The irreducibility of causation

Dialectica 51 (1):79–92 (1997)
Abstract
Empiricists have sought to follow Hume in claiming that causality is a relation between events reducible to something more basic, e.g., regularities or counterfactuals. But all such attempts fail through their inability to distinguish cause from effect. The alternative is that causation is irreducible. Regularities are evidence of causation but do not constitute it. We understand what causation is through performing intentional actions which necessarily involve trying, which in turn just is exercising causal power
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