Locke biography and criticism for all. Thoemmes, 1990. Read More
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