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By Frederick C Copleston

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Ockham is here arguing that we cannot have a natural knowledge of the divine essence as it is in itself, because we have no natural intuition of God; but the principle is a general one. AU knowledge is based on experience. What is meant by intuitive knowledge? '1 Intuitive knowledge is thus the immediate apprehension of a thing as existent, e:1abling the mind to form a contingent proposition concerning the existence of that thing. • 3. 2. • Prol. , F. 62 J, 2. a kind that 'when some things are known, of which the one inheres in the other or is locally distant from the other or is related in some other way to the other, the mind straightway knows, by virtue of that simple apprehension of those things, whether the thing inheres or does not inhere, whether it is distant or not, and so with other contingent truths....

But in the statement 'man is a species' the term 'man' stands for all men. This is suppositio simplex. Finally, in the statement 'Man is a noun' one is speaking of the word itself. This is suppositio mate,ialis. Taken in itself the term 'man' is capable of exercising any of these functions; but it is only in a proposition that it actually acquires a determinate type of the functions in question. Suppositio, then, is 'a property belonging to a term, but only in a proposition'. 1 (iv) In the statement 'man is mortal' the term 'man', which is, as we have seen, a sign, stands for things, that is, men, which are not themselves signs.

But we have to be careful of our way of speaking. We ought not to say that 'Plato and Socrates agree (share) in something or in some things, but that they agree (are alike) by some things, that is, by themselves and that Socrates agrees with (cont'mit cum) Plato, not in something, but by something, namely himself'. 2 In other words, there is no nature common to Socrates and Plato, in which they come together or share or agree; but the nature which is Socrates and the nature which is Plato are alike.

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