The free will describes the property which would have the human Volonté to be freely determined - even arbitrarily - to act and think, in opposition to the Déterminisme or with the Fatalisme, which affirm that the will is given in each one of its acts by forces which require it there. to be determined with or to be given by : such is all the stake of the discrepancy of the Destin and the free will.
The origin augustinienne of the concept
The French expression of “free will” insufficiently gives an account of the insoluble bond which links it with the concept of Volonté, bond appearing clearly in the expressions English ( Free will ) and allemande ( Willensfreiheit ), which present the disadvantage however to dissolve the concept of referee or Choix essential with the concept. “Free will” ( liberum arbitrium in Latin) is the contraction of the technical expression: “free will of the will”. Of this Concept forged by Latin patristic theology, it is not exaggerated to write that it was invented to clear God of the responsibility for the evil by charging it to its creature. This clearly appears in the treaty Of libero arbitrio of Augustin d' Hippone, founded on the dialog of Evodius and Augustin. Evodius poses the problem in precipice terms: “God isn't he the author of the Mal? ”. If the sin is the work of the heart S and that those are created by God, how God wouldn't it be, in fine , the author? Augustin answers unambiguous that “God conferred on his creature, with the free will , the capacity badly to act, and by-there same, the responsibility for the sin”.
Thanks to the free will, God remains impeccable: its kindness could be held for person in charge of no moral evil. But isn't this to move the problem without solving it? Why God it conferred us the capacity to sin:
from which comes that we act badly? If I am not mistaken, the argumentation showed that we act thus by the free will of the will. But this free will to which we must our faculty sin, we are convinced by it, I wonder whether that which created us made well give it to us. It seems, indeed, which we would not have been exposed to sin if we had been private; and it is to be feared that, in this way, God also passes for the author of our ill deeds ( Of libero arbitrio , I, 16,35).
The answer of Augustin is that the will is a good, whose man can certainly misuse, but who makes the dignity of the man. Who would like not to have hands under pretext sometimes that those are used to commit crimes? However, that is truer still free will: if one can live morally while being private use of his arms, one could never reach the dignity of the moral life without free will:
the free will without which nobody can live well, you must recognize and who it is a good, and which it is a gift of God, and who should be condemned those which mésusent of this good rather than to say that which gave it that it should not have given it ( ibid , II, 18,48).
But paradox of Augustin, which makes also his richness and which explains why it could inspire, within the Christianisme, of the so divergent Théologie S, is due to the diversity of its adversaries. If he affirms, in the treaty Of libero arbitrio , the existence of the free will against the Manicheans which allotted to divine the responsibility for the evil, he tends, against the Pélagien S, to minimize of it the role in the work of the hello, under pretext which the man has, by the original sin, lost the use of this faculty: “ amissa libertas, nulla libertas ” (“lost freedom, null freedom”). Only the grace, granted free by God, can achieve the work of the hello. Let us keep in memory this paradoxical position, which makes that the Réformateurs and the catholics will be able, without contradiction, to assert itself of Augustin in the controversies about the respective role of the grace and the free will in the work of the hello.
The development scholastic
The Scolastique considerably worked out this concept invented by Augustin, while resting on Aristote. The Greeks ignored the free will, not having the concept of will but rather that of act voluntary, studied with the third book of Ethics with Nicomaque .
In this book, Aristote defines the volunteer by the union of two faculties: the spontaneousness of the Desire (to act by oneself), whose opposite is the constraint, and the intentionality of the knowledge (to act with full knowledge of the facts), whose opposite is ignorance. Thus, I acted voluntarily when:
- I acted spontaneously (I find the principle of my acts inside myself, contrary to the individual who is taken along feet and fists bound by kidnappers), and
- B I acted by knowing what I do (contrary to that who manages with a patient a poison while sincerely believing to manage a remedy to him, because the pharmacist inverted the labels).
The volunteer thus supposes the union of spontaneousness and intentionality; it is condition of Responsibility moral for individual (I would know to be held for person in charge because of to have left my country when I have be removed by attackers from which it me was materially impossible to escape, or when I crossed inadvertently a Frontière which was not clearly announced, while having intended to remain on the national territory). These analyzes aristotelicians were fundamental for the development scholastic of the concept of free will. The Christian theologists will retain of Aristote the concept of free like associating the will (spontaneousness) and the Raison (intentionality), and like flux the responsibility for the individual in front of the laws morals, penal and divine.
