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And still more if the ideas which perception excludes were ever attended to; if rejected suggestion, conflicting supplement, wrong interpretation, and disappointed action, were held before the mind, then a reflection might take place, which would antedate the slow result of developement; and the sense of illusion would awaken the contrast of idea and reality, truth and falsehood. But all this is impossible. For the leading feature of the early mind is its entire and absolute practicality. The fact occupies the soul no longer and no further than it tends to produce immediate action.

A phrase we have used was designedly ambiguous. Are we to hold that the real, which is the ultimate subject, and which, as we said, appears in perception, is identical with the merely momentary appearance? We shall see that this can not be, and that such a view could not possibly account for the facts. At present we may offer a preliminary argument against this mistake. 52 The subject which appears in the series of time, and to which we attribute our ideas as predicates, must itself be real. And, if real, it must not be purely adjectival.

Chap. ), yet as a truth it will not bear any serious examination. Let us look at it more closely. (i) If what is asserted be equality, then that of course is identity in quantity, and is nothing else whatever. And I must venture to complain of the reckless employment of this term. To use the sign = for qualitative sameness, or for individual identity (I do not ask here if these are different), is surely barbarous. No harm perhaps may come, but there should be some limit to the abuse and confusion we allow ourselves in practice.

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The Principles of Logic by F. H. Bradley


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