Analysis of Hume’s Argument of Miracles

Hume has done a commendable job in his postulation of the argument of miracle. He made an attempt to explain the true meaning of miracle as opposed to the majority who simply accept any unusual event as a miracle. In his own test of miracle, the philosopher has employed the use of universal laws of nature, frequency of the occurrence, witnesses and reliability as the only parameters upon which the miracle test operates. Hume has fulfilled much curiosity and anxiety concerning how to determine the true miracle in his coming up with the argument of miracle though.

According to Hume, many people have taken any unusual events for a miracle without any proper standardized principles to support their judgments. The Hume’s argument could be put into practice to determine whether a particular event is a miracle or not. I am not in an agreement with the religion philosopher that all miracles should grossly violate all the existing laws of nature and that anything that falls short of this test should not be termed as a miracle.

Nevertheless, Hume’s argument of miracles is based on serious assumptions and oversights. It is a common knowledge that existing natural laws are narrow in scope hence cannot be used to define a miracle if at all universality has to be achieved. Basically, there is not a single law of nature that operates within the spiritual realms where miracles emanates from. For this reason, the laws of nature cannot be used to define miracles- a reality that renders Hume’s definition of miracles and subsequent miracles test criteria null.

Additionally, comparative weighing of the miracles’ witnesses versus those of the natural laws is not a valid parameter of the empirical evidence due to its dynamic nature which varies from place to place. For example, the law of nature and a miracle may outweigh each other interchangeably depending on the geographical and cultural location. Based on this biased outcome of the determination of a miracle, a similar event may qualify to be a miracle in one locality but fails in another place at the same time. What an inconsistency!



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