Good concepts, worst writer in the history of philosophy. [/quote]
Sorry, this award goes to Heidegger. In fairness, I haven’t read his stuff in German, and its been about 20 years, but I suspect its basically gibberish in his native tongue as well. [/quote]
You may be right, I haven’t had the need to expose my self to his works. I know Kant is a terrible writer. Hume on the other hand was brilliant.[/quote]
Kant is one of those guys most people need an interpreter for. His writing is almost Shakesperian, differing interpretations of his works are still coming out to this day. You want Kant, Epifanio Elizondo is a great guy to read… http://www.academia.edu/3323897/Research_Overview
Hume, scary stuff for most Theists
An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding is THE book to read from Hume.
No, Hume is not a scary thing for theists. His analysis on causation was brilliant, but it did not do anything to cosmology. Some of his ideas were way off, like his ‘third element of causation’ but that doesn’t mean his insights weren’t genius.
If anything Hume did more to destabilize the the ability for scientists to establish causation. He basically discovered that you cannot prove causal relationships by observation. You can only establish correlation. If ‘A’ then ‘B’ cannot be fully established unless you know all the instances of ‘A’. Since you cannot know all the instances of ‘A’, you can only infer that ‘A’ causes ‘B’. You can establish the likely hood of ‘B’ as a result of ‘A’, but you cannot prove it beyond the shadow of a doubt.
This is a problem for empiricism, not for deductive reasoning. A priori deals in absolutes. And because that can only be established in metaphysics, it’s not a problem. It’s not a reliance on observation, its reliant on pure reason. Hume was a hardcore empiricist and his empirical insights were genius. Way smarter than Kant. Actually, if not for Hume, there would not have been a Kant.
But Leibniz was smarter than both put together. His ideas in monadology were so ahead of their time, people thought he was a nut. Except now we are figuring out, he was right. Like there is no such thing as empty space. If a space exists, something is in it. So that space is a factor of stuff. [/quote]
Depends on what subject you are touching on. Cosmological argument? Argument from Design? Miracles? Problem of Evil? These are all things Hume went out of his way to touch on, and in damaging ways to common religious beliefs at the time. It’s famously all over his works. What’s amazing is how he was able to avoid getting into trouble.
Correct. In fact the cosmological argument was his main focus, but his main counter claim was that there was a third element to the cause- effect relationship. Something he was never able to prove. However, it was through the process of trying to counter these things are where his brilliance lies. His insight to causal relationships, the fact that you could reliably make predictions with a small subset of data, and things that did not fit the mold, had him postulating another element of causation, intervening between cause and effect, that must explain all of it.
It didn’t. And again, he was a hard core empiricist. What he did not analyze was causal relationships that exist by definition, he dealt mainly with physical matter. His biggest problem was that effects followed their cause. So to him there was plenty of opportunity for another intervening factor.
Hume was a fearless philosopher, honest to a fault, and never had an issue painting himself into corners. But he made some very interesting observations with long lasting reach. It effects science the most, though.
He tried to disprove the thing you mentioned, he did not succeed at that, but he succeeded at other things in the process.
Monadology was considered strange by everybody. That everybody of space is occupied by something tiny, indivisible and permeates everything is a concept we are just warming up to now. Because, by all measures, he’s right. There is always something, never nothing.
All metaphysics is the result of plato’s forms. As much as I don’t really like Plato, that gave birth to metaphysics. It was one of two things Plato was actually right on.
I am not attracted to a philosopher based on their religiousocity. Hume is one of my favorites of all time and he was an atheist. I am attracted to the ideas. Berkeley is also a particular favorite of mine, not because he was a theist, but because of his works on ontology.
I give Kant his respect, but never was a huge fan. His works on morality are important, but I always felt he liked to over complicate the issues. However, his ability to break things down, particular moral events are important.
Leibniz, rescuer of religion in a sense he offered a view of religion that worked with physics which means a lot today… But his ideas during the time had most theists and lightweight scholars pointing the finger and calling him a moron. [/quote]
Religion was never in danger. Aquinas did most of the heavy lifting and basically girded religious philosophy against the notion that science or anything else for that matter, could disprove God. He also was the one that realized the rule of nature, does not violate religion, in fact they are complimentary. Leibnez, expounded on those ideas, but Aquinas came up with them first.
It’s Leibnez’s scientific observations that interested me the most. I am less concerned about what he thought monads were than I am about the notions such an idea brought forth. [/quote]
Speaking of which, Aquinas’ proofs are great. They are what everyone was talking about at the time in terms of why to be Christian, PROOF of God, why bother with Faith when there was Proof!!? http://www.yale.edu/adhoc/etexts/aqproof.htm And the long lost question about Aquinas… Being he felt dogma should be unseated by logic, he would have been a huge fan of Hume if he actually were around to stick to his guns.
When I talk about religion being in danger, it’s more in reference today. The idea of grasping for proofs of God, reasons to be good being rooted in Gods existence. If Aquinas’ proofs can be shot down by a sophomore college kid who took a philosophy of religion class, it’s time to move on to the big guns; Liebniz since his world view leaves room for souls and makes sense with contemporary physics. So I had you pinned wrong/ as somebody who goes to great ends seeking or defending proof of God for whatever reason. I think often times people are comfortable in their moral fabric because it’s attached to eternal life, and that’s the reason to be good/ reward. Or people are so afraid of being dead forever, or the prospect that everything just ends for everyone that it’s just easier for them to believe what they have been brought up with.
Kinda Pascals wager folly. Of course that doesn’t guarantee that there was faith. If you do the legwork and go to Church all the time and act morally according to the rules, that’s still not good enough… So the closet Atheist is damned without faith? Or would God, who insists on faith let a non believer who wishes they could will themselves to believe into his flock? Is this a good God?
Sorry I got into more of a demonstration but, being more into Ethics and some Phil of Language I tend to enjoy those particular subjects a bit more. Well, I’m more into ethics and etymology.