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11

Should I be deliberately working to move faster? No. You should be deliberately working to move slower. Nietzsche called himself "a teacher of slow reading" and in many ways philosophy is the art of reading slowly. Take as long as you need to understand the text. Then, take the time you need to understand it deeper. Serious texts take a lifetime to ...


8

When something appears so obvious that it is uninteresting and yet one knows that others do not find it obvious at all, what one may be missing is understanding what is at stake for them. Why do they not agree with what is obvious? The OP provides some examples from David Hume's Dissertation on Passions that appeared particularly uninteresting and obvious, ...


7

In short, Kant's answer is that 'causality' isn't, contra Hume, merely constant perceived conjunction. If this is the case, then the problem of induction applies and it is not possible to infer that there is a necessary connection between a cause and its effect. Instead, Kant argues that causality is an a priori concept of the faculty of understanding. ...


6

Inductive inference. All humans have died so far, therefore (in all likelihood) all humans die at some point. You are human, I take it, so there you go.


6

Causality is a notoriously thorny topic, but the short version is: no one has yet provided an adequate refutation to Hume, nor is it evident that such a refutation is possible. To turn your questions back on themselves: what kind of scientific theory could provide evidence for or against Hume? What possible empirical procedure could be immune? I don't ...


6

That's quite a simple one: Let's use Hume's definition of "a violation of the laws of nature". The "laws of nature" are simply descriptions of the best experimental data we have. Our best empirical predictions are under controlled circumstances and predict accurately under those conditions only. For example, my friend Steffan may catch an apple before ...


6

The Logical Positivists did not accept synthetic a priori knowledge. They accepted only Hume's Fork, two kinds of knowledge, as you suggested in the question. Logical Positivism was not a single shared opinion, but a variety of opinions and arguments under a shared general approach. We can take A.J.Ayer's Language, Truth And Logic (1936) as one ...


6

How about this? The celebrated Arab commentator Avicenna (ibn Sīnā, 980–1037) confronts the LNC [Law of Noncontradiction] skeptic...: “As for the obstinate, he must be plunged into fire, since fire and non-fire are identical. Let him be beaten, since suffering and not suffering are the same. Let him be deprived of food and drink, since eating and ...


5

This is not the right way you should be approaching it. Reading philosophy is not a race; people have their own paces and that's totally fine. The most important thing is that you understand the text, and to that extent you might consider touching base with professors or knowledgeable peers about some of the concepts you've read about. Hume is not known to ...


5

There are three key concepts involved in Objectivism when tackling the is-ought problem. They are "Man" (referring to mankind, but in terms of the individual person), "Value", and "Morality." Understanding these concepts, in addition to every concept upon which they depend as Objectivists define them, will help you understand how Objectivism dispenses with ...


5

I can't comment on the general opinion, but I can point you towards this lucid and, I think, fairly even-handed discussion of a collection of essays by Putnam on the fact/value distinction: Alexi Angelides' "The Last Collapse?". Angelides reads Putnam's argument as essentially pragmatic in character (when it succeeds), and so his argument would not amount to ...


5

Hume is using vulgar in its original sense, meaning "common." His claim is that all common systems of morality (he's probably largely thinking of Christian morality here) muddy the distinction between statements of fact like "water is wet" and statements of value like "water is good." The overall thrust of his argument is against the rationalist concept ...


5

Yes. Both features of the relations of ideas, analyticity and a-priority, are spelled out in §30 of the Enquiry, a bit after the one you quoted from. Hume associates relations of ideas with demonstrative reasoning: All reasonings may be divided into two kinds, namely, demonstrative reasoning, or that concerning relations of ideas, and moral reasoning, or ...


5

Goodman's claim is that Hume has missed the main point about how observing past examples provides confirmation of laws. To appeal to the uniformity of nature is either vacuous or false. The future always resembles the past in some respects and does not resemble it in other respects. The important question is which predicates are projectible and which not. ...


5

Goodman's new riddle of induction is old wine in new bottles. The substance behind the problem of induction is the following. People imagine that they arrive at theories by looking at evidence and drawing conclusions from it. But a collection of observations doesn't imply anything at all about the future. So conclusions reached by current evidence may not ...


