The Four Idols

Topics: Human / Pages: 4 (1295 words) / Published: Feb 23rd, 2015
Idols and Francis Bacon
By: Bailey Gray
Soc 101-099
TR 11:10

To Francis Bacon the four idols, tribe, cave, market place, and theater, beset the minds of men (Bacon). To him, the human race has four prejudices that haze our scientific thoughts: 1) Our perceptions are true and trust worthy,2) Experience make us wise, 3) Language provides us to be superior beings, and 4) We believe previous scientific theories and philosophical assertions (Bacon). Because of these prejudices Bacon says that we must acquire evidence and question the truth instead of assuming that what we know is all there is. Therefore, Bacon believes that the four idols interfere with the human race’s ability to perceive the truth and prevent humans from prospering in scientific thought (Bacon). The Idols of the Tribe is the “tribe” or society you are born into. The Tribe is the natural weaknesses and tendencies common to human nature (Shouler). The Idols of the Tribe are a person’s barrier to understand things based on their human nature, for example where they grew up (Bruce). Living in the Deep South, also know as the Bible belt, Idols of the Tribe play a major part in our southern society, especially when dealing with ethnicity. Growing up I was taught the saying, “The Red Birds stay with the Red Birds and the Blue Birds stay with the Blue Birds.” This euphemism stating that blacks marry and reproduce with blacks and whites marry and reproduce with whites and they never mix together, is one of the very first “life lessons” I remember learning as a child. While researching more about Idols of the Tribe I realized that nowhere else in the United States, much less the rest of world, did parents and grandparents teach their children this racist ideology, besides the south. This made me realize that without even thinking about it I fell accustomed to an Idol of the Tribe without even processing what I was being told much less that I was being racist. I



Cited: Bacon, Francis. "The Four Idols." Olearyweb.com<http://www.olearyweb.com/classes/philosophyS2/readings/ bacon/Idols.pdf>. Bruce, Terry. "Francis Bacon 's 'The Four Idols '" Francis Bacon 's 'The Four Idols ' N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Feb. 2015. Hall, Manly. "The Four Idols of Francis Bacon. "sirbacon.org<www.sirbacon.org/links/4idols.htm>. Shouler, Kenneth. "Understanding Philosophy." The Corruption of the Mind: Bacon 's Four Idols -. Netplaces, n.d. Web. 05 Feb. 2015.

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