Writing a definition paper can be a challenging but rewarding task. A definition paper is a type of essay that defines a term or concept in detail and presents the writer's personal understanding and interpretation of the concept. The purpose of a definition paper is to provide a clear and concise explanation of a concept or term, and to demonstrate the writer's understanding of the concept.
There are several steps involved in writing a definition paper. The first step is to choose a term or concept that is suitable for definition. It is important to choose a term or concept that is not too broad or too narrow, as this will make it difficult to provide a detailed and accurate definition. It is also important to choose a term or concept that is not too familiar or too obscure, as this will make it difficult for the reader to understand the definition.
Once you have chosen a suitable term or concept, the next step is to conduct research on the term or concept. This may involve reading dictionaries, encyclopedias, and other reference materials, as well as consulting experts in the field. It is important to gather as much information as possible about the term or concept, as this will help you to provide a more thorough and accurate definition.
After you have gathered all of the necessary information, the next step is to organize your research and begin writing the paper. A good definition paper should have an introduction, a body, and a conclusion. The introduction should provide some background information on the term or concept, and should clearly state the purpose of the paper. The body of the paper should provide a detailed definition of the term or concept, and should include examples and explanations to help the reader understand the concept. The conclusion should summarize the main points of the paper and should provide some final thoughts on the term or concept.
It is important to keep in mind that a definition paper is not simply a regurgitation of information from reference materials. Rather, it is a chance for the writer to express their own understanding and interpretation of the term or concept. As such, it is important to use your own words and to avoid simply copying and pasting information from other sources.
In conclusion, writing a definition paper can be a challenging but rewarding task. By carefully selecting a suitable term or concept, conducting thorough research, and organizing and presenting the information in a clear and concise manner, you can effectively define a concept and demonstrate your understanding of it to your readers.
David Hume’s (1711
The volume will be valuable for scholars and advanced students working on Hume. In like manner, when an effect is supposed to depend upon an intricate machinery or secret structure of parts, we make no difficulty in attributing all our knowledge of it to experience. When we reflect on our past sentiments and affections, our thought is a faithful mirror, and copies its objects truly; but the colours which it employs are faint and dull, in comparison of those in which our original perceptions were clothed. This belief is the necessary result of placing the mind in such circumstances. In vain, therefore, should we pretend to determine any single event, or infer any cause or effect, without the assistance of observation and experience. Since we neither intuit nor infer a priori that similar objects have similar secret powers, our presumption must be based in some way on our experience. The reason why we place any credit in witnesses and historians, is not derived from any connexion, which we perceive a priori, between testimony and reality, but because we are accustomed to find a conformity between them.
When we reflect on our past sentiments and affections, our thought is a faithful mirror, and copies its objects truly; but the colours which it employs are faint and dull, in comparison of those in which our original perceptions were clothed. Moreover, some voluntary movements can become involuntary, as in the case of palsy. Lots of planes do take off at dawn, but this does not suggest to the mind that dawn causes them to take off—or vice versa. I need some further proposition or propositions that will establish an appropriate link or connection between past and future, and take me from 1 to 2 using either demonstrative reasoning, concerning relations of ideas, or probable reasoning, concerning matters of fact. Every supposed addition to the works of nature makes an addition to the attributes of the Author of nature; and consequently, being entirely unsupported by any reason or argument, can never be admitted but as mere conjecture and hypothesis. Among the ways it affects my senses are its brilliant purple color and its sweet smell. An artificer, who handles only dead matter, may be disappointed of his aim, as well as the politician, who directs the conduct of sensible and intelligent agents.
Consequently, since there is no impression of a necessary connection between events in a single sequence, there is no reason to think one develops over a series of similar sequences. Your deliberations, which of right should be directed to questions of public good, and the interest of the commonwealth, are diverted to the disquisitions of speculative philosophy; and these magnificent, but perhaps fruitless enquiries, take place of your more familiar but more useful occupations. And as a uniform experience amounts to a proof, there is here a direct and full proof, from the nature of the fact, against the existence of any miracle; nor can such a proof be destroyed, or the miracle rendered credible, but by an opposite proof, which is superior. For if there be in reality any arguments of this nature, they surely lie too abstruse for the observation of such imperfect understandings; since it may well employ the utmost care and attention of a philosophic genius to discover and observe them. Hume identifies three principles of association: resemblance, contiguity in time and place, and causation. Thus I bring the dispute, O Athenians, to a short issue with my antagonists.
David Hume: An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding (Section 2
In other words, is every possible state of affairs that counts as a cause and effect relation according to Definition 1 also going to count as such a relation on Definition 2, and vice versa? But Hume argues that assumptions of cause and effect between two events are not necessarily real or true. We are wrong to justify these beliefs by claiming that reason supports them or that we can absolutely know that one event causes the other. Ambition, avarice, self-love, vanity, friendship, generosity, public spirit: these passions, mixed in various degrees, and distributed through society, have been, from the beginning of the world, and still are, the source of all the actions and enterprises, which have ever been observed among mankind. Does the inference become justified, once its conclusion is qualified? Rosenberg, 1981, Hume and the Problem of Causation, New York: Oxford University Press. Hume 1974:391-392 Moreover, he stresses that talk of the miraculous has no surface validity, for four reasons. If you hold a medium between affirmation and negation, by saying, that the justice of the gods, at present, exerts itself in part, but not in its full extent; I answer, that you have no reason to give it any particular extent, but only so far as you see it, at present, exert itself.
