Belief Discovers No New Qualities

SINCE therefore belief implies a conception, and yet is something more; and since it adds no new idea to the conception; it follows, that it is a different MANNER of conceiving an object; something that is distinguishable to the feeling, and depends not upon our will, as all our ideas do. My mind runs by habit from the visible object of one ball moving towards another, to the usual effect of motion in the second ball. It not only conceives that motion, but feels something different in the conception of it from a mere reverie of the imagination. The presence of this visible object, and the constant conjunction of that particular effect, render the idea different to the feeling from those loose ideas, which come into the mind without any introduction. This conclusion seems a little surprising; but we are led into it by a chain of propositions which admit of no doubt. To ease the readerís memory I shall briefly resume them. No matter of fact can be proved but from its cause or its effect. Nothing can be known to be the cause of another but by experience. We can give no reason for extending to the future our experience in the past; but are entirely determined by custom, when we conceive an effect to follow, from its usual cause. But we also believe an effect to follow as well as conceive it. This belief joins no new idea to the conception. It only varies the manner of conceiving, and makes a difference to the feeling or sentiment. Belief, therefore, in all matters of fact arises only from custom, and is an idea conceived in a peculiar manner.


Folksonomies: philosophy empiricism

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Idea (0.948509): dbpedia_resource
Cognition (0.896561): dbpedia_resource
Abstraction (0.859740): dbpedia_resource
Ontology (0.858603): dbpedia_resource
Mind (0.674869): dbpedia_resource
Concepts in metaphysics (0.641366): dbpedia_resource
Thought (0.623196): dbpedia_resource
Imagination (0.614243): dbpedia_resource

 Treatise of Human Nature
Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Hume , David (1739), Treatise of Human Nature, Retrieved on 2021-10-14
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  • Folksonomies: enlightenment philosophy reason