§ 4. If, by this enquiry into the nature of the understanding, I can discover the powers thereof; how far they reach; to what things they are in any degree proportionate; and where they fail us: I suppose it may be of use to prevail with the busy mind of man, to be more cautious in meddling with things exceeding its comprehension; to stop when it is at the utmost extent of its tether; and to sit down in a quiet ignorance of those things, which, upon examination, are found to be beyond the reach of our capacities. We should not then perhaps be so forward, out of an affectation of an universal knowledge, to raise questions, and perplex ourselves and others with disputes about things, to which our understandings are not suited; and of which we cannot frame in our minds any clear or distinct perceptions, or whereof (as it has perhaps too often happened) we have not any notions at all. If we can find out how far the understanding can extend its view, how far it has faculties to attain certainty, and in what cases it can only judge and guess; we may learn to content ourselves with what is attainable by us in this state.
§ 7. Secondly, Sometimes the word time is used in a larger sense, and is applied to parts of that infinite duration, not that were really distinguished and measured out by this real existence, and periodical motions of bodies that were appointed from the beginning to be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years, and are accordingly our measures of time: but such other portions too of that infinite uniform duration, which we, upon any occasion, do suppose equal to certain lengths of measured time; and so consider them as bounded and determined. For if we should suppose the creation, or fall of the angels, was at the beginning of the Julian period, we should speak properly enough, and should be understood, if we said, it is a longer time since the creation of angels, than the creation of the world, by seven thousand six hundred and forty years: whereby we would mark out so much of that undistinguished duration, as we suppose equal to, and would have admitted seven thousand six hundred and forty annual revolutions of the sun, moving at the rate it now does. And thus likewise we sometimes speak of place, distance, or bulk, in the great inane beyond the confines of the world, when we consider so much of that space as is equal to, or capable to receive a body of any assigned dimensions, as a cubic foot; or do suppose a point in it at such a certain distance from any part of the universe.
Some essays published earlier as pamphlets
§ 19. Though in compliance with the ordinary way of speaking I have showed in what sense, and upon what ground our ideas may be sometimes called true or false; yet if we will look a little nearer into the matter, in all cases where any idea is called true or false, it is from some judgment that the mind makes, or is supposed to make, that is true or false. For truth or falsehood, being never without some affirmation or negation, express or tacit, it is not to be found but where signs are joined and separated according to the agreement or disagreement of the things they stand for. The signs we chiefly use are either ideas or words, wherewith we make either mental or verbal propositions. Truth lies in so joining or separating these representatives, as the things they stand for do in themselves agree or disagree; and falsehood in the contrary, as shall be more fully shown hereafter.
He carried more lilies still, another whole tray.
They say you should never ask questions that only a dead man can answer. But what if you could answer them? What if you could remember every detail of your death and aftermath? What if you continue to die over and over again?
"Aren't I in good voice, mummy?" she beamed.
There lay a young man, fast asleep - sleeping so soundly, so deeply, that he was far, far away from them both. Oh, so remote, so peaceful. He was dreaming. Never wake him up again. His head was sunk in the pillow, his eyes were closed; they were blind under the closed eyelids. He was given up to his dream. What did garden-parties and baskets and lace frocks matter to him? He was far from all those things. He was wonderful, beautiful. While they were laughing and while the band was playing, this marvel had come to the lane. Happy ... happy ... All is well, said that sleeping face. This is just as it should be. I am content.