Chapter

David Hume

Alexander Broadie

in A History of Scottish Philosophy

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print December 2008 | ISBN: 9780748616275
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748652471 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3366/edinburgh/9780748616275.003.0007
David Hume

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The first volume of David Hume's Essays Moral and Political appeared in 1741, followed one year later by volume two. The Treatise of Human Nature is a long work, divided into three ‘books’ devoted successively to the understanding, to the passions and to morals. It addresses three ideas: the idea of the necessary connection between a cause and its effect, external world and Hume's account of personal identity. Hume starts his philosophy with perceptions, purely mental existences that by their nature can have no being outside the mind. He holds that there are sufficient hard empirical facts to justify the conclusion that the historical starting point of religion is polytheism, and looks at the behaviour of religious communities and finds no grounds for the justification for religion.

Keywords: David Hume; Moral and Political; Human Nature; external world; personal identity; philosophy; polytheism

Chapter.  22635 words. 

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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