PSY502 GDB Solution Fall 2012

David Hume was of the view that world is what the senses perceive it to be. For example, when a person sees a table lying in a room, the table exists because his sense of vision can detect it, but if the person goes away from the room the table does not exist anymore for him. Therefore, the existence of a material world is just a perception of the senses.
Does material world exist for them?
Do you agree with DAVId HUME’s philosophy of material world or not? Explain his point of view with reference to blind and deaf people.

Solution:

According to Hume, human mind tends to establish a cause and effect relationship. This means
that if one event follows another, the first event is considered to be the cause and the second event is the
effect. In other words, the apparent sequence of events in the external world is in fact the sequence of
perceptions in the mind. From this statement Hume argued that our expectation that the future will be like
the past has no basis in reason; it is purely a matter of belief. For example when we expect the sun to rise
every morning, it is a belief based on the past experience.
Hume believed that the purpose of knowledge is to facilitate life. This is known as the Utilitarian
approach according to which knowledge must serve life and it must have a purpose. Later James adopted a
similar approach in purporting the idea of Pragmatism which means that everything has to have a practical
application and reason.
Hume also distinguished between violent passions and calm passions. Violent passions for example
are love and hate while calm passions are aesthetic and moral feelings
If a defect of an organ has prevented a person from experiencing a sensation then he can have no idea of the sensation. For example a blind man can have no idea of color nor a deaf man of sounds. Hume said that if the following simple proposition were adhered to then metaphysics could be cleared of the senseless jargon that has drawn disgrace on it.
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