Questions tagged [hume]

David Hume is a 18th century philosopher and contemporary of Immanuel Kant. He is best known for his skeptics views, empirical analysis, and naturalist positions.

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On the Objections to Compatibilism

I was reading An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding by David Hume, specifically the section titled On Liberty and Necessity (both parts). Hume reconciles liberty with metaphysical necessity by an ...
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Racism and empiricism - Locke and Hume in the dock?

Edward Said writes in his book Orientalism Similarly-as Harry Bracken has been tirelessly showing-philosophers will conduct their discussions of Locke, Hume, and empiricism without ever taking into ...
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Moral skepticism and “walking the talk”

It would seem that a substantial minority of philosophers agree with the moral anti-realist position that we have a problem going from "is" to "ought"--that there is no objective correlate of the ...
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675 views

Does Popper's falsification view of the problem of induction have any implications for the NEW riddle of induction?

Popper claims to solve Hume's problem of induction by explaining that science does not use induction at all, but rather science can be described by the process of putting forward hypotheses and then ...
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Hume eliminated cause & effect, is this verified by our best physical scientific theories?

Hume shows that experience, when looked at rigorously, gives us no information about cause & effect. At most he permits only that two events are simultaneous. Is this reflected in our best ...
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Hume (Cause and Effect and Substance)

I am having trouble understanding how Hume arrives at the concepts of cause and effect and of substance. Does any of it have to do with every perception being a distinct experience or that causation ...
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Granted Hume's psychological perspective regarding impressions and ideas, doesn't this make his epistemology obscure?

Hume held that all that was meaningfully present to the mind consisted in matters of fact (impressions) and relations of ideas. But even ideas were faint impressions themselves, formed over time by ...
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Hume: excavating the is/ ought gap

Why does Hume believe that ought brings a new relation? If means-end reasoning, where we can say that one is ought to do X in order to get Y, does not bring a new relation, then in order to tell that ...
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Where did the conventional notion of human nature become popularized?

Oftentimes in popular media today, we see many themes that boil down to "human nature is to be greedy" or that "human nature is to abuse power that is given". This is not always posed as a negative ...
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What does Hume mean by “genius”?

What does Hume mean by "genius"? I take it to be quite different from modern usage, rather more like "effort" or "application of one's intellect", without implying some particular measure of mental ...
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382 views

Constant conjunction of events and probability

Hume argued that it's impossible to say that event A causes event B. For all we know, everytime event B is directly followed by event A, we could be witnessing the "constant conjunction of events." ...
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Are Hume's 'impressions' Kant's 'phenomena'?

Why do some philosophers like Carl Stumpf or Immanuel Kant use the word 'Phenomena', whereas British empiricist philosophers, like Locke and Hume, or even Kant, use the word 'Impressions'?
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Hume: “We learn to be who we are”

I was reading Alison Gopnik's essay in The Atlantic, "How an 18th-Century Philosopher Helped Solve My Midlife Crisis", and I came across the following [...] the coherent self is an illusion. My ...
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Free will and the principle of sufficient reason

According to Hume, "All distinct ideas are separable from each other, and as the ideas of cause and effect are evidently distinct, it will be easy for us to conceive any object to be non-existent this ...
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Why does Humean supervenience fail in quantum mechanics?

I am not sure I understand the idea properly. Moreover, why are philosophers so interested in quantum mechanics? What philosophical implications could quantum mechanics have?
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Hume's problem of induction

Hume argued that assuming A causes B isn't the same as arriving at a truth of logic. However, even though Hume cautioned the "the mental habit" of induction should be used carefully he still believed ...
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How is experience different for Locke and Hume?

Am I right to say that both Locke and Hume are empiricists? Their ideas are pretty similar but they seem to use human's experience as part as their argument differently but I can't seem to point out ...
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Hume on contingent existence

In A Treatise of Human Nature, Hume says, "To form a clear idea of any thing, is an undeniable argument for its possibility, and is alone a refutation of any pretended demonstration against it." I ...
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Hume held that the self could not be proved due to its not being an impression or idea, but is not the self necessary for associative capacities?

Associations are principles whereby impressions come to exist in different capacities than by what was received initially. So for example, in having the impression of brown, furry, smelly, and so on ...
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Hume's definition of cause and effect

I read on Wikipedia that Hume remarks that we may define the relation of cause and effect such that ``where, if the first object had not been, the second never had existed." I do not understand ...
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Do necessary ought nots follow from impossible oughts?

I'm reading about Hume's is-ought gap and how oughts can't follow from is's. My question is if there are impossible oughts and if these impossible oughts create necessary ought nots. Example: "you ...
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If it's impossible to separate science from metaphysics, is it is also impossible to separate science from ethics and values?

One of the most important results in philosophy of science is that every observation is "theory-laden", i.e. that the outcome of any scientific experiment is affected by the theoretical ...
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Hume Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding “Algebra, Geometry, and Arithmetic” from “senses and experience”?

Here are two quotes in Hume's Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding. They seem to contradict one another, and I want to know how/where Hume or his adherents reconcile them. I have not yet finished ...
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Was Hume a sophist?

rs.29 wrote in an answer to a question about the is-ought problem the following: ...we could hold the is–ought problem only as a obsolete sophism, and not as a real problem. This reminded me of ...
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Hume's epistemology : impressions, causality, and judgment?

I'm thinking about the phrase of David Hume that suggests that causality fills the world of beings. I don't know how to understand that. This phrase indicates that causality makes experiences possible ...
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Have any philosophers written about why they write philosophy?

