Topics Worth Investigating

  1. Hume argues that cases of friendship, benevolence, and so forth ought be explained in the simplest manner: "The simplest and most obvious cause which can there be assigned for any phenomenon, is probably the true one." What reason can be given for the simplicity hypothesis? (Cf., Occam's Razor or the Principle of Parsimony.)

  2. Is Hume correct in his argument that we seek objects, not pleasure? When we are hungry, we seek food; when we are tired, we seek rest. Is pleasure only a side-product of activity? Compare Aristotle's view as expressed in his Nichomachean Ethics.

  3. Explore the so-called Hedonistic Paradox: "Pleasure to be got, must be forgot." Relate the paradox to Hume's distinction between primary and secondary passions.