Volume 92, Issue 4, Fall 2018
Hume on Laws and Miracles
Hume famously argues that our past experience of 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 a governing view of laws. I conclude that regardless of which kind of view we adopt, the fact that a miracle is a violation of the laws of nature does not give us any reason to believe it did not happen.