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"'. . . that He may teach us about His ways
And that we may walk in His paths.'
For from Zion will go forth the Law
Even the Word of God from Jerusalem."
|David Hume wielded his surgeons knife of skepticism to cut the heart out of ethics just as he had done with science; both science and ethics were psychologically rooted according to him (cf. his discussion of induction). Moral judgments are based merely in moral sentiment; a persons approbation leads him to prescribe moral principle. The moral sentiment is a given of experience (as are desires, aptitudes, etc.) and so unanalyzable. One does not rationally support such a sentiment, he simply accepts it as a given part of his constitution or on the basis of sympathy. Hence, with Hume morality becomes noncognitive and closed to public examination for truth. Skepticism closes the door on universal moral absolutes. Hume "defended" ethics by making it as tenuous as science! Because Hume saw moral judgments as rooted in feelings of approbation and disapprobation, prescriptions are not statements about moral truth but statements about the moralist himself. And biography is a woefully inadequate substitute for ethics.|
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