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 David Hume 
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New post David Hume
For people interested in philosophy.

Read this: http://thecatholicthing.org/2012/05/16/ ... christian/

Then this: http://www.theamericanconservative.com/ ... servative/

Half way through the second article I was merely bored by the clever ignoramus. From there on I was fascinated. The comments section is the highest quality commentary by members of the public that one could hope to see. The comment by Paul Jones is simply dead on, as well as profound.

My question for Hume: If sense knowledge is all that we know for sure, then why were your books not mere descriptive catalogues of things you had observed? :D

Once Aristotle is abandoned, one really is all at sea, helpless amongst the waves of error. Every one of these characters was like an object lesson in that truth, no matter how much sympathy one can summons for them personally.

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Mon Oct 07, 2013 12:00 pm
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New post Re: David Hume
If it is true that Hume is at the source of modern political conservatism, that would suggest that modern political conservatism is a somewhat dubious enterprise wouldn't it? But on the other hand, a lot of things that paleocons say are mere statements of unpopular truths and it would seem that we would have a common cause with them. How to avoid having dodgy philosophy slipped in with common sense politics? Does anyone know any good books for Catholic men approaching the political sphere?


Sat Nov 23, 2013 6:03 am
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New post Re: David Hume
James, I can't comment on what concrete historical effect Hume had, but certainly his notions concerning respect for traditions and conventions were nothing more than a half-baked solution proposed on the basis of a complete misapprehension of the problem. He thought that philosophy was too theoretical, when it was merely mistaken (due to the Renaissance and Protestant Revolt). The true answer was a return to Aristotle and St. Thomas; instead, Hume proposed an unphilosophical philosophy which, precisely by its abandonment of philosophy as such, would (he hoped) remain grounded in reality. This is all just typical of the chaos which reigns outside the Church, particularly in the post-Christian milieu such as England after the Revolt (think Hobbes, Locke, Hume, Mill).

It seems that (non-Catholic) conservatives saw Hume's notions as an answer to the abstract nonsense of Hobbes. And it was, but it was one of those answers which is in the line of a strategic retreat, but without the conscious strategy to support it and turn it to good use later. The blind leading the blind.

This is all bankrupt. It always was, of course, but in the past it was worth the effort to try and find common ground and work from that at convincing non-Catholics of the truth. Now, that's all a waste of effort. There's nothing left upon which to build, in my opinion. The world doesn't even believe the things it declares most stridently. Political and philosophical commentary are both reduced to chanting slogans, like football fans. So I think that the practical course now is to ignore all of that and simply state the truth in clarity. Preach the Gospel. There's a huge amount of work to be done in the Thomistic sphere, addressing modern conditions and problems with the perennial philosophy, and that's where the effort will best be made. Arguing about bankrupt pseudo-philosophies with men who don't even really believe in them, or in anything else, doesn't seem a worthwhile thing to do!

In the mean time, is this the kind of book you seek? https://archive.org/details/cu31924029402439

That's certainly one of the best books on political matters I've ever read.

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Sun Nov 24, 2013 12:13 am
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New post Re: David Hume
John,

Quote:
This is all bankrupt. It always was, of course, but in the past it was worth the effort to try and find common ground and work from that at convincing non-Catholics of the truth. Now, that's all a waste of effort. There's nothing left upon which to build, in my opinion. The world doesn't even believe the things it declares most stridently. Political and philosophical commentary are both reduced to chanting slogans, like football fans. So I think that the practical course now is to ignore all of that and simply state the truth in clarity. Preach the Gospel. There's a huge amount of work to be done in the Thomistic sphere, addressing modern conditions and problems with the perennial philosophy, and that's where the effort will best be made. Arguing about bankrupt pseudo-philosophies with men who don't even really believe in them, or in anything else, doesn't seem a worthwhile thing to do!


I wouldn't dispute the facts of the matter- I think you're absolutely right. But, maintaining due pessimism, I do think Catholic men shouldn't throw in the towel. The odds of us doing anything at all successful in politics are extraordinarily small. But surely the Christian life and growth in virtue require struggle and failure? There are good men- indeed, good Catholics- in the political sphere. Shouldn't we join them and exhaust all possible avenues for getting anything done before concluding it's a waste of effort?

On the other hand, it's possible I've been watching Gary Cooper in 'High Noon' too much!

