David Hume's Philosophy
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This paper argues that, within the confines of Hume's definition of liberty and necessity in his "Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding", Hume claims that free will and necessity are compatible; however, outside his definitions, the theory falls apart. The author points out that Hume's definition of necessity starts with his deterministic beliefs. The paper relates issues of the incompatibility of these two concepts and the definitions Hume uses to explain them: (1) Laws to human behavior always have exceptions; (2) Hume's analysis of what is required for responsibility helps to explain why it is useless to deny determinism by appealing to the existence of chance events in the world to disprove Hume's definition of liberty and, (3) if Hume's definition of liberty with the "could-have-done-otherwise" principle are replace, the compatibility of liberty and necessity disappears.
From the Paper:"If you combine Hume's determinism concerning human actions with his theory of causation, you basically have his working definition of necessity. Hume believes that there are observable, constant conjunctions between motives (including character traits) and actions in human behavior and goes so far as to claim if one were to look over human history, one discovers that the "same motives always produce the same actions." In Hume's conception of the world, it would be a violation of the law of nature for a prior event to occur and a subsequent event not to and this picture of the universe as law-governed applies just as much to human actions as it does to the behavior of the rest of the natural world."
Cite this Argumentative Essay:
David Hume's Philosophy (2006, October 26) Retrieved September 22, 2023, from https://www.academon.com/argumentative-essay/david-hume-philosophy-74821/
"David Hume's Philosophy" 26 October 2006. Web. 22 September. 2023. <https://www.academon.com/argumentative-essay/david-hume-philosophy-74821/>