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16. Persons / F. Free Will / 1. Nature of Free Will

[what exactly a free will is understood to be]

25 ideas
Anaxagoras says mind remains pure, and so is not affected by what it changes [Anaxagoras, by Aristotle]
Aristotle never discusses free will [Aristotle, by MacIntyre]
For an action to be 'free', it must be deliberate as well as unconstrained [Aristotle, by Leibniz]
A human being fathers his own actions as he fathers his children [Aristotle]
Epicurus was the first to see the free will problem, and he was a libertarian [Epicurus, by Long/Sedley]
Knowledge of present events doesn't make them necessary, so future events are no different [Boethius]
Aquinas attributes freedom to decisions and judgements, and not to the will alone [Aquinas, by Kretzmann/Stump]
Our 'will' just consists of the feeling that when we are motivated to do something, there are no external pressures [Descartes]
Our free will is so self-evident to us that it must be a basic innate idea [Descartes]
A thing is free if it acts by necessity of its own nature, and the act is determined by itself alone [Spinoza]
We are free to decide not to follow our desires [Locke]
Future contingent events are certain, because God foresees them, but that doesn't make them necessary [Leibniz]
All theory is against free will, and all experience is in favour of it [Johnson,S]
We must assume an absolute causal spontaneity beginning from itself [Kant]
Free will is a kind of causality which works independently of other causes [Kant]
A free will primarily wills its own freedoom [Hegel, by Houlgate]
Man IS freedom [Sartre]
Whether we are free is uninteresting; we can only experience our freedom [Camus]
Free will is the capacity to choose what sort of will you have [Frankfurt]
The most difficult problem of free will is saying what the problem is [Nagel]
You can be free even though force would have prevented you doing otherwise [Dennett, by PG]
Can we conceive of a being with a will freer than our own? [Dennett]
Free will is mental causation in action [McGinn]
Normal free will claims control of what I do, but a stronger view claims control of thought and feeling [Flanagan]
Free will is held to give us a whole list of desirable capacities for living [Flanagan]