I'm thinking particularly about Hume's and Moore's assertions that you can't get an "ought" from an "is". The trouble is if you can't get an ought from an is, why write that down at all, if your ...
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Does Hume's skepticism about causality depend on his belief that all ideas are derived from sense impressions?

I'm aware of Hume's argument and definitions of cause (though I'm very much open to any kind of discussion around the topic). But I'm most interested in how important his assertion that all ideas are ...
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Is the capacity to form associations of impressions a passive reality or is it indicative rather of an active principle?

Hume famously held that all that was meaningful in the mind consisted of clear and distinct impressions and ideas. Now, notions such as causation, unity and identity are held to be a result of ...
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What is a good article on Hume's view on causality?

Could anyone please let me know of a good review article that gives and overview of Hume's view on causality?
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What are the main differences between Hume's Book I of the Treatise and the Enquiry?

It's known Hume's Treatise on human nature wasn't very successful when first released and then he reworked the Book 1 of it in An enquiry concerning human understanding, but where can we see a good ...
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If vast swathes of philosophy are entirely subjective, why do we care about them?

I'll preface this by saying I'm not an informed philosophy academic, but merely bothered. I've heard that conservative political columnist Ben Shapiro is currently writing a book about how he ...
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Does Hume's skepticism about induction extend to his treatise?

Can we extend Hume's skeptical conclusions to the treatise itself? How far reaching is Hume's skepticism, and if it is all-encompassing, then what is (as he sees) the purpose of his work?
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Hume's analogy to prove that the soul is mortal

Passage from "The immortality of the soul" by David Hume Where any two items x and y are so closely connected that all alterations we have ever seen in x are accompanied by corresponding ...
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Questions concerning Hume's argument for the unknowability of ultimate causes

I'm currently reading through Hume's An Inquiry Concerning Human Understanding, and I'm having trouble understanding one of his big arguments in the section entitled "Skeptical Doubts Concerning the ...
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How does Hume's conception of impressions and ideas lead him to argue that causality can only be probabilistic?

I am trying to understand this concept and it just isn't clicking. Any help would be appreciated!
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Is it possible to make sense of reality that is independent 'our understanding'

Kant has a famous quote; Thoughts without content are empty, intuitions without concepts are blind This suggests we can't understand anything without (independently of) the use of concepts, which ...
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How does Descartes' “cogito, ergo sum” affect Hume's experienced based epistemology and Kant's transcendental philosophy?

My attempts so far: Descartes, being a rationalist, used "cogito, ergo sum" to lead to the concept of innate ideas. Hume, being a radical empiricist, believed in experience based epistemology. Kant ...
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Is there a non singularist analysis of causation which says it's an internal relation?

The final distinction we will need, or more accurately, family of distinctions, is between internal and external relations. What makes them members of a single family is that a relation is internal if ...
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Do I have the right understanding of Hume's suggested association of ideas?

Hume, in his Treatise of Human Nature says: "two objects are connected together in the imagination, not only when the one is immediately resembling, contiguous to, or the cause of the other, but also ...
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Hume and Strawson on Libertarianism and Determinism

a) What is the traditional dispute between libertarianism and determinism, and how does Hume reconcile the two? b) What is Strawson’s claim to be an improvement on Hume?
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What were the most influential concepts in Hume's 'Treatise on Human Nature'?

Is there thought within this work that is considered the most revelatory and influential of all ideas presented, or is it just thought of as a generally well written work? If it does contain specific ...
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How did Hume remain 'jovial', 'merry' and 'unperturbed' despite philosophy's difficulty?

Source: p 231 Bottom, Introducing Philosophy for Canadians: A Text with Integrated Readings (2011 1 ed). How did Hume remain 'jovial', 'merry' and 'unperturbed', despite the difficult perennial ...
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To what extent do variations of Hume's Fork permeate modern philosophy, and specifically the analytical community?

Hume's Fork, which divides knowledge into 'relations of ideas' and 'matters of fact' has had an incredible influence on philosophy ever since its conception (though it is sometimes claimed that others ...
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What are Kant's critiques of Hume's and Descartes's conceptions of the self?

What are Kant's critiques of Descartes's conception of the self contained in the Metaphysical Meditations and of Hume's conception of the self expressed in the Essay concerning human understanding? ...
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What does Hume's “customary connection” between objects mean?

David Hume writes "All belief of matter of fact or real existence is derived from some object, present to the memory or the senses, and a customary conjunction between that and some other object." ...
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Hume's position on Moral Judgement [closed]

I am reading some extracts from Hume's "treaties" and some papers which have been released on them, but I still do not fully understand Hume's position on moral judgement. Hume states that moral ...
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Who was the Philosopher who said to jump into the fire if you think it is not real?

Just as the title says. There was a philosopher who said that you should jump into a fire if you think it might not exist and see how it goes. I cannot find it on google, maybe I am typing in the ...
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Why cannot reports of a miracle overpower all our experience and laws of nature?

A novice, I do not feel prepared yet to, but shall in future, read Hume; please tell me if Hume's originals answer my question. Source: pp 30-31, Philosophy ; A Very Short Introduction (2002) by ...
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What was Kant's particular rejection of the virtue of benevolence based in?

Kant notoriously rejects the utilitarian model of a supreme principle of beneficence, but he still finds a vital place in the moral life for beneficence. He seeks universally valid principles (or ...
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What's wrong with this reconstruction of Nagarjuna?

I was trying to add clarity to my concept of "rebirth" on the Buddhist stack exchange. Nagarjuna's karika, 1.3 (Batchelor) reads: The essence of things does not exist in conditions and so on. If ...