Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion

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Penguin Books, Limited, 1779 - 264 стор.
Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion is a philosophical work written by the Scottish philosopher David Hume. Through dialogue, three fictional characters named Demea, Philo, and Cleanthes debate the nature of God's existence. While all three agree that a god exists, they differ sharply in opinion on God's nature or attributes and how, or if, humankind can come to knowledge of a deity. In the Dialogues, Hume's characters debate a number of arguments for the existence of God, and arguments whose proponents believe through which we may come to know the nature of God. Such topics debated include the argument from design - for which Hume uses a house - and whether there is more suffering or good in the world (Argument from evil)
 

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LibraryThing Review

Рецензія користувача  - nbmars - LibraryThing

David Hume (1711-1776) was one of the most influential writers of the Enlightenment. In his An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding (1748), he argued that there was insufficient evidence to believe ... Читати огляд повністю

LibraryThing Review

Рецензія користувача  - dcunning11235 - LibraryThing

It was good to read this in it's (more or less original) prose, as Hume wrote it. A lot of very perceptive arguments; and the dialogue format serves well to couch Hume's views, forcing you to think ... Читати огляд повністю

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Сторінка 260 - If it affords no inference that affects human life, or can be the source of any action or forbearance : And if the analogy, imperfect as it is, can be carried no farther than to the human intelligence, and cannot be transferred, with any appearance of probability, to the other qualities of the mind...
Сторінка 24 - To whatever length any one may push his speculative principles of scepticism, he must act, I own, and live, and converse like other men ; and for this conduct he is not obliged to give any other reason, than the absolute necessity he lies under of so doing.
Сторінка 220 - What I have said concerning natural evil will apply to moral, with little or no variation; and we have no more reason to infer, that the rectitude of the Supreme Being resembles human rectitude than that his benevolence resembles the human.
Сторінка 129 - The world plainly resembles more an animal or a vegetable, than it does a watch or a knitting-loom. Its cause, therefore, it is more probable, resembles the cause of the former. The cause of the former is generation or vegetation. The cause, therefore, of the world, we may infer to be something similar or analogous to generation or vegetation.
Сторінка 195 - I SCRUPLE not to allow, said CLEANTHES, that I have been apt to suspect the frequent repetition of the word, infinite, which we meet with in all theological writers, to savour more of panegyric than of philosophy, and that any purposes of reasoning, and even of religion, would be better served, were we to rest contented with more accurate and more moderate expressions.
Сторінка 163 - 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.
Сторінка 184 - Epicurus's old questions are yet unanswered. Is he willing to prevent evil, but not able ? then is he impotent. Is he able, but not willing ? then is he malevolent. Is he both able and willing? whence then is evil ? You ascribe, Cleanthes (and I believe justly), a purpose and intention to Nature.
Сторінка 62 - ... to human art. But is a part of nature a rule for another part very wide of the former? Is it a rule for the whole? Is a very small part a rule for the universe? Is nature in one situation, a certain rule for nature in another situation, vastly different from the former?
Сторінка 102 - First, by this method of reasoning you renounce all claim to infinity in any of the attributes of the Deity. For, as the cause ought only to be proportioned to the effect, and the effect, so far as it falls under our cognizance, is not infinite, what pretensions have we, upon your suppositions, to ascribe that attribute to the Divine Being? You will still insist that, by...
Сторінка 230 - Supposing there were a God who did not discover himself immediately to our senses, were it possible for him to give stronger proofs of his existence than what appear on the whole face of nature? What indeed could such a Divine Being do but copy the present...

Про автора (1779)

David Hume was born in Edinburgh to a minor Scottish noble family, raised at the estate of Ninewells, and attended the University of Edinburgh for two years until he was 15. Although his family wished him to study law, he found himself unsuited to this. He studied at home, tried business briefly, and after receiving a small inheritance traveled to France, settling at La Fleche, where Descartes had gone to school. There he completed his first and major philosophical work, A Treatise of Human Nature (1739--40), published in three volumes. Hume claimed on the title page that he was introducing the experimental method of reasoning into moral subjects, and further that he was offering a new way of seeing the limits of human knowledge. Although his work was largely ignored, Hume gained from it a reputation as a philosophical skeptic and an opponent of traditional religion. (In later years he was called "the great infidel.") This reputation led to his being rejected for professorships at both Edinburgh and Glasgow. To earn his living he served variously as the secretary to General St. Clair, as the attendant to the mad Marquis of Annandale, and as the keeper of the Advocates Library in Edinburgh. While holding these positions, he wrote and published a new version of his philosophy, the two Enquiries, and many essays on social, political, moral, and literary subjects. He also began his six-volume History of England from the Roman Invasion to the Glorious Revolution (1754--62), the work that made him most famous in his lifetime. Hume retired from public life and settled in Edinburgh, where he was the leading figure in Scottish letters and a good friend to many of the leading intellectuals of the time, including Adam Smith and Benjamin Franklin. During this period, he completed the Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion, which he had been working on for more than 25 years. Hume first worked on the Dialogues in the middle of his career, but put them aside as too provocative. In his last years he finished them and they were published posthumously in 1779. They are probably his best literary effort and have been the basis for continuous discussion and debate among philosophers of religion. Toward the end of Hume's life, his philosophical work began to be taken seriously, and the skeptical problems he had raised were tackled by philosophers in Scotland, France, and finally Germany, where Kant claimed that Hume had awakened him from his dogmatic slumbers. Hume was one of the most influential philosophers of modern times, both as a positive force on skeptical and empirical thinkers and as a philosopher to be refuted by others. Interpreters are still arguing about whether he should be seen as a complete skeptic, a partial skeptic, a precursor of logical positivism, or even a secret believer.

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