Free Will Essay

262 WordsJun 18, 20142 Pages
The debate between free will and determinism stems from the apparent conflict between the universal rule of causality found in nature and the apparent ability of men to choose between multiple courses of action in order to lead to the most desirable outcome. Inorganic matter such as chairs, stones, and planets, blindly follows whatever forces affects it, and non-human organisms act for their survival alone, but human beings seem to be an exception to natures rule by their unique ability to ponder about how to go about their life and which values to live by. Determinists reject the idea that any of these choices are freely chosen however, and claim that a man is no exception to natures law because he and his choices are nothing more than the product of his environment. Decisions, they usually claim, are simply a product of conflicting environmental influences duking it out. A proper understanding of the nature of volition however, can reconcile the apparent conflict between free will and causality, and soundly reject the position that man is merely a product of his environment. By arguing that his position is a true statement about reality rather than simply the product of various influences, he implicitly accepts the correct definition of volition while rejecting its logical consequences. The determinist cannot argue that he knows his position is true after all, he is only arguing for it because of prior environmental factors, not because it is independently true or false. In short, in arguing for determinism, the determinist implicitly accepts the opposite of his position.

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