David Hume The Design Argument Analysis

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Philosophy has been plagued with the subject of religion since the dawn of time. Each philosopher having their own opinions, many attempts have been made to prove and disprove their opinion and the opinions of others. The existence of God, a single, supreme being who created the heavens and the earth, is a controversial topic, but even among those who believe in the existence of God, finding a way to explain such existence has been nigh impossible. An 18th century philosopher, David Hume attempted to establish his opinion on the existence of God by critiquing the widely accepted ideals set forth by Descartes. Hume delivers convincing arguments against both the Ontological and Design Arguments by using his distinction between matters of …show more content…
According to the Design argument, 1) there is design in nature and 2) because design is the product of intelligence, 3) nature is the product of intelligence. Therefore, 4) God exists. Before truly divulging into Hume 's critique of the Design Argument, it must first be noted that this argument is an example of Hume 's Matter of Fact reasoning. This means that the argument is based solely on our experience of the world as a harmonious world of order and natural design. To apply this reasoning to God and the making/maintaining of worlds, we would require knowledge regarding prior creations. As the universe is singular in our experience, such knowledge is impossible to gain and as such, Hume believes that no argument from experience alone can establish certainty, only probability at best. For Hume, the Argument of Design also resembled an analogy. In this analogy, it is said that 1) if a machine is the result of intelligence, and 2) the world is like a machine, then 3) the world is the result of something similar to intelligence. By using an analogy, one could arrive at many different conclusions, each possessing similarities and differences. If we were to compare God and the world to a worker and a machine, one could argue that if there are several workers, could there not be several Gods? As there are “bad” workers, could there also not be a “bad” creator of the world? And as machines are made by mortals, could not God be mortal? Using an analogy, any conclusion can be justified, be it good or bad. Analogies require a great deal of inference, and as we do not possess the experience necessary to make such inferences, we cannot definitively use analogies to depict God accurately. We cannot say that the design of the world is proof of God 's existence. It would be hard to

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