// Philosophy Department at St. Anselm College //

Optimism and pessimism, as cosmic philosophies, show the same naive humanism; the great world, so far as we know it from the philosophy of nature, is neither good nor bad, and is not concerned to make us happy or unhappy.

If you wish to make an apple pie truly from scratch, you must first invent the universe.

— Carl Sagan

How can I tell that the past isn't a fiction designed to account for the discrepancy between my immediate physical sensations and my state of mind?

(The Restaurant at the End of the Universe)

Light and colours, heat and cold, extension and figures- in a word the things we see and feel- what are they but so many sensations, notions, ideas, or impressions on the sense? And is it possible to separate, even in thought, any of these from perception?

Even the inner and sensible intuition of our mind (as object of consciousness) which is represented as being determined by the succession of different states in time, is not the self proper, as it exists in itself -- that is, is not the transcendental subject -- but only an appearance that has been given to the sensibility of this, to us unknown, being.

Immanuel Kant

Before what is sacred, people lose all sense of power and all confidence; they occupy a powerless and humble attitude toward it. And yet no thing is sacred of itself, but by my declaring it sacred, by my declaration, my judgment, my bending the knee; in short, by my conscience.

New knowledge is the most valuable commodity on earth. The more truth we have to work with, the richer we become.

If a sign is useless, it is meaningless. That is the point of Occam's maxim.

Faith which does not doubt is dead faith.

The stuff of the world may be called physical or mental or both or neither, as we please; in fact, the words serve no purpose.