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Defending Hard Determinism Against The Strongest Objections Raised Against It

1679 words - 7 pages

Defending Hard Determinism Against the Strongest Objections Raised Against It

In this academic essay there will be a clear and defined description
of both hard determinism and its eventual nemesis indeterminism. Based
on these definitions there will be a personal attempt at denying hard
determinism. This will be accomplished through the introduction of
David Hume and his radical philosophy on causality and the relation
this may have on hard determinism, as well as the various
possibilities it may distinguish. Furthermore the Causal Principle
will also be introduced and slandered in its incapability to provide a
concrete defense for hard determinism and its potential in proposing a
solution through indeterminism. All these factors will ultimately
point to the possibility in which when A happens B is likely to happen
but not essentially determined in happening. This will give rise to
the possibility of a random event occurring and therefore the demise
of hard determinism.

Determinism is the doctrine that man’s choices, decisions, and actions
are decided by antecedent causes, inherited or environmental, acting
upon his character: opposed to free will. (Funk & Wagnalls, 349) Hard
Determinism is the belief that everything is determined, the most
aggressive stance within determinism, leaving no possibility or room
for either quantum mechanics, or free will itself. Indeterminism on
the other hand is merely determinism’s denial. Indeterminism
acknowledges the possibility of determinism to a certain degree but
suggests that it is falsified through some uncaused random
accordance’s in the universe.

In understanding or allowing ourselves a better perspective and grasp
on things we need to consider the question of ‘cause and effect’ Let
us consider, through the perspective of Hume, what is usually meant by
saying, “A causes B?” Hume suggests that the most important
perspective that needs to be considered is necessary connection.

Necessary connection suggests that the common concept of causality is
that the cause and the effect are necessarily connected- that is that
if the cause occurs, the effect must occur as well; the effect cannot
but occur. (David Hume, An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding,
Section 7)

Hume suggests that this perception of Necessary connection is wrong
and states the following:

“In considering the operation of causes, we are never able, in a
single instance, to discover any power or necessary connection; any
quality which binds the effect to the cause, and renders the one an
infallible consequence of the other. We only find, that the one does
actually, in fact follow the other. Consequently, there is not, in any
single, particular instance of cause and effect, anything which can
suggest the idea of power or necessary connection.” (David Hume, An

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