David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Journal of Philosophical Research 26:223-227 (2001)
According to Hume’s classical definition of causal relations, a cause must fulfill two distinct conditions: a) be a sufficient condition for the occurrence of its effect; b) be temporally prior to it. However, a careful logical analysis shows that the combination of sufficiency and temporality is impossible. This is because if a complete cause is a sufficient condition for its effect to occur-then the effect is a necessary condition for the occurrence of its own complete cause! Thus, there can be no complete cause for anything to occur, which means that causal determination is logically impossible.The paper goes on to examine some possible responses to this argument, and then concludes with a nontemporal version of the paradox that shows that even the first of Hume’s above conditions cannot be fulfilled on its own. This is because if something (e.g., the cause) is a sufficient condition of something else (e.g., the effect), then it cannot be a sufficient condition of itself
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
No categories specified
(categorize this paper)
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
David H. Sanford (1975). Causal Necessity and Logical Necessity. Philosophical Studies 28 (2):185 - 194.
Rögnvaldur Ingthorsson (2008). The Logical Vs. The Ontological Understanding of Conditions. Metaphysica 9 (2):129-137.
Georges Dicker (2000). Regularity, Conditionality, and Asymmetry in Causation. The Proceedings of the Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy 7:129-138.
David H. Sanford (1976). The Direction of Causation and the Direction of Conditionship. Journal of Philosophy 73 (8):193-207.
Michael J. Futch (2005). Leibnizian Causation. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 56 (3):451-467.
Christian Elsholtz & Christian List, A Simple Proof of Sen's Possibility Theorem on Majority Decisions.
Jonathan Schaffer (2000). Causation by Disconnection. Philosophy of Science 67 (2):285-300.
David H. Sanford (1978). Causal Necessity and Logical Necessity. Philosophical Studies 33 (2):185 - 194.
Simona Aimar (2011). Counterfactuals, Overdetermination and Mental Causation. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 111 (3pt3):469-477.
Simona Aimar (2011). Counterfactuals, Overdetermination and Mental Causation. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 111 (3):469-477.
Mathias Frisch (2010). Causes, Counterfactuals, and Non-Locality. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 88 (4):655-672.
Jiji Zhang & Peter Spirtes (2008). Detection of Unfaithfulness and Robust Causal Inference. Minds and Machines 18 (2):239-271.
Added to index2011-12-02
Total downloads3 ( #345,781 of 1,692,623 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #181,401 of 1,692,623 )
How can I increase my downloads?