Compatibilism vs. Imcompatibilism: Is There Really Free Will

1043 Words Jul 17th, 2018 5 Pages
Compatibilists and Incompatibilists debate determinism and free will. Determinism is the idea that our actions are determined by past events. In other words, in our present state we do not have control over our actions and they are pre-determined. Only one thing can happen given a certain condition and nothing else can occur. Determinism seems to pose a problem because it tests the possibility that we do not have free will or control over our actions because with certain conditions there can only be one possible outcome. Another problem it poses towards the idea of free will is that since there are infinite possibilities of what actions one takes, this means we do not have control over our actions according to determinism. Compatibilists …show more content…
One has absolutely no control over his actions, so if determinism is correct our actions are not up to us and we do possess free will. Either we deny the causal chain and accept that we all have free will or we say we do not have free will because everything is pre-determined. The incompatibilist argument is slightly more convincing than compatibilism, but is also flawed and can be very confusing because there are different types of incompatibilists. The first type is a hard determinist, they believe strictly on the idea that there is no free will. The second type are libertarians. It becomes confusing because incompatibilists believe one strict idea and libertarians believe that you must not only show that free will is incompatiable with determinism but they must also show how free will can be compatible with indeterminism. Kane uses a diagram called the "incompatibilism mountain" to describe the Libertarian Dilemma. He poses two problems, the ascent problem and the descent problem. The ascent problem questions,"Is free will incompatible with determinism?" and the descent problem questions, "Can we make sense of and affirm an indeterminist free will?"(Kane pg.34). He uses the example of quantum jumps in atoms and how they happen by chance. From the Libertarian point of view free actions must be undetermined, in conclusion quantum jumps must happen by chance. This

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