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A Defense of Hume on Miracles

Princeton Univ Pr (2003)

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  1. It’s a Miracle: Separating the Miraculous From the Mundane.Michael R. Ransom & Mark D. Alicke - 2012 - Archive for the Psychology of Religion 34 (2):243-275.
    What aspects and features of events impel people to label them as miraculous? Three studies examined people's miracle conceptions and the factors that lead them to designate an event as a miracle. Study 1 identified the basic elements of laypersons’ miracle beliefs by instructing participants to define a miracle, to list five events that they considered miraculous, and to state what they believed to be the purpose of miracles. Results showed that individuals tend to view miracles as highly improbable and (...)
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  • Hume on Laws and Miracles.Nathan Rockwood - 2018 - American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly 92 (4).
    Hume famously argues that the laws of nature provide us with decisive reason to believe that any testimony of a miracle is false. In this paper, I argue that the laws of nature, as such, give us no reason at all to believe that the testimony of a miracle is false. I first argue that Hume’s proof is unsuccessful if we assume the Humean view of laws, and then I argue that Hume’s proof is unsuccessful even if we assume the (...)
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  • “God Does Not Act Arbitrarily, or Interpose Unnecessarily:” Providential Deism and the Denial of Miracles in Wollaston, Tindal, Chubb, and Morgan.Diego Lucci & Jeffrey R. Wigelsworth - 2015 - Intellectual History Review 25 (2):167-189.
    The philosophical debate on miracles in Enlightenment England shows the composite and evolutionary character of the English Enlightenment and, more generally, of the Enlightenment’s relation to religion. In fact, that debate saw the confrontation of divergent positions within the Protestant field and led several deists and freethinkers to resolutely deny the possibility of “things above reason” (i.e. things that, according to such Protestant philosophers as Robert Boyle and John Locke, human reason can neither comprehend nor refute, and that humanity must (...)
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  • Natural Uniformity and Historiography.John Beaudoin - 2006 - Philosophia Christi 8 (1):115 - 123.
    According to some, the historian must for working purposes assume that nature is uniform, i.e., that miracles do not occur. For otherwise, it is suggested, he may place no confidence in the historical reliability of the records and artifacts on which he relies: such confidence can exist only where it is assumed, for example, that ink marks in the form of words do not sometimes appear spontaneously on old bits of paper. In this article I spell out this methodological thesis (...)
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  • Twenty Questions About Hume's “Of Miracles”.Peter Millican - 2011 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 68:151-192.
    Hume's essay on the credibility of miracle reports has always been controversial, with much debate over how it should be interpreted, let alone assessed. My aim here is to summarise what I take to be the most plausible views on these issues, both interpretative and philosophical, with references to facilitate deeper investigation if desired. The paper is divided into small sections, each headed by a question that provides a focus. Broadly speaking, §§1–3 and §20 are on Hume's general philosophical framework (...)
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  • It’s a Miracle: Separating the Miraculous From the Mundane.Michael R. Ransom & Mark D. Alicke - 2012 - Archive for the Psychology of Religion 34 (2):243-275.
    What aspects and features of events impel people to label them as miraculous? Three studies examined people’s miracle conceptions and the factors that lead them to designate an event as a miracle. Study 1 identified the basic elements of laypersons’ miracle beliefs by instructing participants to define a miracle, to list five events that they considered miraculous, and to state what they believed to be the purpose of miracles. Results showed that individuals tend to view miracles as highly improbable and (...)
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  • Miracles.Michael Levine - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  • Epistemological Problems of Testimony.Jonathan E. Adler - 2006 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  • Rationalist Atheology.John R. Shook - 2015 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 78 (3):329-348.
    Atheology, accurately defined by Alvin Plantinga, offers reasons why god’s existence is implausible. Skeptically reasoning that theological arguments for god fail to make their case is one way of leaving supernaturalism in an implausible condition. This ‘rationalist’ atheology appeals to logical standards to point out fallacies and other sorts of inferential gaps. Beyond that methodological marker, few shared tactics characterize atheists and agnostics stalking theological targets. If unbelief be grounded on reason, let atheology start from a theological stronghold: the principle (...)
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  • On Some Limitations of Humean Disagreement: Miraculous Testimony and Contrary Religions.Paul Dicken - 2011 - Sophia 50 (3):345-355.
    As part of his wider critique of the credibility of miraculous testimony, Hume also offers a rather curious argument as to the mutual detriment of conflicting testimony for the miracles of contrary religious worldviews. Scholarship on this aspect of Hume’s reasoning has debated whether or not the considerations are to be understood as essentially probabilistic, and as to whether or not a probabilistic interpretation of the argument is logically valid. The consensus would appear to offer a positive answer to the (...)
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  • A Modest Proposal. [REVIEW]Elliott Sober - 2004 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 68 (2):487-494.
    This paper is an essay review of John Earman's book,\nHume's Abject Failure--the Argument against Miracles\n(Oxford University Press, New York, 2000). Earman is very\ncritical of Hume's famous argument about miracles, I am\nmore sympathetic, though I grant that Earman makes many\ngood critical points. Earman's method of analysis is\nBayesian, as is mine.
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  • Hume on Miracles: Interpretation and Criticism.James E. Taylor - 2007 - Philosophy Compass 2 (4):611–624.
    Philosophers continue to debate about David Hume’s case against the rationality of belief in miracles. This article clarifies semantic, epistemological, and metaphysical questions addressed in the controversy. It also explains the main premises of Hume’s argument and discusses criticisms of them. The article concludes that one’s evaluation of Hume’s argument will depend on one’s views about (a) the definitions of ’miracle’ and ’natural law’; (b) the type of reasoning one ought to employ to determine the probability that a particular miracle (...)
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  • Natural Laws and Divine Intervention: What Difference Does Being Pentecostal or Charismatic Make?Amos Yong - 2008 - Zygon 43 (4):961-989.
    The question about divine action remains contested in the discussion between theology and science. This issue is further exacerbated with the entry of pentecostals and charismatics into the conversation, especially with their emphases on divine intervention and miracles. I explore what happens at the intersection of these discourses, identifying first how the concept of "laws of nature" has developed in theology and science and then probing what pentecostal-charismatic insights might add into the mix. Drawing from the triadic and evolutionary metaphysics (...)
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  • Hume and the Independent Witnesses.Arif Ahmed - 2015 - Mind 124 (496):1013-1044.
    The Humean argument concerning miracles says that one should always think it more likely that anyone who testifies to a miracle is lying or deluded than that the alleged miracle actually occurred, and so should always reject any single report of it. A longstanding and widely accepted objection is that even if this is right, the concurring and non-collusive testimony of many witnesses should make it rational to believe in whatever miracle they all report. I argue that on the contrary, (...)
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  • Miracles.Timothy McGrew - 2011 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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