Think by Simon Blackburn. Chapter 3b Free Will

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1 Think by Simon Blackburn Chapter 3b Free Will

2 Review of definitions Incompatibilists believe that that free will and determinism are not compatible. This means that you can not be both free and determined at the same time. Compatibilists believe that free will and determinism are compatible. This means that it is possible to be both free and determined at the same time. Determinists believe that all actions are determined. Determinist reject free will in the CDO/incompatibilist sense of the term. Indeterminists believe that some events are not determined by previous events. Indeterminism doesn t clearly imply anything about free will because undetermined actions are not the same thing as free actions. Libertarians believe that incompatibilism is true and humans are free in the CDO/incompatibilist sense of the term.

3 Thomas Pink We re now going to listen again to the last half of the interview with Thomas Pink, and then answer some basic questions about what he says.

4 Identify the true statement below. A. Thomas Pink believes that free will is a purely conceptual problem. B. Thomas Pink believes that free will is an empirical problem.

5 Identify the true statement below: A. Thomas Pink believes that our belief in free will is based in experience. B. Thomas Pink believes that free will is not based in experience.

6 Thomas Pink speaks of the feeling of losing it in order to establish that. A. Our belief in free will is based in experience. B. Our belief in free will is not based in experience.

7 Thomas Pink believes that it is possible that we have goals that are not caused by past events. A. True B. False

8 Libertarians believe that A. Compatibilism is true and determinism is true. B. Incompatibilism is true and humans have free will. C. Compatiblism is true and people are free in the incompatibilist sense. D. Incompatibilism is false and people are determined.

9 Compatiblism Compatibilism, then, is the view that both of these things could be true at the same time: We are free, in the sense that our actions are the outcome of our decisions. We are determined, in the sense that the process of deliberation that leads to our decisions is a deterministic process.

10 Why doubt that we have (incompatibilist) free will? The main reason is that CDO seems to be at odds with a scientific understanding of how deliberation and choice actually occur. Deliberation and choice are psychological process, and these processes occur in the brain. But the brain is a part of the body. It is an organ which, like any other organ, works according to basic physical principles.

11 An incompatibilist reply Let s look at p. 88 to see how an incompatibilist might respond to this. So on one reading of incompatibilism, it is simply an outgrowth of dualism. Now notice how Blackburn analyzes this appeal to a Real Me on p.89.

12 The main problem with solving the problem of free will by appeal to a Real Me is: A. We have already proved that dualism is deterministic. B. Real Me is a mysterious object and we don t know how it works. C. It raises the question of an UnReal me. D. Real Me is actually just a version of determinism.

13 Blackburn s point Blackburn s point here is that unless you are prepared to say how Real Me works, then you are just solving a problem with another problem which seems even more insoluble than the first one.

14 Moral responsibility One of the main reasons that the CDO version of free will is so compelling is that it seems to be the basis of moral responsibility. For example, when we blame someone for an action we say that he shouldn t have done it. But how can this even make sense if all of our actions are determined?

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