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Berkeley’s theory of knowledge

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  1. Berkeley's theory of reality
  2. Critics view on Berkeley's theory
  3. Berkeley's theory and science
  4. Berkeley's theory and existence of God
  5. Conclusion

Berkeley's theory of reality and reality can be considered to be the opposite of Descartes' theory. For Descartes, the one true thing that could not be disproved was that people have their own thoughts and they can perceive themselves as having these thoughts. Even if they cannot prove anything else exists, they know that they exist because of their thoughts. Succinctly stated, Descartes used the ability to perceive thoughts and sensations as the basis for his theory.

[...] However, why is it exactly that a person can do this for another person while being incapable of doing it for themselves? We can observe the reactions we have upon other objects when we act upon them. Of course, this begs the question as to how a person continues to exist without being in the presence of other people constantly, but Berkeley uses this trouble in his logic to introduce the idea of God. In order to get to his point that existence depends upon being perceived, Berkeley states that it is pointless to consider matter that we cannot perceive directly. [...]

[...] While the rest of Descartes' logical conclusions after the Cogito fell apart because of the difficulty in using logic to prove God's existence, the entirety of Berkely's logic is suspect because it depends upon the faulty use of logic to prove the existence of God. When one states that existence is dependent upon being perceived, one is stating that it would be possible to cease to exist if one isn't being perceived. This has obviously never happened, and it would seem to be a weaker argument when one has to prove something that doesn't need to be proved. [...]

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