A collaborative search for wisdom, at Middle Tennessee State University and beyond...
"The pluralistic form takes for me a stronger hold on reality than any other philosophy I know of, being essentially a social philosophy, a philosophy of 'co'"-William James
As stated before in the past entry of free will, the subject is a complex one. Many of the questions brought up by philosophers are ones that cant be answered. Free will is no exception, between the scientific evidence pointing towards us not having free will and religious views posting towards us having free will its hard to decide for yourself. I’m a man of science but also a religious one. I believe that God uses science to explain His great power. For example, most people ignorant to evolution would say that we, humans, were directly evolved from monkeys (which isn't true). I think that evolution is God’s explanation. I also believe free will is something God gave us. The bible states that God gave us free will so we have the decision to follow Him or not. Unfortunately, we are born as a sinner so we are inherently going to run away form God rather than towards. To link this back up to free will, from a religious standpoint, without our free will we would not have a chance to turn towards God because we wouldn't be able to turn around.
Saint Augustine spoke of both free will and predestination. Predestination made free will nothing. It basically means how it sounds, one doesn't have free will they have a destiny that is already determined. So in the same religious, christian example God has everything planned out for you in your life. If God had everything planned for you then there’s no possible way you could have free will. This is strange stance Saint Augustine takes since he was seen as a religious man. I really think he was foolishly believing that although we might have free will that God wouldn't let us stray. We have the freedom to choose and therefore have the freedom to stray. I believe God wants all his children to join him in heaven one day and will pose many, many situations to bring Himself to people’s attention. Ultimately, we have the freedom to choose to follow that call. To wrap up my final thoughts on free will, I believe God gave us the gift and although He might pose the opportunities for us to follow Him, we have the freedom to choose.
I’ve gotten the marvelous chance to learn about some of the greatest philosophers thanks to Dr. Oliver and I’d have to say that Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz was the one I enjoyed the most learning about. His Principle of Sufficient Reason is very interesting to me. The theory using logic to explain everything is an interesting concept to me. The theory is interesting to me because he links it to God. He thinks that since God made the earth the way it is that’s exactly how it should be. I also enjoy Leibniz because he’s an optimist like myself. Without optimism achieving happiness is a difficult thing and happiness is one of the greatest values one should cherish.