4

In short: there are beliefs and desires. What Hume says (and that's also what is true) is that only desires can make us act / give reasons / determine our goals and the purpose of us / tell us what is good or right / determine what is moral. Beliefs and rationality (reason) are just an instrument, a slave, for achieving the goals given by the desires. (of ...


4

Or perhaps he would say that Grue Theory isn't really falsifiable and therefore isn't a scientific theory until it can be falsified. But it's difficult to see how Grue Theory is different than, say, General Relativity which waited several years for the technology needed to produce definitive tests of the theory. Popper's Falsifiability criterion is ...


4

Hume's argument is that all preferences and motives are emotional. There is no such thing as an unemotional or purely rational decision, because to decide, by its nature, is to have a preference for, i.e. an inclination toward or aversion to, something. Reason's (i.e., cognition's) role is to structure the world for us: it lays out a schematic of how ...


4

Hume's basic premise is that worthwhile information must contain: abstract reasoning concerning quantity or number experimental reasoning concerning matter of fact and existence When we're talking about abstract reasoning as to quantity or number, we're talking about words and symbols that represent things. The abstraction of a thing is not an actual thing,...


4

Hume's definition of liberty (=freedom) is close to your second formulation: By liberty, then, we can only mean a power of acting or not acting, according to the determinations of the will; that is, if we choose to remain at rest, we may; if we choose to move, we also may. Now this hypothetical liberty is universally allowed to belong to every one who is ...


4

Yes, but you'd likely get more out of it if you're familiar with some of the philosophical positions he's challenging. This however, goes for most philosophy. Also, if you're concerned about the readability of the volume, you can find an abridged version written in more modern language here. As an aside, the site above has many other classic philosophers (...


4

For Kant motives other than duty are morally unworthy. He held this view, because these other kinds of motives depend upon some condition. He calls them hypothetical imperatives. They generally have the form: If you want object x and action h is sufficient for x, you have to do h. But these imperatives are always dependent on our desire for x which might ...


4

See the etymology of genius: Sense of "characteristic disposition" of a person is from 1580s. Meaning "person of natural intelligence or talent" and that of "exalted natural mental ability" are first recorded 1640s. Thus, Hume means: talent, disposition, inclination.


4

The quoted passage is part of an exposition of Hume's original argument. One of the previous paragraphs explains what "deductively" meant to Hume: "The deductive system that Hume had at hand was just the weak and complex theory of ideas in force at the time, augmented by syllogistic logic. His ‘demonstrations’ rather than structured deductions are often ...


4

Hume's view is that ideas derive from impressions, meaning roughly and to take an example that I cannot have the idea of blue unless I have had sensory experience (impression) of the colour. The idea is causally dependent on the impression. He doesn't keep strictly to this view in his example of the missing shade of blue. Hume concedes that if we were to ...


4

Here is my understanding of Karl Popper and Nelson Goodman. Both talk about whether and when observations may corroborate a given hypothesis. Popper concludes that observations may falsify, but never affirmatively prove, a statement. Goodman’s New Riddle says nothing about falsification directly, but creates a hypothetical where corroboration and ...


4

It was an epistemological problem, Hume's theory of impressions and ideas was a bit too simplistic to describe human cognition realistically, which is understandable given the state of psychology at the time. Kant resolved the problem by postulating "synthetic a priori" of which causality is one. They do not come from "impressions" but rather from ...


4

Psychology I don't think a philosophy site is the best place to explain the psychology of philosophers' practical stance(s) towards morality. But some response can be made. Fact/ value distinction If moral realism is right, then values and valuations are facts or factual, so that there is no logical bridge-crossing from [factual] 'is' to [factual] 'ought'....


4

The limits of means/ end reasoning 'Ought' operates in a variety of contexts outside means/ end (instrumental) reasoning. Take the case of : 'The train ought to arrive by 21.00hrs'. This means that the probability is that it will arrive by that time. This is a probabilistic prediction unconnected with means/ end reasoning. Again, 'I ought to be at the ...


3

The problem of induction: Induction, would it work, makes it possible to infer from finite "true" observations to a sentence that ranges over infinite cases. P1: Oh look, a white swan! P2: Oh, another one! P3: And even a third white swan! C1: All swans are white. Deductive reasoning for the principle of induction It is not possible to show deductively ...


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