The apologist must maintain (I) that Jesus of Nazareth is a real historical figure - a point well-nigh overlooked by Strauss, and denied by some modern advocates of a mythical theory; (2) that Jesus is knowable (not one " of whom we really know very little " - B.
In opposition to Aquinas, who maintained that reason and revelation were two independent sources of knowledge, Duns Scotus held that there was no true knowledge of anything knowable apart from theology as based upon revelation.
Whereas Plato's main problem had been the organization of the perfect state, and Aristotle's intellect had ranged with fresh interest over all departments of the knowable, political speculation had become a mockery with the extinction of free political life, and knowledge as such had lost its freshness for the Greeks of the Roman Empire.
It appears, therefore, that Spencer ultimately describes the Knowable in terms of the mechanical conceptions of matter and motion, and that this must give a materialistic colouring to his philosophy.
It may be urged in reply that the synthetic philosophy could be made consistent by transferring the knowable resistance and persistence of the unknowable noumenon to knowable phenomena on the one hand, and on the other hand by maintaining that all phenomena from the original nebula to the rise of consciousness are only ` 0 impressions produced on consciousness through any of the senses," after all.