Free Will Vs Determinism Essay

638 words - 3 pages

Ted Honderich
Determinism Vs Free Will

Psychology 101-1322
Professor: James Pattison
By:
Belinda Bielicki
July 2, 2011

Determinism versus Free Will:

The most important and the oldest philosophical question is perhaps that of free will and determinism. Do people have free will, or are our actions pre-determined? Ted Honderich defined determinism as the philosophical idea that every event or state of affairs, including every human decision and action, is the inevitable and necessary consequence of antecedent states of affairs. "Nothing occurs at random, but everything for a reason and by necessity."
Determinism is used by philosophers to account for some of the choices and actions that cause or create the effects of causal sequences; these sequences raise questions about the freedom of the choices and actions.
Determinists believe our decisions are controlled by previous exposure to ...view middle of the document...

Most people tend to believe that all events or occurrences have a basis instead of just simply happening, if we get up in the morning, and go out to leave for work and the car does not start, even if we are not able to determine why the car no longer starts, we do not simply accept the idea that the car simply stopped working for no reason. Whether the car won’t start, the TV no longer works or the window won’t close, each has a cause. This same philosophy can be said with people, every action that is said or done has a cause.
The ongoing argument regarding whether or not free will in fact exists is one that has implications relating to the nature of humanity's role in the world, the appropriateness of praise and blame, and the perception of individual and moral responsibility, are the hard determinists, those deeming that all natural events as well as human actions are predetermined.
Determinist make a valid argument on causality its discharge of human choice means that recognition of the deterministic view would mean human beings would be no more accountable for their actions than an animal. For that reason if a determinist is to argue that determinism is more than the product of influences on him than he accepts free will, yet still discards the notion of conscious choice to act, or believe. Therefore if a determinist were to argue for his position, to make it plausible he would also have to argue that his belief only exists because of prior factors beyond his control, and then he would not be able to prove its truth without the acceptance of the idea of free will.

References:
(2009). Retrieved June 14, 2011 from http://www.informationphilosopher.com/freedom/determinism.html
(2009). Retrieved June 20, 2011 from http://www.informationphilosopher.com/solutions/philosophers/honderich/
(2009). Retrieved June 20, 2011 from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ted_Honderich
(2009). Retrieved June 21, 2011 from http://www.ucl.ac.uk/~uctytho/PofH.html
(2009) Retrieved June 23, 2011 from http://www.counterpunch.org/rooij1204.html

Other Essays Like Free Will vs Determinism

Philosophy Asign1 Essay

1433 words - 6 pages David Chen Instructor Lyle Crawford Philosophy 100 Words: 1404 4th April 2013 A Brief Introduction of Libertarianism and Its Dilemma Do all of our actions have a cause, and are we merely a functioning object following determinism? Or do we control our own behaviours, so we have free will? This long time argument has been extended into two opponent theories: Libertarianism and Hard Determinism. Both of these

Freedom and Determinism Essay

1768 words - 8 pages concept ‘Freedom’. The line of thought that supports the notion of free will is also called libertarianism. DEFINITION OF CONCEPTS Before delving into the argument, it is worthy of note that the terms under discussion be given a definition for a better understanding of the terms. According to Advanced Learners’ Dictionary, determinism is the belief that people are not free to choose what they are like or how they behave because these things are

Socratic Conversation

999 words - 4 pages ask you this: can free will and determinism ever coexist? Beth: I do not believe so sir. Since determinism pushes the ideas that we have no control over what happens or how we react and free will is the idea that no matter what happens we all have a free choice, they can never coexist. While there will always be those who believe they have no choice and only follow fate, they will never convince those of us who know that we make our own decisions

Nature vs. Nuture

804 words - 4 pages . EDITDeterminism and Free will If genes do contribute substantially to the development of personal characteristics such as intelligence and personality, then many wonder if this implies that genes determine who we are. Biological determinism is the thesis that genes determine who we are. Few, if any, scientists would make such a claim; however, many are accused of doing so. Others have pointed out that the premise of the "nature versus nurture" debate

