Journal of Scottish Philosophy 18 (2):117-132 (2020)

Esther Kroeker
University of Antwerp
I examine, in this paper, the contents of one of the most famous religious texts of the early modern period, The Whole Duty of Man, and I show that Hume's Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Man is an attempt to reappropriate and replace the Anglican devotional with his own moral philosophy. Hume would reject the devotional's general methodology, its claims about the foundation of morality, and its list of duties. However, a careful reading of The Whole Duty of Man reveals that Hume shares its author's evaluation of pride and humility, and its insistence on utility and pleasure. Hume, I argue, would not think of this book as mortifying or monkish. Given the popularity of The Whole Duty of Man and Hume's desire to push religion back into the closet together with his passion for literary fame, we have good reasons to conclude that Hume was more envious than critical, and that the EPM was his own remastered version of what could be called ‘The Whole Merit of Man’.
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DOI 10.3366/jsp.2020.0263
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References found in this work BETA

An enquiry concerning the principles of morals.David Hume - 1957 - Les Etudes Philosophiques 12 (4):411-411.
Religion and Faction in Hume's Moral Philosophy.Jennifer Herdt - 1999 - American Journal of Theology and Philosophy 20 (1):75-80.

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