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Please help. with a philosophy question. hume

 
 
oksamar
 
Reply Tue 7 Dec, 2010 08:30 pm
Im writing hume rejects ontological argument. the dialogue is in dialogues concerning natural religion PART IX. there is 4 parts. i have the original text by him. and i am confused on two of the last parts. the first two:

1.cant prove cause and efffect a priori. (need experience)
2. ok to imagine a god which exists and does not exist. (doesn not imply a contradiction)

now the last two parts are in these two paragraphs. i just need an explanation in laymans terms. im lost on the universe necessarily existing.

But further, why may not the material universe be the necessarily existent being, according to this pretended explication of necessity? We dare not affirm that we know all the qualities of matter; and for aught we can determine, it may contain some qualities, which, were they known, would make its non- existence appear as great a contradiction as that twice two is five. I find only one argument employed to prove, that the material world is not the necessarily existent Being: and this argument is derived from the contingency both of the matter and the form of the world. "Any particle of matter," it is said, 7 "may be conceived to be annihilated; and any form may be conceived to be altered. Such an annihilation or alteration, therefore, is not impossible." But it seems a great partiality not to perceive, that the same argument extends equally to the Deity, so far as we have any conception of him; and that the mind can at least imagine him to be non-existent, or his attributes to be altered. It must be some unknown, inconceivable qualities, which can make his non-existence appear impossible, or his attributes unalterable: and no reason can be assigned, why these qualities may not belong to matter. As they are altogether unknown and inconceivable, they can never be proved incompatible with it.

Though the reasonings which you have urged, Cleanthes, may well excuse me, said Philo, from starting any further difficulties, yet I cannot forbear insisting still upon another topic. It is observed by arithmeticians, that the products of 9, compose always either 9, or some lesser product of 9, if you add together all the characters of which any of the former products is composed. Thus, of 18, 27, 36, which are products of 9, you make 9 by adding 1 to 8, 2 to 7, 3 to 6. Thus, 369 is a product also of 9; and if you add 3, 6, and 9, you make 18, a lesser product of 9. 8 To a superficial observer, so wonderful a regularity may be admired as the effect either of chance or design: but a skilful algebraist immediately concludes it to be the work of necessity, and demonstrates, that it must forever result from the nature of these numbers. Is it not probable, I ask, that the whole economy of the universe is conducted by a like necessity, though no human algebra can furnish a key which solves the difficulty? And instead of admiring the order of natural beings, may it not happen, that, could we penetrate into the intimate nature of bodies, we should clearly see why it was absolutely impossible they could ever admit of any other disposition? So dangerous is it to introduce this idea of necessity into the present question! and so naturally does it afford an inference directly opposite to the religious hypothesis!

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talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Dec, 2010 08:37 pm
@oksamar,
As far as I know not going on to his awkward long winded English, he is essentially says what happened does not necessarily means it will happen tomorrow. Induction is no guarantee of future events.
0 Replies
 
talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Wed 8 Dec, 2010 06:40 pm
Hume in general is right. No one can predict the future as no one has absolute knowledge. However, science has partial knowledge of predictability with the laws of science. Experiments could be repeated with predicted results within certain boundaries. Once extraneous factors intrude all bets are off.
0 Replies
 
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Dec, 2010 11:23 am
@oksamar,
Could you make your question more specific? Just what is it you do not understand? Since, according to Hume, nothing can necessarily exist (do you understand why?). So, the world cannot necessarily exist. Hume's argument has nothing to do with induction.
talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Dec, 2010 02:35 pm
@kennethamy,
Quote:
cant prove cause and efffect


There is induction involved.
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Dec, 2010 07:04 pm
@talk72000,
talk72000 wrote:

Quote:
cant prove cause and efffect


There is induction involved.


For all I know. Please explain where that is.
talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Dec, 2010 07:09 pm
@kennethamy,
You need induction to find cause and effect. A theory has a description and the experiment is shown and the results shown. All of that is induction. Then from the theory we infer... It is this part that Hume missed the boat - this inference. As long as the parameters are the same the predicted result(s) should follow. But Hume is taking a general view of world events not isolating scientifically. For instance where there are clouds they must be lightning. Not always.
talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Dec, 2010 08:14 pm
Quote:
Inductive reasoning, also known as induction or inductive logic, or educated guess in colloquial English, is a kind of reasoning that draws generalized conclusions from a finite collection of specific observations. The premises of an inductive logical argument indicate some degree of support (inductive probability) for the conclusion but do not entail it; that is, they suggest truth but do not ensure it.

