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Libertarianism Essay Topics & Paper Examples

The Compatibility of Free Will and Determinism

One of the biggest issues regarding criminal activity is deciding how to assign moral responsibility to each situation. This critical question has caused the world to take a step back, ponder the origination of individual choices, and decide whether people are determined or not. Determinism supports the claim that “all events are the necessary result of previous causes” (Lawhead, 267). Therefore, a determinist would say that our choices are inevitable outcomes of the causal order. Incompatibilism claims that determinism is not compatible with the sort of freedom required to be morally responsible for our behavior. On the other hand, compatibilism refers to the notion that if determinism is true, then free will can still occur. I shall argue that determinism…

William James on Free Will

William James, born 1842, was a trained physician who subsequently dabbled in works of philosophy and psychology (in which he officiated as a formal study through lectures) (Goodman, 2009). As did many philosophers, Jamesian thinking seeded many discussions on various philosophical topics such as metaphysics, morality, free will-determinism, religion and the afterlife; however, what truly made his ideas notable was his uncanny ability to borrow and integrate knowledge from branches of physiology, psychology and philosophy to weave new insights and dimensions onto traditional philosophical arguments (Goodman). His influential piece called The Principles of Psychology took these ideas together and encouraged a trend of pragmatism and phenomenology in philosophy amongst a generation of American and European thinkers such as the likes…

Free Will in Experimental Philosophy

Although the “free will” problem envelops a spectrum of ideas, I agree with the following belief: “The folk are compatibilists about free will. ” While there are, of course, incompatibilists and indeterminists, for the most part, the general population consists of compatibilists. Now, I know experimental philosophy has a problem with the use of generalizations without actual statistics, but throughout this paper, I will explain exactly why the world revolves in a generally compatibilist manner. Firstly, to speak of compatibilism, you’d have to assume that the world is deterministic, meaning that everything that happens from here on out, including human action, is caused by the facts of everything that has happened before it. With that assumption in mind, compatibilist believe…

G Strawson and Free Will

In this essay, I will outline Galen Strawson’s skeptical view of free will as presented in Robert Kane’s book A Contemporary Introduction to Free Will. I will attempt to show Strawson’s reasoning behind his arguments, and how he believes that his argument holds fast regardless which side of the fence you fall on in the debate about the truth of determinism. I will define the concept of ultimate moral responsibility (UMR) and show how it plays a fundamental role in Strawson’s argument. Finally, I will offer my own criticism of Galen Strawson’s view of free will and UMR, and suggest a solution to the problem I bring up. Galen Strawson is considered a modern skeptic regarding the question of free…

Free Will vs. Determinism

One of the most compelling debates of the present day is the one between determinism and free will. Questions of this issue reach back for centuries. But the current controversy has been sparked by new theories in physics and science that question whether or not the universe is determined and what freedoms humans have as part of that natural system. There have been many advances in learning how the human brain functions that have put the concept of free will into question. Atheists remain divided on the question of free will. Many secular thinkers do not find the idea of human free will a robust one. Others are convinced of the will’s free agency. Many atheists now maintain a compatibilist…

Free Will And determinism

I am writing on Free will and determinism. I am supporting that free will exist and that we control and are responsible for what we do. I will argue that free will better fits our life, than determinism. Determinism is basically some other power controls everything in life, and what we do. Even though people will argue that God controls everything we do, which I agree with, but the fact that everything is already pre-determined in our life, I don’t support. I don’t support determinism because there are things in life, that people do that I don’t think God would wish on anyone, but I think God turns a bad situation into a good one as only as you have…

Determinism and Free Will

?What are the implications of determinism for our understanding of free will? Argue your position. There are several implications of determinism that illustrate our understanding of free will. It is a general understanding that we as humans should be free to make our own choices our lives; yet we also understand that events, including human behaviour, may have a prior cause, perhaps due to natural or some other circumstance. This paper aims to identify and present these implications of determinism on free will. Naturally, we are raised in a society where ‘agency’ or the ability to act freely is a given birth right (in most countries anyway), subsequently followed by the self being regulated over time to develop socially acceptable…

Free Will Symposium

I will be discussing free will. Free will is one of the most highly debated topics in philosophy and the most common topic picked in this class. There have been many ways to prove and disprove the idea of “free will” but I am going to argue that free will does exist. I will first discuss what I mean by “free will” then, I will be discussing Nagel case and explain why I believe in free will and soft determinism. The word “free” is defined as not being under the control or power of another or able to act and do as one wishes and “will” is referring to the act of choosing. Free will is considered to be our…

Free Will Philosophy

I strongly believe that W. T. Stace is correct while arguing for the view of soft determinism, also known as compatibilism. Stace believes in compatibilism, which states that determinism is true, but free will still does exist. He puts both views together by studying the definition of free will. Stace asks, “How can anyone be punished or rewarded for his or her actions if they have no control over their actions? ” That statement seemed extremely convincing to me because both d’Holbach and Chisholm supported one side of the argument. d’Holbach and Chisholm argued that we are either strictly determined by the laws of nature and physics or that we are not determined, rather being we have the power to…

Free Will Philosophy

I strongly believe that W.T. Stace is correct while arguing for the view of soft determinism, also known as compatibilism. Stace believes in compatibilism, which states that determinism is true, but free will still does exist. He puts both views together by studying the definition of free will. Stace asks, “How can anyone be punished or rewarded for his or her actions if they have no control over their actions?” That statement seemed extremely convincing to me because both d’Holbach and Chisholm supported one side of the argument. d’Holbach and Chisholm argued that we are either strictly determined by the laws of nature and physics or that we are not determined, rather being we have the power to do as…