The debate over free will and determinism - Definitions

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Philosophy (Philosophy Unit 2) Flashcards on The debate over free will and determinism - Definitions, created by clm3496 on 11/04/2013.

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Created by clm3496 almost 6 years ago
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Question Answer
Cause and effect: The principle of causality states that every event and every change has a cause. It is supposed to apply without any exceptions.
Determinism: The theory that given a determinate set of conditions, only one possible outcome is possible because of the laws of nature. This applies as much to human behaviour and human decisions as it does to physical events such as a famine.
Introjected: Unconsciously internalised values that originated externally.
Autonomous: Having self-rule and self-determination. So a person is the sole author of his or her decisions, a free agent able to choose his/her desires and moral law.
Necessarily: in this context is 'logically necessary'. It logically follows from the concept of omniscience, that God knows our future.
Fatalism: As all events are predetermined, any attempt to change the future is futile. You may as well not bother to do anything.
Physicalism: That everything described as mental activity can be reduced to physical events, e.g. happiness is neurones firing in the brain. However, not all modern theories are reductive, but mental states can be regarded as nothing but brain activity.
Ontologically: Refers to what ultimately exists. Literally it means 'being'.
Materialism: Matter alone exists, and ideas and mental activity are entirely dependent on physical conditions.
Indeterminism: the view that some events are not causally determined; it implies the possibility of randomness.
Randomness: Lacking any definite plan or order.
Dualism: The theory that the nature of mind is a pure, thinking substance, which is distinct from the body. Human beings therefore consist of two substances - the immaterial mind and the material body.
Subjectivity: This means several things for Sartre. It consists of an awareness of self, which is the foundation of personal choice. We 'make' ourselves and the world in the way we interpret it.
Compatibilism: The view that natural causality does not rule out free will. My desires may be determined, but I am free to the extent that I can act on my desires.
Contingent: If a connection is contingent, it is conceivable that it could be different. It does not have to be true.
Necessary: If a connection is necessary, it is true no matter what.
Utopia: A society with ideal laws and an ideal way of life. the term derives from Thomas More (1516) who set out his version of the ideal community.
Desert: when we speak of a crime deserving a punishment, we expect the scale of punishment to be proportionate to the crime to reflect what we are entitled to or worthy of. But it might take a disproportionate 'treatment' to'heal' a kleptomaniac.
Mitigated responsibility: The degree of responsibility is reduced.
Volition: A mental event initiating action. To will.
Competencies: A competence in this context means 'the ability to be able to' or 'to know how to'.