Free Will, Determinism and Moral Responsibility

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(In)Compatabilism: Free Will, Determinism and Moral Responsibility Introduction To all individuals belongs a free will or the unique ability to control their actions. Free will is directly connected to two other vital philosophical concepts: freedom of action and moral accountability.


This philosophic research study delves into the theories of free will, determinism, and moral responsibility and shows the relationships, exceptions and disparities among them, primarily within the frame work of compatibilism and incompatibilism. Free Will in Context Over the years, an ongoing controversial debate has kindled concerning the nature of free will. On one hand, free will can be defined as an ability that an individual harnesses or on the other, free will can be constructed as a possession inherent in a person. The reasoning faculty of humans facilitates and empowers free will. Causal events are attributed to the exercise and natural outcomes of free will. If rational human actions are assumed to arise from free will, then that would mean that free will is contingent on those events. That position leads to the belief that a person acting freely essentially manifests the working of his or her free will (Van Inwagen 1983). The implications of free will are moral responsibility, legal accountability and self-determinism.2 Self-determinism is a principle founded on free will and self-influenced decision and action. In religion, the possession and exercise of free will places man in a position to either follow the divine will or go against it. Free will makes man liable for his choices and answerable to an authority. ...
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