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Sceptical Solution to Doubts.docx

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Philosophy 2500F/G

SCEPTICAL SOLUTION OF THESE DOUBTS  confess that it is not reasoning which engages us to suppose the past resembling the future and to expect similar effects from causes which are to appearance similar  drudgery of business seeks a pretence of reason to give itself a full and uncontrolled indulgence  nothing, therefore can be more contrary than such a philosophy to the supine indolence of the mind, its rash arrogance its lofty pretensions and its superstitious credulity  nor need we fear that this philosophy while it endeavours to limit our enquiries to common life should never underestimate the reasoning’s of common life  in all reasoning’s from experience there is a step taken by the mind which is not supported by the argument of process of the understanding  there may be no reason to infer the existence of one from the appearance of the other  custom or habit – for whatever the repetition of any particular act or operation produces a propensity to renew the same act or operation without being impelled by any reasoning or process of the understanding, we always say, that this propensity is the effect of custom  we are determined by custom alone to expect the one from the appearance of the other  all inferences from experience therefore are effects of custom not of reasoning  custom then is the great guide of human life, it is that principle alone which renders our experience useful to us, and makes us expect or the future a similar train of events with those which have appeared in the past  there would be an end at one of all action as well as of the chief part of speculation  all belief of matter of fact or real existence is derived merely from some object, present to the memory or senses and a customary conjunction between that and some other object  nothing is more free than the imagination of man and though it cannot exceed that original stock of ideas furnished by the internal and external senses  contrary to what we find by daily experience we can, in our conception, join the head of a man to the body of a horse but it is not in our power to believe that such an animal has ever really existed  it follows therefore that the difference between fiction and belief lies in some sentiment or feeling which is annexed to the latter which depends commanded at pleasure  there would be no difference between the conception assented to and that which is rejected  never had any experienc
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