The scholastic traditionally defines the liberum arbitrium like “ facultas voluntatis and rationis ” (faculty of the will and the reason: cf Thomas d' Aquin, Summa Theologica , I, Q. 82, a.2, obj. 2). This expression is exact if it indicates the collaboration of these two faculties in the genesis of the free act, but erroneous in a more technical direction. Strictly speaking, the free will is a power of the will ( ibid , Q. 83, A. 3); better, it is the will itself as a will performs choices. The free will, in his gasoline, is not other than the will in the free provision of itself; to want, it is to decide freely, and it is thus to be free. The free act answers the following diagram: the will tests the desire of a good (appétition), which constitutes the Fin action; it solicits reason to deliberate on means to arrive to this good (deliberation), but it is with it that belongs to choose means which seems to him most suitable ( electio in Latin, which means choice) to arrive for this purpose, to drive the body to implement these means (the action strictly speaking), and to enjoy the good obtained (Fruition). It is thus the will which plays the driving role and she would not arrive to nothing without the contest reason. In this diagram of the action, the free will appears particularly in the choice, that Thomas d' Aquin defined as the “ actus proprius ” (the eminent act or the clean act) of the liberum arbitrium .
Thomas d' Aquin intends to prove the reality of the free will by two means.
- the first is the moral proof, Corrélat of the moral argument anti-fatalist (see the article Fatalisme). The man is held for morally responsible for his acts; however, this would be impossible if it were not endowed with freedom. The doctrines which deny the free will are fundamentally immoral as it destroys the principle even responsibility.
the man has the free will; or then the councils, the exhorations, the precepts, prohibitions, the rewards and the punishments would be vain (Thomas d' Aquin, Summa Theologica , I, Q. 83, A. 1, reference mark.).
the second argument thomist in favor of the free will is the study of the human action, which is distinguished from the movements Physique S (the stone falls necessarily downwards) and from the animal actions (the animals act according to an instinctive judgment, which is not free: the Instinct of the ewe the growth to necessarily follow the wolf). Only the man acts according to a free judgment, which “is not the effect of a natural instinct applying to a particular action, but of a bringing together of data operated by the Raison (...) Consequently, it is necessary that the man has the free will, by the very fact that it is endowed with reason” ( ibidem ). To choose, it is always to be determined, by the intelligence, between two or several possible: it is thus to be free.
The concept of free will was the subject of two criticisms, one theological (isn't to allot to the man a free will, to deny the role of the divine grace in the work of the hello?), and the other philosophical one (the free will does not amount it denying the influence of the reasons which determines our choices and our actions?). The first criticism is justified by the predestinationism: it leads to the quarrels around predestination characteristic of the Réforme. Second is justified by the necessitarism, fatalism and the determinism.
Critical theological: the controversy of predestination
The free will is one of the two answers to the question of the hello ( Sotériologie ) as worked out by the Théologien S of the Renaissance. The other answer is the Prédestination at Martin Luther, even the double predestination at Jean Calvin.
More largely, the question of the free will tries to locate the role of the human will in the control of a good life (likely to lead to the hello) vis-a-vis a God conceived like very powerful. In this way, the question of the free will crosses the 3 monotheisms and the answers that each one of them gives deserve the examination.
With the humanism, Érasme and Luther share the taste of the reading and the comment of the Bible with the rejection of the Glose Scolastique. Luther is one until - boutist while Erasme is a regulator. Luther hopes to have the support of Érasme whose moral authority is then considerable in its quarrel against the ecclesiastical authority. But the two men will be opposed on the concept of free will. In good augustinien, Erasme supports the free will, i.e. the responsibility for the man in front of God concerning his acts. On the contrary, being based in particular on the original sin, the monk augustinien Luther defends predestination, i.e. the serf referee and the justification by the faith , expensive with Paul de Tarse. Then, Erasme and Luther lose any moderation. While the Martin brother, in 1519 said “admiror convinced” of Erasme, it will come from there to qualify this one of “poisonous polemist”, of “pourceau of Épicure *”, of ridiculous writer “, dazed, sacrilege, chatterer, sophist, ignoramus”.
