Hume 's Theory Of Induction Essay

Hume 's Theory Of Induction Essay

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Hume’s ideas may seem to be contradictory to people who try to understand, but they are not. He simply has similar ideals that just change when the circumstances change. When it comes to our natural world, Hume believes that induction is not based on reason, neither demonstrative or moral reasoning, but customs, the individual’s instincts or habits. However, when Hume explains his beliefs that people should make aninference, or prediction, about a person’s future or private behaviors based off their past ones, he is speaking with regards to the fact that people are not predictable. Although Hume slightly defends a person’s unpredictability by declaring every person acts the way they are “suppose to” (meaning if a person constantly changes their minds, they cannot help it because that is their will), he still views them as such because they have the free will to change their ideas or opinions, which they do often. Therefore, one must go off of the behaviors that person has demonstrated in the past in order to accumulate the best possible inference, though the inference may not be certain. On the other hand, most other things are more concrete and predictable than people, such as scientific theories and mathematics, because they are facts that have been proven and cannot be altered, let alone changed. Therefore, predicting a person’s behavior must be reasoned out through our past experiences with them. On the contrary, predicting our natural world is based on customs. Hume represents his views on induction towards nature and people through his discussions of free will, miracles and cause and effect.
When examining the natural world, because Hume does not believe that we make inductions based on our reasoning, but our customs, he ut...


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...ll people act according to their fate, they do change their ideas and opinions often because it could be that is the way they are meant to behave, we just cannot ever know what will happen, making them unpredictable. Hume’s thoughts on people also support his thoughts about miracles. Hume feels that miracles are: second hand experiences that are told from one person to another, making their validity questionable, and fabrications expressed in the bible that was altered by man as well. Both of these views on miracles also convey to people how untrustworthy Hume really felt people were, which was not very much. Regardless of what people think in modern times, Hume was not contradicting his opinions on induction. All Hume had to do to clarify his thoughts were express the differences between human behavior and nature that caused him to modify his thoughts on induction.

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