Essay On Free Will And Determinism

966 Words 4 Pages
Can you escape fate? Are we free or are we influenced by outside factors? Does our past determine our future? Philosophers have presented two opposing views to answer the aforementioned questions; do we follow free will or determinism? Free will is the concept that we are free to make our own decision. Determinists argue that actions, just like our world, are based on cause and effect. The following essay will explore the concept of free will, determinism and compatibilism; a concept that some argue is the middle ground between free will and determinism.
Free Will
Free will is the idea that our actions and the ability we have to make decisions is done so freely. However, free will does not come without some stipulations. According to Henrik, Walter, a neuropsychiatric and philosopher, to have free will the following elements must be
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He argued that free will is an illusion and that we operate on a system of fixed laws of motion (D’Holbach, 1770). Determinism is the belief that there were no other options because we live in a world where everything happens because of something that happened before it. According to determination we only feel like we are freely making decisions but in all actuality we are not. Let us use when I decided to dye my hair as an example. Was it really free will or was it predetermined that I would dye my hair darker again? Even though I thought I had other options than dying my hair darker maybe I really did not. I had the desire to cover my grays, and in the past I have gone lighter but I always seem to go back to my natural hair color. In the end determinists argue that our choices are not free, rather they are predetermined. The unsettling implications of determination is how does accountability tie into this theory, essentially it does not. In determination we are unable to break free of what has been set in

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