(*) Épicure philosopher hedonist is represented followed by a pig by its followers. This animal, under the biblical influence will be taken into bad part.
Critical philosophical: the problem of the freedom of indifference
The philosophical criticism of the free will is due to the role of the reasons (reasons to choose) in the determination of the choice and, consequently, the action. Am I really free to choose between two objects, one which represents a large good, and the other, a less good? Of two things one.
- Is I choose the largest good: can one then say that my act is free? Isn't it rather determined by the reasons, or more exactly, by the Prévalence of a reason on the other?
- Is I choose the least good, but how such an absurd act could be free? And if I choose it in order to prove that I am free, that returns to the first case of figure: the will to establish the reality of my freedom proved to be a reason more determinant that the preferable object. In one and the other case, I would not be free.
To cure this problem, the doctrines scholastic invented the concept of freedom of indifference . That is to say an individual called to choose between two identical, and thus indifferent goods. There is an equivalence of the reasons here: nothing determines it to prefer one with the other. However, the will tests that it is endowed with spontaneousness: even in this case, it can be determined to choose. The act then does not find its explanation in the reasons, nor consequently in the objects, but in the subject itself as it is endowed with a capacity to act arbitrarily. The concept of freedom of indifference would establish, with the spontaneousness of the will, the reality of the free will. By extension, the freedom of indifference applies to the cases where it there not of equivalence of the reasons: I then extremely well to prefer a less good with a larger good, proving thus that I am the only subject or the only cause of my acts.
The freedom of indifference was very criticized by the majority of the philosopher S and by many theologists (Thomas d' Aquin did not subscribe to it). Leibniz opposed to this concept the following objections.
- Choisir arbitrarily does not testify to our freedom: it is well rather an irrational act, fruit of the chance or whim. Isn't freedom, rather the capacity to operate the best possible choices?
- the freedom of indifference is fictitious. Under the terms of the “principle of indistinguishable”, two objects cannot be absolutely identical: they must necessarily be characterized by some difference. Who knows if this one does not influence us without our knowledge?
- isn't the freedom of indifference illusory? Under the terms of the principle of small perceptions, it happens that we are determined to choose or act by an unconscious reason, perceived by our heart but not seen by the Conscience. Leibniz anticipates here the concept of Inconscient, like that of the Phéromone S and the subliminal images. Who knows if a choice, seemingly arbitrary, does not obey an unconscious motivation, as André Gide in will show it the cellars of the Vatican ?
- Moreover, Leibniz is intellectualist rather than voluntarist. He criticizes the naive diagram of the free will of the philosophy scholastic, which amounts representing the will like a all-powerful queen, divided between her adviser (reason) and his courtiers (passions). In reality, the will is not a faculty remaining by itself: it is not other than the effort of the intelligence as it is determined to act according to its judgments.
If Leibniz does not recognize the concept of freedom of indifference, it does not give therefore in a determinism denying very free will. To be free, it is to be determined to choose by the best possible reason. To be determined is not to be given: it is to find the principle of its acts inside oneself.
Rationalist philosophyIf the thomism allots the free will to Adam, in the garden of Eden, mainly to charge to him the origin of the evil by the responsibility for the Original sin , Jewish philosophy sees the things of a different eye, according to whether it locates its reflection before the Cartesian revolution or afterwards. Two rationalist philosophers , Maïmonide and Spinoza agree on the following idea:
- the knowledge of the well and the badly is different from the science of the true and of the false ,
- this noncoincidence is a makeshift because, in the garden of Eden of before the fall, the rational knowledge of truth and the forgery made useless, and even non-existent, that of the good and the evil.
By the reason, the man distinguishes truth from the forgery and this takes place in all understandable things | Guide of Stray the , 1st part, chap. 2|VerdierThe good and the bad one, the beautiful one and the ugly one do not arise from understandable, rational, but from the opinion, the probable one.
As long as Adam had perfectly and completely the knowledge of all known and understandable things, it had there in him no faculty which applied to the probable opinions and even it did not include/understand them (ibidem). The good and the evil did not even exist; only existed the understandable things and necessary. The loss of this perfect knowledge of all understandable things whose benefit its fusion with God made him makes reach Adam in a new state, a different world:
- the things are known for him differently than by the reason,
- the way in which he knows them changing of the opinion fixes quotas for that he is done some: they are beautiful or ugly, good or bad.
