I am currently reading An Introduction To Philosophy by George Stuart Fullerton. In the opening chapters of the book, he makes some very interesting statements, giving you plenty to mull over. However, there is one claim in particular that I couldn't quite make head-toe of.
A bit of experience is not a sensation, but is a quality or aspect of a thing. Sensations, then, to be sensations, must be bits of experience considered in their relation to some organ of sense.
He then goes on to say that
they should never be confused with qualities of things, which are experiences in a different setting. We may not, therefore, say that 'things' are groups of sensations. We may, if we please, describe them as complexes of qualities.
Here's my problem with this approach. An experience refers to an order of sensory receptions. However, we cannot experience something without knowledge of what Fullerton would have me call the objective world. And our senses inculcate the state of things, as we make them to be. And one such order in which these sensations would've arrived would be stored in our brain as an experience.
But isn't it really the sensory receptions of that one particular time stored in our brain? How can we experience the quality of something without having it reach our brain through our organs of sense?
To the second claim, the brain always makes a picture of a something in relation to other things. So aren't the last two statement self-contradictory? I hold that things are indeed a group of sensations, for they are the only way our brain receives information. And for something to be a 'complex of qualities', the brain must first decide on what its physical qualities are, which can only be analysed through our sense organs.