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Determinism and free will can never be reconciled. Discuss.

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?Determinism and free will can never be reconciled.? Discuss. In order to discuss the above statement, we must first understand the terms determinism and free will. Determinism is the philosophical idea that every event, including every human decision and action, is the inevitable and necessary consequence of previous events and are ultimately determined by causes external to the will. Determinism can be divided into two branches; Hard determinists and Soft determinist. Free will, on the other hand, essentially is the human will to act freely without the constraint of necessity or fate. Free will and Determinism can be seen as complete opposites, thus agreeing with the statement. However some believe that the two can be combined. Compatibilism is an attempt to reconcile both free will and determinism and suggests that it is possible to believe both without being logically inconsistent. ...read more.


This idea is summed up well by Locke: ?Our idea of liberty reaches as far as that power, and no farther.? This brings up the question ?so are we truly free?? and there is no straight yes or no answer to that. Free will is our own free choice to make any decision we desire, but how do we come about making a choice? We turn to our conscience which chooses the most desirable choice for you. However, for us to be truly free, our conscience must have no bias, and not be influenced in any way, otherwise we are not, in essence, truly 100% free. Our conscience (i.e. our choice) is influenced by our surroundings, by authority figures like our parents or teachers, by people we look up to and idolise, and by our environment. ...read more.


This is because it doesn?t believe in free will meaning that holding someone accountable for their actions is wrong as they have had no choice in committing the crime. To hold a person morally responsible requires for them to make a choice between two, or more, truly possible alternatives. The only way of reconciling free will and determinism is through the idea of Compatibilism. However, some believe that a compatibilist?s view of free will is incorrect. Compatibilism defines free will as the freedom to act, whereas incompatibilists believe that free will is more than that and to say it is just the freedom to act is not sufficient. This suggests that both determinism and free will cannot be reconciled, which is more likely, as they are two very different, if not opposing ideas. However, Compatibilism is a good attempt to combine these two philosophical ideas. ...read more.

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