The Two Dialogues Between Hylas And Philonous Essay

770 Words Dec 19th, 2016 4 Pages
In the Three Dialogues between Hylas and Philonous, Berkeley wants to deny the existence of matter as a thing independent of the mind, because he thinks that this kind of belief supports a sceptical view of the world (9). It follows then, that we can only know the world through our mental perceptions, and there cannot be any experience of reality independent of the way we perceive it. For example, we do not know a chair’s existence without having some kind of sensible relation to it, be it by vision, touch or even smell. However, some materialist philosophers are of the opinion that that chair’s essence is in fact distinct from our perceiving it. They believe that the chair possesses, and is composed of something that is unknown to us (Morrison, Nov. 15). This would mean that physical objects are a different kind of thing than what we perceive them to be in our minds. This view creates an unresolvable rift between our experience of reality and reality itself (Morrison, Nov. 15), and between our ideas of so-called material things, and the material things themselves. It is problematic for Berkeley because of the uncertainty of the posited actual reality. He doesn’t believe that there is any point in positing a reality distinct from our perception because there is no way for us to accurately inquire about it. Rather, Berkeley argues that all physical things are like ideas (Dialogue 1: slide 18). It is due to this similarity that we can have a sensible relationship with physical…

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