ON HUMAN THOUGHTS AND CONCEPTS
By Protopresbyter John S. Romanides (2001).
Now what is the origin of human thoughts and concepts? Are the categories of human thought, words and concepts innate to the human mind or are they acquired, gained through external impressions? Although this was discussed in ancient Greek philosophy, it still continues to be discussed today. We know that Aristotle explicitly thought about this problem. This same question was reexamined later during the Middle Ages. And when we reach the age of the Enlightenment, John Locke and David Hume again returned to these metaphysical categories in their highly cogent studies. And this brings us to the modern era.
Today, the exact sciences are also wrestling with this question. We can see psychologists, psychiatrists, biologists, doctors, biochemists, and others applying the empirical method of research in order to explore the question of how thoughts originate and are created in the human mind. Today this topic is not so much a question of logical processes on man’s part (as examined by philosophy and metaphysics) or of philosophical reflection, as it is a matter of empirical investigation.