Page:Reason in Common Sense (1920).djvu/89

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not be so idiotic as to make no inferences from your sensations; you will not pin your faith so unimaginatively on momentary appearance as to deny that the world exists when you stop thinking about it. You feel that your intellect has wider scope and has discovered many a thing that goes on behind the scenes, many a secret that would escape a stupid and gaping observation. It is the fool that looks to look and stops at the barely visible: you not only look but see; for you understand.

Now the practical burden of such understanding, if you take the trouble to analyse it, will turn out to be what the sceptic says it is: assurance of eventual sensations. But as these sensations, in memory and expectation, are numerous and indefinitely variable, you are not able to hold them clearly before the mind; indeed, the realisation of all the potentialities which you vaguely feel to lie in the future is a task absolutely beyond imagination. Yet your present impressions, dependent as they are on your chance attitude and disposition and on a thousand trivial accidents, are far from representing adequately all that might be discovered or that is actually known about the object before you. This object, then, to your apprehension, is not identical with any of the sensations that reveal it, nor is it exhausted by all these sensations when they are added together; yet it contains nothing assignable but what they might conceiv-