— 552 —
Remedies of those Difficulties.
      §20. One part of these Disadvantages, in moral Ideas, which has
made them be thought not capable of Demonstration, may in a good
measure be remedied by Definitions, setting down that Collection of
simple Ideas, which every Term shall stand for; and then using the
Terms steadily and constantly for that precise Collection. And what
methods Algebra, or something of that kind, may hereafter suggest,
to remove the other difficulties, is not easy to fore-tell. Confident
I am, that if Men would in the same method, and with the same
indifferency, search after moral, as they do mathematical Truths,
they would find them to have a stronger Connection one with
another, and a more necessary Consequence from our clear and
distinct Ideas, and to come nearer perfect Demonstration, than is
commonly imagined. But much of this is not to be expected, whilst
the desire of Esteem, Riches, or Power, makes Men espouse the
well endowed Opinions in Fashion, and then seek Arguments,
either to make good their Beauty, or varnish over, and cover their
Deformity. Nothing being so beautiful to the Eye, as Truth is to
the Mind; nothing so deformed and irreconcilable to the Under-
standing, as a Lye. For though many a Man can with satisfaction
enough own a no very handsome Wife in his Bosom; yet who is
bold enough openly to avow, that he has espoused a Falshood, and
received into his Breast so ugly a thing as a Lye? Whilst the Parties
of Men, cram their Tenets down all Men’s Throats, whom they
can get into their Power, without permitting them to examine
their Truth or Falshood; and will not let Truth have fair play in
the World, nor Men the Liberty to search after it; What Improve-
ments can be expected of this kind? What greater Light can be
hoped for in the moral Sciences? The Subject part of Mankind,
in most Places, might, instead thereof, with AEgyptian Bondage,
expect AEgyptian Darkness, were not the Candle of the Lord set up
by himself in Men’s minds, which it is impossible for the Breath or
Power of Man wholly to extinguish.
Locke Hum IV, 3, §20, p. 552