Induction is employed, for example, in the following argument:

All of the ice we have examined so far is cold. (Specific observations)
Therefore, all ice is cold. (Generalized conclusion)

Inductive reasoning allows for the possibility that the conclusion is false, even where all of the premises are true.[1] For example:

All of the swans we have seen are white.
All swans are white. (Only if we disregard Black Swans)

Note that this definition of inductive reasoning excludes mathematical induction, which is considered to be a form of deductive reasoning.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inductive_reasoning
babsatamelia
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Dec, 2010 09:01 pm
@oksamar,
And you are reading this information for your general amusement, just to pass the time? Or is it being put upon you by some class you are taking?
0 Replies
 
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Dec, 2010 08:52 am
@talk72000,
talk72000 wrote:

You need induction to find cause and effect. A theory has a description and the experiment is shown and the results shown. All of that is induction. Then from the theory we infer... It is this part that Hume missed the boat - this inference. As long as the parameters are the same the predicted result(s) should follow. But Hume is taking a general view of world events not isolating scientifically. For instance where there are clouds they must be lightning. Not always.


I know about that. But what has that to do with the question of whether the universe necessarily exists or not? Just because Hume is famous for talking about induction and cause and effect, that doesn't mean that is all Hume talks about. How does the issue here about whether the world is a necessary existence have to do with induction?
0 Replies
 
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Dec, 2010 08:54 am
@talk72000,
talk72000 wrote:

Quote:
Inductive reasoning, also known as induction or inductive logic, or educated guess in colloquial English, is a kind of reasoning that draws generalized conclusions from a finite collection of specific observations. The premises of an inductive logical argument indicate some degree of support (inductive probability) for the conclusion but do not entail it; that is, they suggest truth but do not ensure it.

Induction is employed, for example, in the following argument:

All of the ice we have examined so far is cold. (Specific observations)
Therefore, all ice is cold. (Generalized conclusion)

Inductive reasoning allows for the possibility that the conclusion is false, even where all of the premises are true.[1] For example:

All of the swans we have seen are white.
All swans are white. (Only if we disregard Black Swans)

Note that this definition of inductive reasoning excludes mathematical induction, which is considered to be a form of deductive reasoning.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inductive_reasoning


Thanks for the lecture on induction. What has it to do with Hume's issue about whether the world is a necessary existent, or whether there can be such a thing as a necessary existent.
Fil Albuquerque
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Dec, 2010 09:32 am
Since it exists, can one prove its not necessary existent ?...
talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Dec, 2010 08:08 pm
@kennethamy,
Quote:
What has it to do with Hume's issue about whether the world is a necessary existent, or whether there can be such a thing as a necessary existent.

I will leave that to you guys to sort out. Mr. Green
0 Replies
 
talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Dec, 2010 08:56 pm
@kennethamy,
Hume is a sceptic and awkwardly arguing about the existence of the world and our logic of math and finally on the existence of a God.
0 Replies
 
mickalos
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Dec, 2010 10:19 pm
@Fil Albuquerque,
Fil Albuquerque wrote:

Since it exists, can one prove its not necessary existent ?...

What on earth would count as "proof" that something does not necessarily exist? Indeed, what would count as proof of any necessity statement? The hardness of the logical must doesn't admit of some kind of independent test that allows us to discover new modal facts. Once I have the concept of a physical object, I know that many of them might not have existed, that's good enough for me.
Fil Albuquerque
 
  1  
Reply Sat 11 Dec, 2010 07:11 am
@mickalos,
1 - The Universe is made of inter-dependent objects, a collection of inter-relations from which all of them emerge...unless one can prove that the efficient causal chain can have some degree of freedom, necessity of that which is must be assumed...the fire of burning cement and burning wood are, not alike, not even concerning temperature...it remains to be seen what is it that one speaks of when one employs the term Necessity...

As I see it the Multiverse has no Cause once the Energy imply┬┤s an infinite circular causal chain in itself...the assumption of Necessity follows naturally...

2 - also bare in mind that the concept of the object and the object are not the same...
Fil Albuquerque
 
  1  
Reply Sat 11 Dec, 2010 07:27 am
@Fil Albuquerque,
...At best, for middle ground, one should be sceptical on this regard...
0 Replies
 
 

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