Freedom and Determinism

LS: According to logic, free will and determinism are mutually exclusive. They cannot co-exist.

OG: Incorrect. You apparently haven’t defined the terms. Define the terms free will and determinism, and I will show you your error.

LS: Predeterminism is the philosophy that all events of history, past, present and future, have been already decided or are already known (by God, fate, or some other force), including human actions. Free will is the capacity of agents to choose between different possible courses of action unimpeded.

OG: Your definitions are pretty good. Although you don’t need to include the concept of foreknowledge. You can change “are already known” to “are determined.” But your definition of free will is spot on. So if nothing impedes my choice, I do it freely. Therefore if I have a choice between tea and coffee, and I choose tea, and nothing prevents me from choosing the tea that I want to choose, then I am free. Even if everything is determined by God. The determination by God does not prevent me from choosing the tea that I want to choose. If I wanted to choose the tea, but God prevented me from choosing that, then indeed I would not be free. But that’s not what is at play here. You are treating God like an element that exists with reality that manipulates reality rather than the determinant of reality. What you’re saying is that in order for a choice to be free, it must be determined by nothing. But choices that are determined by nothing are what we call insanity. I chose to marry a woman because I am a man. Am I enslaved? No. I freely did what I wanted to. Nothing impeded me from choosing what I wanted to do. Yet the choice was determined by my being a heterosexual man. All of our choices are determined. Most of them we make freely. There is no contradiction. But for some reason God is the only thing that doesn’t get to be a determinant. That’s what isn’t logical, my friend. You’re acting as if determination by God is an impediment to the ability to choose what you want to do, but it isn’t. If you can describe for me a choice that isn’t determined, but that is free, I’ll revise my position.

Somebody can’t recognize a defense of compatibilusm. Satan impedes human powers of recognition.

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