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Free Will


When I was 19 I began to have doubts about free will, which I felt posed difficulties for my Catholic faith. It seemed to me then that my actions were decided either by my upbringing or my heredity, and this seemed to leave little justification for the doctrine of mortal sin.

Now, more than 50 years later, I still find this an absolutely central question, though not in the original terms. I’ve continued to read about the free will problem in the intervening time and now I’ve got The Oxford Handbook of Free Will. Not exactly light reading but fascinating. So far I’ve liked Robert Kane’s Introduction and Galen Strawson’s chapter, which takes a pretty radical line but one I think I agree with; he seems to be writing about just the question that troubled me so long ago.

I’ll try to do a review later.

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