Ramble. Focus. Ramble.

Locke and Innate Ideas

If there are innate ideas, there are ideas that are accepted by everyone.

There are no ideas that are accepted by everyone.

Therefore, there are no innate ideas.


5 comments on “Locke and Innate Ideas

  1. Wyrd Smythe
    January 16, 2014

    Would you consider ‘fear or awareness of death’ to be an idea? That one seems pretty universal. (I’m thinking Maslow here, but mainly I think I’d like to see proof or support evidence for the assertion that no ideas are accepted by everyone… I’m just not sure I buy it.)

    • hadeelnaeem
      January 16, 2014

      Ah, thought-provoking!

      • Wyrd Smythe
        January 16, 2014

        Yep! That’s me: Provoker of Thoughts!

        Else, what’s a Philosophy for?

      • hadeelnaeem
        January 16, 2014


        babies don’have awareness of death?

        And I was wondering if fear could pass as an idea? Fear is an emotion and I am sure all or most emotions are universal.

      • Wyrd Smythe
        January 16, 2014

        Good question, I don’t know if babies innately fear death or not. As a general principle, life seems to want to continue living. This may come down to definitions. Is intelligent consciousness a key part of this equation? If so, that eliminates babies. More importantly, are emotions the same as ideas?

        Animals have emotions, but not ideas (at the human level). Is this conundrum about the universality of human ideas? Or just any thoughts by any being?

        It’s possible (maybe) to make a case that human concepts are not universal (but I’d want to examine that premise closely… I think “religion” might quality). But I agree: emotions are universal and even extend to the animal kingdom.

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This entry was posted on February 19, 2013 by in Philosophy.
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