If the truth of religious doctrines is dependent on an inner experience which bears witness to that truth, what is one to do about the many people who do not have this rare experience?
Experience has shown, and a true philosophy will always show, that a vast, perhaps the larger, portion of truth arises from the seemingly irrelevant.
What we experience in dreams, provided we experience it often, pertains at last just as much to the general belonging of our soul as anything “actually” experienced; by virtue thereof we are richer or poorer.
What is the price of Experience? do men buy it for a song? Or wisdom for a dance in the street? No, it is bought with the price Of all that a man hath, his house, his wife, his children.
What experience and history teach is this – that people and governments never have learned anything from history or acted on the principles deduced from it.
Welcome, O life! I go to encounter for the millionth time the reality of experience and to forge in the smithy of my soul the uncreated conscience of my race.
There is no limit to the increase of experience, but theories cannot become clearer and more complete in just the same sense. The field of experience is the whole universe in all directions. Theory remains shut up within the limits of the human faculties. Hence there is no way of looking at the world, but it recurs, and the curious thing happens, that with increased experience a limited theory may again come into favour.
The stuff of which the world of our experience is composed is, in my belief, neither mind nor matter, but something more primitive than either. Both mind and matter seem to be composite, and the stuff of which they are compounded lies in a sense between the two, in a sense above them both, like a common ancestor.
The man who has lived the most is not he who has counted the most years but he who has most felt life.[L’homme qui a le plus vécu n’est pas celui qui a compté le plus d’années; mais celui qui a le plus senti la vie.]
Some care is needed in using Descartes’ argument. ‘I think, therefore I am’ says rather more than is strictly certain. It might seem as though we were quite sure of being the same person today as we were yesterday, and this is no doubt true in some sense. But the real Self is as hard to arrive at as the real table, and does not seem to have that absolute, convincing certainty that belongs to particular experiences.