Do We Have Free Will

3213 words - 13 pages free will. We can confidently say that this is not what we mean by the term. In that case, might free will be compatible with determinism? A famous philosophical tradition, running through Hobbes and Hume, maintains that it is. Compatibilists say than an action is freely chosen if someone decides to do it without any compulsion, say from someone holding a gun to their head, or a drug slipped into their drink. There is something to this definition

Sociology And Technology

2376 words - 10 pages technological determinism approach. It has also been said that technology cannot work on its own, but rather it is found to work hand in hand with the environment in which we live (Lian, 2007). Therefore in my essay I will be looking at various types of technology from a technological determinist and cultural materialist perspective, and then looking at how these two approaches compare or differ from one another. This would also lead me to seeing

Johnathan Edwards-Free Will

1554 words - 7 pages Free Will vs. To assert that God is omniscient, is not compatible with the traditional Christian view of free-will under compatibilism. Compatibilism can be defined as the belief that free-will and determinism are compatible ideas. Here we must define what it is that we are discussing. To say that one has free will one if you are to move to the libertarian view must be that an agent has in his or her power in any given moment to otherwise

Ethics Project Notes

637 words - 3 pages in nature. I like what William James noted, “Our first act of freedom, if we are free, ought in all inward propriety to be to affirm that we are free. Our strivings for good and our regrets over bad deeds are, he feels, indications that there is freedom, for if a bad act, for example, were fully predetermined, then there would be no point in feeling regret.” Determinism is a philosophy stating that for everything that happens there are

Existentialism

309 words - 2 pages Existentialism is in essence a belief that the world we live in is fundamentally meaningless and absurd. A philosophical theory or approach that emphasizes the existence of the individual person as a free and responsible agent determining their own development through acts of the will. Existentialism believes that individuals are entirely free and must take personal responsibility for themselves (although with this responsibility comes angst, a

Free Will

986 words - 4 pages “Human actions are causally determined and therefore not free” Discuss. Determinism argues that all human actions are determined as they apply to natural laws. However, to say actions are determined means that human action isn’t free and we do not have free will. Free will is the term given to the idea of human ability to do what we like whenever we like without restraint. I disagree with the claim that human action is not free and I will put

Discuss Genetic Factors Involved in Aggression

803 words - 4 pages with genetics factors is free will vs determinism as it suggests that individuals with an extra Y chromosome are more likely to exhibit aggressive behaviour. Richard Speck claimed that he was a victim of the XYY syndrome therefore he was innocent suggesting that genes may not be fully responsible and therefore innocent people are mistreated as those with XYY chromosome may blame the extra chromosome for their aggressive behaviour even if they

Related Papers

Determinism And Free Will Essay

1026 words - 5 pages Determinism and Free will Suppose that every event or action has a sufficient cause, which brings that event about. Today, in our scientific age, this sounds like a reasonable assumption. After all, can you imagine someone seriously claiming that when it rains, or when a plane crashes, or when a business succeeds, there might be no cause for it? Surely, human behavior is caused. It doesn't just happen for no reason at all. The types of

Determinism And Free Will In A Doll's House

835 words - 4 pages Perhaps the most crucial theme in A Doll's House is determinism and free will. It is a theme that encapsulates many of the other themes of the play, and forces the audience of the play to ask the question; to what extent are the characters in play influenced by society?Or are they purely guided by their own free will?. These question could just as easily be applied to the world today as it could in 19th century Europe. During the play we see

Stock Market Essay

586 words - 3 pages Free Will vs. Determinism Socrates: “What is the definition of determinism?” Maria: “It, the theory or doctrine that acts of will and occurrences in nature or social or psychological phenomena are usually caused by preceding events or natural laws? Socrates: “What is the definition of free will?” Maria: “Free will is a voluntary choice or decision, freedom of humans to make choices that are not determined by prior causes or divine

Free Will 3 Essay

546 words - 3 pages Free will implies that we have the ability to choose something or to not choose something regardless of the circumstances. Determinism is the idea that something causes every event, and therefore what we do is decided by prior events and not what we freely choose. Therefore this paper will argue that one theory cannot exist where the other does and they are therefore incompatible. If free will does exist then determinism does not. As I will