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A Treatise Concerning the Principles of Human Knowledge


inquiry, seemed
to me evidently true and not unuseful to be known--
particularly to those
who are tainted with Scepticism, or want a demonstration
of the existence
and immateriality of God, or the natural immortality of
the soul. Whether
it be so or no I am content the reader should
impartially examine; since
I do not think myself any farther concerned for the
success of what I
have written than as it is agreeable to truth. But, to
the end this may
not suffer, I make it my request that the reader suspend
his judgment
till he has once at least read the whole through with
that degree of
attention and thought which the subject-matter shall
seem to deserve.
For, as there are some passages that, taken by
themselves, are very
liable (nor could it be remedied) to gross
misinterpretation, and to be
charged with most absurd consequences, which,
nevertheless, upon an
entire perusal will appear not to follow from them; so
likewise, though
the whole should be read over, yet, if this be done
transiently, it is
very probable my sense may be mistaken; but to a
thinking reader, I
flatter myself it will be throughout clear and obvious.
As for the
characters of novelty and singularity which some of the
following notions
may seem to bear, it is, I hope, needless to make any
apology on that
account. He must surely be either very weak, or very
little acquainted
with the sciences, who shall reject a truth that is
capable of
demonstration, for no other reason but because it is
newly known, and
contrary to the prejudices of mankind. Thus much I
thought fit to
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