Ideas from 'Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion' by David Hume [1751], by Theme Structure

[found in 'Dialogues and Natural History of Religion' by Hume,David (ed/tr Gaskin,J.C.A.) [OUP 1993,0-19-282932-7]].

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2. Reason / E. Argument / 3. Analogy
An analogy begins to break down as soon as the two cases differ
7. Existence / A. Nature of Existence / 8. Criterion for Existence
Existence can't be proved a priori, because it can't be a contradiction to say something does not exist
28. God / A. Divine Nature / 3. Divine Perfections
We can't assume God's perfections are like our ideas or like human attributes
28. God / B. Proving God / 1. Proof of God
The objects of theological reasoning are too big for our minds
28. God / D. Proofs of Evidence / 1. Cosmological Proof
If something must be necessary so that something exists rather than nothing, why can't the universe be necessary?
To claim that motion is derived from intelligence is based on no evidence and explains nothing
Thought is caused by experience of the world, but the world is only caused by thought if it is linked to it
A chain of events requires a cause for the whole as well as the parts, yet the chain is just a sum of parts
28. God / D. Proofs of Evidence / 2. Teleological Proof
The thing which contains order must be God, so see God where you see order
28. God / D. Proofs of Evidence / 3. Teleological Proof critique
Judging by the design, God is finite, imperfect, may not be the designer, and may be a team of gods
If we infer God from an analogy with a watch, he must have human characteristics like sexuality, infancy or senility
Maybe the motions of the world converge on efficient structures, without divine intervention
Analogy suggests that God has a very great human mind
How can we pronounce on a whole after a brief look at a very small part?
Why would we infer an infinite creator from a finite creation?
From our limited view, we cannot tell if the universe is faulty
The universe may be the result of trial-and-error
A design argument implies that the cause is like its effect, so God must contain the defects of the world
If the world is designed why does it have unnecessary things like our second eye, camels, sheep or magnets?
Creation is more like vegetation than human art, so it won't come from reason
Order may come from an irrational source as well as a rational one
Patterns in numbers look like divine design, until you discover that they are inevitable