History of Modern Philosophy
Azusa Pacific University
Dr. John Culp

"John Locke"

I.   John Locke
A.   Influences
1.   Epistemology
2.   Concept of Substance
a.   It was an attempt to define what really exists
b.   Ideas lack substance, people have substance
c.   Historical Context
i.   Prior to Descartes, substance was defined as: an existent thing that requires nothing but itself to exist
ii.   Hobbes, commented on it as well
d.   Extended Substance: anything that takes up space
e.   Locke talks about the function of the concept of the substance, as appose to the nature it is
i.   He is focused more on what the object does as appose to what it is made up
3.   Politics
a.   Content
i.   Arguments with Hobbes about the rule of the sovereign/ruler
a.   Both agree in an exist in a state of nature prior to setting up a government
b.   We do not need a government to exist, nor do we have a social organization born into them (like ants)
ii.   Nature
a.   According to Hobbes, our state of nature is to selfish and nasty
b.   According to Locke, our state of nature is loving
1.   Everyone can recognize the value of other human beings
2.   We have this can do this because of our ability to reason
iii.   Rebellion
a.   You can rebel only when the government fails to serve the community
b.   However, he does feel that the people should have power
II.   Differences between Locke & Hobbes
A.   People
1.   Hobbes - people are bad because we are constantly fighting for survival and self-interest
2.   Locke - people are good because we have the ability to reason
B.   Private Property
1.   Hobbes - right to private property when the government chooses
2.   Locke - private property is deserved if you earn it
C.   Public Offices
1.   Hobbes - creating a public "office" is necessary for survival
2.   Locke - help people remember the ways things are in life
D.   Power of the Sovereign
1.   Hobbes - no limits whatsoever as long as he doesn't make you destroy yourself (although Hobbes gives the ruler the power to destroy you himself)
2.   Locke - it is limited and held in a trust
III.   Explaining how you know something according to Locke
A.   He claims that you know something by what you experience
B.   He proposes to take a close look in sensation as the basis of experience - as if to distinguish between sensation and emotion
C.   Locke accepts there is a difference between the object and the idea of the object in our mind
D.   Your knowledge becomes less certain because it is possible your idea isn't the same as the object
E.   Summary of Locke's Epistemology
1.   Sensation
a.   Observation gives rise to sensations
b.   Sensations give rise to primary qualities
i.   Primary qualities give rise to many simple ideas (i.e. shape, hardness, color, etc &)
ii.   Primary qualities give rise to secondary qualities as well (i.e. response that comes from us that does not come from the object themselves)
c.   Simple ideas and secondary qualities get put together to make complex ideas
2.   Reflection
a.   Sensation (not the object) leads to reflections
b.   Reflection leads to simple ideas
c.   Simple ideas lead to complex idea
3.   Complex ideas - The complex ideas from each category combine with each other to form an understanding
F.   "Primary qualities are utterly inseparable from the object" -John Locke