Is Reading This Column Really a Choice? And Does That Matter?

Source: Garrison Center
by Thomas L Knapp

“If the philosophers who have expounded throughout history on systems of ethics grounded in notions of free will had no free will themselves, how would that invalidate those systems? After all, they had no choice in the matter. If free will doesn’t exist, their explicit and implicit claims that it does, and the systems based on those claims are … well, predestined! ‘A difference which makes no difference,’ as psychologist William James pointed out, ‘is no difference at all.’ We either HAVE free will, or are doomed to believe we have it, and to act AS IF we have it.” (11/18/23)