Why I Like Hume

Mark Vuletic

Hume features so prominently in this website for one simple reason—I like Hume. Yes, yes, you say, but why do I like Hume? That, too, is easily explained.

When you read Hume, it's like you're at a traveling fair in Scotland. You pass by a big tent, and in front of the flap stands the amiable David Hume, who asks you to follow him inside, because he wants to show you something. Following him in, you discover yourself winding through twisted passageways containing vast wonders which, at first, delight you. But, the light grows gradually dimmer, the air colder and damper, and soon you become aware of the crooked shadows that stalk you, and the warped mirrors surrounding you that distort reality into grotesque shapes—or is it, in fact, reality that is grotesque and distorted, and the mirrors only faithfully show you what you, in your stubbornness, choose to ignore? Your blood runs cold as you realize, with a start, that your host has abandoned you, and suddenly you are running frantically down the labyrinthine corridors, losing yourself ever further in the infinite twists and turns, descending deeper and deeper into madness. A banshee-like wailing of boundless despair rises out of the blackness—is it from an uninvited, unwanted visitor who shambles toward you blindly in the dark, or is it from you yourself? Your grip on sanity falters, cracks, then shatters, and just as you are blacking out, toppling forward into Hell, David Hume is there again, seizing your wrist with an iron grip, hauling you back into the light.

The next morning, you're sitting with Hume in a parlor, playing a friendly game of backgammon, eating crumpets with blackcurrant jam, and sipping earl gray tea (or whatever the hell 18th-century Scots ate and drank), and your whole ordeal is so distant a memory that you assume it was all a dream. You roll the dice, and you're like "Hey, a five!" when all of the sudden BAM!—Hume wallops you out of nowhere with an uppercut to the chin—BAM!—a knee to the groin—BAM!—elbow to the throat—BAM! BAM! BAM! And you're like, "AAAAAAAAAAH!"

That's why I like Hume.

Last updated: 21 July 2010

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