Friday, November 25, 2016

Intellectual vice

"There are some men, who have sufficient abilities to discern betwixt the true difference of things; but what through their vicious affections and voluntary prejudices, making them unwilling that some things should be true; what through their inadvertency or neglect to consider and compare things together, they are not to be convinced by plain Arguments; not through any insufficiency in the evidence, but by reason of some defect or corruption in the faculty that should judg of it.  Now the neglect of keeping our minds in such an equal frame, the not applying of our thoughts to consider of such matters of moment, as do highly concern a man to be rightly informed in, must needs be a vice."

     John Wilkins, Of the principles and duties of natural religion (London:  T. Basset, 1675), 35-36 (5th ed., 1704), as quoted by David Wootton, The invention of science:  a new history of the scientific revolution (New York:  HarperCollins Publishers, 2015), 423.

No comments: