Core Concepts

Actualism
Agent-Causality
Alternative Possibilities
Causa Sui
Causal Closure
Causalism
Causality
Certainty
Chance
Chance Not Direct Cause
Chaos Theory
The Cogito Model
Compatibilism
Complexity
Comprehensive   Compatibilism
Conceptual Analysis
Contingency
Control
Could Do Otherwise
Creativity
Default Responsibility
De-liberation
Determination
Determination Fallacy
Determinism
Disambiguation
Double Effect
Either Way
Enlightenment
Emergent Determinism
Epistemic Freedom
Ethical Fallacy
Experimental Philosophy
Extreme Libertarianism
Event Has Many Causes
Frankfurt Cases
Free Choice
Freedom of Action
"Free Will"
Free Will Axiom
Free Will in Antiquity
Free Will Mechanisms
Free Will Requirements
Free Will Theorem
Future Contingency
Hard Incompatibilism
Idea of Freedom
Illusion of Determinism
Illusionism
Impossibilism
Incompatibilism
Indeterminacy
Indeterminism
Infinities
Laplace's Demon
Libertarianism
Liberty of Indifference
Libet Experiments
Luck
Master Argument
Modest Libertarianism
Moral Necessity
Moral Responsibility
Moral Sentiments
Mysteries
Naturalism
Necessity
Noise
Non-Causality
Nonlocality
Origination
Possibilism
Possibilities
Pre-determinism
Predictability
Probability
Pseudo-Problem
Random When?/Where?
Rational Fallacy
Reason
Refutations
Replay
Responsibility
Same Circumstances
Scandal
Second Thoughts
Self-Determination
Semicompatibilism
Separability
Soft Causality
Special Relativity
Standard Argument
Supercompatibilism
Superdeterminism
Taxonomy
Temporal Sequence
Tertium Quid
Torn Decision
Two-Stage Models
Ultimate Responsibility
Uncertainty
Up To Us
Voluntarism
What If Dennett and Kane Did Otherwise?

Two Standpoints
Immanuel Kant viewed the problem of free will and determinism as an antinomy (an apparent contradiction) that arises from looking at the problem dialectically and from two standpoints, the first theoretical reason, the second practical reason.

From the standpoint of theoretical reason, human actions are phenomenal events occurring in the natural world and are therefore completely determined by natural physical laws.

From the standpoint of practical reason, however, actions are noumenal events that result from a free will that deliberates between alternative possibilities, evaluates them, selects one, and thus acts freely by self-determination.

Humans are determined when viewed (theoretically) from a third-person perspective as an object, but free when viewed (practically) by the "self" from a first-person perspective as a subject.

These two standpoints correspond roughly to to David Hume's fact/value dichotomy, and more recently to Wilfrid Sellars Scientific Image and Manifest Image. It is sometimes argued that Kant was a dualist describing two "worlds" - the one phenomenal and the other noumenal.

Kant's Idea of Freedom antinomy was in many respects a response to Hume, which Kant claimed could provide a defense of moral responsibility. But it has satisfied very few philosophers.

Now determinists deny both freedom and moral responsibility, while compatibilists generally assert a special form of free will (a chain of causes in the mind) that is compatible with determinism and allows them to defend responsibility.

But note the curious fact that all the participants in the free will debates are in basic agreement with Kant that there exists an Idea of Freedom, even as some of them deny that there is something phenomenally and physically real corresponding to the Idea and others redefine the meaning of the term "free will".

Most compatibilists (and even some determinists) admit that on introspection they find that (despite their refined theoretical positions) as a practical matter they continue to deliberate over alternative possibilities, they continue to act on an Idea of Freedom.

Compatibilists argue that determinism is compatible with human freedom, and that indeterminism is not compatible or at best incoherent. If our actions are indeterministic, they say, we cannot be responsible for them. (This is a critical part of the standard argument against free will). They feel (correctly) that there must be a deterministic or causal connection between our will and our actions. This, they say, allows us to take responsibility for our actions, including credit for the good and blame for the bad.

In two-stage models of free will, the indeterminism is limited to the first stage, where alternative possibilities are generated, and the second stage is an act of self-determination.

Two modern philosophers who have tried to make sense of the obviously contradictory (if not, in principle, irrational) standpoints in Kant's Idea of Freedom antinomy, are Christine Korsgaard and Dana Nelkin.

Both these philosophers focus on the "deliberative aspects of practical reason, which require the existence of alternative possibilities to deliberate in an act of self-determination.

For Teachers
Note there is also incompatibilism. There are two kinds of incompatibilists, those who deny human freedom (usually called "hard" determinists) and those who assert it (often called voluntarists, free willists, or metaphysical libertarians - to distinguish them from political libertarians).
For Scholars
The first compatibilist was Carneades (214-129), the great Skeptic.

 Chapter 3.7 - The Ergod Chapter 4.2 - The History of Free Will Part Three - Value Part Five - Problems
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