Philosophy of Free Will vs. Determinism Comparison Essay by Nicky

Philosophy of Free Will vs. Determinism
A comparison of the philosophies of determinism and free will and their implications.
# 148824 | 1,195 words | 6 sources | MLA | 2011 | US
Published on Nov 06, 2011 in Philosophy (General)

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This paper explores the philosophies of free will and determinism and their implications for humans. The paper considers the issues of the natural sciences, God or a higher power, and morality, and then reaches a conclusion on the side of liberalism or free will. The paper points out that if humans were determined in all of their actions, the entire systems on which humans have built their societies would be null, as the corrections and reward systems would be meaningless.

From the Paper:

"O'Connor defines free will, or libertarianism, as a "particular sort of capacity of rational agents to choose a course of action from among various alternatives" (para. 1). According to O'Connor, philosophers debate the different kinds of free will that humans may have. Some philosophers believe that there is a difference between free will and the freedom to act "because our success in carrying out our ends depends in part on factors wholly beyond our control" (O'Connor para. 2). Further, extremists suggest that free will either does not exist or exists infallibly, but "majority view, however, is that we can readily conceive willings that are not free" (O'Connor para. 3). Thus, the question is to what extent one has free will. Because there are many incidents in which one's desires cannot be fulfilled because of a lack of funds, physical limitations, and other reasons, philosophers like O'Connor state that, "If there is such a thing as free will, it has many dimensions" (para. 5). In addition, if there is such a thing as free will, it carries with it many implications. The first among them is the question of morality. If a person has free will, there is such a thing as moral or immoral. "

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Hobbes, Thomas. "Entire Causes And Their Only Possible Effects." University College London. n.d. 34 May 2009. <>
  • Hoefer, Carl. "Causal Determinism." Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 2008. Stanford University. 25 May 2009. <>
  • Honderich, Ted. "Mind Brain Connection." University College London. n.d. 25 May 2009. <>
  • Maher, Michael. "Determinism." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 4. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1908. 25 May 2009 <>.
  • Maher, Michael. "Free Will." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 6. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1909. 25 May 2009 <>.

Cite this Comparison Essay:

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Philosophy of Free Will vs. Determinism (2011, November 06) Retrieved September 30, 2023, from

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"Philosophy of Free Will vs. Determinism" 06 November 2011. Web. 30 September. 2023. <>