Philosophy of Knowledge

Categories: Treatise

David Hume's "The Origin of Our Ideas and Suspicion about Causal Reasoning" mentions his beliefs about understanding and his idea that we can just have relative certainty of reality. Doubters concur that there is not sufficient proof to anticipate the future or show fact. In "An Argument Against Uncertainty," John Hospers argues that we can have outright certainty due to the fact that there suffices evidence from the past and from our own experiences to show an argument to be real.

Although both Hume and Hospers make strong arguments, Hospers' philosophical beliefs on different levels of knowledge and evidence are more convincing than Hume's ideas on understanding and truth.

Hume's argument is based on the idea that we can just be specific of analytical realities, such as mathematics; artificial realities, or "matters of truth" are only and can only be probable, not truth. He believes that induction can not be logically justified since the premises support but do not guarantee the conclusion to the argument.

Get quality help now
Dr. Karlyna PhD
Dr. Karlyna PhD
checked Verified writer

Proficient in: Metaphysics

star star star star 4.7 (235)

“ Amazing writer! I am really satisfied with her work. An excellent price as well. ”

avatar avatar avatar
+84 relevant experts are online
Hire writer

Hume specifies that through experience, people assume that the future will represent the past, which comparable things will be combined with similar qualities.

Doubters, like Hume, think it is not an absolute fact that the sun will rise every day; it is simply expected that history will duplicate itself. If there is any suspicion that nature will alter, experience spoils in forecasting the future. Hume concerns why we must accept the harmony of nature, and anybody who argues this point is stated to be "asking the concern.

Get to Know The Price Estimate For Your Paper
Number of pages
Email Invalid email

By clicking “Check Writers’ Offers”, you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy. We’ll occasionally send you promo and account related email

"You must agree to out terms of services and privacy policy"
Write my paper

You won’t be charged yet!

" He comes to the conclusion that there is no real proof to prove that inductive arguments hold true or incorrect, and accepting them is simply routine however can't be justified.

Hospers believes that because there are different amounts of evidence needed to find certain truths, there are different levels of knowledge. In daily life, we use the weak sense of know, and therefore we do not need absolute proof. Why should people be so skeptical of propositions that are not relevant to everyday life? Hospers also poses an argument to Hume's idea that synthetic truths are probable and can never be actual truths. Hospers believes that an argument that has a probable conclusion can become a certainty, or truth, if evidence permits it. He argues that these "matters of fact" are probable until time and evidence make them certainties.

Because we use the "weak sense of know" in our everyday lives, why wouldn't we accept the uniformity of nature, and the idea that the past outlines the future? The sun will rise everyday in my lifetime, because it always has, and there's no logical reason that it would cease to do so. If, as far as we know, nature's past has always shown a vision of nature's future, there is no reason to be skeptical about it.

Hume's point that induction cannot be justified makes sense but is arguable. If the premises support but do not guarantee the conclusion to the argument, it can still be easily justified with little evidence. Hospers' view on the amount of evidence needed to prove that something will happen in the future, is much more reasonable and realistic in everyday life.

Updated: Jul 07, 2022
Cite this page

Philosophy of Knowledge. (2016, Jul 23). Retrieved from

Philosophy of Knowledge essay
Live chat  with support 24/7

👋 Hi! I’m your smart assistant Amy!

Don’t know where to start? Type your requirements and I’ll connect you to an academic expert within 3 minutes.

get help with your assignment