In Hume’S Writings, The Treatise And Enquiry, He Makes

1332 WordsApr 15, 20176 Pages
In Hume’s writings, the Treatise and Enquiry, he makes an attempt to reform philosophy, claiming that philosophical systems prior to his own work had “convinced him philosophy was in a sorry state and in dire need of reform” (4 Stanford). One of Hume’s motivations for writing his own works is that ancient philosophers and natural philosophers both had made errors in developing theories Hume felt were entirely too hypothetical (4 Stanford). He claimed that these philosophers had made claims “based on speculation and invention rather than experience and observation” (4 Stanford). Additionally, Hume was an advocate for natural philosophy, arguing that it wasn’t as speculative as the philosophy of the ancients. In Hume’s Enquiry, he discusses…show more content…
Hume’s claim that the only semblance of causation we’re able to discover is that one idea or thing follows from another, fails to recognize that we discover necessary causation through simple experiences almost daily. While it may be the case that we truly cannot see the connection between why we can move our limbs, but cannot alter the state of some organs or control their actions through experience alone, we can discover the causal relationship between other things. Hume argues that “while the impulse of one billiard ball is attended with motion in the second[,] this is the whole that appears to the outward senses” (Hume 558). His claim is that “the mind feels no sentiment or inward impression from this succession of objects” and that as a result, there is nothing derived from the experience that suggests “the idea of power or necessary connection” (Hume 558). However, that which we perceive with our outward senses does allow us to derive a necessary connection between ideas or things. We are able to observe that the necessary connection allowing the billiard ball to move is that another object interferes and causes its motion. We know this through experience because we consistently perceive another object interfering and causing the effect of the ball’s motion. In this sense, we can perceive many necessary connections, as the same is true with cutting

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