35 min

ST608 Lesson 03 Ethics

    • Religion & Spirituality

In what way is our will free? Libertarianism is the view that freedom is incompatible with determinism and, in fact, that humans have free wills, so there is no pre-determination of human choices. For Libertarianism, the ability to choose means that prediction or foreknowledge of what we will do is impossible. Determinism is the view that freedom is incompatible with determinism and that, in fact, human beings are not free. God, genes, or the environment determine. Compatibilism is the view that freedom is compatible with determinism. View a chart on Libertarianism showing the influence of experience, biology, environment and the Self on choice that leads to actions. (Alternatively, a libertarian position could make the self the cause of choice by reducing the reality or constancy of the self; either the real self imprecisely determines action, or the imprecise self fully determines action. Either way, there must remain an inability of the choice to be precisely anticipated given the nature of the self and the environment.) Consider for “can” there are many choices. For “would” there are many choices. View a chart on Physical (biological) Determinism that shows Biology (plus experience and environment) causing actions. This view has only an illusion of Self and Choice. (Related positions will insert God, experience (as in behaviorism) or other apparently external forces in place of biology in explaining other types of determinism. Calvin is accused of the position where biology is replaced by God, but similarly making the self illusory. Calvin knew of this accusation, and replied that he was a compatibilist.) Consider Grace and Law arguments. The work of the Holy Spirit is in us. The Holy Spirit is not in place of us. Compatibilism is the view that freedom is compatible with determinism. The three concepts are that people have free will; there is predestination; and free will and predestination are incompatible. Does Scripture anywhere indicate that free will and predestination are incompatible? View a chart on Compatibilism showing experience, biology, and environment influence or are contained under or by the Self which causes choice, which then causes actions. (This position does not avoid determinism, for the self is a concrete reality, which, while free, is not indecipherable. Thus, the choice is determined by the nature of the self (and the desires or motives therein), in accordance with the particular situation. The foundations of the concrete nature of the self are varied, but in all cases there is a real determination of choice according to the self's nature, not external, forcing factors.) In Determinism there is only one choice - it is predetermined- there is no "would". In Compatibilism there are many choices under can but only one under would. Consider the statement: “Free will is incompatible with predestination.” Consider that what we need is not more freedom but a different person who is being free.

In what way is our will free? Libertarianism is the view that freedom is incompatible with determinism and, in fact, that humans have free wills, so there is no pre-determination of human choices. For Libertarianism, the ability to choose means that prediction or foreknowledge of what we will do is impossible. Determinism is the view that freedom is incompatible with determinism and that, in fact, human beings are not free. God, genes, or the environment determine. Compatibilism is the view that freedom is compatible with determinism. View a chart on Libertarianism showing the influence of experience, biology, environment and the Self on choice that leads to actions. (Alternatively, a libertarian position could make the self the cause of choice by reducing the reality or constancy of the self; either the real self imprecisely determines action, or the imprecise self fully determines action. Either way, there must remain an inability of the choice to be precisely anticipated given the nature of the self and the environment.) Consider for “can” there are many choices. For “would” there are many choices. View a chart on Physical (biological) Determinism that shows Biology (plus experience and environment) causing actions. This view has only an illusion of Self and Choice. (Related positions will insert God, experience (as in behaviorism) or other apparently external forces in place of biology in explaining other types of determinism. Calvin is accused of the position where biology is replaced by God, but similarly making the self illusory. Calvin knew of this accusation, and replied that he was a compatibilist.) Consider Grace and Law arguments. The work of the Holy Spirit is in us. The Holy Spirit is not in place of us. Compatibilism is the view that freedom is compatible with determinism. The three concepts are that people have free will; there is predestination; and free will and predestination are incompatible. Does Scripture anywhere indicate that free will and predestination are incompatible? View a chart on Compatibilism showing experience, biology, and environment influence or are contained under or by the Self which causes choice, which then causes actions. (This position does not avoid determinism, for the self is a concrete reality, which, while free, is not indecipherable. Thus, the choice is determined by the nature of the self (and the desires or motives therein), in accordance with the particular situation. The foundations of the concrete nature of the self are varied, but in all cases there is a real determination of choice according to the self's nature, not external, forcing factors.) In Determinism there is only one choice - it is predetermined- there is no "would". In Compatibilism there are many choices under can but only one under would. Consider the statement: “Free will is incompatible with predestination.” Consider that what we need is not more freedom but a different person who is being free.

35 min

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