In the eighteenth century, the words “natural religion” referred to religious beliefs based on reason and evidence instead of revelation. In Understanding David Hume, Professor Laurence Houlgate has written and designed a philosophy study guide that helps serious students get through the labyrinth of arguments for and against the existence and infinite nature of God, focusing mainly on the famous Design argument that was popular in Hume’s day and still persists in contemporary philosophical discussions.
Lengthy dialogues between two or three speakers are broken down into discrete and understandable short chapters, allowing students to easily navigate through the book. However, this is not one of the “information” study guides that are so prevalent in the study guide. Understanding David Hume is a philosophy study guide for smart students who want to think critically about what the author writes not memorize passages so they can get through a multiple-choice exam.
Professor Houlgate uses the same “smart student” approach to help readers understand Hume’s other short essays in the same book: Miracles, Suicide and Immortality of the Soul. Each essay will get serious students thinking about some of the most fascinating topics in philosophy.
Questions for thought and discussion and ideas for student essays and term papers are to be found at the conclusion of each section.
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