Quotation by Thomas Reid

Every man feels that perception gives him an invincible belief of the existence of that which he perceives; and that this belief is not the effect of reasoning, but the immediate consequence of perception. When philosophers have wearied themselves and their readers with their speculations upon this subject, they can neither strengthen this belief, nor weaken it; nor can they shew how it is produced. It puts the philosopher and the peasant upon a level; and neither of them can give any other reason for believing his senses, than that he finds it impossible for him to do otherwise.
Thomas Reid (1710–1796), Scottish leading philosopher, opponent of Hume. Essay II, ch. xv, p. 241, Essays on the Intellectual Powers of Man, MIT Press, Cambridge, Mass. (1969).

Reid's commonsense defense of belief in the external world.
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