An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding Section 2 Summary
Demea adds that giving God human characteristics, even if they are greatly magnified, denies him attributes theists have always ascribed to him. Our authority over our sentiments and passions is much weaker than that over our ideas; and even the latter authority is circumscribed within very narrow boundaries. Thus note 5 only appears in the Textual Variants tab in section 3. He uses the same method here as he did in the causation debate: there is a critical phase in which he argues against his opponents, and a constructive phase in which he develops his version of sentimentalism. Nevertheless, he admits, humans and animals differ in mental faculties in a number of ways, including: differences in memory and attention, inferential abilities, ability to make deductions in a long chain, ability to grasp ideas more or less clearly, the human capacity to worry about conflating unrelated circumstances, a sagely prudence which arrests generalizations, a capacity for a greater inner library of analogies to reason with, an ability to detach oneself and scrap one's own biases, and an ability to converse through language and thus gain from the experience of others' testimonies. The more instances the associative principles explain, the more assurance we have that Hume has identified the basic principles by which our minds work.
David Hume: An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding
Can I do better than propose the difficulty to the public, even though, perhaps, I have small hopes of obtaining a solution? We construct ideas from simple impressions in three ways: resemblance, contiguity, and cause and effect. This possibility is converted into certainty by farther observation, when they remark that, upon an exact scrutiny, a contrariety of effects always betrays a contrariety of causes, and proceeds from their mutual opposition. MOL 3 Katherine Falconer Hume realized that David was uncommonly precocious, so when his older brother went up to Edinburgh University, Hume went with him, although he was only 10 or 11. This species of reasoning, perhaps, one may deny to be founded on the relation of cause and effect. We need only ask such a skeptic, What his meaning is? In vain would our limited understanding break through those boundaries, which are too narrow for our fond imagination. The supposition of such a connexion is, therefore, without any foundation in reasoning. But what renders the matter more extraordinary, is, that these seemingly absurd opinions are supported by a chain of reasoning, the clearest and most natural; nor is it possible for us to allow the premises without admitting the consequences.
Shall we then assert, that we are conscious of a power or energy in our own minds, when, by an act or command of our will, we raise up a new idea, fix the mind to the contemplation of it, turn it on all sides, and at last dismiss it for some other idea, when we think that we have surveyed it with sufficient accuracy? I shall allow, if you please, that the one proposition may justly be inferred from the other: I know, in fact, that it always is inferred. And impressions are distinguished from ideas, which are the less lively perceptions, of which we are conscious, when we reflect on any of those sensations or movements above mentioned. On that hypothesis, the cause of the universe is entirely indifferent to the amount of good and evil in the world. The first question concerns justice as a practice constituted by its rules. Why think that the universe is more like a human artifact than an animal or a vegetable? I pretend not to have obviated or removed all objections to this theory, with regard to necessity and liberty. Todd, Indianapolis: Liberty Classics, 1983. All these operations are a species of natural instincts, which no reasoning or process of the thought and understanding is able either to produce or to prevent.
An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding Section 7 Summary
Causation and necessary connection are beliefs felt so strongly that any inferential move the mind made during the initial process of forming them is no longer considered. You never go the other way round. Our conversation began with my admiring the singular good fortune of philosophy, which, as it requires entire liberty above all other privileges, and chiefly flourishes from the free opposition of sentiments and argumentation, received its first birth in an age and country of freedom and toleration, and was never cramped, even in its most extravagant principles, by any creeds, concessions, or penal statutes. But where different effects have been found to follow from causes, which are to appearance exactly similar, all these various effects must occur to the mind in transferring the past to the future, and enter into our consideration, when we determine the probability of the event. Hume considered his Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals to be one of his best works.
An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding Section VI and Section VII, Part 1 Summary & Analysis
Hume, however, wants to go much further. Hume argues that the practice of justice is a solution to a problem we naturally face. And however we may flatter ourselves that we are guided, in every step which we take, by a kind of verisimilitude and experience, we may be assured that this fancied experience has no authority when we thus apply it to subjects that lie entirely out of the sphere of experience. To prove this, the two following arguments will, I hope, be sufficient. Here the mind wills a certain event.
Hume's An Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals
So the ordering principle of the universe, if indeed there is one, can be absolutely anything. His critique of metaphysics clears the way for the constructive phase of his project—the development of an empirical science of human nature—and Hume is not at all skeptical about its prospects. I have frequently considered, what could possibly be the reason why all mankind, though they have ever, without hesitation, acknowledged the doctrine of necessity in their whole practice and reasoning, have yet discovered such a reluctance to acknowledge it in words, and have rather shown a propensity, in all ages, to profess the contrary opinion. We only experience a tiny part of the universe for a short time; much of what we do experience is unknown to us. But to convince us that all the laws of nature, and all the operations of bodies without exception, are known only by experience, the following reflections may, perhaps, suffice. This hypothesis seems even the only one which explains the difficulty, why we draw, from a thousand instances, an inference which we are not able to draw from one instance, that is, in no respect, different from them.