For SpinozaThe filiation of Maïmonide with Spinoza is obvious in what follows:
If the men were born free, and as long as they would be free, they would not form any concept of the good and of the evil '' That one is free which is led by the only reason and which it does not have, consequently that adequate ideas | Ethical IV, proposal 68| Spinoza
The free man thus does not have any concept of the good and the evil which is the result of inadequate and confused ideas, either that of a good which would be correlated to him. Spinoza defines the good in the beginning of part IV of the Éthique :
what we know with certainty to be useful to us | Ethical IV, definition 1| Spinoza
Bringing closer this definition to its Foreword and proposals 26 and 27, its ethics rather returns us to an ethical of the virtues than to a Utilitarisme.
However, observing that the men are only of the parts of nature, it from of deduced that this assumption of a freedom of the man as of the birth is false. The parts of nature are subjected to all the determinations of this one, and they are external with the man. He thus considers that the feeling of freedom of the man results owing to the fact that he is informed only immediate causes of the events met. He then speaks about free need.
Spinoza then comments on thus the episode of the garden of Eden.
It is this determination which the words of Moïse in the famous history of the first man seem to mean this impossible originating freedom when Moïse tells that prohibited God with the free man to eat the fruit of the knowledge of the good and the evil and that, as soon as he would eat some, it would fear death more than it would not wish the life | Ethical IV, proposal 68, scholium|Spinoza
How to rest today the question of the free will?
Starting from the philosophy of sciencesToday, the modern Physique eliminates knowledge from the causes without making quantum indetermination the Preuve of a essential Hasard . The knowledge of the causes, even limited to the efficient causes disappears from the explanations to the profit of predictive mathematical laws because probabilistic and calculable.
the belief in the relation of cause for purposes, it is the Superstition | Tractatus logico-philosophicus , 5.1361, Gallimard| Ludwig Wittgenstein
Although, up to now, this assertion is generalizable only with hard sciences where the Fortuit indicates what intervenes not only without final or efficient cause but especially without calculable probabilistic law. The quantum indeterminism represents the taking into account of the limits of the Connaissance: that of an insuperable limit in practice as in theory with regard to reality in oneself . Contrary to the reality in oneself of Kant, this indetermination does not release not-phenomenal space of a freedom: the probabilistic laws apply to the level of the observable phenomena. With regard to the nonobservable one, it is the equation of Schrödinger which gives an account of it.
It is generally thought that the belief in the free will founds with it only an ethical of the responsibility. The Psychanalyse showed us that the majority of our acts depended more our Inconscient that of our conscious will. This knowledge leads to the paradox which the sex criminals are at the same time criminals likely to return accounts to the Justice because of their responsibility and of the patients, ordered by their unconscious and their Hormone S which must be neat. The Jurisprudence inserts this paradox in its arsenal with the therapeutic injunction where medical monitoring becomes a sorrow .
In this limitation, one meets the intuition of Nietzsche when describing the eternal return , it with the intuition of a creative will given in the past which it tries to justify:
I taught all my thoughts and all my aspirations to them: to join together and join all that at the man is only fragment and enigma and lugubrious Hasard, as a poet, a devinor of enigma and redeemer of the chance. I learned how to them to be a creator future and to save, while creating, all that was. To save the past in the man and to transform all that was until will say: “But thus I would like that it was. But thus I would like it” | Ainsi spoke Zarathoustra , III, 3 - old women and new tables - Mercure de France| Nietzsche
Free will and assumption of Everett
If assumption of Everett would be founded - assumption according to which would exist parallel Univers, which is not established -, all possible futures (or more exactly a number of possible futures having the Constante of Planck in denominator!) at each time of the universe in each place would occur indeed: there is no quantum chance; if a particle seems to have to choose randomly between two directions, actually there would exist a universe in which the particle takes on the left and another in which it takes on the right.
The relationship with the free will of the human person is more than thin. in the possible measurement or all futures (possible according to the laws of the quantum physics, which thus does not mean all the conceivable futures ) occur and where each observer located in one of these universes improperly named parallel with the impression to be only, the free will becomes in fact a not-problem . See David Deutsch.
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