Interesting that Chomsky heaps undue praise on Galileo, but not Copernicus, Descartes, Newton or others. He always has an agenda. I think his agenda is anti-everything. And so he gives Galileo undue praise for his battles with the church.

—“The Aristotelian scientific tradition’s primary mode of interacting with the world was through observation and searching for “natural” circumstances through reasoning. Coupled with this approach was the belief that rare events which seemed to contradict theoretical models were aberrations, telling nothing about nature as it “naturally” was.

By the start of the Scientific Revolution, empiricism had already become an important component of science and natural philosophy. Prior thinkers, including the early 14th century nominalist philosopher William of Ockham, had begun the intellectual movement toward empiricism.

The term British empiricism came into use to describe philosophical differences perceived between two of its founders Francis Bacon, described as EMPIRICIST, and René Descartes, who was described as a RATIONALIST.


Thomas Hobbes, George Berkeley, and David Hume were the philosophy’s primary exponents, who developed a sophisticated empirical tradition as the basis of human knowledge.

An influential formulation of empiricism was John Locke’s An Essay Concerning Human Understanding (1689), in which he maintained that the only true knowledge that could be accessible to the human mind was that which was based on experience. He wrote that the human mind was created as a tabula rasa, a “blank tablet,” upon which sensory impressions were recorded and built up knowledge through a process of reflection.”—