I will read Donoso Cortes. What I really had in mind was some kind of book for people engaging in party politics that might help in solving moral dilemmas. But on reflection, perhaps if one is going to do party politics what one really needs is a good spiritual director.


Sun Nov 24, 2013 9:58 am
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New post Re: David Hume
James Francis wrote:
There are good men- indeed, good Catholics- in the political sphere. Shouldn't we join them and exhaust all possible avenues for getting anything done before concluding it's a waste of effort?

...

What I really had in mind was some kind of book for people engaging in party politics that might help in solving moral dilemmas. But on reflection, perhaps if one is going to do party politics what one really needs is a good spiritual director.


Well, I guess those are distinct points. Yes, there are good men - by their lights, at least - in the political arena, and no good work is ever lost (but don't mistake that for an averral that you can make any significant difference in this world!), so that it isn't pointless to contribute in the political hurly-burly.

A book of morals for politically minded men? An excellent idea. I wish I knew of one!

I have a story for you, since you're interested in politics. I was at a Liberal Party cocktail party a couple of weeks ago at which both Colin Barnett and Tony Abbott were present. Colin gave a speech in which he explained that the Liberal vote in WA was the greatest ever at both the last State and Federal elections, and that everything was extraordinarily rosy for the conservatives, etc. Colin's as wet as they get, you know. Anyway, he went on and on, praising his own achievements, it seemed. Anyway, Tony took the stand next, and his first words were, "I am so glad to be in WA, Colin, where I can bask in your reflected glory."

It brought the house down. :)

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Mon Nov 25, 2013 12:10 pm
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New post Re: David Hume
Gold! :lol:


Tue Nov 26, 2013 7:14 am
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New post Re: David Hume
John Lane wrote:
A book of morals for politically minded men? An excellent idea. I wish I knew of one!

Although I don't know of a single such book, I most certainly do know of, and greatly respect, a man who wrote many articles and books which contain the necessary exhortations for us: G. K. Chesterton.

In my opinion, he was a most amazing man all of whose writings are most Catholic, despite the fact that for much of his life he was not yet a Catholic.

Again, in my opinion, he is a saint. His wife too, for that matter.

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Tue Nov 26, 2013 4:53 pm
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New post Re: David Hume
I agree Ken! I love Chesterton especially his writings on Catholic economics, I have always been a huge advocate of what has been derogatively termed distributism. Distributism as it is taught by the social teaching of the Church is real Capitalism.

This is where I really have beef with the Austrian school of economics, they become a bunch of pansies when it comes to the extremely wealthy. Their principle of "non-agression" is self-refuting and what a difference with Catholic thought! The other day I was reading the life of St. Anthony of Padua who was a huge condemner of Usury! Ohh what great success he had with his great preaching of the Gospel truths... The Catholic state if it is truly Catholic should and MUST take away the wealth of those who die and earned all their wealth through usury. Sadly enough this is not done anymore, imagine this happening to a family whose name means Red Shield (famous bankers) in you know what country E_gland.

Interesting how a devil named Isacharon in one of the most famous exorcist cases in the Church (check the Satanism in the Modern World), this is what he said when asked about Christian Perfection. "The Rich should be the bankers of the poor." He said this in reference if they desire to be saved, but woe to them. What a mystery of Divine providence of why certain people are born with so much and how they can help the Church of God very much. Very interesting how many prophecies say how the rich of our time could be able to help spread the faith very much through helping the right causes, but because they stood their and did nothing we will be given over to the enemies... I for one certainly never envy the rich it is such a great responsibility if you think about it. What God will ask of what you have done with what he has given you. Kyrie eleison...

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Wed Dec 04, 2013 5:17 am
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New post Re: David Hume
Some people here might be interested in the post "Hume vs. Aquinas on Transubstantiation."

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Sat Dec 07, 2013 9:18 pm
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New post Re: David Hume
Very good, thank you Alan. Excellent, really.

This brings to mind a brief period - perhaps a few weeks - I spent quite some years ago engaging with philosophy students and philosophers on some forum or other devoted to the subject, which was dominated by debate about what is called the "dream" argument. Those putting this forward were convinced that it proved that the senses cannot, ultimately, be trusted. Those answering it did not appear to know what to say. The answer seemed, and seems now even more clearly, to be that in fact we are not actually deceived by dreams, in the only way which matters, that is, in our judgement. The intellect, seeking substance, asks itself whether what was just experienced was a dream or not, and then forms a judgement, which is virtually always accurate (I cannot think of an exception, but allowing for exceptions does not destroy the argument, since the possibility of error does not take away the capability of certitude). The "dream" argument depends for its force entirely on the notion that we are indeed hopelessly deceived by dreams. But this is not factual.

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Sat Dec 07, 2013 9:52 pm
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New post Re: David Hume
John Lane wrote:
This brings to mind a brief period - perhaps a few weeks - I spent quite some years ago engaging with philosophy students and philosophers on some forum or other devoted to the subject, which was dominated by debate about what is called the "dream" argument. Those putting this forward were convinced that it proved that the senses cannot, ultimately, be trusted. Those answering it did not appear to know what to say. The answer seemed, and seems now even more clearly, to be that in fact we are not actually deceived by dreams, in the only way which matters, that is, in our judgement. The intellect, seeking substance, asks itself whether what was just experienced was a dream or not, and then forms a judgement, which is virtually always accurate (I cannot think of an exception, but allowing for exceptions does not destroy the argument, since the possibility of error does not take away the capability of certitude). The "dream" argument depends for its force entirely on the notion that we are indeed hopelessly deceived by dreams. But this is not factual.
This reminds me of a Fr. Garrigou-Lagrange article: "Non Potest Esse Genuina Sensatio Sine Reali Sensato."
It's basically a defense of "nihil est in intellectu quod non prius in sensu," the scholastic axiom contra what you call the "'dream' argument."

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«The Essence & Topicality of Thomism»: http://ar.gy/5AaP
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Modernism: modernism. us.to
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Mon Dec 09, 2013 12:29 am
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New post Re: David Hume
I recently came across this article by Orestes Brownson on Hume and causality:


http://orestesbrownson.com/790.html

I confess I didn't know much about Brownson and I certainly haven't read any of him. But on the strength of the first sentence of this piece I'm going to blow my Christmas bonus on his complete works.

Enjoy!


Wed Dec 18, 2013 10:47 am
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New post Re: David Hume
James Francis wrote:
I recently came across this article by Orestes Brownson on Hume and causality:


http://orestesbrownson.com/790.html

I confess I didn't know much about Brownson and I certainly haven't read any of him. But on the strength of the first sentence of this piece I'm going to blow my Christmas bonus on his complete works.

Enjoy!
Oh, yes, Browson is very good. Read his: "Catholicity Necessary to Sustain Popular Liberty."

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«The Essence & Topicality of Thomism»: http://ar.gy/5AaP
by Fr. Réginald Garrigou-Lagrange, O.P.
e-Book: bit.ly/1iDkMAw

Modernism: modernism. us.to
blog: sententiaedeo.blogspot. com
Aristotelian Thomism: scholastic. us.to


Wed Dec 18, 2013 6:25 pm
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New post Re: David Hume
James Francis wrote:
I recently came across this article by Orestes Brownson on Hume and causality:


http://orestesbrownson.com/790.html

I confess I didn't know much about Brownson and I certainly haven't read any of him. But on the strength of the first sentence of this piece I'm going to blow my Christmas bonus on his complete works.

Enjoy!


Yes, Brownson is absolutely worth reading. America's "Ideal" Ward.

It's a pity the OCR of that piece is so poor! "act" for "fact" and "till" for "will" etc.

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Wed Dec 18, 2013 11:06 pm
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New post Re: David Hume
John Lane wrote:
James Francis wrote:
I recently came across this article by Orestes Brownson on Hume and causality:


http://orestesbrownson.com/790.html

I confess I didn't know much about Brownson and I certainly haven't read any of him. But on the strength of the first sentence of this piece I'm going to blow my Christmas bonus on his complete works.

Enjoy!


Yes, Brownson is absolutely worth reading. America's "Ideal" Ward.

It's a pity the OCR of that piece is so poor! "act" for "fact" and "till" for "will" etc.
Here's the original: http://books.google.com/books?id=3lUYAA ... &q&f=false

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«The Essence & Topicality of Thomism»: http://ar.gy/5AaP
by Fr. Réginald Garrigou-Lagrange, O.P.
e-Book: bit.ly/1iDkMAw

Modernism: modernism. us.to
blog: sententiaedeo.blogspot. com
Aristotelian Thomism: scholastic. us.to


Thu Dec 19, 2013 7:16 am
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New post Re: David Hume
This topic (of David Hume) reminds me of a funny cartoon I saw once:

Image


Mon Mar 24, 2014 12:52 am
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